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Occasionally I wandered in where I was not wanted and gave truthful answers.
Sometimes I even did it deliberately. A little disruption now can prevent disaster later.

The pedestal problem

"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--
Of cabbages--and kings--
And why the sea is boiling hot--
And whether pigs have wings."
I've been trying to write this one for a while now.

As I see it, the pedestal problem is actually two problems.

The first is the Idea that the people on the pedestal are beyond question and accountability. That is you cite someone as an Authority, they are an Authority in many things. But especially MORALITY.

Hang on, you might have missed that.

But especially MORALITY.

No, I am not exaggerating. When someone is a Leading Authority that you respect, there's a pretty big temptation to assign them authority that they haven't earned. Just because you know the best mechanic in town doesn't mean they know diddly squat about how you should discipline your kids. Or treat your spouse. Or deal with your pesky neighbor and his dog that has claimed your front lawn.

Likewise that means that if a Leading Authority is something less than perfect morally, that doesn't mean you should dismiss everything they wrote and said because they are Unworthy. They haven't fallen from authority, you should just recognize that everyone has their limits and their failings.

And yes, I'm referencing the Bonewits mess.

If you don't question what a book or Authority Figure™ tells you, you aren't doing your part. Ask questions. Question the answers. Question your questions.
That brings us to the second part of the pedestal problem. No one person, no one group has all the answers. And you should run like hell if anyone announces that they do.

No one should get a pass because of a label. It doesn't matter if they are "doing good work" or if their "motives are good." Words matter. Actions matter more. Intentions don’t.

"Fighting the good fight" is not enough.

It's hypocrisy to say one thing and do another. And it's wrong to overlook that just because you approve of their choice of target. It's wrong when someone proclaims their moral superiority while denying that their side can do any wrong.

So don't tell me about the pedestal. Ignore the label. Tell me how someone has made the World a little better. And don't be afraid to tell me about their failures.

We measure a person by now they touch the lives of others.

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A narrow slice of life, but now and again pondering American neopaganism, modern adult pagans & the World.

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