Thursday, May 31, 2007

While I do consider myself pro-lunch in this case...

I think PB's initial post on the subject was meaner than it had to be, and while I disagree with a lot of the responses from people who disagree, they have on the whole seem have been going for a polite tone and that speaks well for them having a decent amount of respect for the power of polite discourse to solve problems.

It might stir up a bad association. It certainly will for me, thinking of students at Starr King, who have so many things to learn about ministry (none of which I heard mentioned in their latest YouTube testimonial, by the way) using up their precious brain cells remembering not to use the words “brown” and “bag” next to each other in a sentence.

for example, was over-the-top in my opinion.

Oh, and I am totally with Fausto when he says,

The opposite of reason, though, is credulity or gullibility, not anger or any other emotion.
(Confidential to Andy: Yes, the bible quotes were a bit much.)

who felt that if that girl could stand up in a meeting and ask Rebecca Parker why on earth brown bag was racist, she reckoned she could stand up and say that.


CK said...

By the way, another use of the term which is common in medical circles. I knew I'd heard it in another context before...and just remembered. Really, I'm done now! :)

ms. kitty said...

Has anyone who is getting so excited about this term and the so-called prohibition of it at SKSM actually read the article in QUest? I'm a Quest subscriber and I just had to go back to it and reread the article, which had not done more than inspire a flicker of interest in me. The story is told in a sermon reprinted in Quest; it gives no date of when it happened, the preacher does not make any point of it other than to say how valuable it is to learn these things.

Good grief, you'd think people would read the primary source before jumping to conclusions.

Jeff W. said...

I read the Quest article before I commented. I think that's true of most of the commenters, from what I've seen anyway.

ms. kitty said...

Yeah, I went back and read some of what I'd missed, having been mostly offline for several days now. I see that most people did. I still think they missed the point of the sermon published.

But here's something that bothers me: in the Unitarian Universalist ministers' guidelines, there is a strong admonishment against criticizing a colleague publicly. If we have something to say that is critical, we need to do it in a private forum, which the internet is not

I think that goes for students too, even though they may not be full-fledged UUMA members yet. Seminary is a time for learning how to interact collegially and we UUMA members need to be modeling that for them.

I'm bothered by the tone of voice used between colleagues here, both full members and student members. We fellowshipped ministers need to be demonstrating collegial respect for our student members.

PeaceBang said...

Kit, hilarious!! You JUST in your previous comment insult me by insinuating that I publish things "without even reading the primary text." Mere moments later you take a big dramatic moment to explain how colleagues should talk to one another, and about one another, with respect.

All without batting an eyelash.

SPS said...

Yikes! I have been following this discussion from the beginning and am surprised ,disheartened and disappointed by the tone it has taken. I read the original article and thought the whole brown bag issue was a bit “out there” but quite harmless and well intentioned. I don’t understand what seems to me to be an extreme reaction to it. Apparently there are some serious unresolved issues
around language and discrimination that I was unaware of and don’t fully understand.

I am a relatively new UU. I live and work in a very “red state” environment. Outside of my congregation, most of my social interactions are with people who exhibit subtle and not-so-
subtle racism, sexism and homophobia. Any attempt at avoiding discrimination is a breath of fresh air to me, regardless of how self conscious or doctrinaire it may be.

It seems to me that some of you who live in a more rarified liberal environment have lost perspective. It is my hope that you resolve your differences move on to more important things

ms. kitty said...

Again, PB, you have inferred that I meant you. I think you may have a guilty conscience! But I do appreciate your pointing out my shortcomings, of which I have many! Thanks for your feedback.

ms. kitty said...

PS. I realized that I hadn't yet read PB's post about the issue when I made this comment. So that's interesting.

SC Universalist said...

I dunno SPS, i think this whole talk is quite good - or at least could do some good. There are actually at least 3-4 way different issues being discussed. I'm not sure I can fully follow all the different issues myself. But it's good - something we need, and we need more of - a heck of a lot more.....

Jay said...

Thanks for saying this, CC.

PeaceBang said...

Well Kitty, as the person who began the entire conversation, it certainly isn't a wild stab in the dark for me to assume that you might be referring to me as "anyone who is getting so excited about this term," et al.

You have twice now contributed highly critical comments and then admitted you didn't have the full story and should have read more widely before making your comment. I find that unproductive and irresponsible. This is a complicated conversation happening many places at once. We should do some basic homework before flinging our opinions out there. Especially colleagues -- and *most* especially colleagues who claim to care about modeling collegial interaction.

Jeff W. said...

I am leaving in a moment to take a plane to China, so this has to be a short comment. But one more thing really struck me and I wanted to raise it. Ms Kitty, you've been talking about how you don't like how ministers and students are being publicly criticized. You've criticized some of the actions you've seen in the recent discussion, but held back from naming names. Now it seems that people whom you apparently weren't talking about believed (reasonably) that you were attacking them, and have reacted negatively. It seems to me that failing to be public, forthright, and clear in our critiques of ministers etc will just lead to this sort of situation, where many people mistakenly think the oblique comments you do make are about them. More hurt feelings, more confusion, more conversation breakdown. I never thought about this dynamic before but it seems relevant to the whole issue of how and when to criticize ministers and seminarians.

Meowia said...

ms. kitty says:

Good grief, you'd think people would read the primary source before jumping to conclusions.

then later goes on to say:

PS. I realized that I hadn't yet read PB's post about the issue when I made this comment.

Good Grief!