I'm not going to lie. I've enjoyed watching conservative pundits over the last week flogging themselves while at the same time blaming what some are calling an "uneducated voter base" after the reelection of President Obama. The proof is in the numbers that the country is changing, and my talk about diversity and why it's such an important topic to this country has borne out to be true. Vindication is a sweet thing, but there's so many more important things than that.

Everything Is Piling Up
Creative Commons License Ian Sane via Compfight

One such event came over the weekend when the CEO of Papa Johns decided to get into the fray and blame President Obama and the health plan for cuts he was going to have to make regarding his franchise chain. That he decided to say anything in my opinion smacks of insincerity because here's a billionaire who's spending tens of billions on advertising campaigns that involves giving away $2 million in pizzas to people that probably don't need it and being a major sponsor of a college bowl game, a stadium somewhere, and the Super Bowl, where there will be lots of commercials.

Knowing how fast health care costs are rising, knowing that they will be reduced when this bill comes through, and in my mind knowing that better publicity for such a major chain would be that they were going to make sure their employees had the opportunity for great health care coverage instead of giving away millions in pizzas and paying celebrities big money to be in their commercials, it's hard to figure out where his mind is.

Anyway, this led to a conversation on Facebook where someone posted what he said and I decided I agreed with that particular post and shared it. Most people seemed to agree with it, but one person, instead of just agreeing, decided to add that both sides were kind of shading the truth. The mob mentality came and all, including myself, wanted to know which truth was being hidden from the "other side", which was my side.

He decided to delete his original message instead, which is his right, and I wouldn't have even noticed if someone else hadn't called it out. But that person wrote something that I thought might be going a bit too far in his response, and I decided it was time to pull it back some and aim for some civility and responsibility.

I've always said here that anytime people decide to say something they need to be ready to weigh what they say against the possibility that others might disagree with what they've said or might call them on it. Equally, there are times when a pile on might be warranted and times when one isn't warranted.

For instance, it seems there were a great number of high school kids who, on election night after President Obama was stated to have been reelected, decided to write racial epithets on Twitter expressing their displeasure. Some media outlet decided to find information on many of these kids, then contact their high schools to ask them if that's what they were teaching in those schools. Turns out many of these students were athletes or had been awarded scholarships to some colleges, and calling them out like that resulted in some kind of action (most of the schools wouldn't confirm the action but confirmed they didn't tolerate that kind of behavior on their campuses, though the media service did learn that the athletes had been suspended from their teams & had closed their Twitter accounts). I have no sympathy for that kind of stupidity; social media can be unforgiving.

But on the other side, if someone decides at a certain point not to participate in something where they may feel they were misunderstood, said something without fully thinking it through, or just don't like swimming against the tide, that's their right, and since I knew the guy well, I wasn't going to allow him to be piled upon even though he was no longer there without some defense.

If one is to show true leadership, one realizes when to let someone get a bit of what they deserve and then when to turn it off and stand up for the principle of fairness and, well, "time to let it be." I stated my piece in defending his action, based on my assumption of what he probably meant to say, and the conversation ended there, not because I tried to order anyone to stop but because there was no more reason for the discussion, I suppose.

Consequences are one thing; going overboard is another. And allowing it to continue is unconscionable. Or am I wrong on this one? Let me know your thoughts.