How homebirth advocates treat other womenKneeling woman has posted an apology to me:
The recent post on my response to Dr. Amy brought a lot of traffic and comments and some really good conversation; all of it peaceful, generous, respectful and constructive; thank you! I must tell you all that I'm not entirely proud of that post; I want to apologize to Dr. Amy because she kind of made a too convenient embodiment of a kind of discourse and conversation that many of us, in the admittedly fringe world of alternative birth; have had too many times. It was not intended to target her personally or professionally;.. Dr. Amy, I am sorry if what I wrote seemed like a "diatribe" such was not my intention and I will not, I hope, find myself guilty in the future of creating you as more of an archtype than a 'real' person; I apologize for that.I appreciate the apology and I especially appreciate the thoughtfulness that went into composing it. I was never angry to begin with, and I am certainly not angry now, but I am rather bemused. In many ways these two posts epitomize how homebirth advocates treat women who disagree with them, and it's not a pretty picture. If homebirth advocates want to know why other women have such strong reactions to them, they might consider this example.
While I appreciate the apology, is bears no relationship to the original insult and it actually denies that the insult occured:
1. "It was not intended to target her personally or professionally" and "I am sorry if what I wrote seemed like a "diatribe" such was not my intention". Those sentiment are belied by what you actually wrote:
"Dr. Amy doesn't get Midwives; she just can't get there!"2. "The recent post on my response to Dr. Amy brought a lot of traffic and comments and some really good conversation; all of it peaceful, generous, respectful and constructive ..." Really? That's not what I read. I read:
"I find highly questionable and suspect the character of anyone who would sum up any group of people, completely unknown to her personally or professionally; as "whackos". (By the way, I never said that; someone else said it and you ascribed it to me.)
"And Dr. Amy doesn't understand women."
"Dr. Amy believes, as she of course very much needs to, that my expressed frustration with her is, and can only be, because my "little world view" was falling down around my ears, due, of course, to her having enlightened me."
"She believes, the darling girl, that I've never heard any of this bad news before"
"Dr. Amy is not able to be contributed to; she lacks the nimbleness of mind, the creativity, to respond authentically."
At the risk of stating the obvious, those comments are personal, nasty, and false. Homebirth advocates do this all too frequently. They insult other women, and then they deny that they have insulted them.
"she is like some of the most insideous (and popular!) radio-talk demons: Quick and Harsh and Snappish"Since when is comparing another woman to a "rapist" part of a "peaceful, generous, respectful and constructive" conservation?
"Your words will resonate far longer than any bully's words ever can.
My minimal education in psychology has come in most handy of late. The verbage of brilliant psychotics often comes across as inspired, when, in fact, the language is twisted, wretched and filled with the example of their overflowing dearth of self-esteem.
Bullies are like rapists..."
"She's a bored housewife with too much time on her hands"
As I said, I appreciate the apology and the thought behind it, but the effect is dramatically diminished by using the apology to deny that any insult was intended, or to claim that a conversation referring to another woman as a bully and a rapist is consistent with respectful discourse. Homebirth advocates need to say only what they are willing to "own", "own" what they say, and understand that personal insults have no place in intellectual discussion.