Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Manners Please!

There is no doubt about it, animal lovers are a passionate group of people.  Unfortunately, this leads some of them to let their emotions, rather than reason, rule.  Here are some thoughts (or tips if you prefer) about this.

·  When you rant in a comment posted to a news article or Facebook page, you detract from the issue at hand ... helping the animal in need.

·   When you rant in a comment posted to a news article or Facebook page, the person you are ranting at will not see it, so what’s the point?

·   Name calling and profanity does nothing to help the situation, and may in fact make it worse.  Again, the person you are cursing at and/or calling less-than-polite names won’t see it.

·   Threatening physical harm to a person, be it the alleged abuser or an elected official, absolutely does more harm than good.  It also has the potential to land you in jail.

·   Posting personal information, such as address or phone number, of an alleged abuser can land you in jail, especially if you include inflammatory comments with it.

·   Writing to elected officials, police departments, etc can help … IF it is done politely and with thought.

·   Sending rants and other impolite writings will not help in any way.  They will be deleted and ignored.  They also tend to destroy the credibility of animal advocates as a whole.

·   Do not spread rumors or unverified information.  It will create confusion as well as harming the effort to help the animal in need.

I understand the need to rant about many of the situations that animal lovers and advocates come across multiple times a day.  BUT keep your rant to yourself:

·   When you write that message, email or letter, be polite and courteous.  State your concern, argument and/or plea with reason and verified facts.

·   When you write that comment to a news article or Facebook page, make it one of love and/or support. 

·   Remember that sometimes it takes time to gather information and verify it.  Be patient while waiting for updates to be posted.

·   Remember that often numerous comments are being posted every minute, and a lot of scrolling takes place.  Have the patience and take the time to scroll through several pages of postings.  The question you want to ask and/or the information you are looking for may already be there.

Animal lovers and advocates can do a lot of good if their ‘efforts’ are done correctly and with reason. 

We are the voices for these animals, and when we speak for them, not only must we make ourselves heard; we must say it in a way where people will listen.