Wednesday, October 28, 2009

You aren't really all that anonymous on the Internet

As someone who writes a blog that nobody reads, I don't get very many comments (it's okay, I don't expect them. Any I do get are a welcome bonus). And those that I do get are usually anonymous.

I make it a point to make sure that I'm never hiding behind a screen name. I publish my Twitter with my real name, have my real name on this account, and comment on various blogs either using the same screen name or linked to my Facebook or Twitter. I don't believe in hiding behind a screen name. I believe that those who exercise their right to free speech should also be able to handle the rights of everyone else to respond to their speech.

So I received an anonymous comment on the short piece I did on Councilor Minton-McNeill, who I believe should resign. It's been 9 weeks and counting since she's done any business on the council, including missing meetings on the city budget and the expanded smoking ordinance. This comment looked to be from some Internet defender of her, but this person is posting these messages elsewhere under the name "Charlie Stewart", as in here.

Mr. Stewart's comment on my blog left no real information to go on and I did not go out and search for his name. I regularly read Indiana Barrister and that entry has gotten a lot of attention.

Mr. Stewart says he is a neighborhood president and, due to the information he claims to know, an insider with Minton-McNeill. Surely he would know that the hush-hush attitude she's been keeping with the public can't be good for her political future. My advice to him: Stop hiding behind anonymous Internet accounts and get your pal to speak up, do the right thing and resign. There's no job in the real world where you can take 9 weeks off with no public explanation and expect to still have it when you get back. Council seats should be no different.

That being said, there are situations where if she has a legitmate reason for being absent, she should keep her seat. But considering Minton-McNeill is not saying ANYTHING, let's just say I have faith in my fellow citizens and I hope she proves me wrong by making her situation public.

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