Sunday, May 24, 2009

A Dose of my Own Medicine...

Do you believe in "The Secret"? The forces of positive vs. negative energy? Of karma? That "what goes around comes around"? Or "What you think about, you bring about."

I am undecided. Sometimes I believe it is absolutely true. But then some really horrible things have happened to some really wonderful people. And some really wonderful things have happened to some really horrible people. I wont presume to understand how the universe works but I do know this... but I have received my first ever negative comment and I believe that I actually asked for it. Not technically...but "karmicaly"... (if that is word?)

I wrote an opinion piece called "A Mouthful about the AQHA" that contained a few derogatory and thoughtless statements and a negative overall tone which unfortunately only served to undermine the integrity of my position. Which is why I am not surprised that the post was what provoked the first comment I've ever received where the reader felt personally offended and the need to defend herself....which is why I can only be mildly offended that a reader would call my integrity in to question.

Also unfortunate is that the reader, Mrs. Orms, probably did not feel compelled to read my follow up post entitled "Where in the Hell is my Soapbox?" in which I backpedaled a little and apologized for the grandstanding position of my post. For that post I was rewarded with this comment by Jen098 (Thank you):

"The great thing about your blog is it challenges people to think about WHY they think something is great/not great. So even if opinions differ, I enjoy seeing where others are coming from and their experiences.It helps me understand my own positions on horses, riding..."

That makes me SO happy. I love that any of you choose to join me while I try to look just a little deeper at why we do what we do or tag along as I seek to become a horseman or just a better person, as I share my challenges and occasional triumph. I always try to do so in a positive way and as such you all have always responded with such thoughtful insight and opinions, even if they do differ from my own.

I never, ever...ever want anyone to read this blog and come away feeling worse for it. Unfortunately that is what happened with my AQHA post and is what provoked a Mrs. Orm's in to giving me a taste of my own medicine. That was a natural was mine to hers- that was that just a minute after reading her comment, I jumped over to my blog and set out to refute and rebut a few of the statements Mrs. Orms made that I felt were untrue.

But then I realized just how very sad that was. Because I did not feel compelled to quickly reply with a thank you to Jen098 when she left that nice comment for me. Or anyone else that has done the same. She complimented my blog and I didnt even say thank you! How rude! (I used to be one of those annoying kids that would say "How rude" just like Michelle Tanner (Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen) nearly trademarked in the 80s/90s family sitcom Full House. And yes, that was my attempt at comic relief.)

So often our natural defensive response to negative provocation is so much stronger than our positive. Blogs like Fugly Horse of the Day being evidence of such. So screw that. I'm not going to perpetuate the cycle. Because I am responsible. I started it. I am wrong. (damn, that soap box was much easier)

So to Mrs. Olms I have this to say: I am sorry that I offended you. I am sorry if I made you angry and/or if your day was in any way blighted by this blog. I acknowledge that some of my statements were unfounded. I hope that if you read this you will hear the sincerity of my apology. I also hope that you will maybe consider that my thoughts on the flow of negativity are true and that in the future you will maybe, or better yet all of us will maybe, when challenged by an offensive and or inaccurate post find a way to challenge the writer to qualify themselves in such a fashion that it may result in something constructive, rather than further barrage of negativity.

I would also like to further say that:

I made some very pointed statements about the AQHA without properly backing them with facts, if they so existed.

The point I was trying to make was that I don't think that most people realize that, (as I never really stopped to consider it myself) AQHA is a business. I believe, from experience with friends and family that a lot of people believe that breed organizations work on a NON-PROFIT basis and would be surprised to learn that AQHA is profitable and not only that but that they have such a rich asset base.

I wanted to speculated how the business objectives of the AQHA or any profitable breed organization could compromise the directive (that most people would assume would be their primary one) of preserving the integrity of the breed. I also wonder how it would effect their promotion (or lack thereof) of ethical or responsible of breeding (with respect to population and quality.)

As to her statement about Halter horses competing in roping and other events, I would stand corrected. I should not have made such an statement. My experience with Halter horses, while limited, lead me to believe that while a certain percentage of Halter horses may go on to have a future in another sport, that is not the case for the majority.

Blogging provides "the writer" with a forum for personal expression and can be at times mindless or uncorroborated but never intends to maliciously provide misinformation. My intent is to think. And write. And use my noggin a little, at times unsuccessfully so that it doesnt shrivel up till I am only capable of regurgitating a select few questions like, "Honey, what do want for breakfast/lunch/dinner?" ..."Hawk out of the garbage/bed/garden!" "Kitty off the counter/bed/garbage!" "No, I do not want that credit card/viagra/or to participate in that survay!"


  1. I enjoyed your AQHA post. And I agree with a lot that you said. I think sometimes the truth is hard for people to hear. I don't think we can please everyone, and someone will always get offended.

    And this is from a post you did a few posts ago....We have a BUNCH of unuseful horses here. Every one has a price tag on them. They all need to go somewhere, where someone will use them. I am with you on that. If you don't use them, sell them! I have no need for a horse I can't ride or use as a broodmare, which isn't really profitable these days.

    Also, we have a 15 year old mare that is foundered and if she ever is to the point of just NOT sound, she will get put down before I drag her painful life out any further. My mother in law couldn't believe I said that, but really, what kind of life does a horse have if every time it walks it is in horrible pain. She is happier put down than limping in my pasture. If you love them, you will let them go!!

    And I like your blog, I may not comment all the time, but I do read it all the time. Keep up your thoughts, it's your blog, you can say what you want. :)

  2. I own a horse ranch where we breed, raise, and train horses. On my ranch we have Paint's and QH's. While I did not agree with everything you stated when you posted the original post ie opening the books to other breeds for breeding, my first reaction when reading the post I felt kind of offended simply because of the comparison of QH to Hanoverian or any other type of breed. I love most breeds but I recognize that they are different for many reasons...And I will be the first one to say that if I could avoid dealing with AQHA I WOULD!!! To me as a breed association they are very difficult sometimes to deal with..But as a breeder I do breed my horses based on bloodlines and what I want them used for and there is nothing wrong with that, that is the purpose of a horse to train it in an area that you want them working in...With that being said I realized that your post was something that you were questioning as a whole and I hope you got the answers you were looking for..

  3. Chelsi-If a person never questions anything, never expresses and opinion or never makes statements-whether they are right or wrong...they NEVER give themselves a chance to grow or to learn or obtain new information. But ya gotta realize along the way that you are going to hit nerves, ruffle feathers and sometimes make people a little upset.

    Your opinion of halter horses obviously hit a nerve with Mrs. Olms...but why? Because it is primarily true. The vast majority of halter-bred horses do NOT do anything besides Halter. In a lot of cases, it's not the horse's fault, but the people who own them. Yes, I've known people who ride their "halter" horses, some make great horses...a lot do not. Some stay sound, but a large amount do not-irregardless of their "perfect" conformation. And then you get into things like their dispositions and ability. If you start breeding for "pretty", like FUGLY advocates, you are going to sacrifice in these areas.

    Here is how you aught to look at this-you put out over the open air, you opinions and your thoughts. Having people agree with you is always great, sometimes we glean a bit of new information. But most often we learn more from discenting opinions.

    Mrs Olms sounds a bit touchy on the halter horse subject and I bet it it because she realizes that what she does with her halter horses is in the minority and not the majority. Much like I am touchy when it comes to FUGLY dissing the foundation-bred horses.

    Don't take such things too much to heart though kiddo! There is nothing wrong with your integrity.

  4. Horses - as much as we love the little buggers - are a business. I did get that you were trying to point out that it's a business and I've pondered a number of the things you pondered. Bottom line - its your blog write about what moves you at that particular moment in time. If it moves people be it positive or negative thats fine. But - I also think if people don't like it they shouldn't read it and save their "soapbox" response for the people in their life who want to hear about the ignorant blog they just read. lol!

  5. Hey Chelsi,

    I don't have much of an opinion about AQHA, but I do appreciate everything that you wrote....because it made me THINK. Quite honestly I never really thought much about the AQHA, but I'm glad you brought it up and I completely appreciated your honesty and your opinions.

    Heck! I even appreciated your honesty regarding your dislike for sheep. You never made me feel bad or 'blighted', or even defensive about owning sheep. And I didn't feel I had to defend sheep, either, because much of what you said was actually true (sheepish grin).

    I guess what I'm trying to say is, that I like your blog BECAUSE you speak your mind and your thoughts....and you cause your readers (ack! did I say that....recalling your blog post. hehe) to think a little bit deeper and maybe even learn a few new things along the way.

    Keep up the good work here, Chelsi. I think you rock the Casbah!!
    (or something like that) lol!


  6. Funny, I have a story about "the secret" I will tell someday...I find it oddly fun that you read the same things I do (and have a very similar opinion)!

    I don't disagree with your earlier post entirely, I just think we find the same things everywhere. As for halter horses, I have seen some people grain young horses so heavily they have problems with growth while Olms may not do such a thing, there are people who DO. Ugh.

    Gosh, to say you have no integrity based on one post that has your opinion, and some darn good facts? She should spend more time reading your other posts before jumping to conclusions.

  7. There is nothing that inspires dialogue more than controversy. It even inspires people to think!

    Your opinions are yours ... others have their opinions. Who is right is based on countless factors.

    In my humble opinion, an apology is necessary only when there has been a deliberate offense for a negative purpose. You did not do that.

    On my site, people have made negative comments on stories such as the rescued horses adopted by Priscella Presley. And the problem there is ...?? That certainly created dialogue.

    Keep writing! Enjoy your blog.

  8. Wow - i missed that. I have to go back and re-read the comments.

    Ya know the thing is that it's your blog. You can say what you want (within legal parameters, of course) about whatever you want. I don't have a problem with people arguing with me or disagreeing with something I have written but I do have a problem with people implying that I can or cannot say something.

    Truth is I can say whatever I want on my blog, whether it bothers someone out there in blog world or not.

    I congratulate you to taking the comment and finding a silver lining and using it to improve your blog - but don't "not speak your mind" just cause someone might get upset. I like your blog because you say what on your mind.