But lately, it’s been getting harder and harder for me to stay neutral. Because on some issues, I am not Switzerland. I do care deeply and profoundly about outcomes, about the paths we choose both here in the United States and around the world. To remain silent seems not only disingenuous, but also wrong.
It is too easy to be complacent. Live and let live is a wonderful policy, and one I fully ascribe to. Except—and here’s the important part—when my complacency leads to the rise of tyranny or when it allows an injustice to go unchallenged. Because if I don’t speak out against wrong when I see it, if I remain silent, then am I not part of the problem?
Last week, I wrote a post about how I believe all assault weapons should be banned. This is a hot button issue for me. A while back, I wrote about Syrian refuges in regards to the Paris attacks. Another issue I felt strongly about. I thought long and hard about posting either of these blogs, and then decided they were worthy of publishing. I’ve decided I will post more such blogs.
I may lose some readers in doing this. That will not make me happy. I would much rather build bridges than put up barriers. I believe in bridges. I also believe in open discourse. And I believe discourse means not only that I should write about those issues concerning me, but that I must.
Because the real reason I put pen to paper, the reason I sit at my computer every day to work on stories has very little to do with selling books. Make no mistake, I do want to sell books. The more the better. But the thing that motivates me to write and to keep writing has much more to do with examining the interiors of my own psyche, and my own imagination to uncover my truths than it does with commercial success. Most of the time, these truths coincide with the truths of readers. The very best compliments I’ve gotten are from readers who tell me my writing resonates with them.
To tell the truth, my truth, I must be honest. About who I am, what I believe, what I want for myself and for those I love and those I share this world with. You may not always agree with me. That’s okay. I wouldn’t expect you to. I do hope, though, that you will appreciate the honesty. And that my one small voice in this big world, a world too often full of shouting and slogans and pithy sound bites, will light a small flame, somewhere, in someone else’s mind and heart.