Believe it or not, I wasn't born espousing my point of view. It took me a while to become an annoying, opinionated jerk. And despite what my aana thinks (love you!), I don't always share it. ;)
This morning, I read a bit of one-sided, mean-spirited reporting from what I normally consider a reputable news source. I'll keep the subject matter vague, for reasons that I'll quickly make clear. But suffice to say it's something I care about.
Normally, I'd write a letter to the editor expressing my vague consternation, and if I was really upset, I'd place a call as well. But in this case, the story is about something I've always felt unsafe opining on. People who take the same stance as me, in my position, have a history of facing retaliation. Or worse. It's not the vague sort of threat you get from being, say, a staunch Libertarian in a Green Party neighbourhood (or anything like that).
It's easy enough to write an anonymous letter to the editor. However, those are frequently ignored. If not outright trashed. And I do have a name that I do occasionally use for signing up for things, so if get letters intended for my faux-ego, they get tossed before I even go inside my home.
But what responsibility do I have to stand up for my convictions? Surely using a pen name is somewhat disingenuous. Surely I should stand up for what I earnestly believe to be the truth. I've no problem facing down animal rights nutters and terrorists when it comes to standing up for my field, etc. Why not here?
Sadly, I think I'll sign with a pen-name. It's the cowardly way out, but I suppose that's how I'm feeling this morning.