4.2

I just Read an Attack on Elephant.

Hey there. Wait. a. Minute. 

I just read a full-blown attack on Elephant Journal, its founder Waylon Lewis, and the Elephant Academy

Let me start by saying, I am all for people standing up for what they wholeheartedly believe will make the world a better place.

Many friendships thrive on conversations that just end by agreeing to disagree. The discussion gets passionate, and the voices grow stronger despite the opposition’s questioning. They enjoy the challenge.

Being a former debater who even coached it for a spell, I can attest that arguing is an art form. It is not a fight. We discuss and question both sides of an argument fairly.

Yet, there is a line.

One must be a firsthand witness, an expert, or have reputable sourced information to voice an argument worthy of a retort. No, hearsay or guessing counts.

Without knowledge about a subject, one should not debate it—let alone attack it.

This was an attack.

The author smacked down Waylon Lewis as a scam artist and threw the entire Elephant Journal community under the bus. I dare say he drove it back and forth over both a few times.

While the intent and the passion of the piece may be worthy and applaudable—going after the jugular is a foul.

It is uncalled for to rip apart a subject without having researched, interviewed, or have taken the time to question anyone, not even the source itself.

Read around. Elephant’s story, background on Waylon Lewis, and voices sharing what happens in the Academy and how they have benefited from it are not secrets. Those articles have already been published and shared…over and over again.

I could launch into a long and lovely story regarding my Elephant Academy experiences over the past two years. However, Waylon and another senior Elephant exec, Dave Rogers, commented on the article itself already. Their experience and evidence outweigh mine, so I fold.

Although, I offer a challenge to the author of the attack and to anyone who wants to change the world for the greater good:

Please, do your homework.
Come back to the argument when prepared.
Be ready to join in a balanced discussion and to be sportsmanlike about it.
Ask questions.
Listen and learn from others; and by all means, allow them to listen and learn from you.

There could be a winner and loser in the end, like in a debate.

Otherwise, if it’s a tie, respectfully shake hands and follow the words on Waylon Lewis’ hat from his Instagram account today:

“Make LOVE great again. We’re all in this together. Let’s disagree, agreeably.”

Final note: it is a choice to submit to Elephant or to join the Academy. It was Elephant’s decision to open the discussion and to publish this.

Check it all out for yourself, and decide what is right for you.

Write on.

 

“Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won’t come in.” ~ Isaac Asimov

“We kill all the caterpillars, then complain there are no butterflies.” ~ John Marsden

 

Editor: Kate Fleming

Image: Andrej Lišakov / Unsplash

Editor: Julie Balsiger

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Daniel Vaughn Dec 8, 2018 7:39am

A different point of view is not an attack.

Jenni Lynne Dec 5, 2018 8:59pm

Supporting what we love, is key. Even if we think what we love, is loved by others, that does not mean anyone else is showing the love. Loving from afar, is not really love, it just tells us, it is. Lets all move in closer. Thank you for stepping in and protecting what is loved. I love Elephant as well. Amazing show of support here. More more… <3

Galina Singer Dec 4, 2018 10:54am

This is so good, Kate! I agree with you wholeheartedly. Especially: “it is a choice to submit to Elephant or to join the Academy.” Thank you for writing this!

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Kate Fleming

Kate Fleming is an artsy, toe tappin’, dog snuggling, linguistics lovin’ liberal (but sometimes conservative) mom, a trusted friend, and a servant to the greater good. By sharing personal and professional experiences from chapters in her life, readers get a glimpse of raw lessons from real experiences. Find Kate somewhere outside, read her articles here on elephant journal, or connect with her on Instagram or Facebook.