Monday, July 21, 2014

Dear Ellen

An open letter to Ellen Fox, bus operator and writer of the Cyber Stalking and Workplace Bullying blog.

Dear Ellen,

I'm sorry for what I wrote about you in my blog recently.

I know that other people in the blogging world are going to probably scold me for doing this, but I believe an apology is necessary.

You see, Lane Jensen is one of my best friends. He is also one of the levers we TriMet bloggers pull if we want to get pageviews, since any time his name is mentioned our views go up significantly due to his quasi-celebrity status. So I felt that writing a story summing up my impression of certain recent events regarding your interactions was warranted. It was also my opportunity to support my friend.

I recognize that Lane has done some stupid things in the past. While I support him as a person and a friend, I haven't always supported his actions. There apparently were things he did that made you afraid of him that went on before I knew him as well as I do now. These were things that certainly weren't good and should never have happened. Please know that he has grown a lot from consequences of his mistakes and has matured to be a person who wouldn't do anything like that again.

But I am not here today to vouch for Lane. I am here because I have realized my mistake.

It has become standard procedure in the blogging world that if one finds someone they disagree with, it's okay to make a public statement/attack on one's own blog. A story is a story, especially if it is informing people about events that they may find interesting or pertinent.

So I decided to point out what I perceived about your interactions with Lane on my blog in the name of being informative. I thought I laid out my argument pretty well, but when I went back and read it tonight I realized all I did was rehash everything everybody else says about you, things which really aren't that nice.

I do have opinions about some of your tactics regarding Lane. And I will always side with him in a dispute as much as is reasonable. But shame on me for speaking such hurtful things to you, turning myself into one of the very types of people you speak against.

The Transit Rider PDX blog is designed to be informative and moderate, seeking for all to know the truth, and where it is lacking that together we find the truth. It is not supposed to be a place where people are bashed and bullied. Although this blog is portrayed as a sort of news source, it is really just an extension of me, Patrick Stanley. I cannot separate from what I write, because this blog is fully mine and no one else's. The person I want to be and the person this blog portays me to be need to be the same thing.

I do have opinions about people. For example, I disagree with Al M about more things than we agree on. But I have made it a point to not alienate him, to find common ground, so that we can strive as colleagues to see real change at TriMet. If I can keep a level head with Al, I have no excuse for not keeping a level head concerning every other person. No one deserves to be made a target or humilated.

So please forgive me for what I have done. I know I don't have to apologize. I just want to take a stand for doing what is right. I want to be the bigger person and not just disappear in the crowd. I hope that my integrity is not lost in your eyes.

Patrick Stanley
Transit Rider PDX

P.S. If Lane ever accidentally ends up on your bus, I have instructed him to not do anything other than show his pass and take his seat. Please do not call the police on him. He really doesn't want a confrontation.