F.T. Rea takes the online anonymous support for Baseball In The Bottom to taskand it of course brings the same anonymous voices out of the woodwork to criticize him. Naturally the anonymous FanGuy cites anonymous resistance to tyranny as a justification for his stance, but keeping baseball on Boulevard hardly necessitates a Richmond Tea Party.
That said, Terry is right to question the motives of the anonymous support for the stadium, especially when one blog was recently created last December and has made baseball in The Bottom the major theme of its posts. Too often astroturf is being rolled out on the internet, attempting to create the look and feel of a grassroots movement toward something when it’s really one or two guys potentially paid by moneyed interests making it look like there is a movement. Anyone can anonymously start a blog or four and then talk to themselves in the comments under other false names. This happens in politics, business, heck, even restaurant reviews.
From childhood we are taught to question our sources – especially if one is working in a journalistic or academic capacity. When those sources can not be completely vetted or properly questioned, then the merits of their arguments are thrown into doubt.
F.T. Rea and others are willing to put their names to their questions and stand by them, even opening themselves up to anonymous poo slinging. That tells me more not just about their character but the weight of their words.
It really comes down to this: You do yourself and your cause more justice if you put your name on it. If you don’t have the guts to put your name on something then how can anyone else take you or your points seriously?
If you can’t sign your name to your work then how seriously do you really take it and yourself?
PS – Baseball in Shockoe is a TERRIBLE idea. Access to the area is horrendous and the development of the area is not one currently tailored to a baseball stadium. Boulevard is THE home of baseball in Richmond, there’s plenty of room for growth and little currently existing structures or businesses that would suffer from a coninuation of the theme and efforts there. It’s also right off an I-95 exit and you don’t have to worry about fighting through the I-64 interchange madness to get to it from the north (and it’s always easier to deal with the downtown interstate from the south anyway).