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Sinbad the Scapegoat
Scapegoats, an individual or group singled out for unmerited negative treatment or blame, have been with us since the 24th century B.C. We have many ‘scapegoats’ in our society. I have known persons who felt like a scapegoat but until recently have not felt that way about myself. Now I do.
Recently persons have blamed me for Messmer Catholic High school contracting with the Department of Defense and for the lack of resistance to military at Marquette University despite my strong stand on militarizing our education system. Today I got an email from a group that I have been aligned with for 45 years saying they could not work with me any longer and used a stigma of me to justify it. Whenever I receive such scapegoating I reflect on my actions and conscience. I know that I have faults but cannot let scapegoating or stigmatization stop me from saying and acting on my conscience.
When I receive such criticism I always asked for an example of what I did, an dialog of what is wrong with my beliefs and conscience or recompilation. Seldom do I receive any of these but usually more scapegoating or stigmatizing. People seem more interested in attacking the messenger than the message.
However, as a scapegoat I have learned not to play into the stigmatizing but just ignore it. To do this and not encourage the scapegoating by reacting to it is difficult to do. Being a scapegoat in life is hard. But someone needs to do it.