It has been, I admit, a rather testing twenty-four hours or so, for reasons which will be understood by readers of Liberal Democrat Voice. Apparently, that which does not kill us makes us stronger. Trust me, that may be true in the long-term, but it doesn't feel like that right now.
Writing instant response pieces has never been a personal strong suit, and I have received a reminder as to why that might be so. A valuable lesson learned, I guess.
It is also a reminder, both for myself, and for others, that one is often better served by reflection before a response, rather than reaction made in anger, or in partisan excitement. And, perhaps, reading all of something and confirming understanding might be good too...
The nature of the debate which followed is just as troubling, if not more so. The ability of some on both sides of the debate to express hostility to those with whom they disagree in terms that are themselves wholly offensive does make you wonder if there is any common ground to be had - I must thank my colleagues for their efforts in moderating comments that comprehensively breach its comments policy in my somewhat shell-shocked absence.
So, somewhat chastened, and rather more cautious, I continue to ponder over the responsibility I have to the audience and to my Liberal Democrat Voice colleagues. A media platform, regardless of its scale, importance or influence, is a delicate thing, requiring balance, judgement and integrity in how one interacts with one's audience. An inability to bear that in mind has tarnished our media in this country, and our politics, and I intend to remember that in future.