Friday, September 4, 2015

An Open Letter to Impact Team

I don't know who you are.

Oh, I hope and pray to the gods I don't believe in that the FBI finds you. I don't care if you're prosecuted or not. I just want to know your names. I want to see your faces, see if they match up to the images I have in my mind. You're fat, and you're skinny. You have grubby Cheeto-stained fingers with nails chewed to the quick by your rotten teeth, blackened and decayed by the gallons of Mountain Dew you pour down your gullets while you sit at your battles stations in the basement of your mom's home, or your dark, cheap little studio apartment. Greasy hair, greasy skin... and greasy souls.

I've never used Ashley Madison. Neither has my (ex?) boyfriend. Yet you destroyed us anyway. In your desire to take down the big bad website, you instead destroyed the lives of people you don't know, relationships you know nothing about. It was none of your business.

It was not your battle to fight.

Is Ashley Madison a big scam? I don't know, nor do I care. I wasn't a user. Perhaps they were taking money from their members to destroy their information, and not following through. That was between AM and their users. It was not your battle to fight.

It was not your battle to fight.

You know nothing of relationships. Of the approximate 4 billion adults on this planet, there are 4 billion stories. None of them are black and white. Sure, there are men who just can't keep their dicks in their pants, and women who can't keep their legs closed. But there are far more stories with layers upon layers, stories that make Dostoyevsky look like light bathroom reading.

Stories that are far beyond your feeble comprehension.

You don't know what leads people to where they are today. What twists and turns their lives take. You do not know the reasons behind the choices people make.

But you also don't care. You're terrorists. Lazy sociopaths. Hiding behind your keyboards, you cared nothing about the real human lives you destroyed.

And, like all terrorists, you failed abysmally in your mission.

Is Ashley Madison gone? Nope. From all accounts, they're doing better than ever and *gasp* real women are even signing up for accounts now. Good job, mother-fuckers!

Everybody knows about Ashley Madison now. And people know how to use it properly, too.

(For any of you wondering, the secrets are thus: Throwaway email accounts, incognito browsing, never, ever store passwords and most importantly, get some cash, go to the store and purchase some of those Visa gift cards with the untraceable, throwaway credit card numbers. BOOM- it's easier than ever to have an affair!)

You don't get to know my story, or his, or the sequence of events that brought us together. You'd never be able to follow it, or understand it. It's simply beyond your comprehension.

I'm a good person, but I don't need to justify myself to you. He's a good man. We never met, never heard each other's voices. We filled a need in each other's lives, without affecting the lives we lived in the real world.

At least, we did until you came along. We're broken now, and Ashley Madison is going strong.

I hate you. And that isn't something I say lightly. Hate is a strong word, a powerful emotion and one I don't like to feel. I love puppies and kittens and rainbows and ladybugs and the scent of Jasmine and just waking up every day and being alive. I appreciate people and their complexities and intricacies and their faults and foibles. I never want to cause another being pain- be it a human or a bug crawling on the ground.

But I hate you. And that's why I want to know who you are. I want to know who it is that I hate so very much. I hate you for what you've done to me, and to him... and yes, to her, too.

And I hate you for making me feel this hatred.

There is so much ugliness in this world we all share. So much pain and misery and hatred and I never wanted to be a part of that. I wanted to take my little spot on this planet and make others smile. You'll never be able to know and appreciate the feeling in your heart when you've done something selfless to give another a little bit of happiness. Just a moment of acknowledgement that their lives matter and that you see them, and wish them well in their journey through life.

I was a Pollyanna. I used to see the best in everyone I met. I fought, hard, deep within myself not to judge others on the basis of what I saw at first glance. To give everyone the benefit of the doubt and know that each human being has their own story that is none of my business. I believed that there was good in every one if you looked hard enough.

But for the life of me, I see nothing good in your actions. There is nothing noble in what you did. You sought to destroy Ashley Madison- you succeeded in destroying human lives. There is nothing- nothing- to be proud of there.

And, god, the people celebrating what you've done. What sort of a world is it we're living in where people are getting off on other's sadness? Sanctimonious, holier-than-thou monsters. I know- we all know- that every single one of us has flaws. We all make mistakes. And we all end up hurting people, sometimes on purpose, often completely inadvertently.

The sickness is in when we take joy in that. When we enjoy hurting others. When we enjoy seeing others be hurt.

I am imperfect. He is imperfect. But neither of us has the sickness in our souls that you do, Impact Team. We didn't seek and find a way to cause insurmountable pain in our fellow humans.

But you did. You did that.

And I hate you.

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