Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Anonymous World Out There, and What to Do with It ...

About a year ago, I gave serious thought to not posing comments by Anonymous. A few considerations held me back:

The internet is rife with anonymous remarks. Without them on some websites, there might be very few, and the dialogue might not be nearly as interesting.

In the circus, in particular, the community is so adverse on the surface to issuing criticism of circus shows (other than, perhaps, Ringling), that the only route for some who do have opinions worth considering but for whatever the reason can't or won't reveal their names, is to conceal them under the Big A. I well understand the social culture in the circus community and the limited outlets it offers for vigorous debate.

However, I do not post all comments by the Big A. No profanity. No personal attacks on others; taking issue with what somebody has said does not constitute a personal attack in my opinion.

Believe it or not, the second most visited posting on this blog, if my blogger stats are to be believed, is "Two Views of Carson and Barnes," which came out two years ago. I posted two very different points of view, neither mine, one positive and one negative.

I just got a comment from the Big A that I did not post, even though it contained a lot of stimulating juice and heat, because the contributor callously dismissed the idea of African Americans being able to perform in circuses. Not just insulting but rather ignorant. Yes, yes, yes, there are very few blacks in our circuses, and I have long pondered why. But how can you discount evidence in the affirmative, such as the Ayak Bros, whom Cliff Vargas brought over. One of the few modern day ringmasters who really impressed me, although I have only see him work once, is Calvin "Casual Cal Dupree," originally from UniverSoul. I have seen a few comedy ground acrobatic acts (one on UniverSoul) there were sensational. I saw a decent high wire troupe from South Africa on the same show, too. I think John Ringling North II presented a lively African troupe of tumblers two or three years ago. Some said it was the show's highlight.

Why there are so few black performers in the circus fairly mystifies me -- as it may the African American owner of UniverSoul Circus, who pulls his cast from many nations. I have given up trying to figure out why.

I will continue monitoring my space on the midway.

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