A wise and thoughtful friend pointed out that my knee-jerk reaction that resulted in my last post made me sound like a member of the Ladies' Temperance Union, which for anyone who knows me (particularly said friend, who has seen me through the good, bad and the Merlot, letting me stay in her guest room on more than one late night) is pretty rich.
My intention in writing it wasn't meanspririted, but it that doesn't matter, because it came across that way. Although it's a point of pride with me to be tolerant and thoughtful, it appears I can be as narrow-minded as the next guy. In writing what I did, I forgot that others' experience isn't the same as mine---the very definition of intolerance.
Many years ago another dear friend asked me why I read fiction. My response was, "For empathy." I've not been working hard enough at that. Although I suppose I might now have a better sense of how Gil LeBreton feels.