There's an ongoing discussion on the ARRL NPOTA page on Facebook. It appears that a newbie Ham activated a Historic Site and posted a picture about it on Facebook. The problem is, that from the picture posted, it's apparent that the operation took place in front of the site, on a street instead of on the actual property of the Historic Site. As a result, his activation was disqualified.
In NPOTA rules, that's a no-no, unless you get dispensation from the ARRL after explaining mitigating circumstances. In the case of an Historic Site, an NPOTA activation has to take place on the actual site, its parking lot or driveway - not on the public street in front of it, as that space in NOT administered to by the National Park Service.
Instead of dealing with the mistake and the ensuing disappointment, the newbie Ham resorted to what only can be politely described as a ...... umm, err ............ lengthy bout of whining. He was whining about why he thought the rule was faulty, in his case, and then he started whining about the rules in general and about Sean Kutzko, the NPOTA Administrator, in particular. He also whined about the lack of a prompt response and how he perceived that others in the group were "disrespecting him."
I try to stay away from such threads as they quickly become emotional quicksand. The guy is disappointed and seems to be hurt by what he believes to be a lack of support from the Ham Community in general. But I had to reply. Basically this is what I said ......
"(Name withheld), yes, you're right, we all started from nowhere. And we've all made our share of mistakes. You can choose to learn from it, carry on and have the satisfaction of having gained some experience, or you can choose to stew about it. Not trying to be snarky or disrespectful, but each and every one of us has been down that road. Just remember that nothing worthwhile comes easy ..... and as a wise old boss of mine once said, "Respect is earned and not granted."
I've noticed that some of the younger generation can't seem to refrain from using the "vulgar vernacular" of the streets in their posts. There's no need for street language or "cussing" in a discussion with people who are other than your immediate circle of friends. IMHO, using that type of language is not conducive to earning the respect you are so desperately seeking.
And then the matter of making the mistake. So what? We've all made them. Some way more serious and costly than this. All he lost was time, basically. Some (many) of us have made mistakes that have cost money, like blowing up power supplies, or frying finals, for example. But even there, you have the choice on how you want to handle it. You can learn from your mistake and move on, or you can throw yourself a pity party (to be blunt).
It's smarter to move on and learn. If he's like most of us, he won't make the same mistake again.
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!