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Re: Your forwarded e-mail message stops here

Some of my friends may think I’m an e-mail snob – and maybe evena heathen.

When checking my e-mail inbox, I try to reply quickly tomessages directed specifically to me. But forwarding or replying tothose items that were sent to me as part of a group because someonethought I needed a “day-brightener” or a chance at a $1 million isnot high of my list of things to do.

While I am far from an Internet expert, one thing I hope myfriends can appreciate is my ability to properly forward thosefactual or funny e-mails when I do communicate via the electronicage medium.

I point out “properly forward” because one of my ongoing petpeeves is having to open multiple files to get to whatever it isthe e-mail sender wanted me to see. I don’t need to get the forwardthat came with the forward that came with the forward that camewith the forward that came with the forward …

(Are you getting tired yet? One could get Carpal Tunnel Syndromeopening all the forwarded messages that come with somee-mails.)

… to get to the original message, joke, photo, or commentaryon the latest issue of the day that’s gotten someone’s knickers ina wad. That brings me to my latest e-mail annoyance and why I placea value on factual content.

I imagine a fair number of people have received the e-mailthat’s being going around for a while urging a boycott of the newdollar coins. The reason for the requested boycott is the motto “InGod We Trust” is not printed on the new coins.

In actuality, that’s not the case.

The phrase is merely printed along the edge of the coin. It canbe difficult to see, but it is there – in most cases.

Due to a printing error, our national motto was accidentallyleft off some of the coins. Also, there is no validity to thecontention that the new coins were designed to omit “In God WeTrust.”

I got my information from a wonderfully informative Web sitecalled snopes.com. It addresses the myths, legends and rumors thathave arisen over the years.

Contrary to whoever started the e-mail, I don’t see ananti-Christian conspiracy theory in everything that happens in theworld today. God has been and continues to be under assault intoday’s society, but I believe there are far better ways ofstanding up for Him than joining in some half-baked call for aboycott of a piece of change.

Rather than getting all bent out of shape, I wish more peoplewould spend an extra second or two to look up the facts behindwhatever alleged wrongdoing they are concerned about today. Toomany people, though, want to take as gospel whatever pops up ontheir computer screens and then forward it on everyone in theiraddress book.

I, on the other hand, am hesitant to send too much to my e-mailcontacts. I’ll forward the occasional joke – provided I find itfunny – and even then I try to tailor my forwards to those who willappreciate what I send.

I don’t respond to anything that prompts me to fill out someform and return it to the original sender while also forwarding itto a designated number of my contacts. Religious-oriented e-mailsare among the most common of this that I receive.

You know, the ones that say something like, “If you love God,you’ll forward this to 10 of your friends in the next 10 minutes.”It can be 10 minutes, 10 hours, 10 days or 10 years and I’m stillnot sending it on.

Instead of an impersonal e-mail message, stepping away from thecomputer and going to church and treating others as you want to betreated are better ways to showing how much we care for him and ourfellow man. I just don’t believe God’s evaluating our love for Himby how many times we hit the forward button on our computers.

And I’m also not worrying about that $1 million that’s going toarrive as soon as I forward the latest e-mail to everyone Iknow.

Write to Matthew Coleman at P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven MS39602, or send e-mail to mcoleman@dailyleader.com.