Yesterday, I posted a meme of a statement from President Trump where he, more so the many other politician in history, has been treated terribly. to paraphrase, he is the most persecuted politician ever. Below that quote was a picture of Nelson Mandela behind prison bars. I figured, enough said. No need to bring up the assassinations of presidents like Kennedy or Lincoln. Mandela was good enough.
I don’t normally post political stuff on my Facebook. It is more reserved for things I actually like – my kids, video games, random bullshit, etc. Every now and then I will see something I perceive as truth, like the above mentioned meme, and I will post it. Not for political reasons – see, I’m not conservative or liberal – I refuse to conform to a label that society has created for my belief system – but rather because I know what happens when you post politically charged garbage on your FB page. More garbage seems to appear. On top of that, if I want to continually see political or religious bullshit, all I need to do is continue to scroll down my Facebook feed. Its their, from all sides, because I keep an eclectic assortment of friends, acquaintances, etc.
With that eclectic assortment, I try to make it a point not to comment on politically or religiously charged posts, UNLESS I know for a fact that I can have a rational discussion with the person whose post i am commenting one. I admit, I have erred here – I have commented on posts that I knew nothing rational would come of it, and likewise, I have made posts in the past that were charged so to speak. Regardless, my effort is not to do so.
Social media is a tool that can and is used by those in power to reign in their subjects within the belief constructs that they have created by hijacking what people belief. In turn, they use it for their own benefit, and we, as they people who carry their messages of hate and ignorance are the pawns that are sent across the board to die at the hands of the other side. We do this willingly. We take posts, comments and tweets and turn them into a vitriolic machine that only serves the grand plan of division – which is what the political, and I dare say, religious climate we live in demands and feeds off of.
As I said before, I refuse to carry a label of liberal or conservative. I have my beliefs and opinions and they are mine. I have friends from every political, religious and social spectrum, and i respect those people for who they are – not what I think they should be. I respect their ideas – even if i think they are wrong, because they are theirs, just as mine are mine. If I end up wanting to discuss something or “importance,” unless there is no other way, social media is not the way to do it, simply because it does not lend itself to healthy discussion and behavior – as could be seen on the post i made yesterday.
I have a dear friend who always prefaces posts he makes that are not of his own making – this friend has a blog in which they write daily, by saying if you want to discuss the topic of the post, do it on your own page or do it with them, in person, over a beer. Both methods – in person and on your own page ensures that the other person who is discussing the post owns it in their own right. It means that you are willing to not just make comments on someone’s post, but you are willing to let everyone that “knows” you see it as well. likewise, face to face enables your entire language to be seen, not just what you type with your fingers. I personally have never taken anything this far – simply because I typically do not make political or religious type posts, but i feel this is the best approach for someone who does.
My politics are not your politics – even if we agree on 95% of things, there is going to be something that we do not agree on. My religious thought is not your religious thought, again, we may agree on certain principles are even a majority of thought, but there is going to be something that we do not agree on. I would go as far to say this about some people who I know on FB, my God is not the same as yours. Sure, He may have the same name and come from the same book, but as i see on the daily basis, the “fruit,” by which we are known is not the same. This is okay – we are all different, it is what makes humanity humanity – freedom of thought and freedom of will. The issues come when we impose our thought and our will on other people in such a way that does not promote rational discussion, and that is what social media, at it’s core has become.
To finish, i have many friends who do not agree with me who make comments on things I post who i appreciate. It makes for good discussion that leads to an understanding between us in what we believe. Hopefully, the same can be said of me by those friends in which I comment on their posts, and if not, i invite them to message me and let me know. I am not ignorant, i know nothing I post here, on Facebook or twitter will change anyone or anything. My goal is not to change anyone, but rather to a) have a serious and rational discourse on a subject and b) to espouse the truth as I see it, with hopefully some dissenting commentary to fulfill rational discussion. Rational discussion is the ultimate weapon against those who seek to control us with labels and ideology, and beyond remaining silent, which I do not advocate, it is the only real tool at our disposal.