This post is a bit unrelated to my former posts, but I really felt the need to talk about this. A couple of days ago my sister, who is twenty years old, posted her thoughts about the current United States political environment on Facebook. She did so because she felt things were becoming so unacceptable she had to use her voice on social media to speak out. She wasn’t hateful. She said she respected those who disagreed with her. Then, five minutes later, everything went up in flames.
Her best friend’s sister commented on her post, telling her she was wrong, that she needed to get her facts straight, and basically claimed she had no idea what she was talking about. Eventually my sister’s best friend got into the conversation and also accused my sister of being clueless. Then, as a final blow, they proceeded to call her stupid.
Here’s my problem with this (outside of the protectiveness I feel for my sister). The post my sister shared wasn’t filled with insults. It wasn’t filled with hatred. It was merely supposed to be a way to discuss the current state of our nation. What worries me is how quickly a respectful post dissolved into an uneducated throwing of insults. This leads me to the big concern.
If we cannot, as a country, as a community, discuss the issues we collectively face without using childish insults to argue our side, how are we suppose to move forward?
Right now especially, our country desperately needs citizens who can participate in friendly, educated discourse. This is made more important by the fact that the people we’ve elected to represent us cannot seem to speak to each other in a likewise productive manner. It has to start somewhere. Maybe it has to start small.
So, next time you see a Facebook, Twitter or other social media post you disagree with, perhaps take a breath and really try to create a conversation that will enhance the American dialogue, instead of further its descent into filth.