I promised myself that I wasn’t going to get involved in politics on social media, but no one reads this anyway, so what the hell.
I believe in the right to protest the government. It’s a free country. But, like everything else in this world, there’s a right and wrong way to go about it.
Wrong: Hateful rants on Facebook.
Right: Talking to your government representatives about your concerns. (Hint: that’s why they’re there. To REPRESENT you.)
Right: Voting in your municipal elections so that your local representatives might be people who care about what you have to say.
Wrong: Rejecting people who think differently than you.
You will never convince anyone to think differently by posting a meme or an article or a paragraph-long status. People who agree with you will like it. People who don’t will get mad at you. And in the end people are upset and nothing has changed.
Don’t be idiots. If you want to better yourself, listen to someone who is on the opposite side. Don’t listen to tell them why they’re wrong. Listen to hear them. Understand why they think what they do. You don’t have to agree. Build some freaking empathy and say sure, I see where you’re coming from, even if that’s not how I see it. If they invite you to, share your side. Don’t throw it in their face. Don’t insult them. Just tell them why it means something to you.
And just like that — conversation. And you can still be friends! Super.
There’s a meme out there that I love. Jesus (don’t start with the religion thing. It’s a good message no matter what you believe spiritually) says to a crowd “love one another”. Now there are various versions in which the crowd asks “what if they’re….gay, black, immigrants, etc?” His response: “Did I stutter?” I think we should include “What if they have different political leanings than me?” Did. I. Stutter? Love one another. Period.
For those of you who can’t get behind something Jesus said, let’s instead follow the example of Jackie Moon: Everybody love everybody. And if we can’t even figure out how to be as good as Will Ferrell, we’re in real trouble.
Love you all.