Saturday, February 22, 2014

Just because it's social media doesn't make it OK

I'm going out on a limb here. I'm going to be freaking frank and I'm going to totally put you and yours squarely in the picture.

Because it's not OK.

It's not OK for you to spread your lack of compassion about fellow human beings over the inter webs.

It's not OK for you to agree and propagate racist attitudes towards others, which are merely based on your fear of difference.

I't's not OK for you to share stuff that talks about killing and maiming fellow human beings who through birth and circumstance ended up with a different life trajectory to you, yet seek to emulate yours.

I can't do anything about your narrow-mindedness, your tiny little intellect and your lack of compassion for those less fortunate than you.

You have a right to your opinion, and I'm not going to begrudge you your right to that opinion.

But if you share your petty mindedness on social media, you can kiss goodbye to my opinion of you.

I won't be your friend, I won't be your Facebook friend, and I certainly won't value your opinion.

Call me a leftist pinko, a blackfella lover, a disillusioned socialist, I've heard it all before. Personal attacks are merely a refuge when the intellectual argument doesn't stack up.

I'll always listen to people's stories before I judge, I'll always try to "stand in their shoes" before forming an opinion,  I'll try to empathise with their situation, especially if it comes from a place so foreign from my own experience. How can I know how it is for people if I don't even try?

Compassion is a core value for me. It personally defines the person I am, the career I've chosen, the friends I've made.

And I've decided I'm not willing to accept lack of compassion, particularly when it is publicly shared on social media. It's not OK to share privately, it's even more unacceptable to trumpet it to the world.

Not that you may value my friendship, but if you're one of those who trumpets your bigotry, consider me no longer your friend.

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