Bigot! Racist! Idiot! Bully!
The words fly more easily through fingertips than they do through lips.
It is soooo easy to type them and even feels more powerful to add a hashtag: #bigot
I read, I cringe, and then I hide the very post that made the person who posted it feel so righteous–simply because I don’t want to see it over and over. And as I hide it, I wonder, “would they say what they just posted to that person’s face?”
In other words, would THEY want to be treated the way that they are treating that politician, that celebrity, that official, their co-worker, their fellow student or that bozo in the other car?
I see someone scream racist from my Facebook feed and I wonder if they even know the heavy meaning of that particular word? And, in using that word, do they realize that they are actually segregating, as well as categorizing, themselves? It is frightening.
These loaded words are strong. And online, there is no takey-backy!
At the very time the #bekind movement is rising, our culture is feeling more and more entitled, and empowered, to voice opinions about anything and anyone at anytime. All of us have opinions. Few, if any of us, should so flagrantly voice them…especially in a public forum.
One day my son overheard me quip, “they’d better be careful—what goes around comes back around…”
He said, “MOM!? Do you believe in Karma?”
I thought for a few seconds and said, “Yes, I do. But God invented karma: ‘you reap what you sow.’ Somehow that got a name.”
Yup, the rants that we perceive we are entitled to make, will come back around. #karma
So I have taken it upon myself to make a to consider list (simply because lists are trendy!):
Five Things to Consider before you Post and One Good Suggestion
- Do you really know the true meanings of the words that you are hashtag-ing?
- Is adding your opinion online important enough to categorize yourself?
- Would you say that wonderful quippy zinger to that person’s face?
- Is your rant actually unveiling a bully?
- Would you mind if this person posted your words about you?
Good suggestion: Read through your posts and see if (and which of) your friends are:
- liking your post?
- ignoring your post? (ouch)
And remember: #treatothersthewayyouwanttobetreated
Really. Even online. Especially online!
and, please, #bekind