By: Callie Douthit – August 2, 2016
Seriously, stop booing, or shouting insults. VOTE.
Don’t get me wrong, I obviously love Facebook. But I hate what Facebook has turned into. A good portion of my “newsfeed” is now flooded with loud opinions where my friends are now arguing about who’s opinion is RIGHT in this election and who is smarter and more well-read on issues. Or even who is more politically correct, or morally right. And the way a lot of them are expressing these opinions are noteworthy (but not for good reasons).
Of course, everyone should express their opinions if they feel they need to. But sometimes I think the point in doing so is lost. If you are thinking you are an activist for posting a hashtag, or a status that defends your belief on pro-life, then you are seriously confused about what activism is. Activism is based on DIRECT action and involvement to support, bring awareness, and make changes to a cause or issue, often with intentions of changing policies surrounding them.
How do you consider sitting on Facebook to be this type of action? Yes, it can be considered cyberactivism, but I think that depends on the way you put forth a message. For example, if your point is to explain that you support Donald Trump because of his business background, why is it necessary to call Hillary Clinton a whore or any other usually gendered derogatory term to express that you do not support her policies or candidacy? In fact, if you use those kind of words and “reasons” for why you don’t support a candidate, then I feel bad for your inability to understand what makes a president qualified. It’s not his or her gender, race, or societal stereotypes, but what they bring to the table in terms of bi-partisanship and policies that will make actual changes to the injustices and issue areas in America.
And I am not saying gender does not matter when looking at the bigger picture of our political climate. Because when I look at our country, I am discouraged to see how overwhelmingly under-represented women are in government. To somebody with an interest in politics, it’s truly discouraging to know that statistically I am at a disadvantage if I were to run for certain offices, just given history and our current demographics of genders (and don’t forget, races) in Congress. I am discouraged because I see intelligent people resort to trolling and using reasoning like “she’s a whore, she belongs back in the kitchen, she’s too old, she needs to smile more, etc” for why they would NOT support a female candidate. Also, do you speak to your mom or sister or grandma like that?
Since when have we resorted to backing our opinions which such ill-informed logic? Another example is just a few people calling volunteer-generated fraud at their local polls because they did not know that THEY had to request a provisional ballot to vote in their State, which is clearly public information. How does that make sense? How can you blame volunteers from both campaigns that they maliciously threw away your ballot or gave you wrong information so they could illegally throw away your one vote? In the instances where it was the voter’s fault for not taking advantage of clearly legible rules and directions for voting, it is offensive to pass the buck to volunteers that actually took the time to work these elections. Also, lets always keep in mind that state run primaries are dictated by that state’s election laws—NOT by the National Democratic Party.
And yes, disgusting and harassing words are used as a weapon against plenty of other political candidates, both male and female, white and black. I guess my point is using language like that to express your political or social opinions is weak and cowardly, not to mention very unintelligent. I hope you didn’t go to college or pursue an education to be able to defend your beliefs and opinions by using terms you could have learned by trolling on twitter or Reddit for 30 minutes. Did you miss the lesson where your teacher said you can’t say something in your paper unless it is backed up by sources? So why call fraud or somebody a whore when you know little to nothing about a process or a person?
Last thoughts: if you’re one of those people who can only defend your positions with the use insults and attacks based on appearance, DO BETTER, PLEASE. If you think sitting on your computer and retweeting or hashtag is enough for issues you care about, please reconsider. Get out there and vote for local and national elections and do more out in the community to change issues. Facebook is great for amplifying, but do not replace it with good ole fashion activism.
Also, here are some fun sites I like to use to make sure I am not making shit up when I talk about politics, please use it before you say some nonsense that is only based on your imagination: