Election season is officially here. I thought we had more time, but no. The bashing, the poking, the outright accusing. Such is the case for an election season, but all I really want to do is deactivate my Facebook account because we all know it’s about to get dirty.
Why is that, by the way? Do we post our political thoughts with the hope that we’ll convince others to switch sides or are we just feeling feisty? Are we eager to persuade or itching to persecute? Do we want to provoke thought or just provoke?
I’m guilty of this in the past, but we’re talking ions ago when I thought my views were rock solid and candidates were honest. My political passions waned several seasons ago and I’ve all but stopped watching the news. I read a small selection of news stories from a small selection of news sources, and I read transcripts of speeches if I think anything important was said.
But that’s it. I ignore all rhetoric and do not watch debates. I turn the channel when a campaign ad airs. I don’t buy bumper stickers, I don’t put signs in my yard, and I don’t engage in political discussion. I do not watch interviews with “analysts” or “experts” because I don’t believe real analysts and experts are on television.
Sad, isn’t it? I want to believe objectivity still exists in political journalism, but it’s so hard to find. Avoidance has kept me sane.
That being said, avoiding politics in the upcoming election season will be tough with Facebook. God bless you all, but geez… I much prefer to use Facebook as a way to see pictures of your kids, your pets, and your travels. I want to hear about your impending marriage, your promotion, and the movie you think we all should see. If you need to rant, then let’s share a complaint about Common Core, wacky weather, or that crappy ex-husband of yours.
I understand Facebook is an outlet and we all have the right and ability to say what we want and use our voice as we want to. This isn’t about censorship. Rather, it’s about being polite. If you must bring up politics, use your manners.
For example –
Polite: “I’m so excited Hillary Clinton is running for President.”
Impolite: “I hope Hillary crushes those right-wing fascists and religious zealots! Conservatives suck! They’re all racists and bigots!”
Polite: “I’m pulling for Rand Paul this season.”
Impolite: “I’ll be damned if liberals control our government again! Rand Paul is smarter than all of Washington put together! Do we really want that lying, cheating scum Bill Clinton back in office?”
Where are our manners if we consistently go for polarizing instead of unifying? You don’t have to be silent, but you should be judicious. It’s the snide remarks, the insults, and the presumption that anyone who doesn’t think like us must be completely ignorant.
Some of us know what we’re talking about, and some of us don’t, but we can all be kinder, gentler, and less prickly. No?
For what it’s worth, the candidates I vote for never get elected anyway.