Thursday, July 5, 2012

Reptiles on the internet

Lately I’ve been thinking about criticism. I know I don’t like it, even when it’s warranted. While sometimes criticism is necessary, personal attacks are indefensible.  

There is no shortage of hate speech on the internet. Anything and everything is fair game for criticism. It is a common defense mechanism to attack when we feel threatened.

I tend to run in Conservative circles. I happened to see a discussion that was “dissing” Obama and "libs." I forget what exactly the issue at hand was, but it was basically an “Obama Sucks” high-five session, with nothing more than reprehensible personal attacks on he and Michelle.

There were no issues discussed, just disparaging remarks. I made a comment to the extent of, “I find it interesting that you guys have nothing better to do than stoop to personal attacks when there is so much more at stake here.”

One of the key ringleaders, who I didn’t know, accused me of being a liberal troll, which is kind of laughable for anyone who knows me.

Much later, I was surfing around on Facebook, when I noticed a friend had commented on a picture posted on a humanist site. Curious, I clicked on it. It was a picture of a former Kansas Senator, with an offensive quote about women voters. My first thought was, this woman is crazy, how in the world did she herself get into office? I certainly didn’t agree with her sentiments. I really don’t think the majority of voters did either.

But apparently, the first thoughts of the people on the site were a lot more vitriolic. You would have thought that Senator O’Conner was advocating taking their personal rights to vote away, or a fate much worse, with the hate they spewed.

The people commenting weren’t from Kansas; they were saying vile things about the state, as well. This lady’s beliefs don’t concern them, don’t affect them, don’t even represent the majority of America, why are they so defensive, why so hateful?

Clearly her IDEAS are a threat to everything they hold dear, but they chose to attack HER instead. Apparently the mere utterance of them posed a threat, to which they apparently had no choice but to employ the fight part of the fight or flight stress response.

They have the right to free speech just like anyone else. But keep in mind these are the same people who were up in arms about Rush Limbaugh’s slandering of Sandra Fluke.

This was on a blog, so it could be considered fairly impersonal, but really. You kiss your mama with that mouth?

BOTH SIDES are guilty of this, unfortunately. So often with politics and religion, people on both sides allow their primitive brains to take over, and decorum is thrown out the window.


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