Op-Ed: On Apathy and Social Media Politics

| January 15, 2017

Don’t you just hate it when you’re scrolling through social media and you don’t see people arguing over politics?

That really grinds my gears, man. All I see is doltish clips of dogs behaving whimsically, maybe a cat mixed in every now and then. My timeline is littered with those bland, thoughtless videos of food production; labeled, rather boorishly, as “tasty”, or “yummy.” Mentions saturated by links of gauche articles compiling “facts” (read: opinions) into lists to a yawning effect.

I suppose the only politically-charged posts I see on social media is various memes undermining the legitimacy and credibility of the Vice-President of the United States.

But void are offerings of controversial and touchy subjects.

Where’s the fire?

Where’s the gumption?

Is everyone really that thin-skinned?

Delicate fairies, triggered snowflakes if you ask me.

I want scorched-earth warfare. I want that open-minded cousin from Portland and that intolerant Aunt from Dumpsville to rip into each other: he says she’s Caitlyn Jenner and she says he’s Bruce Jenner. I want entire posts the length of novels devoted to why Colin Kaepernick is a hero, or why he’s the devil. Abortion? Please, I am begging for digital dialogue. I implore you to explain to me, even after a free and fair democratic election, why he’s still ‘#notyourpresdient’. I gotta know your opinion of President Barack Obama. Gotta have it, can’t get enough of it.

I don’t merely want this, I need this.

Cursing and name-calling is not only allowed, it is encouraged.

Everyone is bush-league. Wine-and-cheese fans sitting on their hands during the game. I need passions flaring. Bigotry begetting tolerance, diversity inciting prejudice.

I want this agglomeration of opinioned content to reach such a peak that if you don’t post something cringe-worthy I will have no choice but to unfollow/unfriend you. I am fully prepared to lose as many friends as necessary in the process.

And believe me, my closest friends have threatened to unfollow me if I continued this pattern. They say that they’re above it all. That they’re too darling and nonchalant to give into the brutality of expressing political reservations; virtuous, even. They chastise my use of social media as an avenue to vocalize my thoughts. They do so much as call it a faux-paus.

Then, indifferent to irony, they’ll go on to share a life hack or invite me to candy crush. They’ll post selfies, post humblebrags, and start a poking war, but damned if they don’t share anything polarizing.

I much prefer the clashing of passionate opinions – irrelevant if I agree with them or not – than the agonizing monotony of pious trends and humdrum click bait.

A happy teenage girl and her grandparents using a laptop. (Dreamstime/TNS)

A happy teenage girl and her grandparents using a laptop. (Dreamstime/TNS)

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Category:Opinion, Politics

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