This world has gotten so nasty. And I am so tired of it.
In a time where a beautiful “snowflake” has become a derogatory term, I guess I long for a world full of those snowflakes. People I define not as whiny doormats who are offended by everything, but nice, genuine, good human beings who are considerate of other people’s feelings and who speak respectfully to their fellow human beings whether they encounter them in grocery stores or on Facebook or Twitter.
I feel like we are just surrounded by ring upon ring upon ring of this nastiness.
This first ring is very close to us. In the last few years I have personally witnessed or heard more stories of family and friends sparring so much over politics that it irreparably damaged their relationships.
I go on my own social media pages and see people I have known since high school, and who I know were more than just “Facebook friends,” calling each other vile names. It used to be over Trump and Hillary or the battle between liberal and conservative viewpoints. Now the battlefield is closer to home as people fight over “insane” “lunatic” Roy Moore versus “baby killer” “Demo-crap” Doug Jones. Sometimes it’s not even over politics. It’s just people being nasty to each other on any number of topics.
These arguments always, always devolve into something really ugly and really personal. No one has ever in the history of social media changed anyone’s mind about politics, religion or sports by arguing on Facebook. It is an exercise in futility.
I recently had a friend tell me she was no longer speaking to another friend because of one of these arguments that had gotten a little too heated. I guess this shouldn’t really be surprising. As we all grow older, we tend to either grow more moderate or extreme. Our world viewpoints tend to change based on our own life experiences. Often our professions have a huge influence on this.
People will naturally start to think differently and grow apart. I get that. But we have now gotten to a place where we can’t just agree to disagree on things. We have to absolutely hate the ones we disagree with.
Maybe it would have always been this way if we had the technology available to know everyone’s thoughts on absolutely everything, as we do now. I miss the days when I didn’t really care or just had to wonder how someone I kind of knew or knew 25 years ago felt about health care, tax reform or the terrible service they received at the restaurant down the street. The good ol’ days, B.F.B., aka Before Facebook.
The next ring of nasty is can be found in our institutions, especially in government — and is what often causes all that trouble in the first ring.
Though most of us aren’t personally connected to our representatives, we have lost faith in Washington. We no longer look up to the people we elect; we are disgusted by them. We view all of those who go to D.C. as opportunists who may very well be working “for us” in some ways, but they are also most certainly working to line their own pockets as well. They are willing to sell the American people out if a lobbyist is per$ua$ive enough, especially if they can sneak some new regulation or deregulation they may not even understand themselves into a bill no one really notices. See the recent “60 Minutes” and Washington Post stories on the opioid crisis if you want the latest example of how disgusting the system is.
This is precisely how we ended up with the president we have. People are just so tired of it. I get it. I want that dirty system to change too.
But I also hate that I am often embarrassed to have the nightly news on in front of my kids because I don’t want them to see the reports of our president’s latest Twitter war with a senator, a fallen soldier’s widow or the National Football League.
We spend so much time teaching our children to be kind to others and to take the high road if someone is mean to them and to never call other people names.
Tonight on the news, the lead story will be how President Trump called Bob Corker, a United States senator from his own party, “liddle” (making fun of his height), “incompetent” and a “lightweight.” If I got a note home from one of my children’s teachers saying either one of them had called one of their classmates a name or made fun of them for being short, I would be mortified. And they would be in so much trouble. And this is what they are growing up seeing as normal behavior.
I get wanting change, but is this really the way to accomplish it?
I bet someone right now is reading this and saying, “Well, clearly this snowflake is raising a bunch of ‘liddle’ snowflakes.” To which, I would say, God I sure hope so. I want them to grow up to be kind, generous human beings, not bullies. You can stand up for yourself, be assertive and get your message across and still be a nice person. It doesn’t have to be an either-or situation.
I’m so tired of all of the political nastiness. And clearly it’s worth nothing. All of this name calling and divisiveness and still they have accomplished nothing. If that’s the way it’s going to be, I’d rather them not get anything done and just be nice to each other.
Living in this seemingly constant “trending now: nasty war of words” world we live in just starts weighing on you. On all of us, no matter what “side” we are on.
And, unfortunately, it seems like some people enjoy it. I just don’t get that.
I just long for calm, for decency, for kindness, for civility. Can a world like that ever exist again? I sure hope so. But sadly, I have my doubts.