Facebook Arguments & Limited Perspectives
I have this Facebook friend constantly posting his opinions in the form of status updates throughout the day. Not even political things, either, thank goodness. Just totally irrelevant, funny things that he is clearly well-aware are going to cause an uproar, and it’s quite honestly cracking me up. It’s cracking me up because people are just eating. themselves. up. over disagreement. It’s like they’re just scrolling along hoping to see another puppy video or “that moment when…” meme, and then they see something they disagree with and they’re all Oh uh-uh, imma tell this boy why his opinion is wrong. Watch me.
And just like that, a Facebook riot has ensued.
This happens at least 5 times a day on my newsfeed, and it’s like passing a car accident on the highway. It’s hard to look away. I’m 1000% guilty of reading the comments in disgust, rolling my eyes and shaking my head in what I wish was disbelief, but seeing as this is a regular occurrence, I’m ashamed to admit I’m not at all surprised.
To my Facebook friend who has recently been doing this, thank you. Thank you for casually bringing to the surface an issue that has been eating at me for way too long now.
You know what I am sick of? Not people getting easily offended (although that ranks up there, too). Not Donald Trump news or “copy and paste” legislative rants meant to inform. Nope, not that stuff. I’m sick of such limited perspectives. I’m sick of people being more obsessed with being right than being understanding.
If you watch any of the social media keyboard warriors attacking each other, you’ll see how focused we are on being "right" and being "heard" immediately. It's such a selfish focus: Read about ME being right. I will be heard. Here is MY opinion.
NONE of the arguments I’ve read have good ole selfless, kindness at the core, because, I mean, what personal gain do you get from that? They are so bitter, so sharp, so hurtful. NONE of them feature two sides trying to see from the other’s perspective. They are always about shoving one opinion down another person’s throat.
It’s like people read something they don’t agree with, and instantly see a need to right some wrong. We are missing the point though. The point is not right or wrong, or even agreement. That’s not the solution here. It never has been, and it never will be. The point is understanding. Connection. Human to human interaction, but this is a level far beyond where many people are willing to go.
We have lost sight of what it means to have an opinion, where an opinion comes from, and what we do with that opinion. We’re just obsessed with saying, “I’m entitled to feel this way!” or “I have a right to believe this, you have a right to believe that.” And we end it there (sometimes). What if we went deeper though? What if we *gasp* tried to understand one another instead of just trying to make everyone agree? Sure, yes, absolutely, you have a right to your opinion, but rights come with responsibilities, and I think we’ve forgotten about our responsibility to be respectful, even when it’s not easy. (Especially when it’s not easy.)
I won’t rewrite an entire post, but this one explains my thoughts on opinions.
In summary, our opinions are just constructed beliefs we have based on our very, very personal experiences, experiences unique to our own navigations through life. We can’t possibly all see the world the same way, but we shouldn’t be trying to. How beautiful to exist with other perspectives. What a gift to be able to see the world from a different point of view. You don’t have to stay there, but what if instead of trying to make everyone see like us, we tried to see like someone else every once and a while? What if we stopped insulting who people are, and started trying to understand them instead?
I am so sick of people abusing their right to have an opinion. We have so many rights. We know that. We don’t need to be reminded of those anymore. What about our responsibilities as human beings? As souls? What about the things much more important than being right or wrong, offended or uncomfortable? It is so surface level to stay there, to stay obsessed with proving a point. That is literally 4th grade playground banter. Come on. Let’s grow up and reach for understanding, the higher growing fruit, instead of that low-hanging easy-to-grab fruit of “I’m right, you’re wrong.”
I wonder how we’d see the world then, if we were brave enough to try and see the world from a perspective other than our own. I wonder how our eyes would open, and how our hearts would, too.