Posts Tagged ‘Social Media’

GodI have questions for God. Questions only he alone can answer, if he chose to do so. And since I have heard God is all-seeing, all-knowing, all-everything-everywhere, then I find it hard to believe he wouldn’t use social media, email or some type of texting service to communicate with his followers. He certainly shouldn’t reserve his responses to places like churches and battle grounds, right?

So, I hereby submit my questions to God. I’ve tried to get him to follow me on Twitter (since I don’t have Facebook), but so far the only person he follows is Justin Bieber. That douche bag gets all the special treatment, doesn’t he? (Bieber– not God – people aren’t killing other people in the name of Justin Bieber…yet)

 

black-cross-elastic-waist-long-skinny-polyester-pants1. What size and style of pants do you wear?

 

2. What color are your eyes?

 

???????????????????????????????????????????????????3. How much do you weigh?

 

4. Are you right-handed, left-handed, or ambidextrous?

 

 

 

5. What is your actual age right now?

 

6. Where do you go to the bathroom?bathroom-design-ideas-for-apartment

 

7. What kinds of food do you eat?

 

8. Do you have a belly button?

 

That’s all. I figure since people say you answer all questions, I thought I’d throw a few out there for you. Please be as thorough as possible in your responses. Except for questions #6 and #8, I’ve pretty much left them wide open for you.

Thanks!

 

(PS: Thanks for inventing the following things: ice cream, coffee, pizza, friends and dogs)

(PPS: We could use fewer cockroaches)

 

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One of the main reasons I went into teaching, and focused my attention towards the middle school crowd, was because of my empathy towards this age group (11-13 yrs). This is the most tumultuous time to be alive and it can really set a child on a path towards happiness, positive mental health, self confidence and worth — or destroy every ounce of self confidence and self esteem they’ve had up until this point. 

I was a skinny, gawky kid in junior high. While the rest of the girls around  me were beginning to attract the attention of the boys, I was waiting for the day when I could actually start wearing a training bra. I endured all sorts of horrible, demeaning comments from both boys and girls – boys in public and girls in the locker room as we dressed for gym class. I remember very clearly the day I got rat-tailed on the elbow by a mean girl who was making fun of my physical stature in the locker room shortly after gym class. Not only did I have to endure the emotional abuse but the rat tail (a wet, wound up towel) hurt like hell and left a big bruise for several days afterwards. NOTE TO ALL: the words and actions of these kids when I was in junior high will never, ever, be forgotten. The psychological hurt remains forever.

I empathize with children in this age group, because I know what it is like to be bullied. I was bullied from 7th grade up until I graduated from high school and then long into my adulthood. I was picked on by other kids for a variety of things: I didn’t drink, smoke or do drugs, so I was called a “goody two shoes” by the crowd that did. I didn’t have sex, so I was called a “prude” by the crowd that did. I was a well-behaved student, so I was called a “teacher’s pet” by the lazy, misbehaving kids. I was called “carpenter’s dream” by the boys who had just discovered how much fun looking at girls’ boobs was. (Carpenter’s Dream: flat as a board, easy to nail, simple to screw)

It seemed no matter what I tried, or didn’t try, I was always the “odd girl out” and the target for numerous bullies. I imagine that, if the internet existed when I was a kid, I would have been cyber-bullied as well. Sadly, situations like these today often result in suicide. Kids have too much pressure on them to be someone else’s idea of “perfect” or, “friend-worthy”. They become severely depressed and feel they have no choice but to take their own lives. Heartbreaking.

But bullying doesn’t end with childhood. I’ve also been the victim of bullying from adults as well. And that’s what I want to bring to the public’s attention: BULLIES COME IN ALL FORMS, SIZES AND AGES.

bible_thumper_tshirt-p235486815632551276qd00_400Some bullies even come in the form of organized religion. Just look at all the stories and internet message boards of the deeply religious people and it is easy to see that bullying is still allowed to take place. The bullies disguise themselves as “followers of the truth”, wrap themselves in outdated, biblical scripture, then proceed to pass judgment and damnation on everyone and everything that doesn’t align with “their” religious doctrine. They claim they are just “doing God’s work”, as though God has hired them as His own personal squad of morality warriors.

HypocriteLook at the actions of the Westboro Baptist Church members. Look at the Catholic dioceses that demand their teachers obey their religious doctrine and not believe or participate in anything that could be considered contrary to their beliefs or they will be fired, while the clergy – the biggest hypocrites and offenders of God’s word–are allowed to abuse their innocent flock over and over again. And not get caught or held accountable for their crimes.

Look at the Islamic faith, the Jewish faith and the battles they engage in every day in Israel. Every single religious group out there that forces its own opinion on others and demands strict obedience to it at the exclusion of all others’ rights to believe whatever they want to believe or do is, in my opinion, nothing more than a big bully trying to control others’ lives. 

We have the right to believe what we want to believe, and practice whatever faith we wish to practice. But, we have a moral obligation to show respect for others’ opinions, feelings and beliefs – no matter if it’s in real life or on the internet. 

Social media is a powerful communication tool. It allows instant access to an endless stream of information. But, when used inappropriately and hurtfully, it becomes nothing more than just one more tool for big bullies to use on the cyber playground of life.

socialmedia

I hate Facebook. There, I said it. I find it boring, insipid, pedantic and self-serving.

I’ve never understood the desire to log onto Facebook every twenty minutes just to post random, vapid comments such as:

“Sitting in Starbucks, sipping a chai latte and thinking about clouds.” This brings nothing of value to the table – other than the uptick of Starbuck’s company stock.

Or better yet, posts like:

“It’s Autism Awareness Month – please repost this to your wall, indicating that you aren’t a heartless asshole who thinks children with autism are freaks and should be culled from the human population.”

Guess what? It is NOT Autism Awareness Month, it hasn’t been Autism Awareness Month in several months because it was just Autism Awareness Month six months ago when you posted this the first of twelve times. They’ve switched over to “Fact Checking Awareness Month”. If you want to repost that over and over, go ahead — it’s more educational anyways.

Unfortunately, social media sites have become the new battleground for wits, anger, angst and opinions. Facebook is no exception to the rule. When I was on Facebook years ago, I would end up in conversations like the one below, just because my smart-assed muse would end up getting the better of me:

Me: I am Christian, but I question the bible’s voracity

Bible Thumper: Why? Everything in it is true, because God wrote it.

Me: No, God did not write it, scribes wrote it. And they were probably on some really good old testament style acid during the time.

Bible Thumper: Are you saying God was a drug addict?

Me: He created the Universe in seven days. He invented the people who invented the ability to make meth. Nobody could create something so large in seven days without meth. Hence, God was a meth addict.

Bible Thumper: That sounds a bit blasphemous.

Me: It’s called “Freedom of Speech” and it’s my God-given, US Constitutional right to say it.

Bible Thumper: But you’re insulting God!

Me: Wanna move onto politics then?

Bible Thumper: I’m done with this conversation

See how much destructive fun I was having? And that’s why I left Facebook. Not because of the creative writing, but because I had too many idiot Facebook “friends” who couldn’t think beyond their close-minded, opinionated, non-fact checking minds. Like a cat playing with a mouse, I eventually grew tired of the game and just signed off.

The biggest problem with social media is obvious: some people have this over-inflated sense of self-importance. They feel that everything they do, think, feel, etc., is interesting or relevant to the world. They want the world to know they are important, so they gather tons of “friends” (whom they’ve never met and probably won’t ever meet), post about every little triviality that occurs in their less-than-adventurous life, and hope with fingers crossed that they will get 3,000 likes on the recently posted video with the caption “Bought a new waterpik – here’s me in action!”

My second problem with Facebook is the impersonalization of major life events. Divorces, marriages, relationship break ups, addictions, and even crime admissions have been posted to Facebook with such flair as:

“22 years of marriage over, finally get the bed to myself!” posts and, more tragic ones like; “RIP, buddy”.

The last one actually happened to my family. My brother passed away June 10th. Prior to his failing health, he had adamantly stressed that he did not want anyone posting anything about his death to his Facebook wall. He had children who lived in another country and he wanted all family and friends to be told about his death via telephone or email. He had been suffering from advanced liver failure and it finally caught up with him. He died a slow, agonizingly painful death and passed away on an early Tuesday morning. By 1:30 that afternoon, Facebook had 110 “RIP, buddy” comments and likes on it. And, this was how  his daughter found out her dad died. We were furious and demanded the posting was taken down. By that time, the damage had already been done. My brother’s last wishes were grossly ignored because some asshole felt it entirely appropriate to put that flippant comment out to the universe.

I value and accept others’ differing opinions and I understand everyone grieves differently. However, the concept of “Freedom of Speech” has gotten way out of hand on social media sites. I 100% support the right to post and write whatever one wishes — I do that myself all the time. However, with freedom of speech comes the responsibility to respect other people’s opinions, values, privacy, thoughts, feelings, etc. Just because it can be said, doesn’t mean it should be said. Otherwise it just makes a person look like a jerk.

That’s why I love Twitter. It forces me to say what I want to say in only 140 characters. For someone with so much to say, about things people really don’t care about, Twitter keeps me from saying too much.

Most of the time.