When I saw you each engage at length with two of my most … hm… “spirited” friends, I thought, “uh oh… I’m gonna lose them after this” and debate about stepping in, doing a “hey guys” and try to tie things together somehow.. or delete the thread if it got really bad.
But then I realized that emotional turmoil is part of life and people battle passionately about what they believe in and everybody learns _something_ in the process, even if they end up punching a wall half-way through.
I actually CRINGE when I get a reply on one of my posts from them. [there’s a few others as well – they usually have conspiracy believing in common, but what the BAD ONES are different for each of them. It’s often misogynist too, but I also have women who are of the “all men are [x], except for you Ken” as well, so I try to keep it balanced]
I actually feel bad for them, honestly. It has to be hard being angry, fingers poised at the keyboard, ready to be offended at any given moment. All someone has to say is just the wrong thing and BOOM, like a race, it’s on.
I also understand the behavior because there are some topics I get that way about as well. I wonder, “I’m just making sense, why can’t they see it?” and then I find my mind filling with stereotypes about them, filling in missing pieces about them with whatever portrays them in the worst possible light.
But then I remind myself: we’re all intelligent here. The fact that we’re even ENGAGING in this online format means a LOT of things have to click into place for it to happen.
We’re humans. We’re schooled. We feel as if we’re rational beings and that our opinions matter. We can turn on a computer/phone. We can engage in conversation. We can be passionate and debate and portray emotional content using solely words or memes.
That’s pretty amazing when you think about the amount of coordination required for all of to be possible.
So, approaching everybody I encounter with the assumption: This is an intelligent being whose perception of the world is different than mine but otherwise is not lacking in any ways that I’m not lacking as well.
This isn’t to say my way is best. I have no idea if it is. But it’s my way… and I’m sorry if you both got dragged into it. I have the appearance of inconsistency but really it’s because I don’t explain myself properly most of the time smile emoticon