I am passionate. I have strong opinions. You already knew this.
Throughout my social media existence, I’ve engaged, at various times in various levels of intensity, in many of those issues I feel strongly about; abortion, gun rights, theology, and many other things.
For those of us used to some kind of western idea of freedom, we’re accustomed to being free to engage in a discussion or debate, with at least a small amount of freedom to speak our minds. It’s codified in one of the most basic documents of our nation. However, if you’re a guest in my home, and you’re rude or I simply don’t want to hear your opinion, I’m free to ask you to leave.
In the socialwebs, that’s most often embodied in the infamous “unfriending”. Some websites allow you to do something in between, like hiding the offending party.
One area that doesn’t seem used that often, is the simple closing of comments. Bloggers and old skool media do this often. They write something they know will be offensive or bother their readers, so they close comments. Google+ allows this. Posting to this blog, allows this. Facebook, however, does not. 😦 Coupled with my love-to-hate relationship with Facebook, I wish I could just close it down for good. But there are too many actually-important-to-me family and friends whom I remain in contact with, on Facebook. Some of them live far away, and I just can’t get them to use Google+ for a better experience.
So, for now I’m going to try something new. When I post controversial stuff, just know that I’ll most likely just delete debate-worthy comments. It’s that simple. For those who can’t handle it, they can make it all go away by unfriending me. I’m more than willing, however, to take that conversation to a more private place.
First, I want to reserve my debate energy for actual people in my actual life. I cannot take upon the burden of changing the minds of every person I know, online. (Some of whom are photographically oriented friendships, of tremendous diversity.) So, rather than retort with you all, I’ll wait until we see each other in person.
Second, I will also permit any of those who genuinely want to discuss or even understand my view more, to chat with me on Facebook’s direct message center, or of course email always works.
I’m even considering going back through the past few day’s worth of heated conversations, and trimming out the contentiousness.
What do you think? Am I being unfair? Am I closed minded?