SOCIAL MEDIA “FRIENDSHIPS” ARE FALLING APART BECAUSE ‘SENSITIVITY’
I’d like to take a moment to thank all the recent “friends” of friends on social media who’ve been gently reprimanding and correcting me and my fellow feminists/human’s rights advocates for being appalled by those who stood up for Donald Trump by voting him into office.
Thank you for asking us to stop being crybabies by unfriending people who “don’t think like we do.” It has certainly helped us understand that we are being “too sensitive.”
I’d like to take moment to express my shame that I am angry at these “friends” for not thinking like they do, for trying to force them to think about how their vote made us feel unsafe around them. They’re right, you see. I do think they should have, in this instance, thought like I did. Or thought about it more carefully, in the very least.
I have been properly shamed into admitting that I don’t think a rapist and sexual predator should be in the highest seat in the country. Want to push against the facts? Got some alt-facts you’d like to discuss? The charges are long and public. But you didn’t seem to care enough about that, and that makes me angry. “Unfriend” angry.
So it is that I have let these ‘precious’ friendships slip through the cracks, the callous bitch I am, because it is clear to me that we have a very different idea of what is right, and some people’s idea involves giving power to a very sick man and being “grown up” about him being the commander-in-chief.
I’d like to thank so many of you (though you might not read it because I was not a grown up and I deleted you from my social circle) for pointing out that all people are flawed and that all politicians lie. It very much makes up for that fact that my civil liberties are going to be violated, that my body will not be my own and that the rights of countless minorities are in the hands of a man who wants to target people based on their religion in a country founded by people who fled religious oppression.
Thank you for reminding me that I’m being petulant because “my candidate” didn’t win the nomination. For one, that’s literally not true. In a fair democracy, my first choice, Sanders, would have won the primaries and my second choice, Clinton, actually swept the popular vote. Secondly, I’m enraged that a sexual offender and bigot is my president, not mad that a viable candidate was swept under the bus.
But, let’s talk about the media and how we can’t trust that Russia interfering with our election isn’t actually a huge deal (even though our own intelligence agency seemed to think it was). The fact that our president now has a very tangled business agenda isn’t either.
Please tell me to calm down again. Please tell me to just wait, watch, be patient and friendly. Please tell me why I shouldn’t be angry, that’s it’s just an election. Please tell me I’m crazy.
Please gaslight me and my friends because you cannot physically make us be friendly, cannot force us not to have valid concerns that someone with the sexual harassment record of Trump (who should not even be able to hang out near parks) is now in charge of the country where my children are supposed to feel free. Please try to name call us, tell us we are overreacting and childish. Invalidate our fear so that we can be molded into civilly oppressed peoples.
Like this meme on Ben Carson’s webpage, tell us to love first, to be kind, to open doors, etc. etc. Never mind that our current leader and the people he is employing are dismantling our health care and yanking a rug from under the disenfranchised in this country. We should do as they say, not as they do.
Yes, call us divisive. Remind us about creating a civil war, even though the Civil War was fought for the freedom of the racially oppressed and was a truly JUST war. Convince us that we are slaying our sisters because we are appalled that our family chose to vote a rapist into office, and chose to promote people who have upheld the KKK.
Keep the gaslight burning. It might keep us quiet, docile for a bit longer.
WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? I’M NOT TRYING TO GASLIGHT, I JUST WANT PEOPLE TO BE NICE!
For the most part, I think people don’t know they are gaslighting. They want to be right, they don’t want to seem like the bad guy/girl, and they do want people to be nice to them, and maybe they were just voting with their party. Unfortunately, the way they voted is gross to me, will have a drastic impact on so many marginalized lives. So, I don’t want to be nice about it, and I will not tiptoe around you in order to not hurt your feelings.
You can’t make me feel that I’m acting like a sore loser. Doing so makes you like Trump, who is one of the biggest gaslighters I’ve ever seen, as Frida Ghitis wrote for CNN Opinion:
“…recently the tactical tampering with the truth has become a preferred method of strongmen around the world. Gaslighting by other means was always a common feature of dictatorships, but it has found new vogue as a more subtle form of domestic political control even in countries with varying degrees of democracy.”
The distinguishing feature between someone who gaslights and someone who doesn’t is an internalized paradigm of ownership. And in my experience, identifying that paradigm is a lot easier than spotting the gaslighting.
Gaslighting tends to follow when intimidation is no longer acceptable.
I believe that gaslighting is happening culturally and interpersonally on an unprecedented scale, and that this is the result of a societal framework where we pretend everyone is equal while trying simultaneously to preserve inequality.
You can see it in the media constantly.
For instance, every time an obvious hate crime is portrayed as an isolated case of mental illness, this is gaslighting. The media is saying to you, What you know to be true is not true ( everydayfeminism.com).
IF YOU’RE UNINTENTIONALLY GASLIGHTING, YOU CAN QUIT
Look, if you’re not trying to manipulate people into being submissive drones so that Trump’s cabinet can trample people’s rights without being held accountable, that’s good. I’m proud of you. Maybe you’re just misinformed or a little racist/sexist/bigoted, but you generally want people just to get along, and you try to be nice to people. Yeah, conflict is uncomfortable. I get that. But conflict is sometimes necessary in order to move forward.
So if you don’t want to gaslight me then stop saying I have to take the withdrawal of basic human liberties–fair treatment, privacy, equality, thought, education, etc.–quietly and good-mannered. I am not being an oversensitive, sore loser. I am a concerned citizen who is justly angered.
Don’t be like this Facebook gaslighter:
“Being good friends isn’t about one person expecting the other to believe what he/she believes or they aren’t friends. Proselytize, Obtrude or otherwise force your beliefs on another as a condition of friendship doesn’t seem much like friendship, but then again, I get we don’t all share the same values. People seem too important to discard like that.” (anonymous FB gaslighter)
I’m not expecting people to have the exact values I have, I just expect my friends to not treat others like second-class citizens, as Trump has repeatedly done to those he does not care for (or even women he seemed to actually like). If you support a man like that, it makes me wonder if you are the type of person who behaves like that to his/her friends. If so, I don’t need that in my life. Bye-bye-bye.
Lastly, if you think friendship and people are so important, don’t try to make them feel badly when they are worried about the lives and civil liberties of ALL Americans and want to take a valid stand against tyranny. That makes you look like a hypocrite at best and a gaslighter at worst.
TO THOSE I TREASURE
If you are still on my social media feed and we disagree heartily about this topic, it means you are probably a family member who I treasure. As a believer in the God of love, I am told to love everyone. I try. I’d be lying if I said I’m really good at this, but so would you. Anyway, I still love you. I do not have to like how you behave, who you support or everything you say to love you.
I also challenge you because I expect more from those I love. I expect those I love to act like the loving souls who played with me, read with me, cheered me on, supported me. I also expect that we will sometimes fight, like we did when I was young. I have ALWAYS been different. You saw that then, and you worry about it now.
You think I don’t know that you pray for my soul, a soul you feel is being tarnished by libtards and leftists. But I don’t play that game. I am a woman who loves widely. You are in that circle of love, but so are many people unlike you. I will not partake in the rhetoric of hate. I will be disappointed when the people I love support it, and call me out as crazy, conspiratorial or sensitive because I decide to question an immoral authority.
I don’t even know why ya’ll are surprised by this. My favorite book was 1984 when I was 15.I was literally the only person who liked it in my class.
I am disappointed that we don’t see eye-to-eye, but I love you like the German father in Echo by Pam Mun0z Ryan who loves his daughter despite their great divide. You probably don’t get that reference, but that’s for the best. You’ll think I’m making an unfair comparison. You’ll think it unloving, or maybe a little crazy.