Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Could facebook ever replace my personal phone book?

I've recently began to take mental inventory of the various types of people I have met throughout the years and more specifically, the unique blend of facebook friends that I have acquired. In my effort to be a multidimensional, multicultural human being, facebook has allowed me the ability to tap into the pulse of my private America with interesting results.

What I find on fb on a daily basis ranges from the ridiculous (humorously so) to the sublime. I’m often impressed with my cerebral inventor friends whose outlet is creating a better technological world. These minds make me gasp with wonder and appreciation for boldly going…well you know the rest. I aspire to understand more about the advancement of technology but I exhale with the realization that this mantle will never be passed to me.

My writer friends are truly inspiring, as you may have guessed because it is always comforting to know that someone else has the same love affair with words as I do. I tend to read their blogs with encouragement and pride, silently cheering and expanding my vocabulary at the same time.

I have animal lover friends who love to post various pics of pets in humorous or cuddly situations for the sole purpose of getting an “awww” out of you. There are my inspirational quote friends who cannot pass up an opportunity to post a saying, scripture, or thought that is designed to give you that “aha” moment. My political friends never mind pushing the envelope and giving us all a piece of their minds about the current political state of affairs as it stands. The articles, jokes and commentary seem to have a, shall I say bend; to them while alerting us that we are politically doomed. Thanks guys, really.

My musical friends drop by with either their own original recordings or songs that they want to share with the rest of us because finger popping is addictive. There are gardeners on my page, chefs, athletes, artist, actors, singers, real estate agents, sports lovers, dancers, college students, musicians, health food specialist, Moms, Dads, photographers, Pastors, business owners and me. I guess you can say that my facebook community reflects me in many ways, I simply like variety.

However, in the best of worlds there are those times when one makes an assessment that may be less than popular but honest nonetheless. Every once in a while, I’ll log onto fb and catch a glimpse of a photo that jars me because of its intended shock value and I feel, well invaded, often times insulted. I try hard to stand for something that will uplift my surroundings and while I can never claim to always have uplifting thoughts, I consciously stay away from offensive sayings or material that cloud our daily experience instead of enhance it. I have unfortunately lost “friends” over the past years because I felt that my social media experience was being raided daily by anger, bigotry and hatred. Maybe people thrive off of such things but for me, it’s like pouring muddy water over a flower and expecting it to yield beauty.

Sexually explicit content, objectification of women or girls (which I find nothing short of passive aggressive violence against women) do not belong on social media, in my opinion. I often wonder if an individual who claims freedom of speech in regards to such behavior would stand online in the supermarket and hold up the latest issue of some sexy magazine and begin making random lewd comments about the women at the top of their lungs. I've never seen it happen but I would imagine that it would invoke a response from those in ear shot that would be less than favorable. I ask then, why oh why, do you choose social media to do the socially unacceptable?

I realize that women can be just as bad in this area these days. I see this as sexual retaliation, some form of empowerment if you will. However, it’s still muddy water, no matter who does the pouring.

I guess the obvious answer would be to use my ‘unfriend’ button and delete the people who chose to assault my senses at random times just to get a rise out of everyone, and it may lead to that. I find it sad however, that we lack so much respect for one another at times that we would choose our own insulting amusement over the people that we call friends.

Call me an optimist but I’m hoping that perhaps one day more people will seek to be part of the solution because this sophomoric problem is simply getting old.

Wouldn't you agree that better minds make a better world?


  1. Great point, Bonita! Some of the content out there is truly hard to digest.

    I think that passive aggressive violence against women (and people in general) has been going on for decades, through movies and other forms of media outlets. Using the unfriend button is just like changing the television channel or deciding not to invest your money in an inappropriate movie. But it would be nice, wouldn’t it, if people bothered to raise their standards and “bettered their minds” instead of resorting to what is and has been destructive.

  2. Weam, I am hopeful that this higher level of thinking that you express on a constant basis, becomes a beacon for our next generation. We need more of you...

  3. I some times am assaulted and insulted but for the most part if I know the person I also choose to believe that it is not some thing that have posted willingly (hacked account). I also used to unfriend only to have the person later request to friend me again. If I choose to continue to 'talk' to the person I simply 'hide' that post so as not so offend myself, my friends or younger relatives that might be perusing my wall. You what they say, 'it takes all kinds'...but that doesn't mean I have to accept it. :-)

  4. Sharon, I agree that the hide button is another good option. Unfortunately, we cannot really "hide" what the true meaning of such messages are. I believe that if enough people refuse to accept degradation, it could make a difference.