Friday, June 17, 2016

Pause and Reset

Once my reading challenge was over, I took a break from blogging. I felt like I was just another voice shouting into the wind. While there were many topics I wanted to discuss, rant about, rave about, etc., I wondered if, in this new toxic world of memes and ten-second judgments, if the blog was as extinct as the magazine.

And then I realized, “Who cares?”

If you don’t want to read it, don’t click on it. It’s just that simple. Why should my voice be silenced? What do the pundits of Fox News or the reality TV personalities or the hosts of the morning shows have on me? I’m smart. I’m well read. I’m well educated. I have a healthy sense of reality, a basic knowledge of politics, and an understanding of the human condition that is as good as, or better than, the average talking head.

Over the past few years, the 24/7 news cycle has become even shorter. To steal directly from an Internet meme, last week, we were grieving the loss of a Muslim and were terrified of the LGBT community. This week, we are grieving the loss of life in the LBGT community and are terrified of Muslims. Last month, a kid survived his interaction with a gorilla, so we victimized the parents and lionized the animal. This month, a kid did not survive his interaction with an alligator, so we victimized the animal and lionized the parents. (Yes, I know an alligator is a reptile, but the symmetry wouldn’t have worked as well.) There is no thoughtful conversation, long-form debate, or reasoned discussion. There is just blame, hatred, racism, and sexism. One woman is praised for calling out her rapist, another is blamed for calling out her abusive husband. The pure joy of Hamilton is tempered by the debacle that is Trump. The line between right and wrong, between good and evil is becoming one just massive gray space and I don’t like it. I don’t like it at all.

I’m tired of all the anger. I’m tired of the sadness. When my Game of Thrones discussion sub group on Facebook is more reasoned and thoughtful in its response to book vs. show plot points, then you know the rest of the world has lost the thread of how to hold a conversation.

I don’t want to be a troll. I don’t hate anyone because of their religion, politics, or sexuality. I choose to like or dislike you based entirely on how you behave as a human being and assholes come in all shapes and sizes, colors and creeds. And if you don’t like that, that’s cool with me.

My goal is to post every Friday.

Until then, let’s try not to have a reason to lower the flags to half mast, shall we?P 

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