As a rule, I don’t typically add my two cents to political or religious discussion in a public thread on a forum such as Facebook. As any etiquette column will tell you, religion and politics are two things you don’t discuss at the dinner table, and as anyone who has been involved in a political or religious debate knows, when people have opinions they’re passionate about, tempers flare and things are often said in the heat of the moment that the speaker may later regret. Moreover, the person you’re arguing with is easily as passionate about their view as you are about yours, so it’s unlikely that they will see your point at all, let alone rethink their own and change their opinion. Therefore, unless a good friend of mine is involved or there are other special circumstances, I rarely join in, or say more than a few words.
But, once in awhile, something strikes my annoying-bone (it’s on the other side of the funny-bone for those of you who weren’t sure) and I can’t help but express an opinion.
I saw this picture on Facebook the other day, and I had to say something. I just had to. (I know, that may be indicative of a self-control problem on my part, but that’s not really the point.)
So, I said something along the lines of, “Since this woman opted to take out a loan for her education instead of, for example, taking a few classes at a time and working to pay for it as she went along, or choosing a different career path, my tax dollars should be used to pay for her loan?”
I had more to say. Plenty. Like that she signed a contract, knowing before she did so how long she’d be paying it and at what interest rate (not to mention the absurdly small payments she must be making to not have paid off $26K in 23 years) and that was the choice she made. Or that I went to college and got student loans, and then spent the next two years working two jobs, one in my chosen field (social services, which is dedicated to helping people and is not, by the way, known for its excessive pay scale) and one a slightly-over-minimum-wage job and paying my loans almost completely off. Or that my husband, as well, went to college and took out student loans, and later went on to get his Master’s, for which he also took out student loans, and he has been working as a teacher for the past nine years (another profession dedicated to helping people at a less-than-adequate salary), and we are not asking for anyone to pay off his loans. There were plenty of other things I could have said as well, but I didn’t. All I made was that one simple statement.
The response I got was appalling.
Along with phrases like “stupid, greedily stupid, willfully uninformed ridiculous bigoted” was use of the “F” word, the implication that I was not a human, and the suggestion that I just go and die to make way for people with feelings.
This person then unfriended and blocked me, so I could no longer reference the post or see what else was said about me.
Now, I know that my opinions are strong and not everyone agrees with me, but it does seem to me to be a little on the hypocritical side for someone who is claiming to be compassionate and understanding and feeling to be calling names and saying such horrible things about someone who disagrees with them.
What about you? Anything strike your annoying-bone? Or have you gotten accusations thrown at you that were disproportionate to your comments or expressed opinions?