My Facebook Manifesto

I know! A post on a Saturday! Since I never write on Saturdays this makes me feel less guilty about talking about this election cycle.

AGAIN.

I almost shared out this article on Facebook this morning because it falls into some of the guidelines I’ve set myself in terms of political postings. It has a point OTHER than bashing the guy I’m not voting for. I refuse to post stuff that serves ONLY that purpose. The article talks about his Populism, but also how it’s reflected in other political situations around the world. But then when I shared it out – the thumbnails was his face and the “summary” was about his politics (even though the articles was about much more) and I thought, Nope. This makes it look like it doesn’t fit into my manifesto. It’s the one thing I’m holding on to, I can’t give up on it now. And I deleted the post.

I haven’t really talked about my manifesto yet, so that’s what you’re getting on this Bonus Saturday entry.

Recently I’ve engaged in a few FB political “discussions” and did not go well. My point is never understood exactly how I want it to be. Everything gets distorted and twisted and too many people chime in with their twisted interpretations and it just never ends well. And many of you may be able to dismiss all of the Trump supporters in your life, but I can’t do that. This my family, my neighbors, my community. So, to avoid that situation again (which makes me feel terrible and disrupts my sleep cycle) – but still allow myself to be vocal about my politics, I’ve laid out concrete rules that I think will allow me a voice, while avoiding the drama. I came by some of this by considering the times I’ve had my mind changed and how that happened. Other rules I’ve come by when trying to look at my Facebook feed through the eyes of a Trump supporter.

This is not the manifesto for someone who cares not about maintaining relationships with Trump supporters. If you don’t care? This is just going to seem weak and will probably make you angry. I have a lot of Clinton supporting friends angry at people like me taking the feelings of their Trump supporting family/friends into consideration. But until you’ve walked in my shoes? I don’t want to hear the criticisms. I’m doing my best to keep relationships intact outside of politics, and that may not be important to you, but don’t judge me if it’s important to me. You don’t know my life, so you don’t get to judge my methods.

ANYWAY! My Facebook Manifesto!

  • I will not comment on anyone else’s Facebook status unless it’s to simply provide a link debunking a lie they are perpetuating. This is REALLY hard because there are a lot of memes out there right now comparing 50 Shades (which I didn’t read or watch) to Trump’s behavior, and other memes bashing Beyonce as a way to deflect Trump’s behavior. I want to chime in on all of them but I’m reminding myself: NO POINT. They are WRONG and I want to explain why they are wrong, but since it’s not a simple lie debunked by Snopes, it will just turn into drama that serves no purpose.
  • I will not defend myself on someone else’s Facebook status who seems to have misconstrued the beliefs of people on “my side.” If it’s not something I can easily ignore (so far I’ve been able to ignore the Beyonce/50 Shades memes) I will formulate a well thought-out status or blog post that addresses this type of fallacy and post it on MY wall. I will not be passive aggressive, I will just do my best to explain the position of “my side” in a respectful way. (A good example is how when someone shared a false meme oversimplifying my views I wrote this post instead of debating it on their wall.)
  • I will not share out links that ONLY serve the purpose of bashing the person who is NOT getting my vote. Even if it’s a news story factually depicting his exploits. The news is out there, I’m not sharing out anything that other people haven’t seen or won’t see in the next 5 minutes. I’m trying to find empathy for die-hard Trump supporters and feel a little bit of the pain they must feel at having news feeds full of headlines bashing their guy.
  • I will share out links offering support for MY candidate. This is how I’ve been changed to be a Hillary Supporter. Reading all of the Pro-Hillary stuff out there. Like I said, I was so bitter during the primaries that Elizabeth Warren wasn’t running that I had a hard time getting on either Bernie/Hillary camp. I was swayed by the POSITIVE stuff her supporters shared out.
  • I will practice self care. This is something I have to remind myself on days where people I love are perpetuating the hate talk I’m avoiding for their sake. Or when they’re promoting ideas I’m constantly fighting against for the prosperity and health of my own family. Sometimes this means just unfriending the person who expressed repulsion over thinking about gay men and how they have sex. (No one is ever repulsed by two women being sexually active, of course.) This may mean coloring for awhile so I don’t have to think about someone defending the words that caused me so much pain. This may mean unfollowing someone so I don’t have to be reminded that they think anyone who is Pro Choice is Anti Children and Pro Murder. This may mean deleting FB from my phone for the day. This may mean planning a dinner with some liberal friends so I can have a safe place to vent. (Are you a local liberal lady? LET ME KNOW. I WILL INVITE YOU.) SELF CARE IS KEY.

5 Comments

  • Colleen

    Local, liberal & happy to meet you for lunch, dinner or a run whenever our schedules can mesh! I like your approach to politics because I have lots of family and childhood friends who don’t agree with my views. Mostly I stay in frustrated silence. I wish I was braver about speaking up about my views!

  • Jaime

    I wish your manifesto was everyone’s manifesto. It would bring the hate and rhetoric way down. Thank you for your kind, thoughtful approach at a time when the election cycle seems to have made the world a whirling tornado of nastiness and backbiting.

  • Amy J.

    Reminding you I’m local & libral. I’m also a frustrated silent type… I don’t get political on Social media because of my job. Just a few more weeks to go.

  • Grace

    Not local but used to be back in the day (when you were a CHILD). Chiming in to say that I wish your manifesto were everyone’s. So much more would have been accomplished in these past 8 years, and so much more could be accomplished if that were the case.

  • Elaine C. B.

    Oh, so happy to have a Saturday post on a Monday morning, especially one so relevant. My brother (of all my 5 siblings, probably the one I am most aligned with from a values and ideaology standpoint) just posted something along the lines of if you are voting for Trump, unfriend me right now because we don’t have the same values and you are not my friend. And this really hurt me, even though I’m not planning on voting for Trump, because of a lot of the things you have reflected on lately. I at first let it go, but then went back later to comment a few times on why I disagreed with that stance. I don’t think he’s going to change his mind, but several other people came behind me and also said (nicely!) kind of the same thing, so I felt validated. But it was seriously hard for me to do that! My mom even chimed in and reminded us that two people who do have the same values and even want the exact same things could advocate totally different approaches or solutions. Ugh, so complicated. But thank you for sharing!