In order to get caught up on a few things, I’m reposting an old post from my Facebook about reposting on Facebook, because I fancy myself some kind of meta-humor genius. Or else I didn’t get this week’s topic written in time. It’s like when they announce on TV “Encore Presentation” when they really mean “rerun.” But most of you probably haven’t seen this, so I’ll shut up and let you read now.
Let me preface this by saying that I understand that people repost the “repost this” posts out of sincere desire to get people thinking about a particular disease, disorder, social problem, whatever. I understand and respect the intentions, and have even done so myself. I have been touched in some way by most every issue in these posts. However, they are growing more and more demanding and accusatory towards others in our social network, and I have written the following as part angry rant, part request that we read them more carefully and consider the language being used.
I do not wish to point the finger at anyone, only to point out the lack of civility used in calling attention to what are, indeed, serious matters.
Here’s the post:
Stupid cancer. We all want a new car, a new phone. A person who has cancer only wants one thing… to survive. I know that a lot of you “who think you’re too cool” probably won’t re-post this. But a very little amount of my friends will. Put this on your wall in honor of someone who died of cancer, survived, or who is fighting against it now.
Let’s break this down.
- “Stupid cancer”—Yes. I think we all agree that cancer sucks. As a matter of fact, I would be shocked to find out that anybody I know is a cheerleader for cancer.
- “We all want a new car, a new phone.”—I don’t think this is true for even most people I know. Sure, it’s great to have a car if you can afford it, and in this day and age a phone is a necessity for most people, be it for safety and security, or for work. However, very few people I know want those things for status. They have what they need as tools for survival in modern society. Yes, there are those who want the newest, the most expensive, the flashiest, but they’re not the people running around in my circle. I’m pretty sure that my friends and acquaintances are more concerned with doing a good job in a field they like, where their contribution is rewarding to them and somehow beneficial to society. Those who have children are more concerned with feeding and nurturing them than with giving them the most expensive toys.
- “A person who has cancer only wants one thing… to survive.”—Actually, this is one of the grossest oversimplifications I have ever read. A person with cancer wants to survive. That’s a no-brainer. But while he/she is going through treatment, he/she also wants to live life as normally as possible, or perhaps even make improvements. He/she wants to spend time with family, laugh, love, go to the store, wash dishes, listen to music, etc.
- “I know that a lot of you “who think you’re too cool” probably won’t re-post this.”—Okay, so I’m a self-centered douche if I don’t immediately repost this. I don’t care about cancer, only about myself. Or maybe I was just too busy slipping radioactive mickeys into people’s drinks in the hope of creating more cancer, then coming home and pleasuring myself while thinking about how my victims will suffer. This is the part of this post that bugs me the most.
- “But a very little amount of my friends will.”—I’ll leave the grammar alone and just focus on being called out. If I’m one of the people who don’t post, how can you even respect me and consider me a friend? I mean, if I refuse to post after the last four brilliantly reasoned statements, you must really have a low opinion of me. I don’t blame you.
- “Put this on your wall in honor of someone who died of cancer, survived, or who is fighting against it now.”—Or else?
Yes, cancer concerns me. My mother is a cancer survivor, and my grandfather was a cancer victim. So yes, Stupid Cancer. I think of them and I pray for them, and I thank them for never telling me that I’m a prick if I don’t go shouting about it from every mountaintop.
Stepping off my soapbox now. Please feel free to comment. I’ll be back next week with more on my feelings about social media.