The Fear of Sharing: The Crisis in Social Media Mirrors America

It used to be that differences of opinion were respected and heard. Not always without disagreement or debate, but people were not that concerned about voicing their opinions on important issues.

But now, protestors, politicians and pundits have been demonizing people for so long that any opinion that doesn’t fit the perceived “norm” or “acceptable view” will probably be labeled hateful and dangerous. At least that’s what people fear.

We now have people demanding safe spaces, fearing micro aggressions and claiming injury from speech. Words have become weapons. The promotion of this new perspective has shut down ideas and muted conversations.

imageThe goals of the actual cultural and political powers are clear and simple: Stop the voices of dissent by making their views the object of scorn and ridicule. Redefine terms in order to strengthen the basis for their objectives. They want people to go along to get along.

This is not a picture of freedom and liberty. It is the dark shadow of fascism, with a heavy dose of Orwellian double-speak thrown in to keep things up to date.

That makes it pretty scary for social media users to share items they agree with or even find compelling, if those items go against the grain of “acceptable society”. They are employing self-censorship, exactly as planned.

And most are very willing to shut up in order to avoid friction, maintain friendships, protect an image of “normalcy” and not be a victim of anger and condemnation, sometimes even from their own friends. They’ve learned to just go with the flow, and to express their convictions in private.

image

This is why the polls before last year’s elections were so grossly wrong. Sharing your real views with people outside your inner circle is now thought to be risky.

For example, on November 7, 2016, the Huffington Post’s poll modeling claimed Hillary Clinton had a 98.1% chance of winning the next day. Apparently a lot of people lied to the pollsters.

Nowadays, when someone calls and asks where you stand, you learn to go with the flow. You don’t want to rock the boat.

Are the days of stirring the pot gone? Have we become so afraid of ridicule that we won’t express an “out of vogue” opinion?

imageHave social media sites become echoes of our collapsing right to question and disagree? Are the new crackdowns on dissenting opinion by social media companies just more of the same?

No opinion will be offered here. Too dangerous. Let’s leave that up to interpretation. Whatever you think was meant above, consider us in agreement and share this with all your friends.

Thank you.

 

 

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