Politics is a circus, how aptly said. The wise men of yesteryear truly know what they are talking about. From centuries ago to modern-day politics, nothing much has changed and politicians are just interested in making themselves look good while making their opponents look bad. Well, aside from looking after their vested interests, that is.
Even the people can get so emotional when it comes to their political views. And with a bigger platform like social media, friends become foes and even family members sever ties come election time. Politics should unite people but it actually does the opposite today as leaders instigate the people who believe in them to be hostile to the other party through the articles/ photos/ or videos they post on social media.
Many people engage in Facebook politics because they feel it is the only way their voice can be heard, but it does more harm than good. It is unproductive, often negative, and tends to misdirect or waste political energy. Instead of creating crucial dialogue and engaging people in the issues of our day, it makes politics more divisive and even pushes people away from engaging in politics altogether.
In many ways, Facebook politics is an odd concept. Social norms discourage one simply blurting out controversial political opinions at a party. That would be quite rude. Instead, one normally limits political conversation to appropriate times and places and among people with whom you have a secure foundation of mutual respect. In a sense, the sharing platform that Facebook creates is much like a party, in that most of the people a user is connected with are mere acquaintances. Perhaps this would be different if the platform was made for political speech and consequently could suggest community goals for civil discourse, in the way bridgeND is able to, but it is not and does not. Facebook is made for keeping in touch with friends and bragging about your study abroad experience, but it is unclear that it is an appropriate or useful platform for political discussion.
As a result, it is difficult for Facebook politics to be productive. First, it does not foster quality conversation. Most good conversation happens in person, when opponents are forced to recognize each other as fellow human beings, and when participants must wait for the other person to respond before they speak again, and are able to pick up on tone and body language. The exception may be among close friends, who have built up trust and mutual respect. Unfortunately, political posts on Facebook tend to be reductive and uncharitable to the other side, and the responses they evoke frequently mirror those same negative tendencies.
It does not help that the newly elected leader is very transparent in his dislike for the previous administration and the party. President Trump has a very active social presence and is known to post some of the most controversial Twitter posts from time to time. But the thing is other political leaders do the same and don’t think twice before issuing sensitive comments in public.
President Trump on Thursday struck back at the House caucus that sunk his ObamaCare replacement bill, threatening their legislative careers if the staunchly conservative members refuse to get on board with the new president’s agenda.
“The Freedom Caucus will hurt the entire Republican agenda if they don’t get on the team, & fast. We must fight them, & Dems, in 2018!” Trump tweeted.
Later Thursday, Freedom Caucus member Rep. Justin Amash returned fire in the Republican civil war:
“It didn’t take long for the swamp to drain @realDonaldTrump. No shame, Mr. President. Almost everyone succumbs to the D.C. Establishment,” Amash wrote.
It’s disheartening to witness such a blatant display of biases and disregard to the public interest. As elected leaders of the nation, their utmost priority should be public service for the best interests of the people of the land. But here they are bickering like young kids for the entire world to know.
While we appreciate the fact that they can be easily reached through their social media accounts, they should remember to exercise proper decorum when airing their personal thoughts in public – especially in a platform that is seen all over the globe. America is struggling to recover from the last recession in 2008 but if this circus keeps up, we may lose whatever progress we have made from then on.