A Deep Breath And Thoughts About Facebook

Against my own better judgement, I’ve posted a few things to Facebook lately of a political nature. The government shutdown and a recent glitch in the food stamp program inspired a series of photos and status updates I found obnoxious and ignorant. I regretted the posts almost immediately when my family and old school friends (who are almost all evangelical tea party supporters) started commenting on them and I deleted them.

In the past I would have deleted everyone and thought about shutting down my Facebook account, but I’ve come to learn that Facebook does have benefits and I miss it when I’m not on it, so it’s up to me to use it in a way that doesn’t piss me off or get me into arguments with relatives and friends I really do like. So this is a just a note to myself that Facebook should be for posting pictures of my kids, seeing pictures of other people’s kids, and chatting about sports and books. John Scalzi has a great piece about the massive failure of Facebook as a forum for discussion, but I’ve found it’s only when something major happens in the political arena that I have these troubles with Facebook. And when I need to I just go on Twitter and rant about it because, for the most part, none of my family is on Twitter.

This sort of conflict though does make me wonder about my shift lately to a more liberal world view, even though amongst my writing and publishing friends I’m still one of the more conservative voices. Has living and working in Ann Arbor pushed my views to the left? Possibly? But I suspect its more complicated. Even when I was deeper into the Republican party I was skeptical of the far right elements and my religious beliefs have always been less evangelical than my upbringing would probably indicate. So there were hints.

Anyway, I have this website here for longer discussions of politics and religion and I think the comments section is a much better forum than the screeching circus of Facebook for those kinds of discussions. And I do suspect a longer post here in the next day or so about what I see as the hypocrisy and judgmental attitude of Christians complaining about those on welfare and food stamps. But for right now I have to go complain about the baseball weather on Facebook.