I’ve been a political junkie since I canvassed for a mayoral candidate at the age of 12. I am hardly a new kid on the political block. In all my years of political involvement, I’ve never witnessed an election cycle as filled with vengefulness as the Cyberbullying Cycle of 2012.
I question whether the overt hostility has to do with the stakes involved or the wide open platform which makes personal attacks fair game. I tend to go with the latter.
Remember when rules for dinner parties disavowed discussion of sex, politics or religion? (Unless, of course, you were with like-minded people at a key party, political fundraiser or church potluck!) Facebook, Huff Po and “Fifty Shades” have changed the game.
Doms and subs, nipple clamps, hard and soft limits are openly discussed at suburban barbecues and book clubs. Proselytizing is accepted at public high school football games where cheerleaders wave banners quoting Bible scripture.
And Facebook walls have become the playground for the schoolyard bully.
I noticed a particularly vitriolic form of political discourse during the primaries when a friend of my ex-husband’s taunted a close high school friend whose politics lay on the opposite side of the spectrum. “Where did you go to college? Do you have a graduate degree, smarty pants?” or something along those lines.
Recently, I got into a scuffle on someone’s Facebook wall. When I addressed the racist comment thrown out by someone’s “friend,” he threw back, “Like I’d listen to someone who bleeds once a month!” He called me a clown and asked for my education CV. The arguments didn’t get much more highbrow than that.
Maybe I should step away from knowing an acquaintance's political affiliation just like I don’t really want to know the favorite sex position of a friend and her husband. Some things are best left unsaid!
So, how do you like the weather we’ve been having? I love your shoes!