Politics on Facebook

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on August 24, 2020

For the record, I try to keep politics off my personal Facebook page. I'm a segregationist; Politics is on Twitter, what's going on in my life is on Facebook. (Watch someone take that out of context.) However, if other people are putting all their political garbage on Twitter, I will occasionally comment.

Which brings us to my friend and radio host Dave Congalton's Facebook page. Dave promotes his radio show there, and since that is sometimes inherently political, I will comment.

When Dave updated his pinned photo to Joe Biden's historic choice of a woman of color to be his running mate last week, there was the predictable back-and-forth as Congalton has friends and guests from both sides of the political aisle.

For pointing out that Harris got her political start while dating Willie Brown and the minimal-work patronage jobs he appointed her to, I got the predictable pushback from Democrats. I was labeled a "proud slut shamer," a "Trump apologist" (people will have difficulty locating any apologia for bad Trump behavior anywhere my history), a "disgusting" misogynist and being "awfully judgemental [sic]."

The individual who called me a disgusting misogynist was the same one who called me awfully judgmental, which seemed awfully judgmental on his part toward me.

Politics on Facebook is a bad idea

Setting interest- or political-focused groups to the side, the continual day-by-day, hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute drumbeat of politics on people's personal Facebook pages does little good for anyone's mental well-being or their relationships with their friends.

Posting sub-two minute videos that purport to "explain" or "solve" a complicated social issue aren't helpful and in all likelihood are actually counterproductive. If the complex societal problem you're railing against could be solved by following the policy solutions outlined in your video, we probably would've already solved the problem.

If those short videos are bad, then the sub 20 word memes are worse. Far too many of theme are in some form of "if you don't agree with this pablum, then you are a bad person."

While Facebook is great for sharing funny cat videos, vacation photos, and the like, it's not well suited for 500+ word explanations of opposing policy positions.

Just don't do it

There are plenty of other places to talk politics online. There's Reddit, Twitter, you can create your own free blog at WordPress.com. All of this politics on Facebook isn't good for you, and it annoys me.

Stop it.


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August 2020



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