A Note to Facebook Politicians

Elephant in the room: politics.

I recently went on Facebook, as I sometimes do at the end of my day, and quickly regretted making that the last thing my mind ingested before falling asleep. I climbed into bed physically and emotionally ill and overwhelmed. Literally, my body ached with disgust at the uncivil, arrogant, downright  h a t e  I saw. {To my dismay, that feeling was still there the next morning. What a way to start a Monday.}

It seems that people forget that just because they are typing their opinions into a device and tapping “post” that those same words are being communicated to an actual human being, with actual feelings and real, personal reasons that they process life and the world the way that they do.

People, we must, must, must, must, must stop this.

Love: the foundation of the two greatest commandments given to humanity.

We spend more time voicing our opinions than we do listening to others. Regardless of how stark the differences may seem between us and other individuals, speaking over people with the sole intention of changing them is not love. To be perfectly transparent, I’m still learning on a daily basis what love means and is and encompasses, fully. But, what I am certain of about love is that it is not arrogant or rude.

Let me be clear – I am not advocating that everyone remain silent, or that we should not have bold, strong beliefs about life and love and politics and the world, or even that all opinions are created equal. I myself have beliefs that I hold very dearly and I do believe there are crucial times when it is necessary to stand firmly in those beliefs.

In fact, there are views in the world that do need to be evaluated and challenged.

{What if no one was allowed to question your love for fascism in the 1930s? Obviously, we wouldn’t call that love.}

There is undoubtedly evil in the world and we do need to stand in firm opposition to it.

As passionate as I am about that, it’s for another time and post.

But, 3 things:

  1. Be humble. Keep an open mind and heart because the chances that you are 100% right is likely false.
  2. Be kind. I don’t care how wrong you think someone is – they are human, created in the image of a holy God, just like you are.
  3. Be loving – both to who you are communicating with, while also keeping in mind the people you are standing for.

I simply want to urge all of us to love.

Love. Love. Love. Love. Love.

I realize that that is a daily, sometimes hourly working out of what love looks like from person to person that we encounter. To your spouse, to your kids, to family members, to friends, to co-workers, to perfect strangers… to Facebook “friends.”

It’s hard.

This thing we call life is beautifully complicated and complex, on an individual level simply because humanity is broken – but even more largely because there are other people outside of our own personal selves who are also broken and trying to figure themselves out, let alone figure out what they think about this intricate world we live in.

May we be more considerate.

May we be more patient with each other.

May we  l i s t e n.

May we respect others unconditionally – regardless of how blatantly different or “wrong” you think they are, or even regardless of how much respect they don’t show you in return. Because that is another thing I am certain of about love – it is unconditional.

May we spend more time thoughtfully, carefully verbalizing our words to human faces with love – and again (I know I sound redundant),  l i s t e n i n g  to what those human faces have to say in return – than we do mindlessly, arrogantly, selfishly blasting our personal views of how the world works onto a screen.

For the sake of our broken world so desperate for more of it, I’ll say it again:

Let us love.

 

Alex Hanson

Wife to Nate, mommy to Lucy.

 

2 thoughts on “A Note to Facebook Politicians

  1. Alex, you say it so great! I’m sharing in the hopes that hundreds if not thousands will read, think and learn from your words!!!
    Hugs, Penny

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