Our world is transforming through technology. Okay, I’ll wait a second while that uber profound statement sets in. I know it’s taking a while because no one has ever said anything like it before. I’m still waiting because I think you are still flabbergasted by my extreme assertion. I now am going to continue to wait to see how much I can make you read while I think of how I am going to relate this to feminism and possibly socialism.
Sure. I also hate douchebags who beat women, but creating a facebook group about it puts that opinion on the same level as this one. Both could even be true. You might have been scared by “Are You Afraid of the Dark” and dislike domestic abuse, but I would never talk about both of those opinions in the same sentence.
I understand that it makes me sound like an old person clinging to my fear of change if I say that facebook groups, or MySpace petitions, or Twit-complaints trivialize issues that need to be dealt with in a more traditional way so instead I will say that the gentrification of these casual internet sites into supposedly meaningful expressions of belief just offers its users the ability to feel self-righteous without accomplishing anything worthwhile.
I’m sure there are people who join the facebook group to save Darfur who are also holding fundraisers, but there are plenty who are not. That’s not necessarily harmful – in fact it’s completely neutral and I’m fine with that. If facebook didn’t exist those people would be just as harmless and harmful. They would simply discuss it in person and do nothing about it. No big deal. Not the worst thing in the world. The problem comes in that facebook offers these people with a tangible piece of evidence to call on when their morality is questioned. I don’t mean that there is a group of morality police running around questioning the validity of each person’s indignant opinions in terms of how much they actually try to help the problem they discuss, but rather that when that person’s conscience acts as the morality police they need to know exactly how much good they are doing for the world.
You don’t become a feminist because you joined a facebook group declaring that you “Hate douchebags who beat women” especially when the group description uses the problematic word “pussy” to describe the offenders, and you aren’t helping the situation in Haiti by joining a group that states that “Haiti makes me : (.”
Last night I got the maddest I’ve gotten in years when I brought back my steaming hot bowl of Annie’s Mac’n’Cheese from the kitchen and immediately tripped and dumped the entire bowl onto my laptop. I swore like a pirate who found out his half finished bottle of rum had actually been AIDS-juice. This was because my two biggest loves of my life: Food and My Computer had attacked each other and made each other less useful. The white gloss of cheese across my keyboard and the dirty macaroni that is settling my stomach serve to remind me of the most traumatic experience of my past year. I say this because I am well aware that this is not the biggest deal in the world, but to me it was.
I don’t have the money or time to help out the horrible situation in Haiti, or Darfur, or Afghanistan, or any number of other disturbing things that happen in our world. I only have the money to go back to Minnesota come early March to visit my friends and see my old sketch group’s comedy show. Fuck, I’m selfish, but at least I don’t fake selflessness. Technology has allowed us to do this and I hate indignant rants on the internet that don’t do anything or effect anybody except allowing the ranter to feel better about themselves.
Wow. I feel much better now.