This post has been on mind for a while now. These thoughts started during the Mitt Romney vs Barack Obama Presidential Campaign, developed more during the Gay Marriage disputes, and are continuing to develop as I read more into the "Mommy Wars" (breastfeeding v formula fed, working v stay at home, organic living and eating v non organic living and eating, etc) and the Mormon feminist movement.
I have a confession... I really, a lot of the time, hate freedom of speech. Cue gasp from everyone. My husband loves it (maybe because he's very good at expressing himself through words), me, not so much. I, of course, enjoy expressing my thoughts, views, and opinions freely but don't do it quite as eloquently as I'd like. And most of the time, I'm interested to hear other people's thoughts as well. It is the responses to my opinions and other peoples opinions that makes me cringe. Am I making sense?
Example time. Here are two statements that are controversial in nature but are generally the honest opinion of actual people. *Note- these are not necessarily my opinions
1. God loves all people and people should be able to love one another without judgement in regards to sexuality. What harm does two married men do to a heterosexual couple? Let people love and be loved.
2. Many believe you should be who you are and not try to conform. But life is about change. Changing from a natural state to a state greater than we can even imagine; a state God wants us to live by.
Honestly, the above statements both interest me. I would love to have conversations with people who hold either of those thoughts (I understand there are more arguments for both "sides" of this issue). While they may not be politically correct or completely unbiased, they both present their thoughts in pretty respectful ways. These next statements is where my, "I hate freedom of speech" comes from. *Note- these are not my opinions but are based on actual posts and articles and blogs I have read.
1. Seriously, it's just not natural to have two girls together. If people were meant to be homosexual then why can't they naturally have babies? The crap that goes on in today's society is just sick.
2. So much for the "Christian" lifestyle. People are narrow minded idiots to not support gay marriage. Did we not already jump this hurdle with the civil rights movement?
Do you see the difference? I know it's in language and how it's presented but often people start with a for-the-most-part respectful phrase and then get pounded with responses and replies that are borderline abuse.
Why does everything have to be about taking sides? With the whole thing in Syria- Obama's like, "let's take responsibility and show them that's not acceptable" and I hear a lot of people saying, "what the heck? That's the dumbest possible thing you can do." I wonder if Obama would have been like, "sadly, there's nothing we can do about the events in Syria" if more people would say, "Why the heck aren't you doing anything about what's going on in Syria?!?"
I understand having differences in opinions. I'm not saying that everyone should accept each others beliefs. What I'm saying is, WHY DO WE HAVE TO BE SO MEAN??? I get it. These are real issues that go deep into peoples hearts. I know it's so important for your baby to be breastfed and I know it's so important for you as a woman to be equal to a man but do we really gain that much by generalizing, calling names, being overly sarcastic, and all that other stuff?
I've been wanting- so badly- to post my views on who our president should be, on what we should be feeding our babies, whether I think women should hold the priesthood or wear pants or not, etc. But I can't. I get sick when I think of the backlash I'd get from the public, my friends, and probably family (not everyone but some). I'm not ashamed of my beliefs. If you ask me face to face I'll be honest. But the things people are willing to say on a computer screen are not things I enjoy reading. In essence, I actually don't hate freedom of speech. But I do wish people would stop, think, and then respectfully respond to each other.
And I'm sure I've said things in here that a lot of people disagree with. Let me guess what you're thinking, "It's my right to say what I want so get over yourself, Sadi" "You're a coward for not posting your beliefs. Be a big girl and stand up for what you believe." "Hey, you generalized and excluded me because I'm respectful when I post my thoughts". I get it.
We can argue about anything. There was this Dove commercial that was supposedly promoting self beauty. I saw many postings saying, "Watch this, everyone is beautiful" and then I read other blogs and articles about how the whole thing is ridiculous and and there a racial biases and they are focusing on the wrong kind of beauty. It's a video put on by a soap company! Why do we have to analyze the heck of it? Why do we have to watch a commercial to realize how beautiful we are? Blah.
Why do we have to make such a big deal of one person's thoughts?
I guess in a way it's good. All this controversy keeps me on my toes and thinking about what I really believe. I just wish I wouldn't get that "I wish I didn't read all those comments after that post/article/blog" feeling. I do LOVE it when I read an uplifting article/post/blog. Maybe I should just stop reading people's comments.
If you get anything from this post- Just be nice.
Ok. I'm done. You can go on with your lives.