I guess it's somewhat ironic that I am writing this on May day which is pretty much the day to make political statements in the loudest way possible. But this is something that has been on my mind for a while now.
So much has changed in the last decade. I remember the days when you had to wait for the nightly news to find out what gruesome thing had happened that day. Now a days the news is posted while its happening, and not just by news sources, but by anyone to happens to be there. And that goes beyond just the typical news stories. You can just scroll down your Facebook feeds and chances are you will see articles about business, health, and child raising, most of them with a clear stance on what they think you should or shouldn't do.
And not just that, but people now have the ability to publicize their personal lives in a way that they never could before. Suddenly people are not only sharing every aspect of their lives, but are now telling you how you should live yours. What movies you should watch (or not watch). What stores to shop at. What products to use. How to discipline your child...and so on and so on.
Between all of the social media sites and apps, it has become easier that ever to share your personal life with the world. Which also means that each and every little thing is being used to make a statement. If you support breastfeeding, you can't just quietly breastfeed your baby now. No, you have to post pictures of it, or videos of it, or better yet, just go ahead and squirt breast milk on people who disagree and post it on Facebook and the whole world will be taking sides withing just a few hours. (yes, that really happened)
And yet it goes beyond that. In fact, it is beginning to pervade every aspect of our lives. You can't shop at Target because of their bathroom policy. Don't use sunscreen because it's toxic. Oh yeah, and so is pretty much everything else you eat. You can't use regular diapers because of the chemicals. You can't let your kids watch the TV because that makes you a bad mom. I can't even go to the store without overthinking which store I got to or what I buy. Nowadays, you can't even listen to Taylor Swift because of whatever stupid feud she happens to be in!
Come on people, give it a break! Why are we shaming everyone else who doesn't live or act or choose the same way that we do. When did making decisions about your personal life become a militant act that means that we must now force everyone to do the same thing? Why are we ruining friendship based on what, in the end, are (or should be) very private, personal decisions?
Diversity isn't a bad thing. And someone making different choices in their lives doesn't make them a bad person. There is so much happening in the world and yet we're hassling each other over the minute details of our lives instead of focusing on the big issues. If you want to make a political statement, make one that counts. Stand up against injustice, against racism, against bigotry. Stand up for what you believe in and then understand that some people might disagree and that's okay. Let's agree to disagree without demanding, demeaning, or disregarding other peoples opinions.
You remember when you mom used to say, 'if you can't say anything nice, then don't say anything at all'? Let's take a little lesson from the good old days, huh? If you can't share without demeaning, then don't share at all.
Now you'll have to excuse me while I go rock out to some Taylor Swift (and no, I don't know who she is currently on the outs with and I really don't care.)
Happy May day everyone!