Once upon a time, there was an outage on Facebook and its assorted tentacles.* It was (coincidentally) the day after a shrill whistle was blown on 60 Minutes, alerting both of the people who didn’t already know to the facts that
- Billions of earthlings use Facebook as a portal** to the world around them. So, the accuracy of their understanding of every issue we collectively confront is created, developed, and hardened by the “friends” they “follow.”
- Teenage female earthlings are uniquely susceptible to some of the negative effects of constant engagement of this kind, especially those who use Instagram.
- In the same way that providing ample dry kindling for hate fuels our political dumpster fire, and sells a lotta content (almost as much as a half-naked lady lying to the camera) it gets people to stay around long enough to have to feed the meter for another hour. In other words, regardless of our concerns, it is working for the company.
My obvious question is based on imagining a more thorough outage. What if folks had to take a couple additional steps to get the information they need, and didn’t have the option to dial up the daily ideological back-slapping that keeps them from knowing better? Does it seem pretty certain that the stock price of Hate would go down at least a little?
I’d like to hope so, which means hoping that just because HEAT and HATE are anagrams, our climate trajectory isn’t the one that Hate will follow, and that when we finally slam on the brakes we’ll realize that it’s too late, and future historians will say 333,474,263 (as of 10/11/2021) folks should have seen it coming yikes what a bunch of knuckleheads they must have been!
Ever have a feeling of superiority when learning about the Third Reich, assuming there must have been something wrong with those crazy Germans, goin’ along with that wack-ass dude? Reckon I did, until about 1 A.M. on 9 November, 2016.
The main point I’d like to make is that we’ve had two presidential elections in a row that would have had different outcomes were it not for overpowering Hate: Hillary was more hated than her opponent in 2016. And, whether our Republican friends are willing to admit it or not, Cheato***was more hated than his opponent in 2020. Please stop your kindergarten counting and get that straight. Otherwise, we’ll all move on to the last phase of Yoda’s sequence, and it will be all over but the SUFFERING.
* tentacles(1762, from Modern Latin tentaculum, literally “feeler,” from Latin tentare “to feel, try” + -culum, diminutive suffix (see -cule). Related: Tentacular.)
I could claim that my use of the term tentacles should be read neutrally, request that you ignore the pejoration the word has experienced over time, and the use the context implies, but that would be what my inner-city Atlanta kids at camp would have called a sterry. I had gotten the nickname Tex because of my blue suede cowboy boots. When the kids said it, it came out more like Tek and a typical thing for them to say in response to my varietal hooey was “you a sterry, Tek.”
** late 14c., “gate, gateway,” especially “the entire architectural treatment of the entrance and its surroundings of a cathedral or other grand building,” from Old French portal “gate”