Friday, December 9, 2011

All The News That's Fit to Cry Over



Hello Dear Readers,

Is it just me, or are you finding Facebook really depressing these days? It used to be a pretty whimsical site, full of funny posts and amusing observations, with the added bonus of reconnecting with people you really love.

Maybe it's just the Friends I have, who tend to be very intelligent, issue-conscious people, but lately all I see are posts, links, and comments about how the government is going to hell in a hand basket; animal species that are starving, going extinct, being needlessly slaughtered or otherwise suffering; children that are missing or murdered, and that all time favorite--how we continue to kill the planet.

Enough, already!

Of course I'm aware of these issues. Of course I think it's important that everyone is aware of these issues. But do I like logging on to my newsfeed, only to see bloody photos of murdered kittens? Hell, no. (That last one is a real example that left me crying at work.)

I don't know about you, but this overload of depressing, we're-all-going-to-hell-and-there's-nothing-you-can-do-about-it posts are getting me down. I know about the problems, but what about the solutions? What can I do to save the polar bears? Or to protect our water? Or to stop idiots from poaching rhinos? Or to keep the city I live in from being the murder capital of Canada again? Please tell me, because I really do want to know.

One tip from the corporate world could really work here: if you bring up a problem, have a solution in mind. That will keep everyone focused on the positive, and stop people who already care about these issues from feeling incredibly helpless.

It almost (I said almost, people!) makes me long for the days when Facebook was all about status updates like this:

A mom thinks about her kids even if they're not with her.

♥ A mom loves her kids in a way that they will never understand (until they have their own!).
♥ A mom will be there for her kids when no one else will.
♥ A mom loves her kids even when they neglect and hurt her.
♥ A mom will catch a grenade, take a bullet, stand in front of a train, & ask God to take her instead of her child....
♥ A mom loves her kids to the moon and back and more! xoxox ♥
♥ If you are a mom and have a child or children whom you love more than anything in this world, copy and paste this to your status!!!!

In the meantime, as you shop for holiday gifts, consider putting your hard earned cash towards a worthy cause (or one that will resonate with the recipient of your gift). The World Wildlife Federation has some cute ones. This won't save the world, or resurrect any murdered kittens, unfortunately, but it's a start.

8 comments:

  1. The sad reality is that the world can be an ugly place. It is frustrating to know we're slowly killing it, with everything in is ecosystems, and there is not much we can really do about it.

    The alternative? Ignore it all and be blissfully ignorant. Sadly, I think that's what many choose to do, which is why we are in the situation we're in.

    My take on things? Have a balance of both. Care about the kittens and seals and issues that mean something to you, but tune out every once in a while as well. Sadly, this is probably the only way to keep sane!

    And I'll make sure to post more happy and funny updates on Facebook ;)

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  2. Don't look at the pictures. I rarely do. I'll sign the petitions, email my MP and share so others can do the same, but I don't look at pictures. That's how I keep my sanity. ....and our government? It's always been sitting in hand basket in hell. No news there.

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  3. Between making gifts, baking for friends and getting ready for some holiday time together. Check out what you inspired on FB Holli, let's make some good news sharing happen my friend!

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  4. Thanks for your suggestions, everyone. They are much appreciated.

    @ TS - Unfortunately, it's a case of preaching to the converted. We're all hammering people who already know and care about these issues. And the ones who don't know, don't care? A Facebook post isn't bound to convince them. Facebook is so overrun with issues and causes now, I'm not sure it's the most effective method of reaching people. But do I have an alternative to suggest? Not really.

    @ Angela - the murdered kittens pic was right up on the newsfeed. I wasn't sure what it was at first, but it was truly horrible.

    @ MM - will do! I used to be a Community Review reporter. I know all about the benefit of good news. :)

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  5. I tend to agree with you, Holli. I hear enough sad things on the news if I choose to watch ii, I'd be happy not to read about it on Facebook. Some people think that is sticking your head in the sand, but knowing about the ills of the world is useless if we're not actively doing our part to try and bring about change.

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  6. And once we are doing everything we can, hearing about the same gloom and doom again and again is only depressing. I would love some sand to bury my head in right now!

    Thanks for your comment, Laura.

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  7. I'm totally with you on this (and, like you, not because I don't care about big issues--but because Facebook is a pointless venue for "discussing" them). . . my solution? I very, very rarely check my Facebook--and I only got it a few months ago. I use it to check in with friends/family that frequent it, and that's about it. :)

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  8. Hey, is that the account your husband set up for you a long time ago? If it's a different one, you'd better friend me, Ev! :)

    Yes, there seems to be a lot of people who post provocative things in the hopes of getting into a large scale debate. One woman recently posted that "suicide is the ultimate act of anger against the world" on a friend's wall. As someone who has lost friends to suicide, and who has been suicidal herself, I didn't agree, and I told her so. I said that people who commit suicide usually do it out of intense pain, not anger, and her response was "Well, pain is just anger turned inwards." Oh really? Funny how it feels so different, then. I knew that there was absolutely no point in continuing the conversation. She was more interested in being right at any cost than actually considering someone else's point of view.

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