Is this @ you? Sub-tweeting is taking over

I am sure that it is not just me who is baffled by the amount of hate and sometimes outright ignorance that I see spewed online by people I know or at one point admired, but that many of you are frustrated as well. It is not just happening on Twitter, but on Facebook, Instagram and of course we all know about the recent Snapchat drama. I guess a part of me just doesn’t understand how some people can care so little about the thoughts and emotions of the people that they are “talking,” or rather, sub-tweeting about, but are instead more interested in showing others what they believe to be “right.”

I know a lot of different people like this. People who are so absorbed in their own beliefs, ideas and their need for likes and comments, that they will post anything without a second thought. They might even believe that what they are posting is a common opinion and that they will get praise. What they do not realize is how much what they say can hurt the other party and how very few people actually agree with the method in which they voice their opinion. Do not get me wrong, I am all about voicing your opinions and standing up for what you believe, but there are ways to do so without causing emotional, and in some cases physical harm, upon those in opposition. It is very possible to agree to disagree in a respectful manner.

Some of my own family members fall into this category and it drives me insane when I see some of their racist, misogynist and homophobic posts on Facebook and Twitter. You don’t have to agree with certain lifestyles, but maybe, just maybe, it doesn’t really affect you. The number of times that we call them out on it is not going to change what they do because they enjoy the attention that they are getting for being hateful. They enjoy arguing online with people, but when it comes to face to face interaction, they refuse to reply because of the fear they have of not having anything to say in return.

There is one post in particular that I have come across recently that has just baffled me. It states: “Hate speech is just free speech that liberals don’t like.” Yes, we, as Americans, have the right to voice our opinions, but when does it become too much? I am pretty sure that if this was turned the other way around it would be getting just as much flack as it is currently. It might be because “hate speech” is never okay, but that is just a thought. Liberal or conservative, being hateful is never okay and when you have to hide behind your computer screen in order to say things like this, it might be an indicator that you really shouldn’t say it in the first place.

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Haley Roberts is a writer for The Lorian.

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