…are really a true friend.
…don’t want toddlers to die.
As part of the Facebook generation, I’m really not entirely sure why I stay part of the Facebook generation. I find that, more often than not, I am simply annoyed by what other people post. The list is not short. My liberal friends tell me I shouldn’t vote for Trump because he’s a horrible person, and then in a mind-boggling act of hypocrisy are planning on voting from Clinton. One of my nephews is quoting gnostic gospels and arguing with someone about a pyramid in Bosnia or something. Another nephew is gay and proudly proclaiming how “love won” because of the Supreme Court decision. And then came the “solidarity” profile pictures that made my head want to explode. And then the Traditionalist Catholics can’t help but tell me Pope Francis is an apostate. And don’t get me started about requests to play games, or being poked or prodded or whatever it is that Facebook does.
But one of the more annoying things is when someone posts something on my timeline that says “I want to see how many of my friends are REAL friends. No sharing allowed. You must copy and paste this.” This is the same approach as all those e-mails we’ve all gotten that try to guilt you into sending an e-mail along by saying something like “many of you will be too ashamed of Jesus to forward this and will delete it. Those who really love Jesus will forward.” Yeah – that’s it. If I don’t forward an e-mail to all my friends I’ll burn in hell for all eternity because, obviously, it’s because I’m ashamed of Jesus. Never mind that I don’t forward ANY e-mail because I actually don’t want to spam other people with a bunch of crap they don’t want to see, nor do I want to put someone through the same guilt trip I’m supposed to be going through.
I have a standard rule: I do not copy and paste any message if I am specifically asked to do so. If I want to copy and paste something I feel like copying and pasting (that’s never actually happened yet, but theoretically it could) then I will. But don’t tell me to. And this stand regardless of how nice and good and heart-wrenching your message is. Babies are dying in Somalia? I get it. That sucks. I may even look into charities that I can contribute to who are trying to do something about it. I may even share an article about it (as long as I wasn’t told to), but I will not copy and paste. Because if I do it for just ONE thing, then the precedent has been set, and suddenly I’m pitted against causes and people.
You think I’m your friend? But you’ll only be sure if I copy and paste a post? Get real.
And I love Jesus. I’m not afraid to say it. But if you try to guilt me into copying and pasting something that everyone will then know that a copied and pasted under pressure and duress, why is that in any way salvific? And how am I evangelizing? I LOVE JESUS! NOW, IF YOU DON’T POST THIS YOU DON’T, AND I’LL KNOW I’M BETTER THAN YOU! YAY ME!
And if I don’t copy and paste a post to raise awareness for sex trafficking, breast cancer, depression, yoga, or my left shoe then go ahead and think what you want about me if it makes you feel better.
So, the question is, am I being unreasonable? As a Catholic, a Christian, and just a person trying to be a good overall human being am I taking a stand where I shouldn’t? Or am I truly shying away from sharing the love of Jesus or helping mankind or just making a friend feel good? Is my stand on principle actually innately unprincipled?
I don’t think so, and for now I’ll stick with my current modus operandi. But I’m willing to listen to counter-arguments.