Dear Facebook comment section,
Thank you for reaffirming my fears about this great country I live in. Before reading you I was only afraid that the majority of people I share my homeland with were angry, ignorant, and unnecessarily judgemental, but then y’all opened up your mouth and removed all doubt. I even made a point to avoid all (mostly) un-biased political pages. NPR, Time, Newsweek. Instead I will follow only nature pages, and pet-lovers pages, and pages about food. Here, I will be safe, in my cocoon of denial and like-thought.
Ah, here’s a post about National Parks. I love National Parks. That’s a pretty tree. And it’s snowing, so serene. Oh no, here comes Ron from Milwaukee. Ron’s profile picture is a bald eagle so he can’t be all bad, right? Ron says, “Gee, looks pretty cold in that park, so much for the libtards and there* global warming”. Oh no. They say don’t feed the trolls, but it’s really difficult. I’d like to provide Ron with links to scientific journals and discussions about global warming and it’s impact on the earth, along with links to a few community colleges in his area. Or reprimand him on his use of the word libtard and point out it’s irony. Let it go, Em, it’s a battle in futility.
Okay, well here’s a post from one of my favorite pages, I Love Dogs. It’s a woman holding a puppy and the caption reads, “Why We Consider Our Pets to be Our Children”. Seems innocent enough. I don’t have kids and I know I certainly think of Max as my baby. I have found my people! Oh no. Here’s Melissa from Dayton, Ohio. She says, “I think it’s so crazy when people who have dogs act like it’s the same thing as having an actual child. It isn’t. So get over yourself!!!” Wow. That seemed unnecessary Mel. I mean, did you really think pet owners believe having a dog or cat to be the same thing as having an actual human? I don’t want to speak for all pet owners but I’m aware that I needn’t be concerned with Max’s grades, his being bullied, or overhearing me use the F word and repeating it at the dog park. And when the phone rings after ten at night, I’m not afraid that something has happened to him. I’m also not worried about saving up for his college nor braces. But he is my boy and I love him and, yes, pet owners will treat our pets like children, especially when they’re the only children we have. I wanted to respond to Melissa and tell her what a horrible person she was, but I didn’t have to. 50+ pet owners took care of that for me.
Food pages! My favorite. What could possibly go wrong when folks are swapping recipes, taking pics of yummy things they’ve had for lunch, and waxing poetic on the beauty of a sandwich. For example: here’s a post that starts off with a picture of a juicy burger topped with Cambozola cheese and a sweet tomato chutney. Mmmm. That looks so good. If I weren’t on a diet, I could eat five of those. Jill from Boston says, “Yummy!”. Zack from Pittsburgh tags a friend and says, “We are so coming here this weekend!”. Uh oh. Here comes Beverly from Miami to ruin my high. “This is the reason why 70% of Americans are overweight”, she says. As if America’s obesity epidemic can be pinned on a sandwich, this particular sandwich at that, and as if this were the proper forum to discuss it. Next time Beverly is giving a talk on health and diet at Berkeley, I’ll check it out. This comment is easy for me to ignore as it’s more of a silly statement than an accusation. But then here comes Natalie from Arcata. Natalie is a vegan. She also wants everyone else to be one, too. She tells Jill, Zack, and me all about the cattle industry and the treatment of animals and about how we take a bite of that burger, we are eating fear. Really? Can’t I just enjoy my burger porn? Then people try and defend themselves by stating that they eat humanely-raised livestock, and this and that. To no avail. She even compares eating bovine meat to eating all meat at one point. “If you’ll eat cows, what stops you from eating your dog, then??” she asks when provoked by another commentator. Most likely because his dog is starting UCLA in the fall.
*the use of “there” was intentional 😉