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Missed Memo: Only Other People’s Values Count

Black Boxing Gloves / Photo by: Airman 1st Class Kerelin Molina
Black Boxing Gloves / Photo by: Airman 1st Class Kerelin Molina

I got into my first (and hopefully last) Facebook fight over the weekend. I have a policy of never engaging in Facebook fights, and those who are my Facebook friends know that I rarely discuss politics, religion, or my personal beliefs on the platform, with the exception of the occasional uplifting quotation or petition that I hope others will sign.

One of the reasons why I keep this low profile and bore my friends with perpetual cat pictures and coffee references is because I don’t share many of my friends’ political and religious beliefs, yet I understand that they have a right to their beliefs, so I agree to disagree in my head and move on. Other people don’t show this same courtesy . . . hence, my Facebook fight.

I don’t want to draw attention to it, but a person belittled those of us who expressed continued sorrow on the year anniversary of a tragic circumstance and not only devalued the subject of our sorrow, but also told us to “get over it.” When I called this person out for the unnecessary comment, it was reiterated that we should get over it and worry about what this person felt important instead.

Hmm . . . okay . . . Let me make sure that I have this straight: I don’t have the right to express sorrow over something that I value because you don’t value it. Instead, I should get over my values and only support what you value. I see. Okay, got it, and I apologize. Apparently, I missed the memo issued that lists what I am allowed and not allowed to believe in personally.

Now, why am I bringing this up if I don’t want to draw attention to it? Because it helped me realize something that I would like to share in the hopes that it will not offend but make others think. In my humble option, this attitude is part of the reason why everything is upside down right now, and headed in the wrong direction fast.

In my second-to-last comment to this person, I agreed that are “greater problems” in this world, and that one of those problems is people who think their ideals are the only ones that count and feel it appropriate to belittle others for their ideals simply because they don’t agree with them. What makes one person’s values more important than another person’s values?

The other problem with this entire situation is that somebody chose to insult people who wanted simply to express their sorrow on the one-year anniversary of a tragic occurrence that was close to their heart. What gives anyone the right to insult people over this? It is no person’s place to tell others over who or what they should feel sorrow, much less how long they are allowed to express that sadness.

Why is everything upside down? I believe this attitude is part of the reason. Everyone, please get over your own agendas. If you don’t agree with something, that’s fine, disagree, even open up a healthy debate, but please don’t feel as if you have the right to insult others over their values, and by all means, don’t push your unrelated values on those people to defend that action.

On a separate note, I’d like to thank this person for the Facebook boxing match. It taught me something important about myself, as well, and that is that I must continue to work hard to respect the beliefs of others, even if I don’t agree with them, even if I feel that they cause more harm than good. Who am I to tell somebody else what she or he should value? Who am I to judge?


Copyright © 2016 by Sharon Platz All Rights Reserved

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