The Costanza-Hall-Griffin Credo: Stop Feeding the Trolls

So much anger and hatred.

So much short-sightedness amid very disconcerting discord.

When did we forget that, to quote George Costanza, “…we’re living in a society! We’re supposed to act in a civilized way!”

It’s hard for me to check my social media feeds these days. Not necessarily because of the posts in my feeds, but because of the array of comments from the armchair experts who are “right” no matter what. They feel the need to spew their insults and hatred towards anyone who disagrees.

And it seems like every day is worse than the day before, with more trolls eliciting another day of a seemingly neverending war of negativity.

I’m reminded of a popular quote by Evelyn Beatrice Hall (oftentimes misquoted and/or miscredited to Voltaire): “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

There’s even a “Family Guy” episode where Peter Griffin says, “I may not agree with what you say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”

Peter Griffin is a cartoon character, and a boorish one at that.

HE gets it.

The average American citizen doesn’t.

We’re always encouraging others to love themselves, to take pride in what makes them unique, to stand out from the rest.

But when they do, and their opinions or ideas might differ from ours, we turn into mean-spirited, judgmental elitists, immediately condemning them for doing the very thing we encouraged them to do in the first place.

Instead of defending someone else’s right to say something, we most often resort to demeaning, disrespecting, criticizing, and at times threatening those who don’t agree with us.

Everybody is right, yet everybody is wrong.

Maybe my opinions are correct. Maybe not.

Maybe the other guy’s opinions are. Maybe not.

The bottom line is that we are ALL equal humans with feelings, ideas, backgrounds, experience, wisdom, and insight.

What makes us unique is that our feelings, ideas, backgrounds, experience, wisdom, and insight are different from everyone else’s.

We are the same, yet different, and it’s more important to learn from each other rather than ridicule each other.

It’s time to stand together:

Let’s realize that we are living in a society, and that we should be acting in a civilized way.

Let’s agree to disagree with respect and grace, and accept each other unconditionally.

Let’s use each and every moment we have here on Earth in a constructive and meaningful way, and NOT waste time commenting on posts that have no positive influence or bearing on our future in any way, shape, or form. (Just in case you didn’t know, it is totally okay to read something you don’t agree with, and then simply move on with your day instead of reacting to it.)

Let’s live and let live.

If we don’t, this culture of negativity will only get worse, and I fear that the time will inevitably come when our right to say “it” WILL be taken away for good.