I’ve always been a bit of a homebody, a hermit, if you’d prefer. I love to stay at home and read a book, watch a movie, surf the web, play a game, take a nap — you name it. I’d 100 times rather do any of those things than go out with friends. I’d 1000 times rather do any of those things than go to a party where I don’t know anybody. In fact, I’d just rather not go out at all.

Anita told me the other day that we need friends; that she needs some adult conversation. I put aside the not-so-subtle insult that conversations with me don’t count as the adult variety. I told her I thought going out was an overrated event. Just because we would be doing it with friends would not make it any less overrated.

As technology marches ever forward, I find that I do favor my own company. My company is familiar, of course. My company is safe.

Facebook has been an outstanding way for me to keep up with old friends and family, especially when travelling so much. But it is not without its problems.

Living my solitary life in a pre-Facebook world allowed me to continue to believe that all my friends were smart. They knew the difference between they’re, there, and their. Two, too, and to were also understood by these pre-Facebook friends and neighbors.

In my pre-Facebook life, my friends were all on the same page as me with regards to politics. Social issues, if we could trouble ourselves to consider them, were likewise similar.

This post-Facebook existence has shattered that illusion. Granted, most of my friends still understand basic grammar. Most of them can construct a proper sentence. Many of them cannot. It’s a real eye-opener to discover that a person you respected doesn’t know the difference between it’s and its. It doesn’t make them any less of a friend, but it makes me wonder if we were in the same classroom. I’m positive that we were. What happened? The Oxford comma? Forget about it!

Even worse is the social issue. Many of my friends don’t share my views on social issues. That’s OK, mind you. Once again, it doesn’t make them any less of a friend. It does change things, though. I view them in a different light. What I once considered safe is no longer safe. I once considered them an ally but they might just be a foe. If not a foe, then definitely a person around whom it might be wise to be suspicious or guarded.

I am also an avid fan of Google Plus (G+). If you’re not on there, you should be. It’s definitely social, but it’s different than Facebook. Regardless of what you might read, it is not a ghost town.

Granted, I know precious few of the people on G+, and that’s OK. It’s designed to be that way. Here’s how to understand G+. If Facebook is where you connect with everybody that you know, and Twitter is where you connect with everybody that you don’t know, then G+ is the place to connect with everybody that you should know.

But with regards to my hermit, homebody tendencies, in many ways, G+ is worse than Facebook. It allows me to see a much larger segment of society. And they’re scary.

Most of my friends and acquaintances on Facebook might have differing opinions and views but, for the most part, they’re at least cordial. The rest of society, if G+ is any indication, is not so touchy-feely.

Oh, they’re the voice of tolerance, of course. Just ask them. But what I see and read daily indicates otherwise. They’re more intolerant than those they condemn. They militantly believe what they believe. To hell with those that have a dissenting viewpoint.

I have been in this state of mind myself. In fact, I find myself there often. I have an opinion and you’re welcome to it. But I like to think that I’m at least somewhat considerate of other viewpoints, even if it turns out that I absolutely don’t agree with them. The stuff I read on G+? Not so much.

It makes me sad for our country and our futures. The way things are going now cannot continue. It’s not a self-sustaining way. These people on G+ don’t see that. They think that Barack Obama is OK. They think that Socialism is OK. They think that the country is on the right path.

They’re wrong, God help us. At the risk of sounding overly dramatic, I think that the only eventuality is a civil war. Which side will you be on?

Can’t we all just stay at home and be hermits instead? RJC

Originally published at spiritualbully.com.

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