In July 2015 a Lion, Cecil as he was known was killed in Zimbabwe, just outside a National Park. This magnificent and endangered creature was killed by a Trophy Hunter, whom was also a dentist from Minnesota. Social Media erupted, as well as television commentary. Jimmy Kimmel made a statement and cried during his monologue and people were pissed off. If you don’t know the story check this out!
Then there was the backlash. I like many others made comments on my Facebook page about how angry I was. I quoted conservation efforts made such as half of the worlds lions are located on this Nature reserve and how he was 13 years old and fathered a bunch of little lions (cubs). I was asked point blank on my page, how could I care about a lion when there were millions of children dying in Africa? When there was people here at home dying of cancer? Hungry people, old people, communities in despair, poor people, veteran groups, the ones the defend our country for MY right to care!
Right then I suddenly was at a loss. Why do I have to choose one over the other? This is an absurd concept to me. It’s like choosing which of my children are my favorites, or which song is the best, or what color is perfect? More and more these days’ people cannot freely express their ideas or opinions without being scrutinized for them. Especially on Social Media. Trolls are everywhere, I am sure each one of us has had an experience with troll. Heck, there was just one on our student blog page on day 1!
I am really tired of the intolerance in this world. People are different, we need to be less judgmental and more excepting to each other’s ideas. What I DO NOT mean is we have to agree? We most certainly don’t. However, if somebody likes cats, I am a dog person, that doesn’t make having a cat wrong. I am not going to tell her how having a cat is stupid, and dogs are so much better. I am not going to provide data of how dogs help people, and cats don’t. I am not going to quote famous people telling them that they too are dog people so and therefore you suck because you like cats. I may say something like, hey I like dogs better, and we can even tell each other what we like about them. She may like cats because they are independent and she doesn’t have a lot of time to have a dog. She may have once been bitten by a dog.
My point is this, everybody has opinions, and people have a reason they have come to those opinions. Social Media is a place to express them. Just let it be! Quit being so mean to each other out there. Quit nagging and bragging. Express yourself, and be nice to others doing the same! Tolerance people! Everybody has a story, listen, to the why…that helps us understand one another.
By Jennifer Roach