There will be no more memes tolerated on any of my social media. And by “any,” I mean Facebook because it’s the only social media I’ve mastered and I don’t intend to waste another minute trying to learn another.
And when I say “no more memes,” I guess what I mean is that, going forward from this day, any and every politically-tinged “gotcha’” that comes up on my Facebook timeline will be deleted.
But anyone who posts a sign, photo, or any other kind of internet bumper sticker that exhorts any kind of political stance will instantly be deleted. Well, to be technically correct, “hidden” is the term I’m reaching for here.
Why? Because as nearly as I can tell, it’s all Russian trollery and I’m tired of my Facebook friends falling for it.
I previously wrote that the Russians had amped up the “echo chamber” that social media has become, based on evidence uncovered by U.S. Department of Justice investigators, the playground of Russian government agents and they were leading us by the nose down a dark alley of hatred. Listening to National Public Radio this past week while driving up to Denver (God, I love this city, but I’d never live here) I learned that the evil Ruskies were even being no-goodniks after the Parkland, Fla., shooting, and that Russian bots (whateverthefuck those are) were spreading divisive bumper stickers all over American social media to keep Americans at each other’s throats. And, to my chagrin and horror, even people I loved, admired, and considered central to my happiness upon this mortal coil were falling victim to them.
I’ll sample only one, the one about the guy who cuts his assault weapon “in half” with a chop saw. You can see it here. There’s just one problem: The saw only cuts through the lower portion of the barrel. All he has to do is unscrew the stub of the barrel, screw in a new one, install a (cheap) replacement forearm and voila! He’s back up and running. So, no, I’m calling bullshit on this one. The guy even looks Russian. I think his real name is Yuri.
By the way, if you want to cut your semi-automatic gun in half and render it useless, this is how you do it. Cut through the receiver. Done deal.
So, as far as I’m concerned, bumper stickers that show up on Facebook in the guise of deep thoughts, penetrating ripostes, come-to-Jesus revelations, etc., all will be hidden and, over time, Facebook’s artificial intelligence will determine that I don’t want to see that crap, and it’ll stop dropping it in my timeline.
You should do the same. Stop posting this crap. The problems of the world – violence, hunger, pestilence, injustice – aren’t solved with bumper stickers. My father taught me that, which is why he refused to put bumper stickers on his car. He said his opinion on something couldn’t be summed up in a bumper sticker. His grandson (my oldest son) is equally wise, believing that bumper stickers just help other people judge you instantly and, just as instantly, decide whether they like you or hate you. When did the kid get to be so smart?
So, no more bumper stickers. From now on, if you have cogent thoughts you want to express in scintillating narrative, I suggest you marshal your thoughts, screw your courage to the sticking place, and post something thoughtful, penetrating and persuasive. Let’s have a dialogue, people, let’s respect each other and, most important of all, let’s each realize that we may not have the actual answer.
It’s a hard thing to admit one is wrong, but I’ve done it and survived. It’s how I’ve become so damn sure when I’m right.