The day I decided that I would no longer remain passive in my political views online was the day I began to challenge posts on my news feed. When I say challenge, I mean that I, at least, ask the authors to document what they have posted.
Posts that are obviously true or simply a matter of opinion, even if they are a little caustic, are benign and I generally leave them be. After all, I am not looking for a fight. But if it is suspect or egregiously caustic, I start by asking the poster to provide credible documentation.
It Sounded Fishy
This did not go well the other day when I challenged a re-post by a Facebook friend that accused President Biden of waving sanctions to make way for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline and suggested he was like a Russian asset.
I could let the “Russian asset” comment go, but hadn’t heard the news that Biden had lifted the sanctions, so It sounded a little fishy to me. I asked my friend to send me a credible source to verify the fact.
In Steps Cletus
Next morning, as I sat on the deck eating breakfast and checking Facebook, I received a response from another poster, who we’ll call Cletus.
Cletus barked at me, “read the news” and “trump stoped pipeline biden give the go ahead”.
Okay, Cletus was miffed, but hadn’t provided any help, so I asked him where, in the news, I could find this story.
He barked at me again and then attacked all “demoncrats/republins” as untrustworthy.
I responded calmly, asking him for just one credible source.
Really angry now, Cletus got personal. He told me to do my homework, swore and then accused me of being a — wait for it — democrat.
Done with Cletus and ready to move on, I simply responded, “so you can’t give me a source.”
At this point, I was back in the house and in front of my computer so, I googled “Nord Stream 2 pipeline”, read three articles and learned that there was enough truth in the original post to let it slide.
Back on my news feed though, Cletus was still railing – accusing me of being afraid of the truth and taking off on a Hunter Biden tangent.”
I was about ready to let him have it with both barrels, when my friend who had originally reposted the message interrupted with a link to a Fox News story on the subject. I told him it was helpful and thanked him.
That was all I wanted – to make sure there was some truth in the post. My friend (although he took his sweet time) did exactly what I am now expecting people who post political comments to do – own them. Make sure they are true and be ready to back them up.
By the way, I didn’t hear anything else from Cletus. I hope he’s okay, ‘cuz he “sounded” pretty close to apoplexy.