When the Internet and social media took off decades ago, they both seemed to be a beacon of freedom of speech and communication. We would speak to and (virtually) meet people who we might otherwise not meet and become a better world.
But while the technology has changed, the world has not.
While the social media giants claim that they are all for freedom of expression, they continue to ignore the elephant in the room. That elephant is racism and antisemitism that continually flows from various tweets and posts.
Twitter, while claiming that hate speech is not allowed on the platform, does not prevent Iranian officials from threatening Israel with annihilation via tweets.
I wish it was easy to remove ourselves from social media. But, they are so much of a part of lives that to do so would be akin to cutting off a limb. The only solution is that the people who run the social media platforms follow through on their terms of service. The question is, will they?
Antisemitism is a disease. How does one route out a disease from one’s body? You hit with medicine. In this case, the medicine is truth and the power of the average person.
In response to the antisemitic posts appearing on Twitter and Instagram, a boycott has been called on both platforms for 48 hours starting this morning.
There is a distinct line between freedom of speech and spewing hate. Until the people who run the social media world realize this and follow the rules they created, they will be as guilty as the ones who spew racist and antisemitic lies.
I know that this boycott will be difficult. But if we do not move forward with the boycott, the message that racism and antisemitism is acceptable will continue it’s destructive grasp on this world.
Antisemitism is a disease that has haunted humanity for thousands of years. Just when we think it has finally died down forever, it rears its ugly head once more.
This past week, the hashtag #JewishPrivilege has been circulating throughout Twitter in response to false and age old accusations. I’d like to talk about my own so called “#JewishPrivilege”.
If this privilege includes having relations that were among the 6 million Jews slaughtered in the Holocaust, I want none of it.
2. My immigrant ancestors came to America in the early 20th century with only the clothes on their backs and whatever they could carry. No one helped them to become upwardly mobile, they had to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps. Whatever “privilege” someone thought they had clearly did not exist.
3. I wouldn’t define privilege of having to hire security during religious services. Or seeing the shootings in Poway or Pittsburgh in the news.
4. Privilege is not defined as hearing about nearly 1400 brothers and sisters of your faith murdered in their homeland due to lies and hate.
5. If privilege is constantly watching Israel being attacked in the press and in the UN for so called “crimes against humanity” while other countries receive a slap on the wrist, that is not “privilege”.
Privilege is defined as: special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group.
Whoever thinks that the Jews are privileged needs to get their heads out the sand and read a history book.
In an ideal world, the goal of any leader is to do their job. It is not about always being liked or receiving approval. Sometimes, a leader has to stand up for what they believe is right, regardless of the criticism they may or may not receive.
Anyone who has been following American politics for the last four years would easily be able to tell you that you know who is not focused on doing his job. His focus is looking good to the public and to his base in particular.
That in essence, is everything that is wrong about this President. One of his recent tweets about the upcoming election and Joe Biden stated the following:
“Is this what you want for your President??? With no ratings, media will go down along with our great USA!”
What does not understand (and will probably never understand) is that the job he was hired by the American public to do is not about ratings. We need a President, whomever he or she maybe, to lead this country. Will they receive negative press and attention? Of course they will, that goes without saying.
We need a President who truly understands the job that the voters have hired them to do. That President is to my mind (and many others), is not the current occupant of the title.
These days, its hard not to become cynical about the events in the news. But it all it takes is the simple friendship of two young boys that love is still possible.
Last fall, the internet was introduced to Maxwell and Finnegan, two toddlers from New York City who are best friends. Running into each other’s arms for a movie style hug, they touched the hearts and minds of everyone who saw the video.
Last week a video surfaced on Twitter of the two boys walking hand in hand, wearing masks.
These children, without knowing it, are teaching us adults simple lessons of friendship and decency.
“Buffalo protester shoved by Police could be an ANTIFA provocateur. 75 year old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to black out the equipment. @OANN I watched, he fell harder than was pushed. Was aiming scanner. Could be a set up?”
In a time of crisis, we need our political leaders to use a cool head and think clearly. We don’t need a hot-headed, salesman of a President who prefers conspiracies and half-truths. But that is what we have had for the last three years.
I don’t what it will take to get this man out of office in November. But whatever we do, he MUST not have a second term.
When it comes to leadership (especially in politics), it is easy to talk the talk. But walking the walk is another story entirely.
It has been seven days since George Floyd’s murder. In that short period of time, Americans of all creeds, nationalities and beliefs have come together to protest he senseless slaughter of Americans of color. Unfortunately, some of the rallies and marches devolved into riots and destruction.
In Washington D.C., as the rioting got closer to the gates of the White House, you know who was shepherded to an underground bunker for his own safety. As of this morning, he has yet to return from the bunker. But yet, he still makes his usual outrageous statements via Twitter and calls some Governors weak for not taking military style action on the protesters.
On the other side, Joe Biden appeared in public and spoke to his constituents. Touring the local community, he stood with the marchers and with the business owners whose property has been damaged.
And if, racial unrest was not enough, we are still in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The question that every American has to ask is, who do we want as President? Do we want someone who puts their money where their mouth is, or do we want someone who walks the walk, but is unable to talk the talk?
If one knows nothing else about the United States, they know that Freedom of Speech is one of the legal and cultural cornerstones of the country. That being said, there are certain limits. For example, yelling fire in a crowded auditorium when there is no fire does not exactly fall in the “freedom of speech” category.
After years of letting you know who run rampant on Twitter, the minds behind the social media platform started to fact check some of you know who’s tweets. His response was to sign an executive order (aka take a tantrum), complaining that his rights were being violated. The tweet being fact checked was his statement that voting by mail would lead to a fraudulent 2020 Presidential election result (i.e. he loses).
This man is a hypocrite. His perspective is “good for me, not for thee”. He can vote by mail, but the home bound senior citizen or the single parent working two jobs cannot. He can claim censorship and that his rights are being taken away to anyone who would listen. But the average citizen who also has the same complaint and a Twitter account does not have the same platform as POTUS.
It’s no secret that we have a man child, used car salesman for President. Instead of using his power and his profile to build up this country, he is more concerned with his reputation and his status.
We need to get him out in November. The future of this nation depends on it.
P.S. While he complains, over 100,000 Americans have died from Covid-19. I can’t think of a better reason to vote in the fall.
If the coronavirus has done one thing, it has accentuated the differences between the 1% and the rest of us.
Over the weekend, Madonna posted a video to her Instagram and Twitter pages, claiming that the disease is the “great equalizer”.
To say that she got called out for her b*llsh*t is an understatement.
While other members of the 1% in Hollywood are doing their part, Madonna sits in a bathtub as roses float by and does nothing.
I have nothing but respect for her as musician and a woman who paved the way for multiple generations of female musicians. However, instead of using her name and influence for good, she is only thinking about herself.
*For the foreseeable future, some Character Review posts may not be published every Thursday as they have in the past.
*Warning: This post contains spoilers about the characters from the television series Roseanne and The Conners. Read at your own risk if you have not watched the show.
There is something to be said about a well written, human character. They leap off the page and speak to us as if they were right in front of us, as flesh and blood human beings, instead of fictional creations.
In this series of weekly blog posts, I will examine character using the characters from Roseanne and The Conners to explore how writers can create fully dimensional, human characters that audiences and readers can relate to.
In the history of television, housewives have been portrayed as paragons of motherly and wifely virtue. Their houses and their appearances were magazine ready, their children are angels and their husbands came home to perfect families. Roseanne Conner (Roseanne Barr) broke that mold the moment she appeared on our television screens. She was brash, outspoken, far from modelesque and her family was imperfect.
Roseanne and her husband, Dan (John Goodman), have three kids. Becky (played by Alicia Goranson and then by Sarah Chalke), Darlene (Sara Gilbert), DJ (Michael Fishman) and Jerry Garcia Conner. In addition to her kids, Roseanne’s sister Jackie (Laurie Metcalf) is always stopping by.
The Conners are the average middle-class American family and Roseanne is the average middle-class American wife and mother. She and Dan are juggling their kids, their jobs, paying bills, keeping their marriage going, etc. Over the course of the original series, Roseanne has multiple jobs, a breast reduction, and a fourth child.
When the series returned, Roseanne was still Roseanne. But with a new twist. While dealing with knee pain, she has become addicted to the pain killers. It’s what kills her on-screen while her off-screen alter ego, Roseanne Barr became a persona non-grata after some rather unsavory comments made via her Twitter account.
To sum it up: in being real and representing real women, Roseanne Conner and the actor that played her changed the way that women are portrayed on television. Roseanne was imperfect, complicated and faced the same everyday situations that the viewers faced. It is that grounding in reality that makes her memorable and lovable.