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Politics was once a taboo topic of discussion. Nobody would passionately vocalize who they supported, unless specifically asked, but times have changed.
Social media and academia have become hotbeds for activists who solely wish to propagate their respective ideals. Celebrities now feel obligated to police morality, and angry nobodies, masked as “anti-fascists”, cause riots because of their self-entitlement.
Going one step further, Liberals now want to hijack friendship too.
Disagreement, a law of nature
Psychology Today’s’ Susan Heitler PhD who studied at both NYU and Harvard describes conflict as arising when two people come to a disagreement. She adds though, that it does not necessarily involve fighting.
Conflict, according to Dr. Heitler, exists in any situation where facts, desires or fears pull or push participants against each other or in divergent directions.
An article by Optimize Everything suggests that disagreements arise as a result of primarily eight causes. They are; facts, definition, values, signalling, failures of logic, information processing methods, default beliefs, and lastly self–interest.
Now, this is not a bad thing. In fact, a world void of intellect would never progress. Freedom to thought incentivizes advancements, change, and a pursuit of knowledge.
For this precise reason, it is crucial that everyone is evaluated on based on their character ; not political leniency.
But this not what’s happening at all, and the left is mostly to blame.
Liberals have lost touch with their core value: liberty. This isn’t an indictment of all who identify as liberals, of course, but statistics suggest a concerning phenomenon.
The relentless assault on culture has finally culminated to the complete transformation of personal relations.
Liberals love to unfriend
Pew Research released conducted a survey in 2012. It found that 80% of American adults use the internet and 66% of those online adults participate in social networking sites (SNS) such as Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+. According to the study more than half of the entire U.S. population use social networking sites.
It also found, almost unsurprisingly, that liberals were more likely than conservatives to have blocked, unfriended or hidden someone they disagreed with on social networking sites.
In 2016, the Public Religion Research Institute also found that Democrats were more likely than Republicans to have blocked, unfriended or stopped following someone they disagreed with on social networking sites.
Nearly one-quarter (24%) of Democrats say they blocked, unfriended, or stopped following someone on social media after the election because of political posts on social media. By contrast, less than one in ten Republicans report eliminating people from their social media circle.
Political liberals are also far more likely than conservatives to say they removed someone from their social media circle due to what they shared online (28% vs. 8%, respectively).
There is an evident problem here. A simple social media post, or a political disagreement does not merit such a harsh response. As we progress through the age of social media, it is becoming more clear that for many, friendship has lost value, and more concerning, it is conditional insofar as political agreement exists.
Friendships, or contacts, shouldn’t be dictated by such abstract standards. A social media post is certainly not enough to judge somebody’s character, let alone cease a friendship. But more importantly, it demonstrates the “open-minded” and “all inclusive” left’s hypocrisy. There is no room for diversity at all. Individualism is non-existent for those who vouch for absolute complacency from society’s cohorts.
The ‘real world’ is even worse
Although social media and reality shouldn’t be conflated, parallels between the two can be drawn.
In 2017, Pew Research found that 35% of Democrats said that a friend voting for Trump would put a strain on their friendship. Only 3% of Republicans were to say that a friend voting for Hillary Clinton would put a strain on their friendship.
In a poll conducted by Cato.org, 61% of Hillary Clinton’s voters agree that it’s “hard” to be friends with Donald Trump’s voters. However, only 34% of Trump’s voters feel the same way about Clinton supporters.
The Dartmouth, an American college newspaper found that 34% of the college’s students would not feel comfortable with having a room-mate of opposing political views (45% Democrat and 12% Republicans).
It isn’t just the left wing that is responsible for such a calamity. A 2012 paper in Public Opinion Quarterly reported that Republicans were more likely than Democrats to say they would be unhappy if their child married someone from the opposite party.
In the United Kingdom, the problem is equally rampant. YouGov found that Labour and Liberal Democrat supporters were much more likely to say they would find it harder to be friends with someone who became a UKIP supporter than the other way around.
Left-wing virtue signalling has led to an utter misunderstanding of political idealism, and a complete crusade against individual freedoms. By identifying as the sole beacon of morality, contemporary liberalism now possess a plethora of tyrannical tendencies.
Fixing the problem
To stop the situation from worsening, an extensive resolve is required. Personal responsibility to uphold both civility and decency must be reinstated among a larger re-configuration of liberal attitude. Additionally, greater comprehension about the severity of repressing individualism is imperative.
To accomplish this objective, prominent figures within the left-wing must first abandon the fallacious notion that opposing views are inherently evil. Laws have been established to combat hate speech. Succumbing to mob rule establishes an alarming precedent in which constitutional rights are unimportant.
A disengagement between politics and culture is seldom. Therefore, bipartisan collaboration to ensure freedom is respected must be in tandem with a shift in left-wing ideals.