We’ve spent a year just talking to screens. Some of us still haven’t figured out how to use a Zoom background, I’m still a little lost with Clubhouse, and sometimes, we get into misunderstandings over the use of a sticker. Don’t worry; it’s not just you who is going insane with the whole situation.
What remains very clear in the time of “Can you hear me?” and “You’re on mute!” fumbles is how certain behaviors still are not accepted online and offline. You would think after seeing several personalities getting dragged and endless apology videos from YouTubers, we’ve learned to be more responsible.
Apparently, we haven’t.
Go on your feed right now, and you can easily tell that there are individuals who still don’t use the “Comment” and “Post” buttons wisely and respectfully. We’ve collectively forgotten that with the right to free speech comes a responsibility to use it for a better society.
In this time where we’ve only seen loved ones through video calls and the only outlet of our frustrations is the “Checkout” button on our shopping apps, we’ve shown off an ugly side to us. Instead of shrugging it off and saying that’s just the way it is, we here at Lifestyle Inquirer want to provide a little refresher course.
Here are some things that don’t deserve space on your wall, especially if you are the one authoring it.
Let’s use what just happened to Khloe Kardashian as an example. Say what you want about the personality, but her recent run-in with the Internet mob trolling her for a photo she wanted to be deleted showed how our words could cause serious problems.
Can we blame Khloe for “overreacting” over that photo? Maybe yes, maybe no. What the ordeal taught us, however, is far beyond the Kardashian empire. In the warped sense of what we think people’s bodies should look like, and calling Khloe “the fat sister” for years on end while laughing it up with her use of Photoshop and FaceTune, this is where we are.
We have a woman who cannot do anything right. If she posts an unedited photo, she’s called ugly. She goes on a Live to show off her real curves, and we still say bad things. An “unflattering” photo sends her into a meltdown, only to be met with rude comments.
If she FaceTunes looks a certain way, it’s only because we’ve praised only one kind of beauty. Yes, the Kardashians perhaps have contributed to this culture, but only because they’ve been rewarded for following a certain standard with brand launches and million-dollar deals.
And to think Khloe Kardashian has mansions and diamonds to her name and an entire team helping her out. Do you think ordinary people stand a chance to the way we keep shaming people for the body they have? So next time you want to win an argument by commenting, “Fat chance, fat ass,” maybe you need some time to look at yourself in the (moral) mirror.
Being homophobic and expressing it on social media should take away your posting powers, honestly.
You can’t watch RuPaul’s Drag Race and call yourself an ally if you make fun of your gay friend for being effeminate. Don’t support anyone who says that “gay people will give in to their straight male urges just because they are drunk.” We’re typing it out here to benefit those who think that issue is in a gray area. That statement is wrong, homophobic, and unbecoming of anyone, especially if you’re serving in a public office.
If you randomly attack someone from the LGBTQIA+ community, guess what? You’re a low-life troll. The even sadder thing is that you’re not even getting paid for it. Maybe you should rethink your life decisions.
Questioning the medical condition of people
Look to Tim Yap’s recent experience for this one. The host and eventologist recently posted about getting his COVID-19 vaccine to spread awareness. He indicated how he got it early due to his hypertension to encourage more people to get vaccinated and be educated about their health concerns.
For some odd reason, that can only be explained as “People need to learn their kindergarten lessons again,” some individuals questioned Tim’s posting and his hypertension. Yes, really.
Tim gets hate in exchange for an informational message regarding vaccination and being upfront about your medical situation. When we’re in the middle of a pandemic and a rush of fake news that can cause death, attacking people just for the sake of it shouldn’t be part of your agenda.
You may have a lot or no opinions about Tim, but to twist his vaccination experience into something malicious is uncalled for. We’re here to remind you that health conditions are a private matter, and you can’t question them lest you be the attending medical professional.
As much as we’re on the lookout for people who use medical concerns as a cop-out for bad behavior, we should also be sensitive to how people are vulnerable when they share their health conditions.
If you’re a racist, ask yourself why you are a racist. Is there a deep-seated issue you have to deal with? Perhaps you need to go to a therapist. Perhaps there’s an underlying problem you have to confront.
Being a racist on social media doesn’t get you anywhere. Except being the butt of jokes for late-night TV hosts, not even minding you were once president of a world superpower. That should be a sign for you to change up your stand.
When people post “Stop Asian Hate” and “Black Lives Matter,” the first thing you want to do is make it about yourself; here’s some advice: Don’t.
This covers what we mentioned above but everything else that’s nasty on the Internet.
When you tell people to change something about their looks or when you make fun of them for the kick of it, and when you express your opinion in a rude manner, that’s part of bullying. Your words can do harm, intimidate, and coerce people. Never forget that.
Holding people accountable for their actions is different from bullying. If you disagree with someone’s actions, state clearly why and what would be the alternative. “Your belief is not valid because you’re a f*g” is never the way to go about it. Call-out culture is different from creating a safe space where we can learn from one another. The former is just about lynching with no question, the thrill of schadenfreude, and can even take away from the true matter at hand.
This also applies to people who comment “slut” on bikini photos or “gross” on a photo of two men holding hands. Keep that comment yourself. Death threats shouldn’t also be in your “Sent” folder. Ever.
Conclusion: Whenever Twitter asks, “What’s happening?” you’re not obliged to answer in any circumstance. Having the tools to post messages, thoughts, and questions doesn’t always mean every idea you have is brilliant.
If anything, try to filter first what you want to type out to search for the sparkly theme on Instagram for your Stories. If what you will say falls into any of the categories we’ve listed, maybe take a deep breath, close the tab, and pull up some Netflix.