*Uh oh, she’s at it again. Writing when she’s feeling emotionally overwhelmed and overall very fed up with Twitter and everyone’s antics on there*
I want to begin with apathy, only because I’ve talked about myself and empathy before. Apathy means a lack of interest, enthusiasm or concern. For the sake of this post, we’re going to focus on the lack of concern, rather than interest or enthusiasm. As I write this, it has been a few hours since a man stabbed four people at The University of Texas at Austin (read about it here). I learned about this incident via Twitter because it was in my worldwide trends list, naturally because people were talking about it. To my dismay, disgust, and ultimate demise when I scrolled through this trending to topic, instead of heartfelt words towards the victims and the students of this school, I was bombarded with people who chose to speak about, “black supremacy”, “if he [the culprit] were white, the left would be up in arms”, etc.
My reaction upon reading these comments was absolute rage. How is it that something horrible could happen and instead of offering support to the people injured, some have chosen to spread their hate and political ideologies/conspiracies about the perpetrator of this heinous event. I’m confused as to how some people have become so detached from basic humanity that instead of offering sympathy, they choose to jump straight to attacking the race of the perpetrator. I’m still baffled. Have people become so divided that it’s more important that you make a political statement before one reaching out in empathy towards those hurt?
It sickens me to know that people were more concerned with the culprit’s race than they were with finding out if people were hurt, if they were being treated and if anyone had died. Which someone did, and my heart goes out to that person’s family and the family of everyone who was hurt. I can only imagine how scary that is to hear about and how worrying that is if you’re a parent/sibling/guardian.
Apathy. Lack of concern for the victims and more concern for who to blame and “How can we make this a political statement against the left”. SCREW YOUR POLITICS. SCREW YOUR OBSESSION WITH POLITICAL DIVISIONS AND LABELS. PEOPLE WERE HURT. SOMEONE DIED. It’s bigger than left vs. right. Anyone could have done it. It doesn’t matter what they looked like, because it could have been anyone. Too often now people shift the focus from what is actually important to what can make the most people infuriated. Congrats, you caught me on that one.
Now, empathy. I’ve said before and I’ll say it again, I am extremely empathetic. I feel emotions deep in my bones; when something bad happens and it’s reported in the news I feel sad and hurt and frustration. I put myself in the shoes of other people more often than I should, but I’d rather feel empathy and understanding than apathy and delusional ignorance towards people and their feelings. I put myself in the shoes of others to remind myself that although I may not be going through it, I could be and the only thing that separates them from me is distance and timing.
I understand that people will always have opinions on things such as these and I know that so many issues are intertwined. But when your first instinct after something bad happens is to frame an issue as political instead of seeing the situation for what it is (in this case a stabbing on a school campus), maybe your priorities are disordered. The pigment in people’s skin shouldn’t offend as much as it does, but that’s a topic for another day.
I wish there was more empathy. I wish people cared more about how other’s feel rather than what’s going to get them the most attention on Twitter. I get that we lead vapid lives, but if you’re getting your life from having your mentions ripped to shreds on Twitter, maybe it’s time to log out and speak to people you actually know. Or maybe I just need to log out and never log back in because I am so tired of the negativity.