Look at this, it’s SO AWFUL!

I like to surf the web in the morning. It’s just a thing I do. I like to know what’s going on politically, in sports, in the LGBTQ world, with my friends on Facebook and Twitter.

I’ve noticed a trend recently. And this isn’t a new phenomenon by any stretch; it’s just I’m noticing it more now.

So much outrage!

I’ve been part of it. Many days I’ve shouted out on social media about some horrible injustice that I’ve read about and want to share with my friends.

Read that sentence again. Think about that for a minute.

Ellen Degeneres has an old routine she does called “Taste This.”

This is what I’m saying to my friends when I do this: you need to be angry about this! This is terrible. Look at it!

And people do look, and they do get angry. How do I know? Because if the numbers weren’t there, the blogs and news sites wouldn’t keep serving it.

That’s basically the truth of our world today, especially our world on the Internet. And in the media in general. People want to see horrible stuff. Or at least that’s what we’ve come to want.

I went to one of the LGBT sites I go to most days this morning. This is what was on it:

-A story about how Fox News claimed an anti-gay hate group is a “well-respected Christian ministry.”

-A story about whatever garbage Rick Santorum is saying today.

-A story about a Christian group suing the London Transit Authority for having pro-gay ads.

There were a couple other stories, sure. But the vast majority of it was basically, “Look how many awful people hate us!”

And don’t even look at the comments. Outrage at Christians. Outrage at gays who are too sensitive. Outrage at gays who aren’t sensitive enough. Everybody is furious. I get it; I’m furious too when I read stuff like this.

I have coined a new term for this: Anger Porn.

angry-face-1

I felt it this morning. How my blood pressure spiked as I read these things. I don’t want to read these things anymore. Not that I want to stick my head in the sand and not know what’s going on, but why do I care what Michelle Bachmann thinks of gay people? I already know. Why do I care if Pat Robertson has said something infuriating about whatever natural disaster has been caused by gay marriage? I get it. He’s an idiot and he hates us.

I want to live in a world where we focus less on what’s wrong with the world (hint: a lot) and more on what’s right (hint: also a lot). And moreover, I want to stop rubbernecking at Anger Porn. Because it’s me. I’m the problem. I’m reading those stories, giving those sites big numbers, thereby telling those who run them to continue to publish more outrageous stuff about hate.

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4 Responses to Look at this, it’s SO AWFUL!

  1. Nathan Riley says:

    I couldn’t agree more. A sense of community depends on a confidence that idealism works and we can live happily with decent people. I recently read “Oddly Normal” a book about parents who realized at an early age that there youngest son is gay. They couldn’t shield him from pain but they worked hard to get him to theater camps and defuse tensions between him and his schoolmates and teachers. It also has great background on why we grow up gay and aren’t taught it. The books shows how much positivity there is once we try to find it.

  2. Every notice that all of these stories all have one common denominator (beside “hate”): they all lack in acknowledging that the LGBT community is made up of PEOPLE with emotions, with stories, with struggles, with a lot of love to give despite all the hate. All of these “haters” fail to see the human behind the label, which is often the mistake these news sources make. “Gay” is a label, a way for these public figures and news sources to categorize and marginalize an entire community of people who just wish to be thought of as humans like everyone else.

    I try not to read the negative news too much because I hate being so angry.

    It’s like…as far as we’ve come, as much as everyone likes to think we’re past the need to share coming out stories, there is still a long way to go; there is still a need to see the human struggle, the human emotions, and the triumphs of gay men and women and teens in order for the world to see past the label and recognize the human.

  3. nyraedawn says:

    YES! I totally agree with you. I notice this a lot. We need to focus on being more positive.

  4. Dave Hughes says:

    I agree, and I like your term “anger porn.”

    I’m still pondering what to do about it. I can’t stop “news” web sites from posting it, and I have learned to not even start reading comments to most articles. But I still rely on LGBT news sites for news that I want to receive. Same thing with Facebook. I can hide the news feeds of people who share this stuff, but then I lose the rest of my connection with them too. I’ve already hidden the feeds of people who post or share mostly political memes and grumpy cat memes, I guess I can start hiding more feeds. I suppose it all boils down to whether people are bringing more positive or negative into my life.

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