Nolie’s Nook – I’m Not Writing A Column About America Today

Nolanne Rust

by Nolanne Rust

On the 4th of July, I posted my blessings for the day with a post shared that read “May we think of freedom, not as the right to do what we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right. -Peter Marshall”

Guys, that is so good. In so many ways.

But I’m not writing a column about America today, so I’m going to direct it to the positivity- or maybe the negativity- angle. But before I do, I need to point out that I’m not writing from knowledge based on perfection. Truth is, I struggled hard this week with negativity on a personal level. In reply to my first article, I stated that just as negativity breeds more negativity, positivity also harvests more positivity and the choice in what we produce is ours.

I love social media. I love that I can share my cute husband and babies with all the people in my world. I love that I can reconnect with friends from high school or from spending the summers at my dad’s, some of whom I would have never crossed paths with otherwise. I love that I can see the lives of my nieces and nephews through events and times when I can’t be with them.

But social media isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. It never fails that negativity can- and will- find even the posts with the best intentions. We often hear the phrase “freedom of speech” or “I’m free to have an opinion”. True. We live in and love America for so many freedoms. But there’s also another unwritten rule that some people missed out on. Having a freedom doesn’t mean we are obligated to use it. We don’t have to give our opinion just because we have one. We don’t have to open our mouths with every thought our brains give us. Because just as we have the freedoms, we also have a choice in how we handle them.

I’m not denying a healthy debate, I think opinions can be used for good and it’s a great thing. But what we often times lack, especially when it comes to the internet, is respect. And without respect, there’s not an ounce of good that is going to come from an opinion on social media.

This week alone I have read comments on articles posted, and it breaks my heart to read accusations and opinions meant to hurt people who are already hurting. Worse yet, when it’s on a news post, it’s done by people who weren’t present and who don’t even know the individuals. I’m just as nosey as the next person; I read police reports and news articles when I see them. I appreciate the news available on the Internet, but I’m not always sure how news stations and reporters handle some of the comments I’ve seen. I think back to before internet when we all actually read a newspaper regularly, and it amazes me at how we were able to read an article and mumble some thoughts to ourselves, and that’s as far as it went.

We now live in a day where depression, suicide, anxiety, public shame, and guilt in all sorts of forms run rampant because we lost the ability to keep our negative thoughts to ourselves. We lost the grace or compassion to wish the best for others. We lost the desire to treat others as we want to be treated.

Maybe we didn’t lose it. Maybe we just found text messaging and social media. And with that, we found the ease of spreading negativity and pointing fingers.

I don’t know what the case is, maybe both. But I do know that we always have the opportunity to do what is right.

It’s our own choice as to how we honor our freedoms and our character.
This week, I would encourage even the Negative Nancy and Debbie Downers among us to think before we react or type. Delete that negative comment before pushing send. Or as easy as going ahead and complimenting a post or picture that you normally wouldn’t.

Our world is such a beautiful place, but it’s sometimes hard to see through the negativity. Be someone’s positivity this week. If not on social media, real life is even better! Open that door for the next person. Compliment face to face. Offer a smile in place of an eye roll.

Choose kind, spread love, support each other.

Posted by on Jul 7 2019. Filed under Editorial, Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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