My mother constantly posts things on Facebook that she directs at me or tries to include me in that have to do with how great she thinks Fox News is and how evil all other news is. I have tried voicing my opinion that I do NOT like Fox News because I find them to be biased and bigoted. However, she is in far too deep. She is one of those conspiracy theorist tea party loving people. Completely brainwashed.
I honestly cannot stand hearing about it anymore. She is not willing to listen to my side, so why should I listen to hers? She is trying to argue, not debate. She comes off as very condescending, telling me I am wrong about everything, and mocking me for being an atheist.
Most of the rest of my family doesn't have FB, thankfully, except my brother. He likes to get into arguments just as much. He also openly admits to breaking gun laws and how he thinks the government is coming for him. He thinks anyone who thinks differently is just uneducated and beneath him.
I really don't know what to do. Sure, they are family, but I am tired of the disrespect.
Well, you could always hide her OR unfriend her. I know that's a bit drastic, but I did it with one of my brothers who once posted to me that I didn't have anything to be thankful for at thanksgiving because I didn't have anyone to be thankful TO. We're still on speaking terms, but he lives in another state so that probably makes it easier. You could let her know that you're going to do it if she doesn't stop with the faux news crap. Then follow through if that's what you decide to do.
The thanks goes where it belongs, to the people in your lives. I live with a catholic wife and her two young apprentices (soon, they'll be mine. Bwaahahaahaaaaa).
We give thanks at every meal with a pseudo-prayer that ends with each of us expressing appreciation for the things others have done for us and any good fortune that's come our way. I'm happy with this compromise as it means different things to different people.
I can thank my son for not wetting his bed without invoking god. I like that :-)
In your case, it's entirely possible no thanks should head in the direction of your brother. That's something you need to decide and he may need to work on.
I recently deleted my farcebook account because most of the interactions had become either insipid or contentious. I grew up, such that I did, in rural North Carolina in the 1960s & 1970s, but am no longer there, thank Dog. Many of my Facebook 'friends' were old school chums, relatives or at least acquaintances from back there. They pretty much all are now ultra right-wing evangelical fundamentalist zealots, just as a matter of geography or perhaps something in the water. Even the ones I would have least expected to turn out that way have done so. Very often, my posts intended to be innocuous dissent resulted in a firestorm of indignation and slurs. Sometimes I got a bit angry too. It finally became clear that these interactions were bringing nothing but anguish to us all, so I cut the cord.
With close actual friends and relatives it's of course a lot tougher. I don't like walking on eggshells around those close to me, and very much dislike when we cause one another unproductive distress. Productive distress, on the other hand... :)
In a way, my cutting-off my right-wing friends is an attempt to avoid cognitive dissonance and to swing with confirmation bias -- not qualitatively different from what Fox News fans do. You only have so much psychological resilience to deploy before you have to hit the bunker for a nap and maybe some back patting. Damn shame that our various cultures have become so divided that all but the strongest of us have to spend so much time in the bunker from which almost nothing can be learned or decided.
I live in the south, of course, so I go to the hairdresser's to find Faux News blaring away. This is also true at the dentist, the dry cleaner, and my sister's house. They tell me I watch MSNBC which is liberal. I tell them I get my news from NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, PBS, NPR, BBC, C-Span, Reuter's, etc. because I want a truly balanced blend of hopefully documented facts and not opinion. They don't have much come back to that. As to FB, I had to totally let that go. Life is too short to volunteer for that kind of grief. Welcome to A/N. You will get respect here.
If moral psychology is any guide, you and your family are both likely to be biased and guilty of blind team cheerleading. Professor of psychology Jonathan Haidt says that morality tends to "bind and blind" i.e. it binds us into teams and blinds us from the truth. Watch Haidt on the Colbert Report here:
(or here for outside USA http://radbox.me/watch/video/587516)
Also good to watch is Haidt's TED talk about the difference between conservatives and liberals:
Liberals tend to have a morality concerned with the care/freedom of the individual, but that tends to dissolve the group order, whereas conservatives also have a morality concerned with the longevity of their group.
Haidt also has a website called the Asteroids Club which he explains in this video:
It's about the "asteroids" that both conservatives and liberals are trying to tell the other side about e.g. left-liberals tend to believe that global warming is going to ruin us, right-conservatives tend to believe government debt is going to ruin us, etc.
The bottom line is: no matter what side you're on, it's hard to break out of our tribal psychology to see reality.
From a conservative point of view, there's a convergence of issues that are really threatening their team i.e. illegal immigration, debt, gun control, etc. Obama really has conservatives wired and worried that the USA is going to be ruined and taken over by tyrannical government. Liberals, on the other hand, just want everyone to get along and tend to be more trusting, and pollyanna-ish, and pacifist.
As Haidt explains in the 2nd video, ideally we want to realise that both conservative and liberal positions are prone to run away into extremes and, like yin and yang, both contain some desirable elements and we need a balance of both to restrain the other.
Wow Kelly. I can sympathize with you. I cannot stand Fox News and I never watch it. I only watch CNN or MSNBC. Do you live with your mother, and if so, is there any way you could get out of the home and on your own or with friends or other relatives who are not as enchanted with Fox news or completely antagonistic toward your atheism ?
I've got a friend on the opposite side of the state from me who thinks Faux news is the end of all knowledge. You can't have a conversation with him without something coming up against Obama and the liberals. He thinks the sun shines out bill O'Riley's butt. There are one or two people I encounter in Fb who spout right wing rubbish. I've come close a couple of times to kicking them off my list of "Friends".
Al Jezeera has some of the best news reporting on the planet. RT is pretty good, and so is the BBC. Next try CNN and MSNBC. Maybe France24. Digest this all with your local news and see what you get. To really understand the news you have to get all sides of it.
kelly, the problem suggests two four-letter words: WALK AWAY.
In a family that looked good to outsiders, excessive punishment silenced my sibs and me but left the usual needs in place. When our needs reached our tipping points we threw tantrums.
After some therapy I realized that I'd been born to parents who "grew" passive-aggressive kids.
Only my youngest brother and and I went to college and I thought he could handle the truth. I told him and he all but exploded.
My sibs and I "unfriended" years before fb came along.
Shit happens in violent families; I'm okay with it.
BTW, Shepard Smith on Fox does a decent news program. Otherwise I watch MSNBC, especially Rachel.
Hi Kelly. That's certainly an uncomfortable situation you're in. I un-friended a close friend 'cause she was sending me evangelical extremist religious quotes, scriptures etc - even after I had asked her numerous times to not send me those and to 'agrees to disagree' so we could remain friends. I suggest you block her from posting on your wall and block any news feeds from her. Maybe follow up with post on your wall that you are entitled to rights to believe as you wish. If she confronts you about being hidden or blocked, simply ask her to respect your wish (as her daughter) to allow you the courtesy to investigate spiruality as you wish, on your own time. No matter what the response, just reassure her you love her. Good luck.