I un-friended someone on Facebook today, the first time I have ever done so. I don’t really even know the person; I accept any and all Friend requests. I start with the premise that everybody in the world is my friend unless/until they give me reason to think otherwise. I un-friended her due to a hateful comment in which she said everybody should “shut the fuck up” about the Chik-fil-A gay marriage controversy because, “Chik-fil-A has a right to express their opinion just like you do.” She further went on to say: “Kill yourself.”
Being at heart an anarchist (I hesitate to say “libertarian” since that word has come to be associated with a political philosophy just slightly to the left of Hitler), I essentially believe that everybody should be able to do whatever they jolly well please, so long as they are not exploiting or hurting anybody else. I am relatively easy-going and tolerant.
I would never un-friend someone for disagreeing with my viewpoint. I have many friends of all different shades on the political, religious and philosophical spectrum. As my mother used to say, “If we were all the same, what a boring world it would be!” I enjoy our discussions. And I don’t at all mind people using the F-word; if I did, I would be a big fat hypocrite because I myself cuss like a sailer! Of course, it is a bit ironic, since on the one hand this person said everybody has a right to express our opinion, but in the same breath told us to “shut the fuck up.” But I don’t un-friend people for being illogical. If I did I would have very few friends.
I don’t mind a little name-calling. It’s become an acceptable form of expression now that famous t.v. and radio personalities are doing it. Personally, it won’t hurt me one bit. I’ve been called a great many things and some of them are true. You can call me an “ignorant slut” and I am likely to respond with a clever remark such as, “bite me, dumbass!” No hard feelings. Now if you start calling people really bad, inappropriate names such as “nigger” or “faggot” I may have a problem with it. Even so, I will generally respect your first-amendment right to publicly proclaim yourself a bigot and freely express that you are a very rude person. I support free speech!
But there is a fine line.
IMO the hateful words, “Kill yourself" crosses that line. I believe in freedom, but your freedom ends when you are hurting someone else. Put yourself in their shoes. What if that person is severely depressed and/or suicidal and they take your words to heart? With regard to this particular issue, think of the gay person who is struggling to accept him/herself in a world where they are despised and rejected, where their love is considered a “perversion” and they cannot marry the person whom they love. Their situation is difficult enough without your cruel words. I don’t want to see that kind of bullying on my wall.