Look, people believe different things. People can't all be alike. But under the flesh the heart is the same and the blood is red and the world turns on. It's difficult sometimes today to post an opinion without someone--someone--finding it offensive and making mean, cruel remarks. It's happened on my wall on Facebook, for instance, and I either shame the person or delete his comments and delete him from my circle. I don't play. I don't have time for that noise.
But some people tend to gang up and go after certain writers. They do it, why? I really don't know. And I'm not the policer of manners, but I do know if you have no respect for others, you can't have respect for yourself. Hate and venom is like a cloud and spewing it touches the person who indulges it. You can't be a good person if you're spending time being bitter, cruel, and malicious. Aren't we supposed to be a good person? Does a good person engage in hatefulness? I think not.
What do these people do? In the worst stage they try to ruin a writer's reputation. They set up dummy accounts on Facebook and Amazon to leave comments and one-star reviews. They form groups and gossip. You'd think people would be too busy to do things like this. You'd think they had more profitable avenues to pursue than to bring down someone they don't know.
I don't know what is to be done about this or why it even happened. Only two or three years ago the internet was a pleasant, happy place for writers. Mostly, it still is. I'm just talking about how a new trend seems to be rising where disruption and disrespect for one another has been degrading social media. It's a shame, really. I guess we could blame it on the deterioration of society in general, the malaise and anxiety so rampant, the loss of jobs and money, the fear of the future. Still, how is taking out frustrations on others going to make things better? Is there a deeper sense of separation and jealousy than there used to be or are people just more willing to act out of desperation and envy today? Whatever it is, I sound a warning that this is no way to go.
My friend, Robert Stanek, has been experiencing a wave of haters and this must really cease. Here's his link Robert Stanek. He's been an author twenty years and supports writers and indies. He says, " I have supported other writers my whole career, early on with sites like Writer's Gallery and for the past 10 years with Go Indie, Free Today and Read Indies." Why would a man like this be disrespected and attacked?
When you see writers (or others, for that matter) being targeted, speak up. Talk back to the cruelty. Write a blog about it. Let everyone know you stand up for respect and being mannerly and kind to others. It costs so little to be nice and it costs so much to denigrate others--costs them and you. We don't need this, people. When life gets rough and there's a trench between rich and poor, educated and uneducated, haves and have-nots, the worst thing we can do is turn on one another. Hurting someone else doesn't pump you up. It brings us all down.
Can you disagree politely? Of course. Can you still like someone even if he or she holds different beliefs? Oh, good gracious, why can't you? If someone makes a mistake of some sort, does it have to be pointed out because you feel aggressive? Is your sadness and discontent so deep the only way to make yourself feel better is to try to hurt or destroy others, often strangers to you?
Robert Stanek has done great services for other writers and continues to do so. Come to his support and run off the badgers. Stand up to the screamers, the haters, the horrible and help make the world a better place.
You'll be doing yourself a favor.