On social media voices carry and extreme voices carry the most.
We're exposed to much more extremism than we would normally be exposed to. It's natural to react to extreme positions by forming extreme positions.
We see some ridiculous thing that someone does in the name of civil rights and it becomes a little bit easier to believe that anyone involved in sex / gender based civil rights is an insane hypocritical SJW.
We see ridiculous things being done in the name of social responsibility and it becomes a little bit easier to believe that anyone who believes that our society should decide once and for all that healthcare is a basic human right is a libtard with a mental illness.
Conceptual modeling is our ability to abstract complexity away from noisy reality into something that we can comprehend and use.
We have a need for these abstractions. They are a critical element of what it is to be human and to function at a human level. But, the capability is far from perfect. From the process of simplification we can arrive at ideas like.. (insert abstract group) are lazy criminals...
We cannot effectively understand reality. So we fall back on simplifications that we must learn to realize are ALWAYS fundamentally lacking.
Our conceptual models are not accurate. But, they can be useful. We can use them to predict the future and try to understand why things have happened in the past. When we're exposed to floods of extreme viewpoints our conceptual modeling skills are triggered into backfiring. They create extreme defensiveness, apathy, disgust. These feelings are then tied to the abstract simplification that we use to understand the source of the insanity.. The movements themselves.
I think that it's important that we learn to see past extreme viewpoints to potential underlying causes. We should stop associating extreme behavior with the genuine opportunities that exist for us to improve the human condition.
Yes, people are bat-shit crazy. They are and they always will be. Don't let the fact that we're tired of hearing about their shit, that they're insanely rude and hypocritical, or that they're clearly fucking sociopaths trick us into being the ugliest possible version of ourselves.
Be honest... When was the last time that you sided against what YOU YOURSELF considered to be decent just because you were fucking tired of hearing about it?
We need to be ready to protect ourselves from our own toxic reactions and to see through the fucking crazy in others and seek to understand the underlying systemic causes. If we absolutely cannot engage with others without letting our personal failings make the world a worse place then we should learn to ACCEPT that we're not in a place to be productive and avoid participation.
In the same vein as "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all" consider "if you can't care enough to try to make the world a better place, at least don't actively make it worse just to vent your emotions."
We are individuals and we may be able to reach out to an individual in our lives and improve their situation. But, the real important work is improving the systems that birth us and forge us into the crazy things that we are.
Let's evolve into something that makes positive impacts instead of amplifies negativity.