In a world with 24 hour TV/internet news cycles, so-called round table
news shows and social media, we got a whole lotta opinions being
offered today. If you notice the description of this blog in the upper
right section near the title, you will see that opinions, are a part
of what this blog “is“.
Anybody who shares their opinions, whether they’re shared on radio,
TV, a newspaper or magazine, in person and face to face, or on a
fairly obscure internet blog, runs the risk of sounding like a “know
it all”. Whether I am writing about photography, politics, social
issues, sports, or what makes the grass grow
or the sun shine, it comes at least partially from an opinion I hold.
Any facts I might include, are to many, also a matter of opinion.
Originally I prefaced many of my writings with the statement that what
you are about to read are my opinions. I grew weary of writing that
and eventually just accepted that everybody can figure out that they
are my opinions.
I think when I write about religion, usually Christianity, I infuriate
(with my opinions and my facts) more people than I do with any other
subject. That conclusion is not science, but is actually, just my
I do not see myself as an opinion giver as much as I do a sharer of
what I see in the world. Most of what I share will be thought of as
being my opinion.
I often share observations on these pages that could give the reader
the impression that I think something is good or positive, when I do
not. If some entity does something and I share it, and what they did
was positive, it might seem like I favor that person, when really I am
just reporting an observation. Conversely I may share a negative
observation of something done by someone I like, but that might give
the impression that I do not like or support that person. In both
cases, they are merely observations not my commentary on the person or
group doing the deed.
Life would be boring without opinions. When we read and consider the
opinions of others, whether we like them or not, it not only “sometimes”
promote knowledge, but it gives us a reason to offer our own opinions.
I spend some time every day reading the opinions of others. In
addition to occasionally gifting me with some knowledge I did not
previously have, it gives me an amazing array of targets to shoot at.
I will agree, opinions are cheap. Yours, mine and theirs. It is the
one thing that everybody has, and most people are willing to share.
God gave us brains and feelings, and they are where our opinions are harvested.
In the 1990s I became involved with the first few types of social
media. Some of those early experiments were chat rooms. I am speaking
of group chat rooms and those that were connected with outdoor
photography. Round about 2006 I began to join some of the newer sorts
of social media such as Facebook and so forth. My main purpose was
once again to connect with photographers as well as those who paid
photographers for their work. As time went on, the photography became
less important and those sites had slowly migrated into discussions of
family and private issues displayed for the world to see. They soon became opinion sites.
Today I remain on only two true social media sites, Twitter and Facebook.
On Twitter I follow mostly political types and almost never post
myself. Of course the politics sometimes gets the best of me and I
have been known to comment, usually on other comments that are
directed towards those I follow. The people I follow are so political in their nature,
that rough talk and heated debates are both expected and common.
Facebook has become a mostly political and hateful posting site and I
am in the last vestiges of my time there. Now days I only visit the
site about twice a week. In the rare circumstances when I post, it is
usually in response to some sort of mean and crude comment to a friend of mine
from someone I am not “friended” with. As is almost always the case
with me, I manage to get into trouble of one sort or another when I
make comments to someone who makes hateful comments to people who are
“actual” friends of mine. Such are my current circumstances.
I have actually considered testing Facebook to see what it takes to
get thrown off the site, and maybe using this current set of
circumstances as the catalyst for my experiment. I am not quite sure
that I think answering that question is worth my effort, but we will
In the end, what makes social media good, and what makes it bad, are
our opinions. Opinions are the fabric of our being in the 21st
Century, and it is how we offer them, for better or for worse, that
represent are how we cultivate these “electronic friendships” that
seem so important today.
Opinions, the new base for friendships and for wars of every sort in