Social Media Will Destroy Us All

So I got into a “conversation ” with a couple of blokes on LinkedIn the other day related to Oregon’s governor and a bill she signed related to education policy and standardized testing as a graduation requirement. The article cited was also politically conservative in nature and this series of white men were exclaiming from each of their corners of the country (none from Oregon) an series of alarmingly negative reactions to this news article. As near as I could tell, the article was related to a bill that was passed about temporarily suspending the tests in Oregon schools for this year due to the Covid pandemic and the resulting remote school year. Clearly, this cannot stand. 🙄

Of course I had to open my big mouth to comment that I don’t believe that standardized tests effectively measure what someone knows because some people (myself included) are excellent test-takers and others are very much the opposite, so there should be multiple ways of evaluating what a child knows or has learned. This was just plain too much for these guys, though, who I can only assume could absolutely prove everything they know if given a test. It wouldn’t have been a big deal; I’m not especially well-versed nor dedicated to the topic, but the ad hominem attacks, coupled with checks of my personal information page and insults about my background were all quite unnecessary.

I’m not sure whether these men (they were all white men, of course) were particularly invested in the test prep industry or whatever. I highly doubt it. It was just the speed with which they all jumped up to attack my character when we literally could have just had a rational, agree-to-disagree sort of conversation. I know that is a lot to ask these days, but really. I mean, there are plenty of insults I could lay down about the people of Texas, Ohio, Virginia and Florida (!). The jokes almost write themselves, but that wasn’t what I was there for.

At any rate, I don’t think I will ever understand why A) people feel like they have to spout their inflammatory opinions about everything at all times and B) why we can’t just realize that our opinions are like assholes; everyone has them. I don’t wish any of these people ill will, though it was clear they wanted (and expected) me to STFU, even after misinterpreting what I said multiple times and REALLY not getting the point I was trying to make. So much defensiveness, and for what? An article about a thing that happened in a state across the country from them?

I bet if they looked at their own states, they would find plenty of policies to bitch about. But I suppose that wouldn’t be quite as satisfying as reading about it from a bullshit conservative blog on Facebook, promoting it on LinkedIn and then ripping on anyone from the actual state who disagrees with the thing that they’re all up-in-arms about. Ugh!

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