To my son Tommy,
I think I found the perfect solution if I ever decided to give up on social media and TV media at the same time. Simply have the State Of The Union aired every night.
As the #SOTU (as they called on Twitter) started, the Internet erupted on every platform I belong to. Most of the tweets and status updates weren't worth spittle. They remind me of a digital form of the lyrics from Buffalo Springfield when they say a thousand people are "Singing songs and carrying signs, mostly saying 'Hooray for our side'" except on a much grander scale than one thousand people. It was a bunch of people talking all at once and people only hearing what they wanted to hear no matter what words were spoken.
I am not taking sides on any political debate here. I am definitely not suggesting people shouldn't speak their minds. I am just saying that people should think more before they engage and last night I didn't see that happening from all sides of all aisles. Millions of people silently screaming through status updates all at the same time creates a noise level that for me just wasn't worth the effort to engage at that high of a level. Social media can be a powerful tool but often it ends up like the blood thirsty crowds of the Colosseum. Turning off and tuning out was actually empowering though probably not the best course of action to maintain my self as an engaged and informed citizen. Don't do it often my son, but from time to time for reasons of mental health you have to sit back, disengage, and say "Enough is enough. Stop the noise!" The State Of The Union address cured any addiction I have to social media, or at least for the time being.
Sincerely with love from your dad,