Enemy? There’s an App for That

A friend sent me a link to an article about declaring enemies on Facebook. Yes, you read that right. Having “friends” isn’t enough. People “need” to be able to declare who their enemies are, as well. Those enemies can be people, companies, political parties, stores, whatever makes you angry. And what better way to deal with that anger than by sharing it with others, letting it grow and fester?

Why is this a terrible idea? Let me just give you a few reasons. I’m sure you can supply more:

  • As Christians, we are to love our enemies. That isn’t the most popular of Jesus’ commands, but it’s there. There is nothing loving about declaring Facebook war on someone. Nothing. And there is absolutely no justification for it.
  • We already have MAJOR problems with cyber-bullying. This could take that to the next level. Can you imagine seeing your name on an “enemy” list, with “followers” posting what they don’t like about you? I can’t imagine anything worse.
  • People are much more cruel when hidden behind a computer screen. There was a popular website a few years ago (I can’t remember the name) that allowed people to post anonymous comments about an individual. I had some students who were absolutely devastated by that. Teens who would never say terrible things to another teenager’s face had no problem saying horrible things anonymously. And we all know the long-lasting effect of cruel words.
  • It is a breeding ground for negativity. Even the most optimistic of us can be sucked into a “I hate (fill-in-the-blank)” tirade. And the more people involved, the angrier we get. The angrier we get, the “worse” the offense becomes. I have seen it happen. I’ve let it happen. And it always ends badly, with people hurt and friendships destroyed.

I don’t deny that there are some people, places and things we just don’t like. But there are better ways to deal with those feelings than to make them your Facebook enemy. Or any kind of enemy.  We can disagree without being disagreeable.

“If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.” Romans 12:18

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