Friday, December 19, 2014

Leave Meme Alone!

So this meme shows up on my Facebook feed. I wasn't familiar with the person who posted it and wondered why it was there. It seems that a mutual friend had liked the post so that was why I had the privilege of reading the following:

Say this slow...GOD I Love YOU and I Need YOU NOW!!! If You Meant It Repost & A Miracle Will Happen Tonight. Ignore and All Will Go Wrong.

It reminded me of a chain letter. Yes, children, before the internets existed and snail mail was the primary form of communication, there was this phenomenon known as the chain letter. There was usually a promise of wonderful, miraculous things coming your way in the body of the letter. Then toward the bottom you were warned that failure to send copies of the letter to a dozen friends would result in personal catastrophe. If you sent the letters, good fortune and riches were yours. Unmitigated bullshit, if you ask me. I typically responded by tossing any that I received in the trash. So. The comment field beckoned. I typed that I seriously disliked the mostly innocuous sentiment followed by a less than veiled threat. She responded in a somewhat disjointed fashion. I replied:

I think it's difficult to separate out your intended positive message from the negative end. The full meaning still comes across.

I felt like we had a civil discussion. I made my point, she made hers. Then an hour or so ago I had a private message from a man whose name was a little familiar. We have four mutual friends. He proceeded to rip me a new one over the way I had abused his friend! Shaming me for mistreating her, who, by the way, has a very sick child and hasn't slept much. Apparently the post was an entreaty for God's intervention to help her sick child. He then went on to say that he gets back here sometimes and then we can have an argument about theology. It was a threatening and angry message. I have some points to make. First, I am a mother and my heart goes out to anyone who has a critically ill child. Second, I believe in the power of collective prayer but I think it's odd, perhaps even counterproductive to ask for positive vibes by tossing out a negative one. Third, if you have a problem with me, air it in a civil public post rather than a threatening private message. And finally, the guy is three states away but I was pretty creeped out. He has been blocked.


Lil Sister said...

I am in agreement with "chain" letters of that kind. I'm certain God will do what He is going to do with or without chains of any sort. If I do forward messages like that, which is rare, I simply remove the threat and forward only the good stuff.

Lil Sister (again) said...

Oops my gammer stinks today. Rather "I am in agreement with you regarding chain letters...
My fingers are typing faster than my brain is thinking.
I think.

Bellona of Avalon said...

Haha! You make me laugh! :-)

Absolutely. If you can't wish someone well without a disclaimer it seems mean spirited.

If it's possible to remove the threat I do that as well if I want to forward it. This was a poster type image with an artsy background so editing wasn't an option.