Why Does This Keep Happening?

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This past week I did something I said I was done with- I got into a “discussion” online about something political- specifically the question of DC statehood.

I freely admit this isn’t a topic I know a lot about and I am genuinely interested in learning more about it.  I saw a post on it by a long time friend and asked a couple questions.   Not only were my questions NOT answered by my friend or anyone else, but I was insulted by several of this person’s friends for asking questions in the first place.  There were also comments questioning my intelligence for not having my mind already made up.  I will admit I did get a little snarky by the end of the exchange myself, and I’m not proud of that.  But the entire thing really made me sad.

I should add that I was the only woman in this thread.  My friend and all his friends who piled on are men.  I would like to think that is not why I was treated this way, but unfortunately I don’t think I can say that with any degree of certainty.

I know that politics were involved- apparently the very fact that I am asking questions about DC statehood in the first place means I am a pinko commie liberal.  Which is laughable, but apparently a belief deeply held by this group of people.

It’s also worth noting everyone involved is in their 40s or older.  I wasn’t dealing with some dumb kids who are too young to know better.

But why did this happen at all?  Why did my asking a question lead to a laundry list of assumptions about me personally and the insults that followed?   I wish I knew.  I blame the pandemic for much of it, but this tribal “us vs. them” mentality was around before COVID hit and I fear will be around long after it ends.

I don’t have a good answer other than that.  I wish I did.  If you have any thoughts I’d love to hear them!

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