I have been a member and booster of Facebook since last summer. Among the many worthwhile features are the ability to create and join groups. To give you an example, some of the groups I have joined include: Keep Mike Lowell in Boston, Christopher’s Blue Dogs (Autism Speaks), Left-Handed People Society, I Played in Parkway Little League, and, of course, Hillary Clinton for President – One Million STRONG.
Many of my friends have staked a claim in the presidential race, and not surprisingly, many are firmly in camp Clinton. Being it such that I am also twenty-something, many are unassailable members of ObamaNation. Hearty debates often ensue back and worth and passions run deep regarding our preferred candidates. Yet, the tone and tenor of our debate is always above board and respectful and I am certain that almost all of my friends will unite behind the nominee, once she is chosen.
I wish the same could be say for the haters out there.
A simple search on Facebook for either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama will produce more than 1,000 groups devoted to these two figures. Two are considered the essential support groups: Barack Obama for President – One Million STRONG! (505,867 members); and Hillary Clinton for President – One Million STRONG! (25,026 members).
And almost every state boasts a smaller primary/caucus page: CT for Obama (110 members); and TX votes for Hillary (200 members).
Similarly, almost every college and university has different groups. Let’s look at my alma mater: GW Students for Barack Obama (229 members); and Students for Hillary! GW Chapter (158 members).
Many have positive-tailored messages: I am Black and Proud! I support Hillary Clinton for President (36 members); and I’m giving $2.30 to Barack Obama [1/1000th of the maximum allowed donation] (2,654 members).
Yet, there is a strong presence of negativity out there: Hillary Clinton – Stop running for president and make me a sandwich (42,886 members) [There is also a group called: Hillary Clinton – Keep running for President, but still make me a sandwich (519 members)]; Barack Obama won’t salute my flag, and has no business being our president (2,793 members); If Hillary Clinton is running for President…Then who’s running Hell? (90 members); America is ready for woman president; just NOT Hillary Clinton (24 members); Barack Obama will not support Israel (2,151 members); and World’s Shortest Book: “My Achievements” by Barack Obama (792 members).
I understand that you have to have a tough hide in this business, and some of these groups are in good fun; but they seem to be inflicting damage that could last well past the convention. We are all Democrats, and presumably these groups were set up by strong supporters of either Senator Clinton or Obama (after all, the paucity of GOP presence on Facebook would indicate that their idea of new media outreach includes taking out ad space at the beginning of new “Talkie” movies). So let’s end the snarky and sarcastic taunts and get out there and fight like hell for our candidate all the way through the convention. Once selected, we need to come together to take back the White House. Bad blood now will make that exponentially difficult, if not impossible.
It is heartening to note that there is a group called Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton for President. It boasts 534 members. It might not be much, but it is a start.
(Cross-posted at: http://mattomalley.blogspot.com)