Social movements and politics of race, gender, and class became hotly debated and intertwined in modern times due to citizens’ active use of social media to express their opinions on these questions. For instance, more than 50% of millennials reported using Facebook to receive daily notifications about news on a wide range of topics (American Press Institute, 2015). Still, there are some distinctions in how various ethnicities and racial groups utilize social media. Moreover, these platforms appear to be used by women to fight online harassment and different social classes to express themselves uniquely. However, the most vibrant discussions are recently raised around race and ethnicity, causing controversial statements and aggression.
The most surprising theme in these modules was that black and white millennials had a different approach to social media use. Indeed, it was interesting to learn that African Americans are more active on Facebook and YouTube (American Press Institute, 2015). The most troubling topic, in my opinion, is people’s response to “Black lives matter” and “All lives matter” movements. Although for many citizens, the fact that every human being’s life is crucial is self-explanatory, some groups seem to politicize these essential and straightforward expressions for creating interracial tension. The usual comments of white people to African Americans’ “All lives matter” reminders were sadly sarcastic, stating that nobody said that they do not (KevinOnStage, 2016). Although it is true that now rarely would anyone say such offensive expressions, police brutality sometimes depicts the opposite. Overall, I found this theme the most relevant to my own experience because the most common opinion of white Americans with whom I discussed this topic was that black people exaggerated an old problem.
To conclude, social media has become a crucial discussion platform where people can openly share news and opinions about sensitive topics. In questions of racial and ethnic oppositions, everybody seems to know the correct answer, which is “All lives matter.” However, it does not stop white police officers from shooting unarmed black people and African Americans from attacking them as an act of revenge. Historically, our ancestors and leaders tried to resolve this issue to avoid such conflicts in the future. Finally, I do not think that many of these online discussions are emotional reactions to generational trauma, but my suggestion is to return to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s ideology of non-violence in resolving this problem.
American Press Institute. (2015). Race, ethnicity, and the use of social media for news. In How millennials use technology to get news. Web.
KevinOnStage. (2016). The problem with all lives matter [Video]. Web.