SOWK #5: Social Media

In another installment of my social work experience, I have some cool insight into how politics DOES have a platform using social media.

On June 27th, it was PTSD Awareness Day. At my job, I write for a blog and twitter that caters to military and veteran populations. As far as content goes, there is a lot to touch on in regards to PTSD.

Since it was on my mind, I decided to tweet on my personal twitter about something relating to PTSD that I learned about often in my social work classes.

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I tweet stuff like this all the time, but for whatever reason – this one got some visibility. I think the most current numbers are up to 322 retweets and 492 likes.

I was definitely pretty ecstatic about that because foster care issues are looked over constantly and I was glad to put that specific statistic on hundreds of people’s timelines. Even better, some people actually replied to my tweet.

 

My point of sharing this with you all is that social media really can be a productive tool for politics and spreading awareness. Political apathy is a real problem, and I believe it is at the roots of our current political climate in the United States.

All too often, I see and hear people my age talk about how they find politics ~annoying~ to see on their timelines. If you are one of these people, I encourage you to think about why you feel this way.

First, think about why people talk about politics on social media in the first place. Those who are impacted by the issues you prefer to scroll past have to experience them every day. The people who are discriminated against or persecuted by our legislation can’t make it go away just because it is not funny or cute.

Posting on social media about political issues can simply be a way to use their voice. Just because you scroll past it, doesn’t mean someone else is not going to google the policy they’re talking about or look up the person they @ed in their tweet.

There is weight in that, despite what some want to believe.

So when you see a post about something terrible going on in the world, and the political commentary that goes with it, and say “I don’t want to see that” – think about the privilege YOU have that allows you to think that.

Meanwhile, I will still use the platforms I have to talk about the issues I think are important. If I get two people to MAYBE donate old suitcases to an agency so that MAYBE two kids will be able to pack their belongings with dignity, then that post was worth it.

 

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