Well, it’s been a while.
I’ll be honest, the main reason I’m blogging again is because I was silenced on Instagram. That was my only general, personal outlet. Twitter is 99% weather for me. I keep it that way because I’ve made weather-geek friends there, some of whom wouldn’t have anything to do with me if I posted about other things. That’s ok with me. I can tell we disagree strongly on some very important things, but because we choose to set all of that aside we can all admire a spectacular supercell structure. I don’t feel like I’m compromising anything by doing this; I haven’t hidden who I am. They don’t preach at me, I don’t preach at them. It’s very live-and-let-live.
I stopped making personal posts on Facebook over a year ago. It may be longer, actually; I can’t remember. The only reason I have an account there at all is for the shop. Facebook got nasty and I wasn’t able to do a good enough gate-keeping job.
I moved to Instagram at the urging of a few friends and found it very peaceful. I restricted my circle to those who were supportive, Christian (primarily Orthodox, but not entirely), appreciators of beauty, and not addicted to outrage. It was absolutely wonderful. Until it wasn’t.
Things got ugly in the yarn community first when Ravelry’s founder declared any support for the sitting president was undeniably support for white supremacy. Needless to say I left Ravelry. It suddenly became 95% a leftist, hateful bastion instead of around 50/50, something that was tolerable as long as you kept within your chosen circles. All I was there for was the patterns and my project database. The Ravelry ugliness spilled over immediately into Instagram, something I could see because of the number of knitters I followed. I started removing and blocking people until I had gotten back to a relatively peaceful place. Unfortunately, as anyone could have predicted, it didn’t end there.
I’m not going to go through all of the recent stuff that has been rolling through the site. I was shocked and saddened to see many people I considered friends jumping on the bandwagon. Was there a horrible incident in MN? Absolutely. Had I been at the scene I probably would have risked arrest trying to come to his aid. There are things worth going to jail over, such as saving a life, even the life of a criminal. Every life is valuable to God, and should be to us. Sadly, the reaction to that incident has been horrible and there is no justification for it. None. It has spread like an out of control cancer and is growing exponentially.
I kept silent and did not argue with people’s statements I found illogical. I lived and let live. After a few days, feeling the criticism of anyone not waving the flag de jour I posted some of what I had been reading that morning from Elder Thaddeus and St. Porphyrios on the virtue of silence and prayer. I did not reference anything else. I was immediately attacked.
Let me share Havel’s Greengrocer with you:
This is an example of virtue signaling before “virtue signaling” was a term. When you experience extreme pressure to post rainbows, “black lives matter”, “me too”, “believe women”, “love wins”, etc. (and the list is huge), because not posting these is a de facto declaration that you are the Enemy, you are living under totalitarian rule. Interestingly, the totalitarian rule currently being set up is installed not by the government, but by the citizens themselves. The enforcers are not the police or military, but the mob. Why else on earth would a producer of, say, ball point pens, be anxiously assuring everyone that they support BLM and are making a sizable donation? Think about it.
One can no longer simply be silent, avoid conflict, refrain from criticism, keep one’s head down. We’ve moved way beyond that. Now, if you don’t at the minimum post a black square on Instagram at the appointed time (which, by the way, is one of the most ineffective and cost-free things one can possibly do – risks you nothing and earns you respect and accolades from the group currently in power) then you are a Racist™ and you have shown yourself to be less than human, void of all decency, deserving of any evil that can be used against you. What you think, believe, and say doesn’t matter. What is shown in an examination of your life doesn’t matter. You aren’t even human. Think I’m exaggerating?
I have seen what BLM stands for. I have seen how people claim virtue while treating others like trash. I spent my entire nursing career taking care of every soul entrusted to me. I treated every single one with care and respect, as if I were taking care of my family. My conscience is clear. God knows my heart.
I will not join. I will not get on the bandwagon. I will not virtue-signal, and say what the mob wants to hear. I am an Orthodox Christian before anything else and I will not affirm anything that is opposed to that. I may keep silent to protect my family and my property, but I will not burn that pinch of incense.