Recently a friend of mine was called to task by her team leader for commenting on one of my blog posts.
I’m so flattered that I rank highly enough on the “scandalous” scale that someone can actually get into trouble as a licensee for “liking” one of my posts! Yeehaw, Earl, I thought stuff like that was reserved for people who are committing larceny or libel!
May I state that, firstly, it’s ridiculous that someone is so obsessed with what I’m publishing on my little homeschooling mom blog that they’re lurking around and checking “likes” and comments?!
Secondly, may I point out that people who try to silence others from using their God-given critical thinking skills are generally concerned that the people they’re trying to control are about to find out something that is truthful?
Don’t try to herd cats, Earl. Homeschoolers are hard to manage – 9 times out of 10 they’ll outwit you. (It’s a little like trying to get a good hold on a bundle of slime. The harder you hold it the more it squeezes out of your fingers!)
That being true, here’s another component of this that irks me.
Lately I’ve seen people state that they know there are “moles” in certain Facebook groups and so they don’t want to like or comment on anything because their actions will be reported to “authorities.”
I’m up to eight* people from various states who have personally messaged me with reports that their team leads have contacted them with a warning that their online activity might give people the impression they’re being “unsubmissive” and “divisive.” The message these people are getting is that if you are a good, submissive Christian team player, you’ll mind your p’s and q’s and start toeing the corporate line.
One person even used a funny-not-funny hashtag in their message to me: #CCWitnessProtection.
That’s intimidation. It’s not ok.
It’s been weeks since that first person messaged me, and the reality? As much as it made me mad to know this poopy behavior is taking place, I’ve been unwilling to write about it because I’m scared I’m going to “get in trouble.”
What is wrong with my craz-o-meter?!
Earl – please help me get a technician over here to help me get my brain screwed back on correctly!
Today I would like to come to a full stop and pull back from the nonsense to ask some questions.
In what police state is it actually ok to decide that people “liking” a Facebook post is a sign they are no longer qualified to do a job they’ve been faithfully performing with excellence for years?!
(For real. I can personally verify that from the top down, team leaders are being told that if their people have anything good to say about a specific Facebook group they should be removed from company resources and considered of questionable ethics.)
Under what circumstances does an organization get to have that type of control over their licensees? You want me to believe there isn’t an insane amount of high handed power-tripping happening… that all of these people from all of these different states just so happen to have the same story with the exact same silencing-verbiage?!
What a crazy coincidence!
Go pull my other leg, Earl.
Trying to figure out how this behavior could possibly be explained and made okay, I thought back to my personal experiences.
I was a sorority girl in college. Now, sororities can put an enormous amount of pressure on their members to look and act a certain way when they are wearing their letters. The focus on appearance is one of the reasons it’s unlikely I will encourage my daughters to join a sorority themselves.
That type of pressure has lasting mental affects. Get this – even though I’m anti-control and 20+ years removed from my sorority days – just the other day I saw a girl wearing my sorority’s letters in Walmart. I had to stop myself from instinctively stopping her to suggest she take better care of how she represented the sorority letters because she honestly looked quite slovenly. I was instinctually offended on behalf of the organization. (This is what happens when you’ve been the Standards Chair. It makes you crazy.)
However, thankfully, my brain kicked in and I stopped before my mouth opened. Because that judgement I made on her is completely inappropriate! Because people are not the sum of their likes or dislikes. Or their clothing. Or their workplace. Or their children.
Because mind control and judgement is not what I want to be about anymore. Ever.
You see, humans are made up of lots of little and big moving parts. Each of those parts are components of the whole person, but they shouldn’t ever be sliced and diced from the whole in order to make an easy judgement.
Easy judgments are shallow and rob us of taking joy in diversity.
If we are genuinely interested in other human beings and wanting to love them the way Jesus loves them – we must meet them where they are, not go all judgy-McJudgerson on them.
This is why relationship is so dang important. If you don’t take the time to build relationships with your team, it becomes easy for you to judge them by the component instead of the whole. It becomes easy to make black and white statements out of gray areas and fall into loving the policy more than the person.
And then you’re failing to love well. And those people who you claim to be serving actually get scared into #witnessprotection.
They feel Unappreciated. Stressed out. Abused.
Was that your intended outcome when you started out on this journey?
So may I just say…? With everything in me and with a loving tone…?
Stop it, Earl. You’re not doing yourself any favors.
**** Since this post was published I have been contacted by many more people stating that their social media behaviors have been watched for suspicious behavior. It’s much more widespread than I thought it was when I initially wrote this post.****