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The Northern Star

The Northern Star

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Lucy Brisman, Managing Editor/Opinion Editor • May 31, 2024

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Opinion: Should We Be Posting Political Opinions On Social Media?

Opinion: Should We Be Posting Political Opinions On Social Media?

What makes a person an activist? Is posting your political opinion on Instagram really considered political activism? Who is your audience?

These are big questions I find myself asking when thinking about posting Instagram stories sharing my political opinion. Of course, everyone has the right to post and share any opinion that they want to. But, does that mean that it is effective, or necessary in conveying your message?

When I saw my peers posting “Go vote” during the 2020 election I wondered who was their audience when none of our peers could vote. Who was being moved by your devotion to one candidate or another?

Another way people use Instagram is to inform people of big social movements and major conflicts. Instagram allows for a space for social movements to blossom, people see videos of a conflict and understand the gravity of situations, and brings a voice to people who otherwise do not have a voice. 

If you look at the Russian-Ukraine war, at the beginning of the war, videos, pictures, and statistics scattered on all platforms of social media raised awareness for the war, allowing people to see the victims of this war. Heroes popped up showing us defiance to the violence that is surrounding them. People can understand war through stories and pictures in a way that facts and statistics fall short. 

However, what if the conflict is not so cut and dry? What if people disagree with who’s in the “wrong”? This is where misinformation and snippets of information become a problem. 

This can be seen in the current Israeli-Hamas conflict. The history behind the conflict is so long, complicated, and filled with complex cultural and religious tensions, that can not be summarized in one infographic. Misinformation does not necessarily mean what you said is wrong; it could be that you are simply not telling the whole story.

When you only have so many characters and room for one image how could you possibly encapsulate this conflict? But, if everyone on social media shows a cut-and-dry wrapped in a pretty bow story then that will be what people believe and that is really dangerous. 

This conflict has real effects. There is a considerable rise in violence towards Muslims and Jews in the US because of the conflicts abroad. Additionally, people lose their jobs because of the opinions they post on Twitter (X) and Instagram. What is it worth to share your opinion with the world? I am not saying that you should talk with your family and friends, but do 1,000 people on Instagram need to know how you feel?

It is every person’s right to post an instagram story or their opinions online. I think there’s a real place for it and a need for it. Whether you choose to post online or not, just understand the ramifications of your words. 

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About the Contributor
Lucy Brisman
Lucy Brisman, Managing/Opinion Editor
Hi! I am Lucy Brisman, I'm a senior, and  I am the Managing and Opinion Editor of The Northern Star. I am on the lacrosse team at NVD. I am looking forward to my senior year, and I am excited to work on the newspaper.
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