I’ve written a lot of stuff about Brexit since the earth moved under my feet, in June 2016. Judging by the reactions, some of it was good, and some of it not so good. I admit that maybe, here and there, I wrote something that was not 100% factually correct or that I had incorrectly interpreted. But that is the point of a blog, isn’t it? A platform where you can share your ideas of the world, and where what you get wrong is up for grabs and can be whipped away and destroyed by your audience – if you have an audience, that is. Whipping away and destroying your misconceptions is alright as long as they are not thrown back in your face with a packet of insults.
Maybe today, I went too far. I criticised a deity, a man of honour whose honour I do not doubt for one minute. That was not my point. My reaction was a general point concerning the responsibility of any public figure for what he or she says. We have had enough of the Donald Trump’s, Nigel Farage’s and Boris Johnson’s of this world, must we now put up with a Donald Tusk misplacing a sentiment that everybody who loves the EU shares? I really felt as though I was being attacked by my own people, the Remainers, every one of whom I respect, even though we may differ in our visions of how the EU should be run.
One of the accusations I received, was having published the post in a Facebook group knowing that I would get a lot of attention, and as a publicity stunt for my blog. Nothing could have been further from the truth, because I am quite happy with my blog if my stats show a steady number of views. I ask for no more, and am really not that obcessed with the amount of “shares” or “likes,” as long as I remain convinced that someone out there is reading my posts.
My blog philosophy seems to have been torn apart today by the number of shares the post got, a fact that did not escape the notice of my detractor. I really do not know where all these shares have come from, and just hope that my post is not at the forefront of every pro-Brexit Facebook group.
But what disappoints me the most, and is the main reason why I left two Facebook groups related to Brexit, is not the sometimes overhyped reactions of the Facebook group members, but that of the moderators. One such moderator wrote that my posts were so full of things that he didn’t agree with, that he didn’t know where to start, and would not subscribe to any future posts. I saved him the bother by leaving the group. Why listen to someone you don’t agree with, I ask myself. Upon leaving the group, I read the group’s guidelines and found out that posting from personal blogs wasn’t allowed without permission. I’ll be fair and say that I never asked permission, but not on purpose. So I suppose that I must be thankful for their leniency.
Moderators are there to moderate their groups, and not to unfairly criticize views that do not coincide with their own. Maybe the moderator in question could have enlightened me on the points he did not agree with, so that I could have benefited from his wisdom.
I tried to do something different in these two groups. Instead of posting eye-catching shares from the mainstream press, I tried to share my ideas, worries and frustrations concerning Brexit. Maybe more of us should have done this because we can all read the newspapers and online articles. I wanted to share the sometimes erroneous views of an ordinary person who, like many others, is deeply affected by the folly of Brexit.