I am sure that the Twitter comment was merely an observation. For many, myself included, musing aloud is a normal part of living. I often lose sight that musing on Twitter which is in turn is linked to Facebook means that I am musing in a way that reaches a large community instantly. In the casual, often boring, unfolding of a day, this is not a bad thing. On the other hand, when it a comment about something personal to another, it can be devastating.
As I read the Facebook comments of a friend, I knew the comment went farther than anyone intended. Looking with perspective, it was clearly an inappropriate comment to make publicly.
If only the remark could have been seen through the eyes of another, before one choose to write it down.
Exercising freedom, especially without restraint, can hurt. The original intent may have been honorable, yet the result still cuts those nearby. Everyone reacts, often with as little thought as the first act.
The patter is an old one. In a riot years ago, soldiers came to the rescue of an innocent one. The mob was out of control. The soldiers acted instinctively, “but when they got to the Temple steps, the mob became so violent that the soldiers had to carry Paul.” (Acts 21.35) Everyone was out of control.
The cascade of actions was unfolding from the one remark. Individuals were hurt. Tears were flowing. Comments piled on comments with that reinforced the hurt and anger.
Even as I reacted in my way, sending a note to the source calling the action for what it was, I found myself looking in the mirror. How many times has this been me? Am I any more thoughtful/thoughtless than the one I have just put on notice? Am I willing to think in terms of community instead of myself?
The remark was deleted. With this and unseen actions, one notes the beginning of the process of mending hearts. Today will be a day of healing. It is an opportunity that comes with the dawn.