The Social Media Fallout Of Trump's Victory
MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:
We are spending this hour hearing reflections on the election. Many people are having these kinds of discussions on their own, of course, especially on social media. But sites like Facebook have been criticized for creating echo chambers. People only see the posts of those who agree with them and can easily block or unfriend those with whom they disagree. And that includes one of our Barbershop regulars Doyin Richards who made the choice to unfriend Trump supporters during the campaign, so we called him for his reflections on that decision.
DOYIN RICHARDS: I'm Doyin Richards, founder of Daddy Doin' Work and author of the children's book "I Wonder."
MARTIN: We called Doyin specifically about a Facebook post he wrote before election night.
RICHARDS: I'm going to pull it up right now - one second - scrolling. Real quick - it just says (reading) this is my final pre-election rant.
Blah, blah, blah, blah. I said (reading) if you're a Trump supporter go away. I'm not kidding I do not want you in my life in any way shape or form. I'm not interested in your friendship. This is not about differing political views either because I have plenty of Republican friends. De-Friend me and don't look back.
The sad thing is is that so many people will look at this and be like, you know what? Get over it, man. Well, I can't get over it. I have two young daughters who are going to grow up to be women of color. They're girls of color now. This affects our lives in a way that is so hard to quantify, but it's a huge way.
MARTIN: Doyin told us he reached a breaking point. Long before Donald Trump became president-elect on Tuesday.
RICHARDS: I started de-friending people on Facebook early in Trump's campaign with the whole build the wall thing. I noticed a friend of mine who said at least he's telling it like it is and that - when I saw him building up steam and his commentary getting worse, I just realized, like, I can't have people in my life who was talking like that. I can't have them on my Facebook page looking at pictures of me and my kids and all the activities we do because that's not what I want my kids to see. I don't want my kids to grow up thinking that this is OK, so why would I want to be around people who actually think this is OK? Like, I'm sorry. We can't be friends.
MARTIN: But now that a couple of days have passed, Doyin admits that unfriending on social media doesn't make those people go away or give them any reason to change.
RICHARDS: I definitely regret how hard core I went at Trump supporters. I think what I could have done was to invite conversations. Like, listen, guys, I know there are some Trump supporters on this page or some Trump supporters that are on Facebook right now. Can you tell me why you support the guy? And I didn't do a good job of starting that discussion. I just automatically judged and just like I want Trump's supporters to understand the pain that we feel as minorities, we need to understand what they feel as far as how government has let them down.
And it's up to everyone to venture out of your bubble and meet some people who are suffering. Don't make jokes about it. Don't say that your conscience is clear because you should have voted for Bernie instead. Stop it. You're just being petulant. Go talk to these people because we have a lot of healing to do, and we have to come together on it. And we have a ways to go, but I'm going to do my part to lead the charge.
MARTIN: But is he ready to re-friend some of those he deleted? Not so much.
RICHARDS: Oh, I'm good. I'm - if they want to come to me, they can. If they were unfriended, there is a reason for it, so it's fine. We can just go our separate ways.
MARTIN: Those are reflections from Doyin Richards on the social media fallout of the presidential election. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.