Tragedies provoke increased social media comments on hot button issues

Two things that draw polarizing opinions on social media – politics and tragedy.

There are ways you can step in and make a difference, other than voicing concerns through a Facebook post.

On the WINK News Facebook page, stories out of Parkland provoke comments on school safety, gun control, and mental health, but Dr. Chris Wright-Isak, an FGCU professor, urges you to use caution before getting into a heated back-and-forth debate.

“This is not the time to offer opinions about why it should have happened or shouldn’t have happened. Remember that what you write is gonna be read by people that are directly affected,” said Wright-Isak.

If you feel strongly enough to take action the professor recommends turning to a website where words could spark change, “Go to social activism sites, or just go onto our local legislative sites to voice our opinion to who makes the laws and helps shape the condition and express ourselves that way.” he says.

From contacting lawmakers about changes you’d like to see in schools – to donating to the school affected – Wright-Isak says it takes more effort to take actual action than it does to post a complaint online but the reward can be far greater.

“It’s easy to be seduced by the dark side and be cynical. Don’t get caught up in a negative spiral of one opinion that’s very dark, Dr. Wright-Isak said, adding, “We have to make the active choice to find where the good could be and work hard to achieve it. It avoids adding an extra burden for those already in a lot of pain for the loss.”

Reporter:Melinda Lee
Writer:Derrick Shaw