Another election cycle is around the corner and once again the candidates and their puppet-master media consultants are slinging mud as fast as they can. The negativity is off the chart, crossing over the line to Soap-Box Silly Land. The only thing the candidates are not talking about are the issues you and I want to hear. Frankly, I don’t believe they know how to appeal to a broad base of voters. The issues that I want are probably different than Chad, a 23-year-old hipster with the man bun. I’m sure you agree that protecting our retirement money is key as are issues with Medicare and other “senior” driven concerns. Chad may have another agenda, perhaps a concern that whatever horrible stuff they put in IPA beer may be restricted. (For one, I hope so.) 

I hate to give out a “back in my day” on you but I’m fairly certain that you remember that ancient time before the Internet and social media, when issues were discussed and not texted. People are jumping on the bandwagon and in some cases, have no idea what the bandwagon holds. It is fashionable to post a cheap-shot comment on social media. The sarcasm and arrogance are ridiculous and frankly embarrassing. Fortunately, we arrived at the top of the food chain before the Internet or else we’d be swimming around in the water, waiting for someone to post that its okay to walk on land, even though we knew very well that we already had the feet to do so.

I don’t want a movie actor, three times in rehab and going through his fourth divorce to tell me his political views in order to influence my vote because, I don’t think an entitled and pampered actor has any idea of the concerns of most Americans. Unfortunately, most candidates too, seem to struggle with accuracy on the issues, spending too much time trying to instigate that tabloid mentality that we all see too much of.

Of course, police officers are the low-hanging-fruit that everyone wants to target—especially during sweeps months. Gotta get those TV rating points. To go deeper into this topic would be my concern that the level of inaccuracy perpetrated on the police since 2014 is ridiculous. I firmly believe that as backwards as the world is now, somehow, human nature eventually sets a correction course. I hope it comes fairly soon. Don’t get me started.

So how does all this affect you, a person of mature status, having paid your dues in life, one who has checked a couple of things on the bucket list, one who drives in the middle lane with the audacity to go the speed limit and couldn’t care less about the looks you get from those passing you?    

The first rule of effective propaganda is this, even if you are telling a lie and the people know it is a lie, if you repeat it enough, they will eventually believe it. So why should we, the Boomers, as we’re called by the man-bun-nation, buy into misrepresented and false information on social media and other Internet avenues? For some, they want to believe that all people are good. For others, loneliness clouds common sense. A Facebook message from someone, out of nowhere, who wants to be friends or would like you to invest in something. The Internet is a powerful and wonderful tool that gives us remarkable and ground breaking access to water-skiing squirrels and Instagram influencers who have this thing about cartoon lips. Aside from the entertainment, the Internet is a wonderful research tool that has the ability to connect you to the rest of the world. 

Just remember that the predators are in there as well. The old-school approach is the still the best. 

  1. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  2. You never get something for nothing. 

Now, more than ever, it is time to use common sense. Think things though, ask questions, and don’t make sudden and especially pressure-driven decisions. Keep your anonymity on social media. Don’t say too much about yourself because, in reality, I don’t think that people really care what you’re having for dinner or that photo of your dog on the couch or you lip-syncing to a horrible song. Your common sense is your friend. 

If you’re reading this and have a man bun, seek help.

Steve Rose is a retired police captain and a contributing writer to Atlanta Senior Life.