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Controversy: Only by Popular Demand

Updated on April 20, 2020
Kyler J Falk profile image

Social issues can only be remedied by a collective acceptance of those opinions we view as opposing our own.

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This ought to be a short little essay here, one that I do not wish to dwell on for too long, though still feel it necessary to write because of what it is inspired by. I look at my article statistics, the pieces that do the best and those in the converse category of near-dead. I'm stuck asking myself, "Why does every controversial article I write have to do so well?!"

I can't stand controversial topics, because what is controversial today is so inconsequential I don't see why I let myself get dragged into the fray. At the same time this is an addictive cycle, one that I can't seem to resist, so I suppose there is an answer but I'm unsatisfied by it. Surely, there must be more, right?

It isn't often I'll dignify people with an argument, as I prefer to speculate rather than argue, but when I do it nets me profit. So I'm torn between profit, and the health of my mind, body, and spirit. I can hear it in my head, like an announcer at a circus or monster-truck rally, "Back by popular demand... controversy!"

Is taking part in this pitiful show worth it? Is gaining profit worth looking like a clown? Performing like dancing monkeys can't be the best way to make profit, right?

Then again, looking at the world, I forget we are all just apes throwing poop at one another for entertainment; the world has been this way since time immemorial.

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    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      @Nathan: I think the saddest part about it all is that so many people support these privileges and practices of corporations and celebrities. Even in calling them out, laughing in their faces, and saying "oh f-off with your nonsense," they are still able to get all the support and funding they could ever need. The support goes to profit, and profit goes toward expanding that profit, and so the cycle continues.

      I'm not one to hate big business, I'd love to be head of a fortune 100 company, I just hate using kindness and empathy as a veil for bullshit. Don't piss on me and call it rain. Then again, I suppose the worst part isn't the businesses themselves, it's the people who will go out of their own way and logic to defend their practices.

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      @Mitara: It is absolutely crazy to me, Mitara, how silly it all is. Yet it is allowed to continue, and even gets worse as time goes on and we all become more and more interconnected.

    • NateB11 profile image

      Nathan Bernardo 

      11 months ago from California, United States of America

      I'm glad I'm not the only one that is seeing how these companies are exploiting this crisis and acting like they care to sell their stuff. It just makes me cringe. It's like somebody who abuses you telling you they care. Then you got the celebrities condescending and showing off their privileged lifestyle that they have to "endure" during the lock-down; people called them out for their cluelessness and callousness and so now they're doing their best to seem "relatable". It's so laughable and tragic at the same time.

    • MitaraN profile image

      Mitara N 

      11 months ago from South Africa

      lol, Back by popular demand, I like how you set the scene right there.

      "I forget we are all just apes throwing poop at one another for entertainment"

      You always have such a way with words, I commend and admire Kyler

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      I won't even give them the credit of calling it tugging at my heart strings. It is more "crying out as they strike me" because most of the commercials I see are from corporations who'd sooner bleed us dry for their own survival than offer us a hand up, but all the while they're screaming out that they're helping. Of course, they do offer much help, but at what cost is the question everyone should be asking. Profit margins and bottom lines are all corporations care about, and as much as they want corporations to be humanized for their own ongoing success I just won't let that sentiment take root without a fight.

      Bah, and so the cycle continues! Thanks for reading and commenting Shauna!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      11 months ago from Central Florida

      Kyler, for some reason, the majority of the public thrives on controversy. They like to argue, make people's blood boil and have something to complain about or capitalize on.

      Just look at the current COVID-19 pandemic. Just about every commercial on TV addresses the negative effects with what they deem as doing their part to ease the pain, so to speak. Translation: with the masses being affected by any situation, pulling on the heartstrings is sure to turn a profit. With such a large target audience, hitting a bullseye is effortless.

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      Thanks, Pamela, as for me I go wherever the wind blows me. The whole niche thing is great for those who like to be in a niche, but I'm more the "free spirit" and like to be able to branch off constantly. My niche is in novel writing anyways, and I can't do that here, so I use HubPages as a doodle pad/income generator.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      11 months ago from Sunny Florida

      Kyler, You write a lot of good articles, but there is only so much time in the day to write and comment on other Hubbers. Also, I have found that Hubpages does not pay as well as it did a few years back. So, I stay true to myself and write medical articles most of the time. As a retired RN I am still interested in new developments for health and I get to help some people that way.

      I was told it was best to find my niche and follow it for success. I don't like controversy either, so I stay away as much as possible. I wish you the best of success in the future and I thought this was an interesting article.

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      @Linda: If only more people could be like you! Unfortunately most people claim to want to be empathetic, compassionate, or otherwise offering a helping hand when really their intention is to feel superior or otherwise release their own thoughts and problems through performative cruelty. Taking part in the opinions of others when all they intend to do is hurt you, can't say it ever makes me more empathetic.

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      @Nathan: Yeah, it is a weird cycle of disinterest and near-addicting allure. My biggest problem with it being how simple it is to pull such a topic off. A few buzz-phrases here, maybe some disdain peppered on for flavor there, then stir the pot ever fifteen minutes, and serve with a side of bitter spite. Truly, a recipe everyone loves, but it gives me a stomach ache.

    • Linda Courtney profile image

      Linda Courtney 

      11 months ago from Bloomsburg, PA

      I'm not big on controversy either, but I have to admit to being one of those that are drawn to controversial topics sometimes. I'm not big on contributing to arguments, but I do like reading what others have to say on any given topic. Sometimes it helps open my eyes to what others are thinking or feeling. I think it helps me be more empathetic to others even if I may not agree. Controversy isn't necessarily a bad thing.

    • NateB11 profile image

      Nathan Bernardo 

      11 months ago from California, United States of America

      It's a fact that controversy attracts attention and therefore traffic. I've read advice at different times that a writer should write on controversial subjects because of this fact; and let the rush of comments come in to add even more juice to your article.

      I have a controversial article that does well and it was almost accidental that I hit on the subject that garnered quite a bit of attention. And, like you say, it was kind of a fleeting thing, I don't even care much about the subject now; but it still brings in traffic, and therefore earnings, so I'm okay with it.

      But I don't do a lot of articles of that type, for the reasons, more or less, that you say you don't prefer them. I mainly like entertaining and informative over spectacle and conflict.

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      I'm delighted that you enjoyed my public speculation on profiting from controversy, and my subsequent distaste of such requirements. If only people fed off of understanding, rather than controversy, but alas, the statistics speak to the contrary.

      Thanks for reading, Brenda!

    • Brenda Arledge profile image

      BRENDA ARLEDGE 

      11 months ago from Washington Court House

      Kyler,

      Gotta say this one is cute.

      It probably is not worth it, but the world has been this way for a long time.

      Have a peaceful evening.

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