Sex, politics and religion

"Do I have any liberal friends? Don't be shy." Tim McDonald asked this question on Facebook today. I immediately decided to respond with "‎I'm a bleeding heart lib! 1. I support a women's right to choose. It's her body. "Keep your laws off my body"; 2. I am for stricter gun laws, and actually would love to see them banned (but that darn 2nd amendment gets in the way); 3. I'm against the war; 4. I'm a bit of a tree hugger and would love for everyone to care just a bit more about our planet and banning plastic bags; 5. I'm pro same sex marriage; 6. I think it's sick that so many Americans don't have health insurance (including myself!) and that we should all have it." For some reason out of all the messages posted today filling up my News Feed this one was the one I saw. I am so glad I did. The passion that I have for my own political beliefs is strong and I became inspired.

I'll never forget the questionnaire I took in high school sociology class. It was a list of questions meant to determine a student's political views and help realize the political party with which they most identify. I scored completely on the liberal side. Every single answer I gave was aligned with the typical Democratic point of view. It was in high school that I first became interested in politics. I was a member of the Young Democrats Club that met once per week after school. We had tremendous fun learning about current news, attending political events, campaigning for various political candidates in Grand Rapids and Rockford, and meeting those involved in local governments.

I was fortunate enough to attend a week-long seminar called Close Up in Washington, D.C. I couldn't have been more excited. We toured the US Capital, Capital Hill, Senate and House of Representatives, the Iwo Jima Memorial, the Abraham Lincoln Memorial, the National Mall, and the enormous Library of Congress. We met Debbie Stabenow and Carl Levin. It was one of the best trips I'd ever taken. I was one of about ten students that attended from my school. The lectures were full of kids from all around the country and I made a lot of friends during the week. If you have an opportunity to go, I'd highly recommend it.

There are two major issues that I am very passionate about: a woman's right to choose and gun control. First off it is inconceivable to me that some think they should be able to decide the future of pregnant women. If a woman accidentally gets pregnant, and cannot become a parent for any number of reasons, why should she have the child? To leave at a police station or fire house? To give to another family, when there is no shortage of children who need families and homes? To become a slave, a punching bag, a depressed young life that no one cares for? How is going through an unwanted pregnancy a good thing? How on earth can someone think they can decide the fate of another woman? What one does with their body is their own business. 

The sayings "Keep your laws off my body." and "If you don't like abortion, don't have one." perfectly sum up my feelings on the subject. I believe the court case of Roe vs Wade was one of the most important decisions ever made in American history. If America is the home of the brave and land of the free then shouldn't the decision to choose be decided upon by the woman whom is most affected by her decision?

Make your argument. I dare you.


My social media job

I started working for Vapor4Life one year ago. I began as an intern and after three months was hired as their social media community manager. I absolutely love my job. I am responsible for engaging our fans, keeping them interested in Vapor4Life, answering their questions, and relaying their concerns and suggestions back to management. During my internship I built the Facebook Page, revived the Twitter account, and learned all I could about social media.

In the past year, I think I've learned more than I have the last four years in my previous positions. I've learned about blogging, messaging, forums, Twitter outreach, social media monitoring, and more. Before applying for the internship, I loved being on Facebook. Like the rest of the world I would spend hours looking at friends' photos, checking out pages of brands I like and catching up with old friends. I never realized that being on Facebook was an actual job that people had. It never occurred to me that all the messages from companies and organizations that showed up in my news feed were written by people in the role of community management.

Having come from a background of Public Relations and customer service, social media and community management was pretty easy to fall into. The job requires both a desire to spread the word about your organization as well as help foster an active community built up of customers, fans, and brand ambassadors.

The world of community management and social media strategy is incredibly fascinating. I take every chance I get to attend an event for the industry. So far, I have been to a Chicago Community Manager Tweetup, a SMCChicago Holiday Party - Sugar & Spice, a Community Manager UNconference, a SMCChicago "Optimize and Socialize" event with author Lee Odden, a Mastering Pinterest, Facebook's New Business Timeline & Google Plus event, a Chicago Tweetup with Mark Schaefer, and a Social Media Day event. There are always interesting topics and friendly, helpful people working in the industry at these events. It's really fun to see people that I've met at other events and get to know them better.

Coming into my second year as a community manager I hope to learn even more and continue to develop relationships with influential and knowledgeable thought leaders!