A few years ago, Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg won the prestigious “Person of the Year” award from Time magazine. It was well deserved, I must say. His creation redefined networking and allowed hundreds of millions of people around the globe to connect with one another at the click of a mouse. Good for him. But what Time failed to mention was that, despite Facebook’s monumental success at global interconnectivity, the site has also contributed to a collection of massively inflated egos, delusions of grandeur, and outright foolishness.

If you think I’m lying, take a look at how many people you have noticed online looking and acting like damn fools, but who somehow think it’s cute. How many times have you seen people involved in scandalous behavior with little to no regard for the ramifications of said behavior? But the thing is: I don’t blame them for their behavior. That would be like blaming a child for acting up at an amusement park. Instead, I blame the social networking apparatus and – in particular – that person’s “friends” for feeding the Monster of Facebook Fooolishness. While these folks parade around Facebook (and Twitter. Let’s not forget that) losing their damn minds, their friends are usually the ones contributing to that person’s outrageous shenanigans; most notably by offering a disingenuous “Amen Corner” of support and encouragement. Consider the following examples (relax people, this is all fictionalized):

Exhibit A:

Number of Likes: 24
Comment from Friend 1: “Gurl, you know you right about that!”
Comment from Friend 2: “LOL! you a fool. Love u girl! LMAO!”
Comment from Friend 3: “ROTFLOL!”
Comment from Friend 4: “SMH :-)”

Andre’s Takeaway: No where in the comment section did you see somebody say “Um, yeah. I think it’s a bad idea to mess around with somebody else’s man. If you really like him and he really likes you, why not wait until they break up before you two get together? And for the love of God, don’t post that mess on Facebook, especially given that you’re friends with the girlfriend/wife.” The only semblance of critical disapproval came from one “Shake My Head” comment, which was quickly pacified by a smiley face.

Feeding the monster.

Exhibit B:

User’s Facebook picture caption: “‘Bout to head out to da club!!!”
Number of Likes: 34
Comment from Friend 1: “Lookin’ good, fam!”
Comment from Friend 2: “So beautiful!”
Comment from Friend 3: “Girl, your makeup is the fierce! What is that, Revlon?”
Comment from Friend 4: “Damn, girl! You all grown up. You got a man?”
Comment from Friend 5: “Lovin’ the eyebrows, girl!”
Comment from Friend 6: “Your grill is what’s up! Is that platinum?”

Andre’s Takeaway: Look, people. You know good and damn hell well this girl looks like the most gruesome of train wrecks. Ratchetness, squared. You suggesting anything to the contrary is another example of feeding the monster.

Exhibit C:

User’s Facebook status: “I okly (“only”, spelled incorrectly) fuccs around wit real nuccas. The rest of yall fake azz nuccas can eat a dicc. Dat include mah fake azz fam! Buy’n stamps frm me n not giv’n me luv. Kill yo’ sef!!!!!
Number of Likes: 27
Comment from Friend 1: “I hate dem bich a$$ fools mahself!”
Comment from Friend 2: “LOL! U crazy!”
Comment from Friend 3: “ROTFLOL!”
Comment from Friend 4: “I hate when that mess happ’n to me 2!”

Andre’s Takeaway: Instead of contributing to this buffoonery, this is a perfect time to remind your friend about the potential dangers of the internet. Not only has your friend just displayed the most tragic (and misspelled) form of ignorance, but by sharing information about the illegal sale of food stamps, your friend has basically admitted to committing a crime. Do you REALLY want to be tied up with that person?

Since I love you all and I’m pretty much the smartest person ever, please allow me to offer this public service announcement: STOP FEEDING THE MONSTER! The best friends are not always the ones who merely accept us where we are. Sometimes, the best friends are the ones who pull us aside and show us the error of our trifflin’ ways. If you really love your friend, family member, etc and you don’ want to see their tomfoolery showcased for the world to witness, you may have to intervene. You might have to call on your inner Sandman: grab the nearest shepherd’s hook you can find and graciously usher that person off the stage. Trust me, it’s for the best. Not only does it save them a world of hurt, but you’re free from being guilty of rachetness by association.

It’s a win-win.