Tuesday, June 28, 2022

#180 / Sheryl Sandberg's T-Shirt Slogan


Sheryl Sandberg is pictured to the left. That is Mark Zuckerberg on the right. I presume that you know who they are, and that my identification was actually unnecessary. We used to be able to call Zuckerberg and Sandberg the "first family of Facebook," but times are changing. "Facebook" has now become "Meta Platforms," which means that my nice little piece of alliteration is gone. Besides, Sheryl Sandberg will soon be gone, too. 
As we have been told by The New York Times, "Ms. Sandberg, 52, has increasingly lowered her profile as Mr. Zuckerberg has taken over more of her responsibilities and reorganized the company for its new chapter. On Wednesday [June 1st], Ms. Sandberg said she was leaving Meta — which also owns Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger...."

The picture I have at the top of this blog posting can't be found in the online version of that June 1, 2022, article I just quoted, though it accompanied the hard-copy version of the article. I tracked the picture down, online, in an earlier Times' article that ran on October 5, 2021. That earlier article reported on a weekslong scandal that engulfed the company after a whistle-blower leaked documents showing that the social network had studied and understood the harmful effects of its products. In that 2021 article, The Times' told its readers about a video that was intended to make Facebook/Meta look good, without ever directly responding to what the whistleblower said. 
Considering the context in which it first appeared, that "Just Love" advisory on Sandberg's T-Shirt does seem like an appropriate adornment for an article about how the massive corporation was trying to divert attention from informed allegations that it intentionally visited harm on its users, in its never-ceasing quest to maximize profits. "Just Love!" A clever diversion! Just chalk it up to another maneuver by that "billionaire class" I have been highlighting, most recently

At any rate, I did notice the "Just Love" slogan when I read the June 1st article about Sandberg's departure from Meta Platforms. The photo made me think whether I agreed that "Just Love" is enough. The Beatles would seem to have signed on to that assertion. You remember, I am sure, that the Beatles have famously told us that "all you need is love." But is that true? The Beatles repeat the claim almost excessively as the song fades out
Love is all you need
Love is all you need
Love is all you need
Love is all you need
Love is all you need
Love is all you need
I am not sure that we can trust either The Beatles or Sandberg to have given us the real truth in their claim that "love is all you need." We definitely need love! But is it really enough, all by itself? Is it really "all we need?"
As I started thinking about this question, prompted by the picture of the slogan on Sandberg's T-Shirt, I started focusing on that very first word, "just." That word, of course, can mean, as the dictionary tells us, "only," which is pretty clearly the way The Beatles would have understood the slogan. "Just Love" is simply another way to say that "Love is all you need." This is the thought, I am pretty sure, that the Sandberg T-Shirt means to convey.
But there are a lot of other meanings for "just," too, which you can find if you click this link to review all the definitions that the dictionary lists. "Just" love could mean "righteous" love; it could mean "deserved" love; it could mean "proper" or "reasonable" love. 
If could mean, the way I see it, a love that results in a "just" result. Read that way, the slogan tells us that what we really need is not only love, but justice. That's where I am going with the "Just Love" slogan.
So, here's my thought: let's not be fooled! We can't really have love without justice! Love and Justice: they are both required!

With apologies to The Beatles (I'm sorry, you guys), love is not "all we need." Love and Justice. That's what we need. That's what we need to insist upon when we deal with the billionaire class.
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