Some of the older people reading this post may remember when colored plastic wristbands were all the rage. They demonstrated that the wearer supported some cause -- a yellow wristband for Lance Armstrong's Livestrong charity, for example. There were many colors to choose from, each demonstrating sympathy for a particular cause. And some causes had more than one color. Luckily for colon cancer sympathizers, blue could be substituted for brown. Here's a list to help put the color to the cause.
Then along came social media, and all you had to do to demonstrate you cared was tweet a hashtag. How much simpler could it get? Michelle Obama showed us how it was done when she tweeted about the kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls. She cared. She really did.
There was a time when liberalism meant caring for the underdog. There are remnants of that still around, but today it's really all about showing others that one cares, not about doing anything. So the hashtag fits perfectly with that sentiment. It's easy and it costs nothing. But it shows how much the hashtagger cares.
But pity the poor manufacturer of the sympathy wristband. That symbol has come and gone.