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Instant reaction on Twitter is the real problem

Men are silhouetted against a video screen with an Twitter logo as he poses with an Samsung S4 smartphone in this photo illustration taken in the central Bosnian town of Zenica, August 14, 2013. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic (BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA - Tags: BUSINESS TELECOMS)

Editor’s note: Disco Biscuit is a frequent contributor to the site. Here she responds to another recent article on Houston Sports and Stuff. 


The divide in this country is worse than ever between “I’m educated and therefore I know more than you and you’re just an ignorant hick” and “I’m a working man/woman and you’re a snowflake who needs a safe space.”

I read Lamont’s piece yesterday about Dylan Roof and I have to say, I was disappointed. At first I couldn’t put my finger on why. It’s not because I felt like he was saying Liberals don’t care about ideas just politics; I can see some truth in that – from all sides actually. It wasn’t the idea that certainly only Liberals could be against the death penalty. And I’m not here to talk about the death penalty. Having a conversation with someone is firmly on the other side of the death penalty debate is like having a conversation about abortion – most people are somewhere in the middle, but if you care to argue about it you’re probably each firmly on opposing sides and neither of you is going to change your mind.

I’m not going to waste anyone’s time getting into specific statistics, but if you’re interested in facts and statistics about the death penalty in the US, the Death Penalty Information Center does a good job of compiling this information.

Anyway – there’s a ton of reasons why someone would choose to be against the death penalty and some of these aren’t just because they’re a “Liberal”. Then I finally figured out why it really bothered me. It’s the typical “let’s pull some tweets from some pissed off kids 5 minutes after they found out a mass murderer and white supremacist is getting the death penalty and pass that tweet off as their end statement on the matter.”

My main issue with the piece is the idea that a cross section of teenagers and young adults’ tweets in the heat of the moment about a guy who is pretty universally abhorred somehow represents what they actually feel ALL of the time.

I mean, just go look at football fan Twitter on game days – you really think people wish harm on refs or on Roger Goodell in real life? Do you really think people hope Brock Osweiler breaks his neck? Twitter is for people to report news, for you to interact with celebrities, 140 character jokes, and for firing off heat of the moment reactions.

Some of us scream into a pillow, others take to social media and give those thumbs a quick workout. While you were retweeting these “hundreds” of people (RIP to the timelines of your followers by the way) did it occur to you that these might be gut check reactions to a horrific crime?

Are there some people out there who are having a crisis about their current beliefs? Oh sure. 100%. Are the gut reaction tweets from a couple of people regarding the death sentence of a man who gunned down 10 innocent people enough to say there is a massive group of liberals having an ideological dilemma? Me thinks not.

1 Comment on Instant reaction on Twitter is the real problem

  1. This is sweet, although you know I disagree. I know how these tree huggers think. Killing one person or 100 people is crazy to me in non self defense. Good read though


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