It’s no secret that I’ve become an avid fan of Twitter. It’s a great place to meet people who share your interests, learn from prominent thinkers and keep your finger on the pulse of public opinion.
That’s the good side.
But like much of life, there is a bad side as well. Twitter gives you ringside seats to the craziness of others, extreme ideas, hate speech, racism, feminism, sexism and just about any other ism you can name. Even worse than a singular exchange with one disagreeable person, you have their followers to contend with as well as trolls. A phenomenon that I truly dislike.
Sometimes you’re just scrolling along and come upon a brawl in progress that underscores the many negative thoughts you have about human beings. Such was the case of New Year’s Eve, when I came upon a conversation/argument taking place between Angry Black Lady (Imani Gandy), lawyer and blogger of The Grio & ABL Chronicles, and political commentator Glenn Greenwald of Salon.com. Here is the chirpstory which includes the details of the discussion.
The tweets which caught my eye and caused reverberations of shock and outrage from Twitterverse is as follows:
HOW DARE THEY?
The first tweet is from a follower of Glenn Greenwald and rational folks would say that one can’t be taken to account for the tweets of your followers. However, the second is from Glenn Greenwald and he quite clearly expounds on the previous statement. As if it is acceptable to make such a statement which is a bald faced insult to women and Catholics. As if it is okay to make such a statement about the highest office in the US. As if it’s okay to trivialize the victims of rape. As if it is a reasoned response (example, metaphor, accusation, credible belief etc.) to a request for a debate of facts? Dare I say that it is morally reprehensible? Good, because I am.
For crying out loud, is nothing out of bounds? Well, it damn well oughta be.
He, and several of his followers, go on to defend his comment as a mere metaphor or a joke. Neither of which is accurate or even acceptable but actually goes on to explain that he believes that ABL & her followers would condone such heinous behavior. Imagine that. My mother would call it “stinking thinking”.
It is a bald faced insult to women, reeking of misogyny and it’s mere utterance erodes his reputation as a credible journalist and “critical thinker”. That he writes for Salon, a liberal publication, is deeply disturbing as well. In fact, the whole of his argument and it’s very puerile slant reminded me of shock jock, Rush Limbaugh….but we expect insane statements like that from him. Not from someone whose bio reads as follows:
Glenn Greenwald (email: GGreenwald@salon.com) is a former Constitutional and civil rights litigator and is the author of two New York Times Bestselling books on the Bush administration’s executive power and foreign policy abuses. His just-released book,With Liberty and Justice for Some, is an indictment of America’s two-tiered system of justice, which vests political and financial elites with immunity even for egregious crimes while subjecting ordinary Americans to the world’s largest and most merciless penal state. Greenwald was named by The Atlantic as one of the 25 most influential political commentators in the nation. He is the recipient of the first annual I.F. Stone Award for Independent Journalism, and is the winner of the 2010 Online Journalism Association Award for his investigative work on the arrest and oppressive detention of Bradley Manning.
WHAT A JOKE!
Two excellent pieces on the scuffle are listed below and and I hope there will be many more as the story makes it’s way around the Net.
- Zerlina Maxwell – Glenn Greenwald defends “Obama Could Rape A Nun” attack on supporters
- The Reid Report – On bullying: Glenn Greenwald and the “nun rape” smear
And yet, even in the slew of comments in response to his statement, there has been no apology forthcoming from Greenwald. If anything, he has merely tried to justify his statement. There is no justification. I am waiting with baited breath to see the response from Salon.
It speaks to me of media accountability and lack thereof. This is the land of free speech and yes it’s just Twitter but he is employed by Salon, his account is public, he has over 60K fans and such inflammatory, hateful statements should not be allowed in a public forum as a means of making any point. It’s a sad state of affairs that people must descend to, and condone, this level of behavior and then shrug it off as if words don’t have power. The lack of accountability in media outlets is truly getting out of control and it’s completely unacceptable to me. It should be to you as well. They inform the minds of the citizenry. Chew on that for awhile.
If this is the age of accountability we need to demand that the people in public positions behave with a modicum of decency and respect for the public who they purport to serve, protect and inform. I am incredibly tired of seeing hateful and morally reprehensible analogies and statements bandied about by politicians, journalists and the like. It has become an alarming trend which is nothing short of revolting.
Read my lips when I say that will NEVER frequent a post on Salon.com as long as Glenn Greenwald is on their staff, or watch any show on which he is featured. For me, an apology, even should one be forthcoming, will not suffice. All too often, such jokes are merely a clever way of covering over a truth that you don’t have the guts to say seriously. Oh, but I stand corrected, it’s neither a joke or a metaphor, he BELIEVES that such behavior would be possible from his fellow Liberal base. Apparently, we are all just a bunch of Obamabot obsessed emprogs. Not one thinker amongst us. Another way of cleverly dismissing the opposition. I’m just saying…