I am no stranger to cyber drama, trust. I'm not going to put the screen name here, but back in the aughts I went through the trial-by-fire method. In early 02, I received a desktop computer and a modem as a gift. I had access to the internet earlier of course, at the office. But I never got into it.
I had read about people getting addicted to being online, and I didn't get it. Even when I was looking for a way to waste time at work, I couldn't find one online. Sometimes I'd peruse the Coach website and that would keep me occupied for five minutes. What in hell were people getting "addicted" to?
Well, once the computer was set up, it automatically set the homepage on Netscape, a browser I had never used before. Within days, there was a poll "What do you think of George W. Bush?" and his reaction to one thing or other.
When I answered the multi-choice question, it said "Discuss" and I hit the link, and ended up on the Netscape political message boards for the first time. And that was that.
Believe me, I have stories. Yes, doxing was already happening then, though I don't believe we called it doxing yet. It happened frequently on the message boards. I stayed on the first one that link brought me to that day, the Rate George W. Bush board. I sometimes perused other boards, but Rate Bush (RBB) was my home. There was the War on Terror board which was well-known to be filled with idiots and vicious right-wingers. Moreso than the RBB, though we had our share. And the Mixed Bag board which some of us called the mixed bag of nuts board.
I didn't realize that my writing talents would make me standout on the RBB, but they did, and before long I was cyber-famous, if you confined your definition of "cyberspace" to the Netscape Political boards and your definition of "famous" to, shit, people actually want to kill me.
Among many other dramas, my netscape email was hacked. I very naively used the email they gave you when you signed up, which was your screename @netscape.com, to communicate with other board members.
I was quite a bit younger than I am now, and well, let's just say I wasn't happy when my emails with other board members went viral throughout the message boards. Some may have been untoward, I will leave it at that.
Anyway I could go on forever, this is book length shit, but let me cut this short and tell you the two things I learned: Republican women are the lowest scum on earth, and Republican men are no better, just less surprising...and you can't let the internet fuck with your head.
When I see Twitter pile-ons happening, and I see the target unable to disengage, I know what's happening. I've been there, pre-Twitter. You need to disengage, and the first step to being able to do that is to shut down your ego.
Don't worry about some loud mouth riding your ass and gaining followers by shrieking about your cyber sins, believing they got the best of you. They don't matter. Block them. If there is an incendiary tweet starting trouble, delete it. Your life matters more. And by life I mean your headspace. Keep them out of your headspace. You may think they are sitting there smiling because you "ran". But they're not. You didn't run. You waived them off with a mere flick of your finger as the dust they are. Like a Queen. And they wanted it so bad, when you wouldn't give it to them, they went looking for it someplace else.
And that's all that happened. I do a Willow Rosenberg with that shit.
And I never think about you again.
So that's my hard-earned advice to you if you are on the receiving end of a Twitter pile-on.
But I want to talk about one of the most recent ones.
I can see the view that it's racist. Some Native Americans said they found it to be so, some said they did not. It was said to Trump, and obviously a way of turning his racist and sexist tormenting of Liz Warren back on him. I didn't recognize it to be racist for that reason, when I first saw it.
I'm white, so I have nothing else to say about that. It's not my lane.
But the stroke part...A LOTTA words were said about ableism. And this I kind of have a problem with. And since Trump is showing obvious signs of mental decay, and he has, you know, THE FUCKING NUKE CODES, I'm gonna say that's my lane.
I've learned over the years to be much quicker to change my mind about something someone else tells me is offensive. Years ago, I read opinions about the R word, which amazingly I can no longer spell out, huh. The R word that many used to use to call someone mentally let's say, challenged.
I never used it to hurt anyone who really was developmentally disabled or challenged in any way, and I never would. In a million years I would never hurt anyone like that. But I loved the word for people, mostly men, who were fucking stupid. And I really didn't want to give it up. When I think of how long i refused to give it up, I cringe.
What turned me around was listening to Glenn Beck actually laugh about a developmentally disabled child. I couldn't believe what I was hearing and I got so upset. And that's when I realized I could never use that word again. And I never have, and it was only when I went to write this blog that I realized I am no longer even capable of writing the word.
I learned from that, and am much faster to listen and absorb. But sometimes I'm gonna disagree. Maybe five years from now I'll cringe? I don't know, if I survive Trump I really don't see it, but it could be.
Trump is showing serious signs of mental decline and he was rushed to Walter Reed hospital, and we never really learned why. Every single person involved with Trump lies about everything, all the time. So his WH doctor feel good cannot be believed. Pence cannot be believed. I don't think i have to say Trump cannot be believed do I?
None of them can be believed.
When NY Times "reporter" Michael Schmidt, wrote in his new book that Pence was put on standby that night, the shit hit the fan. Now, I put reporter in air quotes, because give me a fucking break. You hold this news for your goddamn book? If you were a fucking reporter, which is what the NY Times is paying you for, you would break the news when you found out about it. Not save it for your book to make bank.
Honestly, these people all disgust me.
Anyway, I digress. The shit, or should I say, the orange diarrhea, hit the fan and Trump went nuts (again) on Twitter. Denying he has ever had any strokes. Which the book doesn't say differently, but that's our Trump! I call him the Tell-Tale Heart.
So a combination of Trump's history of abusing Liz Warren by calling her Pocahontas, and his own flip-out on Twitter denying he had had a stroke, led to a Twitter user tweeting at him:
"Calm down Strokeahontas."
And that's when the pile-on began. The term Strokeahontas went viral and trended all day. Many people retweeted it and tweeted it at Trump. He most likely knew of it. He likely saw it. Does that make me feel bad? Not really.
Is it racist? Again, I'm white, not my lane. If a lot of Native Americans told me it was, I wouldn't use it. I haven't used it actually, I observed the shitstorm is all.
But it was the loud accusations of ableism that got me. Who was making fun of stroke victims? I may very well have a stroke one day. My dad had one. I would never make fun of a stroke victim.
My question is; if you have had a stroke and are showing serious signs of dementia or brain damage, should you be President?
Is it ableism to think you should not be? Is it ableism to look at this obvious madman daily and feel terror that so much power has been put into his unstable hands?
I don't think so. And it's MY ass on the line here. So I'm gonna weigh in on that and say, sorry, if you are mentally disabled, you cannot be President of the United States, and you cannot have the nuclear codes.
And I am going to stand by that one.
In the meantime, what has all of this done for me? It made me realize even I, who know better, am wasting too much time on Twitter. I immediately signed up for extra shifts at Joebiden.com.
You aren't changing the world by piling-on someone who made a mistake, or you think made a mistake, or didn't make a mistake and did something malicious which also happens daily on the internet (shriek!). You aren't changing anything.
Get off your soapbox and on your phone. We've got 61 days and you got calls to make and texts to send.
Trump is the mission. Dude's gotta go.
Save the drama for your mama, and lets get this done.