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petrini1 [userpic]

The Monroe Street Shooting & The Internet Troll

With the shootings at the YMCA baseball field just down the street from me, Wednesday was a disturbing day all around. And then there was this Facebook user — a guy with whom I had no prior relationship — who repeatedly posted obnoxious comments on my wall after I posted about the shooting. His first missive:

The whack-job liberal-left is on the loose! From Madonna to Kathy Griffin from Berkeley to Portland, the libtards in Hollywood are probably cheering this crap on. Pelosi, Maxine Waters, Chuck Schumer are the leaders of this anti-American garbage and need to be voted out of office!

When questioned, he said that, yes, he was sure that Nancy Pelosi et all really were behind the shooting. From there, he got more and more offensive. I didn't stop him at first. My first tactic was to say, as calmly as I could, that the authorities had not yet determined the motive for the attack, and to ask people to please refrain from speculating about it on my Facebook page until we had some actual facts. But he continued in the same vein. Several of my friends jumped in to help me respond to him. First they tried to defuse the online tension by turning it into a joke, but he refused to back down, and instead kept escalating his rhetoric.

When he accused all liberals of having no respect for life, I chimed in to ask him not to denigrate large groups of people on my Facebook page, or I would have to delete his comments. He persisted and blasted us all outright, and saying Democrats should not be allowed to have guns because we are all psychos who hate America. I deleted that one and posted a comment telling people I had deleted his last comment because he'd ignored my request not to use my page in an offensive manner. He accused me of violating his Constitutional right to free speech. I replied that the Constitutional right to free speech gave him the right to post his views on his own page, not on mine. And I blocked him from reading or posting further.

What a way to make a bad day worse.