In the last 24 hours, and I suppose in general, I have been feeling really awful about the internet. It’s like a gun – it can be used for good, but so many people use it for bad. How can you justify its existence?
More specifically, what’s set off my mood was an incident that spurred yesterday in the internet world. A woman posted her opinion, comedic/satirical or not, about a recent celebrity death. So many comments spurred from it, mostly about hate. Most of them wished she or someone she loved would die, that karma would come back to her, that she was a cunt/slut/whore/bitch who deserved all most awful things to happen to her because she publicly stated her opinion. While I don’t agree nor think her public opinions were necessarily appropriate for such a forum, I don’t think she deserved all the hate she got. I don’t know why she wrote it, why she published it – that’s between herself and her therapist if she has one. What really upsets me the most was that all these people were bullies. Giant, big ass bullies. That’s what sickens me, that people feel so entitled, so “courageous” when they sit behind their screens, typing away without any repercussions to what they say. Would these people say this in front of a stranger on the street? Would these people want someone else to say it to their loved ones? Why do we have to wish such ill on people? It’s awful; it’s sickening.
Then today, I ran across a video. It was in response to a charity video in which three men went around town asking relatively attractive women if they could motorboat them for charity. For each set of boobs they’d motorboat, a certain amount of money would be donated to breast cancer research. I found the video and the “charity act” despicable myself, but I brushed it off and moved on with my life. I read today that they tried to donate the money to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation but their donation was refunded. I agree with the foundation’s decision to return the money as their method of raising donations wasn’t necessarily appropriate nor empowering of women, but many didn’t. Comments said that it was women’s fault and so on and so forth. Other nasty comments ensued. While there were no death threats in this, it was just disheartening to read some of them.
I get that people are ignorant. I get that people have their biases and will act prejudiced in response to these biases. But it doesn’t make sense to me why people need to be awful. Why people can’t, for a second, think otherwise about certain situations. There are always two sides to a story and at the end of the day, can’t we be nice to one another? Maybe I’m too Utopian. Maybe it’s ironic for me to say this when I scream at dumb drivers all the time. But still. I just want the bullying to stop. I want the ignorant comments to stop. I want to stop worrying every time a person of color or a woman does something amazing/wrong and read the backlash about it. Can’t it all just stop?