A Call for Input: Responding to “You Think Too Hard” and Other Forms of Online Bullying

Dear Readers,

This is another one of those postings that I’ve wanted to write for a good year or more. During the process of running this blog (which started in May 2013!), I have encountered a variety of online bullying. Nothing too severe. Here is one of many comments that was left for me: 

Andrew, I just want you to tone down your anti white male rhetoric and take off your white guilt glasses. Are you that hung up on a movie like world war z to bash everything White male !!! When there are more deserving stances to spend your drivel on,,,, for instance The Kurds being wiped out thanks to our prez !!! The innocent children being butchered by radical Muslims infront of their parents then the raping of the wife while the husband is forced to watch, then the husband is killed infront of the wife, the bastards get off on this a lot !!!! So why don’t you spend your time with a worthy cause and write your prez to voice a real complaint. I’m out

For comments like this, I just delete them and don’t respond (and I could spend hours responding to all of the problems in this comment). But the “stop thinking” and “stop writing” underlining message hurts.

I am especially bothered by and/or (depending on my mood) puzzled by all the comments I get from people all the time that specifically say “can’t you enjoy anything” or “stop thinking so hard” or “you’re racist!” How do we respond to such comments? This article offers some ideas, and I have shared it many times, but it has not “silenced” such unfounded non-criticism. (This article also offers a nice overview of how writing in a public forum does not give consent to be bullied.)

If you have any suggestions, I’d enjoy hearing them. Hopefully, there will be a “Part II” to this article at some point with some of your ideas and how they worked out.

I’d love to live in a world where all sincere thoughts are valued, recognized, and rigorously considered and honestly debated.