Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Troll Stories

Trolls are the bane of the internet. For those who have not heard this term in this context before, trolls are commenters whose aim is not to contribute to the discussion but to destroy it, if possible. Trolls range from the criminally insane to those who just like to press other people's buttons. My experience of trolls consists of two main types: trollus misogynistus and trollus wingnuttus, often in the same person. For some reason I get most of them via e-mail, rather than on the blog. I have been blessed with many memberships in online prayer groups, for example, and I'm also on the mailing lists for various embarrassing ailments. None of this affects me in the slightest except for the occasional giggle I get from some of the messages.

Another kind of troll is the one who is determined to be heard and will not stop e-mailing me various kinds of tracts. This is from a recent book review by one of these trolls:

We can thank Ms. Bentley for showing us the future, at least the liberal future of liberated, uncivilized, carefree, anonymous, abortion laden, sex, fueled by Britney Spears style commercialism, our bankrupt souls, and poor thinking. But, it is only the future if we continue to choose it.

This is how the term "liberal" is framed in the troll college. I thought Britney Spears was a Republican, by the way, but perhaps such trivia have no effect on the faith-based messengers of Wingnuttia.

The reason I'm writing about it is that it ties in with one of my earlier posts today, the one about war, in that the same attempt at dehumanization is going on here, too. Liberals are no longer regarded as Americans. The next step is to regard us as not human at all, and the step after that is one I'm not going to be here to witness if I can avoid it. The right-wing framework is one of war.

Of course I'm not totally innocent of this stuff, either. For example, I call wingnuts wingnuts, and that is quite insulting, or would be if they hadn't started the smear campaign and continued it for over ten years while I was trying to be a unifier. (Even bleeding-heart liberals have their breaking points.) But I don't dehumanize the wingnuts; I ridicule their very human faults.