I’m Done with Courtesy


I’ve recently added to my Twitter profile the phrase “Zero tolerance for tcot, NRA and libertarian fools.”

This is more than an intolerance for such nasty tweets. It’s my pledge to strike back at the ravings with blunt force words. I will no longer politely ignore their epithets.

Ignoring or blocking these fools is the worst possible strategy in my mind. I’ve dealt with bullies. I know they are unaffected by reason, by conciliatory offers or by willfully ignoring their presence. The only way to shut down a bully is to bully back.

Of course, this sounds irreconciable to a reasoning person. What? Stoop to their level? Never!

I’m here to say that we are not stooping when we point out another person’s racism or intolerance. We are not stooping when we demand they document their crazed assertions. We are not stooping when we stand up to bullies.

Theirs is a collective hatred for people who identify as Progressive, Democrat, Liberal; for people who use their brains, who engage in logic, who earned a college degree, who use multisyllabic words, who pause before responses, who consider the muddied shades of conflict rather than tack together a world of stark black and white.

These bully-fools operate under the assumption that People Like Me will never default to their low standards of revilement. They assume, and often rightfully so, that I will measure my words or ignore their villification. They assume as a part of their collective persona, that I will not engage.

Their modis operandi is explicitly balanced on the assumption that thoughtful people have a primary desire to put distance between themselves and such spiteful foolishness.

When we move on, when we block, when we shrug our shoulders or laugh at their antics, we are giving them free rein to bully. We become their enablers.

Face it, friends, there is nothing random about their wholesale vitriol. This is an operational tactic. These fools believe in an illusory sense of power, the scare-tactic pack mentality. If they get in the last word or the nastiest remark, they think they’ve won. And they have, haven’t they? Because each time we refuse to engage, we have given them an inch. Each time we defer to sanity, to the quiet mode of looking the other way, they advance. You can hear them all around us: snarling, yapping and giggling at our modest demurment.

Remove a fool from his or her pack. Respond forcefully to his rampage. Then watch the thin shellac of assumed dominance melt. The lone bully cannot endure continued engagement. Bullies perservere because their victims do not fight back.

Attack the illogic!  Do not spare their foolishness with the veneer of polite reply. Go at them with all the vigor with which they turn on you, on us. You’ll see the fools sputter. Their arrogant demeanor will degenerate. When they start cursing, they have used up their allotment of stock replies. Their brains cannot sustain any further discourse. They are done.

Zero Tolerance for Tea Party bullies, neocons, RWNJs, those so-called Patriots with their silly Twitter avatars, the fervent Christians with their redhot bile, all the ignorant, abusive, profane fools who litter the civil conversation of America.

Shout them out. Shut them down. Fight back.

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