Before, during, and after the debate, Twitter exploded with comments calling for Romney’s assassination. Most of the comments contained some level of profanity. Some of the more benign comments were “I’m gonna murder Romney right now,” and (misspellings included) “Somebody needs to asassinate This mofo Romney.”
We’ve been reassured by a group called Think Progress, more or less a front group for the Obama campaign and closely aligned with Media Matters, that no one should be concerned, and only those that draw attention to the comments are to blame.
Think Progress had an article accusing the Drudge Report of “stirring up another race-baiting conspiracy theory” for simply linking to articles that show Obama supporters on Twitter commenting about how they want to murder Romney. These were legitimate tweets by legitimate Twitter users. This isn’t a “conspiracy theory.” People were calling for Romney’s assassination if he wins.
Many of the commenters calling for Romney’s death were angry because they thought Romney would take away their food stamps if he won. (Sounds like a conspiracy theory.) The very thought of being removed from their host makes them want to murder whoever tries to get in the way of their parasitic relationship. They’re acting like radical Muslims overseas who hold up signs that read, “Behead those who insult the Prophet Muhammad!” The Twitter comments might as well read, “Behead those who insult the Prophet Obama!” Yet, after all this, Think Progress is telling us, “There’s nothing to see here. Move along.”
NBC News carried a story detailing all 2 incidents where white Republicans had taken empty chairs and hung them in their trees (or “hanged” them, depending on whether or not you think the chairs were actually being punished). The media were calling these incidents “empty chair lynchings,” making the connection to Clint Eastwood’s “empty chair” speech, where the empty chair represented Obama. Since Obama is half-black, and since white people have lynched black people in the past, there must be some dark, racial connection, and these people (all 2) may have been making death threats against the president. The Secret Service is now “investigating” these incidents.
These 2 “empty chair lynchings” were newsworthy, but everybody should just ignore all the actual and detailed death threats against Romney. Just bringing it up is a “conspiracy theory.”
We all know that local, state and federal law enforcement monitor social networking sites. They scan for any “anti-government” rhetoric that they think might lead to a terrorist attack. People have been investigated, arrested and detained for Facebook and Twitter posts that are nothing compared to the Obama supporters blatantly calling out for the murder of Romney. Will the Secret Service or FBI be investigating all those tweets? Don’t count on it.