Dear America: Think Before You speak

Dear America:

Surely you’ve already heard about the workplace shooting in Manchester that took the lives of many CT residents. Normally, we wouldn’t touch a story like this because there is nothing remotely funny about it. We here at The CuT know many people who work, or have worked there and our hearts go out to anyone suffering at this moment…because we’re decent human beings, unlike the internet trolls commenting on news stories about this tragedy.

The issue of anonymous jerks spewing their ignorance in the comment sections of websites has long been one on our minds. (We’ve personally challenged a few to explain themselves…which never happens.) Barely a week goes by when RingNation doesn’t send me a link to some horrendous flame war happening on a Courant article. This time, though, Gay Guru brought an MSNBC article to my attention. Here are some of the “gems”:

“It’s those damn brown people again! Repeal the 14th and close the borders!!!!”

“Conn. is one of those states where people aren’t allowed to protect themselves. They are not allowed to carry a concealed weapon. I feel for the families of those people. They never had a chance once someone goes on a rampage with a gun, if you don’t have one your dead.”

“The shooter did what was correct. I admire him. He didn’t want to take any crap. This is wonderful!! Great!!!”

For the record, Connecticut does allow you to get a concealed weapon permit. The other two…well, frankly, I’m speechless. Over at The Courant, there are some sensible people, but also plenty of nuts:

Suzy320 at 1:16 PM August 3, 2010

“Once again Courant — please turn off the comment section on issues as intense as this one.  Armchair quarterbacks don’t need to be heard from.  This is an ongoing story where family members turn to the Courant to find out information, only to read junk that people, who have nothing better to do, write.  Civility please.”

Thank goodness for Suzy. So many comments on these stories were about how people no longer respect each other enough to not kill one another. That makes very little sense but gets even more ridonculous when you take into consideration the complete lack of respect many of the commenters have for the friends and family that are, no doubt, reading their comments.

I’m not completely oblivious to the irony here. The CuT writes about news stories that are, in some cases, undoubtedly painful for someone out there. We’ve had everyone from swingers to friends and family of the accused and convicted angry at us. But we do recognize that what we’re writing will eventually be read by someone who cares, and we take that into consideration…which is why we normally stay away from stories like this one. (But if you’re an accused/convicted sex offender with one eye, well, sorry but you’re asking for it.)

So, America, please think about it before you say something completely stupid, mean-spirited and devoid of all redeeming social value. I know you’re allowed to say whatever the hell you want…but maybe you shouldn’t be.