“No one should be deterred from speaking up and speaking out in peaceful dissent, and we certainly must not be deterred by those who embrace evil and call it good. And we will not be stopped from celebrating the greatness of our country and our foundational freedoms by those who mock its greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion and seeking to muzzle dissent with shrill cries of imagined insults.”
In the aftermath of the despicable Tucson shooting, there was plenty of outrage and blame thrown around. One of the biggest targets was Sarah Palin, the current lightening rod of the country. Palin, the job-quitting, half-term governor, reality-show, Fox News contributing, lame-stream media avoiding, darling of the Tea Party chose to put out a statement commenting on the tragic events. Days later her woeful lament that evidently it was actually SHE who was the victim here was posted on her Facebook page as well. I suppose tweeting was not a viable option for the social media diva. Even she had more than 140 characters to add to the rhetoric. Facebook it was. We all know that Palin refuses to sit or stand or do head-stands (I betcha she could do a head-stand, I mean the woman is in shape!) or be anywhere within 500 yards of a real reporter since she was so viciously asked what she read by that diabolical Katie Couric. Oh, the horrors of that question. I get chills just thinking about it. Anyway, those type of “gotcha” questions won’t be tolerated by her. No sir-ee. So she only tweets, Facebooks, and gets softballs thrown at her by her lackeys Hannity, Beck, and O’Reilly. Smart gal.
Unfortunately, one of the problems with Facebook is that while your sycophants can post all the “I love you’s”, and “Keep up the good work-screw the liberals ruining our country Sarah” type of love notes, you also subject yourself to people who, well, might not drool over you so much. That’s the deal with social media. Now, that being said, I don’t quite understand how, on one hand, you can write that, “vigorous and spirited public debates” are a hallmark of our political discourse, and do what you did. How can you say on your own Facebook page, “no one should be deterred from speaking up and speaking out in peaceful dissent” and do what you did? The fact is, you and team Todd sat up day and night and deleted negative comments on your page. Many, many negative comments about you. Now I’m sure some were over the line either through profanity or serious threats. But many, many, many were just simple expressions of that “vigorous and spirited public debate” you so lovingly espoused on Facebook. How do I know this? Well, it seems there are captured screen shots of that happening in real time all over the web. Many of the comments were critical of you, using no profanity or any type of language you could construe as hate speech. But you took them down. And yes, you do have that right. But as a public figure who chooses to selectively communicate through Sarah controlled media, you should back up your words through your deeds. You need to do what you claim to love. You should engage in vigorous and spirited public debate. You should answer your critics and not cower behind a laptop. You need to decide if you are going to join the grown-ups in the room who get out there and feel the heat and answer the tough questions or stay in your little safe Fox News cocoon and have your speech-writers answer for you in an untimely manner. But I get it Sarah. A lot of us get YOU. And we aren’t fooled. You betcha.
- Colin Delany: The Irony Inherent in Sarah Palin’s Social Media Image Machine (huffingtonpost.com)