It’s all fun and games until somebody receives a thinly veiled death threat. The editor at Ms. Magazine was forced to cancel an ongoing series about guns after a pro-gun advocate posted the author’s home address in the comments section.
Heidi Yewman, the writer behind the series, wrote three articles with the first one under the title, “My Month With a Gun: Week One.” A title like that might sound fairly pro-gun, but Yewman tended to lean to the gun control side of things in her article.
“Getting the permit to carry a concealed weapon was simple," she said. "I filled out a form, had my fingerprints taken for a background check and paid $56.50. No training required. It took far longer to get my dog a license.”
She also describes her fear and how her “hands shook from the adrenaline surge” when she held the gun – hardly a confidence-inspiring message.
The blog post sparked a flurry of pro-gun comments. Things took a turn from a classic internet flame wars to possible life-threatening danger when one of the commenters evaded the filter and posted Yewman’s home address.
That, editor Michele Kort decided, was more than enough. Kort sent an email to Yewman to explain that she was canceling the remaining two blog posts, citing the vicious comments and the alleged desire for “payback.”
“I don’t think I should post the next two installments of this — they’ll only fire up the troops again, and we’re just not equipped to handle this on our blog,” Kort wrote.
It is understandable that Kort tried to protect one of her employees from what could have been a death threat, but it’s also surprising that Ms. Magazine caved under the pressure. On the internet, it is virtually impossible to post an article — especially an editorial piece — without inciting anger and criticism. Angry comments directed at online authors are a dime a dozen, and acquiescing to internet trolls only encourages them to keep using the same tactics.
Do you think that the editor was right in axing the last two articles?
The GOP candidate for lieutenant governor of Virginia has been drawing attention for some comments he has made recently. During a speech on Wednesday, Minister E.W. Jackson claimed that government social programs have been worse for the African-American community than slavery.
“My great grandparents, Gabriel and Elijah Jackson, were slaves and sharecroppers in Orange County, Va," Jackson said. "I am a direct descendant of slaves. My grandfather was born there to a father and a mother who had been slaves. And by the way, their family was more intact than the black family is today and I’m telling you that slavery did not destroy the black family even though it certainly was an attack on the black family."
He added: "It made it difficult, but I’ll tell you that the programs that began in the '60s, the programs that began to tell women that you don’t need a man in the home, the government will take care of you, that began to tell men, you don’t need to be in the home, the government will take care of this woman and take care of these children. That’s when the black family began to deteriorate."
Jackson continued with his argument.
"In 1960 most black children were raised in two parent, monogamous families. By now, by this time, we have only 20 percent of black children being raised in a two parent, monogamous families with the married man and woman raising those children. It wasn’t slavery that did that, it was government that did that. It tried to solve problems that only God can solve and that only we as human beings can solve.”
Jackson has previously described gays and lesbians as "very sick people psychologically, mentally and emotionally," and said that Planned Parenthood "killed unborn black babies by the tens of millions," The Huffington Post reported. Jackson has also allegedly said that he thinks President Barack Obama has a "Muslim perspective."
A video of Jackson is below:
A porn community known as r/gonewild, an offshoot of Reddit, has become a place where “normal” people can upload explicit photos in the hopes of receiving favorable comments. Defined as a “place for open-minded Adult Redditors to exchange their nude bodies for karma; showing it off in a comfortable environment without pressure,” GoneWild has more than 400,000 subscribers.
Some of the ladies who upload their pictures are tipped out in Bitcoin, an untraceable digital currency. Others are given Reddit Gold, a $30 subscription package for increased privileges on the social news site. The site is free to use, and the number of women who upload photos far outnumber the men, the Daily Mail reported.
Not all of the ladies who put themselves on display do it for compensation. Some just do it as a way of getting positive feedback about their bodies.
“I wasn't quite sure what to expect, really,” wrote anonymous exhibitionist Natural_Red. “I had an OK view of myself, but wasn't quite sure how others viewed me. It was more or less an experiment in self-esteem.”
Natural_Red, 24, who works in advertising and design, arrived at the site during a rough patch three years ago.
“I was kind of in a boring slump in my life, going to school and work, then coming home, eating dinner, and going to bed,” she wrote. “This was something new and exciting, so I thought, Why not?”
There are certainly some negative things about GoneWild. Many people write mean, nasty or creepy comments, and there is always the possibility that a provocative poster will be recognized.
Still, its enthusiasts view it as a good thing.
“I think GoneWild is a great place for people who are looking for a bump in self-esteem, exhibitionists, and people who are just looking for a little something thrilling in their day-to-day lives,” Natural_Red wrote. “It's a win-win. You get a rise out of posting, and other people get boobs.”