40. Collateral prey

Saturday June 6 2020

My thoughts yesterday were cut short before I could lead to my next thought. Because I had to stop writing to, yep, cook dinner. Again.

The power of mob mentality across social media platforms is really concerning me. Some people are talking about how it’s a shame when someone can’t share what they’re thinking without attack. And there’s a lot of truth to that.

Before the powder keg of Minneapolis ignited, it was possible to read an opinion online and shrug your shoulders at the idiocy of the statement. Then just scroll on to see a funny cat video. Sure, there’s always been plenty of people ready to disagree and share their own thoughts, many times devolving into name calling and blocked profiles. But looking back now, it seemed contained, in a way.

A well-known Dayton businessman, who is known for his strong opinions, posted a comment on his personal FB page. Not on his business page, but his name is the business name, so the two naturally go together in the public’s perception. And we’re in a place right now where things are raw. People are looking for someone to blame, to hurt. They need their tension personified so they can destroy it.

And that became this guy.

What he said was an opinion that should have stayed within the noggin, but actually not racist. He feels the Minneapolis event was a conspiracy, a planned event where the cops were paid to kill a black man, probably this specific man, and those involved will only get short jail time. The cops will be able to retire as rich men after their release.

There are rumors of a civil war; of carefully planned violence to separate sides and allow a certain population to create their own country. A better America, they say.

So how invested in this businessman in this conspiracy to start a civil war? Who knows, really, but my guess is he just wanted to show he knows something the rest of us are too much of dumb sheep to see.

The social media smackdown was quick and fierce and not at all proportional to what was said. A knee jerk reaction with using only assumptions and rumors. Before the end of the day, all media advertisements were suspended and major businesses cut ties with him. He is a philanthropist and a huge financial supporter of non-profits, of which they’ve publicly denounced him as well.

Today, the power is not in the hands of who we’ve voted into our governance. This is like a public stoning. They say you’re a bad person and guess what? They also have big rocks.

Nobody wants to publicly defend this man, right? Right? What, you do? Well, you’re obviously a racist/privileged white/uneducated boomer or being paid. You have no voice here among The Woke.

And just like that, in a course of a day, a man’s thirty year business that he built from scratch out of his garage, is damaged.

The thing is, I don’t have a cat in this fight. I don’t know the guy personally and had never even considered using his business. I’m merely a writer, keeping a journal as our culture and community draws a burning line in the sand.

One thought on “40. Collateral prey

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