Trolls – End of the Day for August 14, 2014

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Troll n Internet slang, a troll is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, either accidentally or with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response — Wikipedia

One grows weary of trolls. I don’t mean just those found on the Internet, either, although they are the most discussed these days. Trolls are to be found everywhere — online and offline. Tragic and dramatic events bring them out in droves and it is more and more difficult to avoid them. Their posts and comments litter your Facebook and Twitter feeds and their words float, unwanted across your local coffee shop or bar.

Trolls are the way they are for some reason, even if I cannot define it. They must receive some internal reward from their trolling behaviors. They must revel in the responses their words receive, but as someone who does not believe in such behaviors, I have no frame of reference to understand it. I only see the results — the animosity they trail behind them. This often makes me think of Shelley’s Poem, Ozymandias. “Look upon my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”

Trolls - End of the Day for August 14, 2014

Despair is exactly what I feel when I see trolls and their “works”. Are trolls really more common now or do they just have better distribution? I think a bit of both. There is a pettiness and a meanness throughout society these days. Some find it much too easy to judge, to slight, to punish those around them — sometimes for the slightest or most non-existent reasons. They take joy, glee even, in making others lives just a bit more difficult, a bit more troubled, a bit less happy.

Let us reject these trolls wherever we see them. Let us reduce the effect they have by showing clearly the flaws and animosity of their efforts. Let us not reward trolls for their behavior, but rather cause them suffer consequences for their anti-social and arrogant acts. Let us hold others to higher standards and not let them lower everyone’s standards to their level.

We are all to blame in some small way for allowing trolls the power they take. We laugh alongside them. We silently enjoy the havoc they bring and the pain they cause. Instead, let us turn away from trolls and make it very clear that we do not approve. We do not commiserate with them. We do not tacitly support them. Let us shun them and instead turn to making the world — or even just our small part of it — perhaps just a little bit better.

Remember, “The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing.” Do something or we are all sure to be buried beneath a mountain of trolls.

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