I mean, really, trolls are ugly! Look at it. Is it eating and picking its nose at the same time? Disgusting! But these are not the trolls I’m talking about. The ones I’m referring to might be actually more disgusting.
For those not familiar with the term troll as it applies to the internet, trolls are those that go on message boards and post things with the intent to provoke emotional responses and generally disrupt things and gain attention. But trolls not only exist on the internet, but also exist in “real life”. I don’t want to give these trolls any more attention by calling them out by name, but let’s just say these “real life” trolls could be members of such groups that like to burn religious things or protest at funerals.
Now let me just say if a certain group wants to buy some stuff and burn it, or stage some sort of protest, that’s really their business. I don’t care. But that is what bothers me. I don’t care, and neither should you. The fact that we give these guys national media attention is what is damaging, not the act itself. By doing so, we play right into their hands and allow them to have much more influence than they have any right to expect (which is exactly what they want which is why they are doing the dumb thing to begin with). These groups tend to number in the dozens, if that. What a handful of people choose to do with their weekend should not be national newsworthy, even if that choice is really, really stupid. Here’s a hint for the media: if you as a reporter go cover an event, and you look around and see more fellow reporters than you do actual participants, maybe you should just pack up and leave.
These groups require attention. If these things effectively occur within a vacuum, they become utterly pointless. So we as society should not give them what they want. They don’t get fed, they die.
Let’s stop feeding the trolls. (On the other hand, feeding gremlins is okay. Just don’t do it after midnight! 😉 )