As I am compelled to say far too often, “as surprising as I know this must be, from time to time I get hate mail…”
This time it came doubled-barreled. I tweeted a Bible verse; a Bible verse, mind you. No commentary on it, just a verse. Within moments I saw a notification that someone had commented on it. When I checked, sure enough, a “lady” had done so. Within seconds more, I received a carbon copy of an email she had sent to one of the newspapers that publishes my weekly column, along with the editor’s spot-on response.
To protect her privacy, I shall call her Scarlett; Scarlett O’ Sweara.
Here was the very first thing she said to me via the tweet. And it wasn’t “hello.”
“Just read your column about Pepe Le Pew. You know it’s a lie, right? Shame on you.”
Scarlett, bless her heart, did not believe that Pepe had indeed become the latest victim of cancel culture. As proof, she posted a Snopes link that she proudly bragged to the editor that she had spent “all of two minutes on.”
I am pretty consistent in doing my homework before I write anything. And so, having had a snark-bomb summarily dropped on me complete with dripping sanctimony, I replied back with a better source than Snopes, and a tiny yet well-deserved drop of gentle sarcasm:
“Scarlett, here is something for you to read [at which point I linked to the far left-leaning major media source which nonetheless proved the entire premise of my column] I know it is a bit longer than a ‘Snopes’ piece, but you can do it.”
As I then opened my emails, I saw the letter she had dashed off to the editor. It said,
“Hello, I read with great sadness the false and inflammatory column by Mr. Wagner which repeated the divisive and dangerous lie that ‘the liberals are killing Dr. Seuss, Mr. Potato head, and now Pepe Le Pew’. It’s ridiculous. Your readers deserve better.
“It took me all of 2 minutes to fact check this garbage. Someone on your staff, or even yourself might want to take a moment to pay attention to what you’re publishing. I respectfully request that Mr. Wagner be required to back up his allegations in future.”
Now, for the record, my column never even mentioned Mr. Potato Head, or as he (It? Zi? Mashed?) is now apparently called, “Potato Head.” But that really isn’t even the point. The point is that the editor calmly offered her the chance to list any lies that I told in the column, and she did not respond. You see, the rabid political left is not really into being challenged on their assertions. Since they “know better” than everyone else, their assertions are simply to be taken as fact, just because they made them.
Scarlett was not having a good day by that point. And, having gotten nowhere with the editor, she tried me on Twitter once more. And as before, that was not going to go so well for her.
“Yes. I did read that. Your implication that I am stupid is noted. I’m not. Your implication that ‘cancel culture’ is coming for the simple joys in life is. Stupid. And in your column you chose an example that is a lie.”
And so once more, in the face of being called a liar multiple times, and being told that I ought to be ashamed of myself, and having the premise of my column called “stupid,” I gave Scarlett a very mild and clean bit of a Rhett Butler-like response.
“One should not take offense at a fairly calm response when one begins a ‘conversation’ incorrectly calling someone a liar and telling him to be ashamed of himself. And if you read it, then you would find my characterization of Pepe’s ‘unemployment’ accurate. Have a nice day.”
Bless her heart.
Now, I do not know if Scarlett herself has learned anything from this. I do know that not one of her zero followers (I am not making that up; she literally has 0 followers) saw or heard or cared. If a person tweets in the digital forest to no-one, is she still both rude and wrong? Yes. In fact, for all of the few moments that her morning protest was going on, and in several days that followed, the story was all over not just American media, but even international media. Perhaps that is why she has now fallen utterly silent on the subject. Maybe she has even done more than “two minutes research” by now and figured out that Pepe was indeed removed from the upcoming Space Jam II movie, and is now persona non-grata in other potential projects going forward.
But if she hasn’t, frankly, my dear, I don’t care.
What? Surely you weren’t expecting me to say something else…
Pastor Bo Wagner can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and his books and audio downloads are available by clicking the “Store” link above.