Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston



Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The 10 Kinds of Trolls You Will Encounter When Talking About Mike Brown

A blogger's guide to trolls while participating in discussions during the Ferguson, Missouri, tragedy:

By Olivia Cole of The Huffington Post

The Full-Blown Racist Troll

Block on sight. Some of them are friends of your Facebook friends -- block them. Some of them are your Facebook friends. Many of them are accounts like the one I have screenshotted below: anonymous and relying on blatantly racist language, such as blackface imagery, monkey references, use of the N-word, etc. These have exploded over the last week. We're talking hundreds. I've been using Twitter avidly for years and I can't recall ever seeing quite this much racist bile taking over an event-related hashtag (#Ferguson) as I have this week. Block them and report them for spam immediately.

 The "Wait for Evidence" Troll

This troll may or may not be anonymous and pretends to be focused on respecting and upholding the law. "We don't know what happened yet," they say, "wait for evidence before you lambast an officer of the law." They pretend that things like racism, police brutality, police corruption, etc. don't exist and insist that if concrete evidence is released, they will be swayed to feel "sympathy" for Mike Brown. But they won't. When evidence arises, they find objection to its relevance or veracity. They then transform into The "Mike Brown Shouldn't Have " Troll, to follow.

 The "Mike Brown Shouldn't Have" Troll 

This troll (and the others as well) will go great lengths to justify the taking of black life. "He shouldn't have run," "he shouldn't have been sagging," "he shouldn't have been walking down the middle of the street," "he shouldn't have stolen something." These trolls come in all races and will insist that when a police officer (or a homeowner, or a security guard) assaults a person of color, that person must have done something to deserve it. The fact that Mike Brown was shot at least 6 times doesn't register as overkill, even when two of those shots were in the head. They will also extend effort to paint Ferguson as a ghetto, where this kind of thing happens all the time. Nope. Ferguson, Missouri had zero murders.


The "But What About Black on Black Crime!" Troll 

Yes, 85 percent of violent crime against black people is perpetuated by other black people. But guess what? The exact same is true for violent crime committed against white people: the vast majority of those crimes are committed by other white people. People who use the term "black on black crime" either 1) work for Fox News, 2) are seeking to portray black people as violent and out of control, and/or 3) seek to portray black people as only caring about black lives when there is a way to blame white people. Let's run that back: 1) If they work for Fox already know. 2) If we're going to make sweeping statements about people being violent and out of control, perhaps we should focus on young white males. 3) Anyone who would fit with #3 is not interested in facts, otherwise they would be aware of the vast number of organizations and movements to end gun violence in black neighborhoods... spearheaded by black people. The real motivation behind this troll (and all of them really) is to distract from the matter at hand, and that's that an unarmed black teen is dead.



Les Carpenter said...

Obviously written by one with a decidedly liberal/progressive viewpoint. However one my veiw the circumstances of the Brown incident the article has merit.

Frankly waiting until all information has been gathered, all the evidence is in, all the testimony taken, and calmer heads are prevailing is the only rational thing to do. Then putting aside any and all preconceived notions aside becomes the challenge for many. Some are simply unable to do this because of personal biases.

Bias is something all have and the wise forever work to tame their biases.

So Shaw, does the above view qualify me as a troll? :-)

skudrunner said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shaw Kenawe said...

skud, your characterization of Michael Brown as a "thug," is all anyone needs to know about your comment and where you stand on this issue.

It is disgusting and beyond hideous.

From your snide comment, one would understand that you believe justice in America means shooting an unarmed person to death and finding out the facts later.

You'd fit nicely in Communist China and other totalitarian states.

Shaw Kenawe said...

RN, you're not a troll, but skud has those tendencies and they're evident here.

Shaw Kenawe said...

I will not publish any more comments that call Michael Brown a "thug" or Officer Wilson a "murderer."

Les Carpenter said...

I will not publish any more comments that call Michael Brown a "thug" or Officer Wilson a "murderer."

Good for you Shaw, it is the right thing to do.

Apparently Scud enjoys being one who sails rudderless or flies blind because not knowing provide comfort and it allows one to not confront unpleasant realities.

Anonymous said...

It is curious that the people who used the word "thug" to describe unarmed young black males who are shot dead never used that word to describe young white males armed to the teeth and who massacred people in schools, movie theaters, and mall parking lots.


(O)CT(O)PUS said...

One more kind of troll, the one that stalks people in Cyberspace, the The Obsessive-Compulsive Troll. RN, you might want to have a look.

skudrunner said...

Ms. Shaw,

Did you see the convenience store incident where he was observed on camera stealing and pushing the owner who confronted him.

What would you call that behavior in Boston or the Cape. Maybe he should have gotten a good citizenship award.

I guess innocent until proven guilty has little meaning. For a governor to say the officer needs to be prosecuted vigorously prior to a grand jury and prior to all evidence being presented. Seems to have a recurrent theme as with gates, guilty until proven innocent.

skudrunner said...

I changed my post because I didn't want to pre-judge the victim like the officer is being pre-judged.

What should happen is follow Governor Nixon and the liberal community and Hang Wilson now and wait for the evidence to show what really happened. After all the truth doesn't really matter because an (alleged) thug was shot and it just couldn't be his fault.

Now that Holder is going to intervene in this incident can we expect that precedent has been set and every time a cop kills someone he will be there.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Did you see the convenience store incident where he was observed on camera stealing and pushing the owner who confronted him."

That video is in dispute.

There is no record, from what I've read, of the convenience store reporting a theft.

Apparently you're guilty of doing exactly what you accuse Gov. Nixon of doing.

We still know nothing definitive, including whether or not Michael Brown stole cigars or pushed or injured Officer Wilson.

The only thing we know for sure is that Michael Brown was unarmed, and he was shot 6 times, two of which were in the head. And we know the name of the police officer who shot him.

Shaw Kenawe said...

(O)CT(O)PUS, that same obsessive-compulsive troll (the one who trolls RN's blog) stalks this blog as well. He was here today as usual, leaving disgusting comments and slander.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Anonymous, that is curious. I've never read any conservative on any blog call the mass murderers who killed dozens of people "thugs."

That term is always used to describe certain young men in our society and only those certain young men. It's the new "N" word.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Just checked Crooks and Liars blog and this is what is posted there on the disputed video:

Crooks and Liars:

Ferguson police's attempts to demonize Michael Brown, the unarmed African-American teen killed by Officer Darren Wilson, may have hit a small snag. The very video they released at the same time as they identified Wilson as the officer responsible for shooting Brown six times, including twice in the head, may show the opposite of what they intended.

While it is difficult to be 100% certain, the video appears to show Brown purchasing some cigars, but lacking the money for the amount he wished to buy. Brown seems to purchase some cigarillos, pay for them, attempt to buy more, then replace the ones he could not afford.

The confrontation between Brown and the clerk may have been because Brown impatiently reached across the counter. Perhaps it was wrong for Brown to shove the employee (it is impossible to know what words were exchanged) but this footage seems to exonerate him. It is important to note that Brown only shoved the clerk after he put his hands on him.

C&L does a good job discussing how media jumped on the "thug" bandwagon and attempted to aid the character assassination of Michael Brown.

Anyone attempting to justify this shooting by calling Michael Brown a "thug" or a "criminal" or who says that "he had a rap sheet" as various people have claimed over the past few days is, clearly, a racist."

Those are C&L's words, not mine.

Ducky's here said...

I'm definitely a "wait for the evidence" troll or I would be if I didn't feel it is a serious mistake to let this case be a touchstone for he larger more serious issue of the militarized police and police/community relations.

Ducky's here said...

@Skud --
What would you call that behavior in Boston or the Cape.
When my local Dunkin' Donuts was robbed I called it robbery.

When the convenience store in the same complex was held up, I called it robbery.

Anonymous said...

"That video is in dispute"
What's the dispute about it. It has been shown a thousand times on all channels.

skudrunner said...

So it is difficult to be certain that he purchased cigars but C&L can tell he didn't have the money to pay for them so he exchanged them.
And to shut everyone up, if you don't believe it you are a racist.

If you don't believe ISIS is the JV then you are a racist, same for keeping you insurance, doctor, etc.
All you have to do is call someone a racist and you win the argument.

Infidel753 said...

Thanks for the info on the video from Crooks and Liars. I hadn't heard about this, and I bet most right-wingers who never step outside their alternate-reality media bubble never will.

In any case, Skud's comment is bizarre. If Brown did rob a store and/or assault someone, that means he needed to be arrested, charged, and tried, not shot dead in the street. The implication is "he was a bad person, so killing him wasn't such a bad thing". We all know that's not how it's supposed to work. In any case, everyone seems to agree that Wilson didn't even know about the store incident at the time he shot Brown.

The "But What About Black on Black Crime!" Troll

This always strikes me as odd. The question here is whether the specific killing of Michael Brown was justified or not. Other, unrelated crimes committed by other people aren't relevant. I suspect the subtext is "the black world is full of violence anyway, so one death more or less is no big deal". There are, of course, people who say that quite explicitly.

The issue here is this one specific killing. Other crimes committed by and against unrelated parties are not relevant to that question.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Here's the difference, skud, between what you wrote here and what C&L wrote and I posted:

C&L wrote that..."While it is difficult to be 100% certain, the video appears to show Brown purchasing some cigars..."

You, skud, DEFINITIVELY called Michael Brown a "thug," without knowing definitively what happened.

C&L made it clear that they did NOT KNOW definitively whether or not the video is correct, but you had no problem labeling the dead, unarmed young man a "thug."

You, skud, have the problem, not C&L.

ISIS has nothing to do with this issue, nor does the A.C.A.

Crooks and Liars said those who call Michael Brown a "thug" are probably racist in their thinking because they are too eager to see this young black man as a "thug," without knowing all the facts. The people who use "thug" to describe young black men are the same people who called Trayvon Martin a "thug," but withheld that epithet from the young white men who massacred innocent men, women, and children. Isn't that interesting?

Would you like to enlighten us on why that is so? You, after all, decided Michael Brown was a "thug," and we'd like to know what you base that nasty label on vis-a-vis Michael Brown.


Shaw Kenawe said...

Infidel753: "Thanks for the info on the video from Crooks and Liars. I hadn't heard about this, and I bet most right-wingers who never step outside their alternate-reality media bubble never will."

True Infidel753. All the right-wingers need to know is that Michael Brown was a "thug." That excuses everything. See "Martin, Trayvon."

KP said...

Does everybody but me already know what happened the day Mr. Brown died?

Why don't I know as much as the knowe-it-alls? I have been paying attention, albeit I skip Al; Sharpton legal interpretations and I think Jessie got out of town. He is more frightened of Bill O'Reilly than MSBNC.

For example; can anyone confirm whether or not officer Wilson suffered an left eye orbital fracture? The one that would be nearest his car window when seated in his car? I don’t know.

Can anyone confirm whether he suffered a concussion during a felonious assault on a police officer? I don’t know. But I am guessing if a 6'4" 300lb man stood over me and crushed my face I might be in danger of a concussion.

Can anyone tell me if the officer with the flattened face was within inches of his life when/and if whoever assaulted him reached into his car for his revolver? I don’t know. There may b evidence brown's hand was on his gun.

It all matters … and I am pretty sure some body who has already convicted Darren Wilson of murder of Brown, will know.

Some know-it-all knows. Lets see. Please speak up.

Then we can save this thread after facts come out and see if Al Sharpton again, was raising cain for his TV show. My prediction, he is shameless and belonged several sates of the investigation maybe in NY City where it all started.

Shame on him. He is the worst of the far left. And those who say there is no radical or far left extremist. He is proof.

Align with him or separate yourself from him. A simple way to identify as a moderate progressive or Dem or an extremist.

Shaw Kenawe said...

KP, I didn't know anything about what Sharpton said or did. I do not listen to him when he's on any media.

As I've stated on this thread: All we know definitively is that Michel Brown is dead, he was shot six times, two of which were in the head, and we know the name of the police officer who shot him.

That's it.

Shaw Kenawe said...

The right wing pearl-clutchers are all in a tizzy because Mr. Obama went golfing after delivering his remarks on the beheading of James Foley.

I wonder how they ever recovered from this guy's remarks on terrorism after the worst attack on American soil that killed 3,000+ people.

But their memories are short and, after all, the guy who kept golfing after 9/11 was one of their tribe, so no one thought anything of it.

It's all so predictable and stupid.

skudrunner said...


Great post and, aside from what has been said, that is what I have indicated. The governor has found him guilty and it seems so have the people in the liberal blogasphere. I guess thug is far to harsh a word for a 300 pound man shoving a much smaller person.

Duck, killing someone for taking something that isn't theirs is not justified. No one knows the facts that lead up to this incident.

As to PRESBO playing golf. Let him have his vacation. If any president cancelled his vacation every time something happened he/she would never take a vacation.

As a country we are far better off when congress is on vacation so they can stay there

Cranston, RI said...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
The right wing pearl-clutchers, and the Faux News addicts are all in a tizzy because Mr. Obama went golfing after delivering his remarks on the beheading of James Foley.
Interesting choice of words!!!
I wonder how they ever recovered from George Bush’s remarks on terrorism after the worst attack on American soil that killed 3,000+ people.

But their memories are short and, after all, the guy who kept golfing after 9/11 was one of their tribe, so no one thought anything of it.
There's a big difference between facts and a conservative facts. For example George Bush’s concern about Katrina! This is all you need to know about the republican party. Romney would be exactly the same. Obama was right in his remarks in 2007, regardless of how theatrical he was.
You people are all so predictable and stupid.

August 21, 2014 at 8:08 AM

okjimm said...

I don't 'get' trolls. I rather think of them as flashers wearing trench coats exposing themselves in dark alleys.

....all they really expose is diminished intellect....or small dicks.

Shaw Kenawe said...

skud: "I guess thug is far to harsh a word for a 300 pound man shoving a much smaller person."

Did you hear the words in that video? No. Didn't think so. You know only the part of the video that was released and no one knows what words were exchanged.

"Thug" would be a proper term for the young white males who massacred the children in Sandy Hook elementary school, the audience in the movie theater in Aurora, and also the people attending a Congresswoman's constituent meeting at a mall in Arizona. However, I never heard or read anyone use that term for mass murderers, just for unarmed young black males.

I have seen a lot of men "shoving" in my life for various reasons, but that doesn't mean they're all "thugs."

You criticize liberals for already deciding who's guilty of what, but see nothing wrong with labeling Michael Brown, the dead unarmed young man, a "thug." IIRC, that word was used a lot during the Trayvon Martin controversy, because it's always the unarmed black kid's fault when he's shot and killed by someone with a gun.

The Prophet Dervish Z Sanders said...

I did catch Al Sharpton's thoughts on this case, and his advice to the community in Ferguson - in regards to the elected officials and police force being majority white and not representative of the majority Black community - was that they need to get out and vote. A good and constructive contribution. He is not an example of a radical or far left extremist, IMO.

And I also disagree with the Skud comment concerning "the people in the liberal blogosphere" having found the police officer guilty before all the facts are in. Shaw did not. And I just posted my thoughts on this to my blog, and I also do not find him guilty (not yet). Although I think 6 shots at least sounds like excessive force may have been used. But there will be an investigation and I think it's only prudent that anyone wait and see what those investigating determine before agreeing or disagreeing.

The post on my blog does, by the way, concern people who are jumping to conclusions when it comes to this case, and those people are a part of the Rightwing media.

skudrunner said...


Those who murder are murderers. A thug by definition is a brutal ruffian similar to a bully.

Perhaps we saw a different tape. The one I saw was on cnn and there was no voice just a shove by a clearly larger individual.

As to the person of color, I turn red when sun burnt and tan later so I guess I am a person of color.

Al Hill said...

It would have been a lot quicker for Ms Cole to list the types of person who AREN'T "trolls".

I find it amazing that "waiting for all the evidence" is considered a form of "trolling". Is the only way not to be a troll to grab a length of rope and form a lynch mob? (and people wondered why the police were reluctant to identify Wilson - they probably feared a repeat of the Zimmerman case when Spike Lee published the address of what turned out to be the wrong Zimmerman).

Coles says: "If we're going to make sweeping statements about people being violent and out of control, perhaps we should focus on young white males."

Well ok - but if you want to focus on people who are violent and out of control then why focus on a group that is a long way from being the most violent and out of control? Wouldn't it make sense to start with the group that is - by a vast margin - the most violent and out of control?

The police in the US (and elsewhere) tend to be trigger-happy, and I suspect Brown was not killed justifiably. But we don't know this yet. Let's "wait for all the evidence". If that's trolling, then I'm happy to be a troll.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"A thug by definition is a brutal ruffian similar to a bully."

True, but from what I saw on that portion of that video, that was not brutal behavior, just shoving. Plus, one cannot label someone on one instance of behavior. You have zero evidence of Michael Brown's behavior prior to this shoving incident. Zero.

Would you like to be labeled based on an unfortunate misconduct in your life that was caught on tape? Or are you surmising, based on this one piece of tape, that Brown is a chronic shover/bully/thug? It appears that you are, since you have absolutely NOTHING else to base your opinion on.

You've taken this video and decided that this one incident makes Michael Brown a "thug." That is prejudice by anyone's definition.

YOu and I know NOTHING about Brown's life.

And we know NOTHING about Officer Wilson's life either. Yet you are eager to define this dead young man.

I'd say it is YOU, not the media, who has passed judgement on this young man based on very, very little evidence but probably deep seated feelings about young men of his race.

That is my opinion, nothing else.

skudrunner said...


Your opinion is noted and valid. No one on this blog knows either party in this tragic incident.

The one thing we do know is there was a shooting and people used that to riot, loot and destroy property. Most of the businesses were small businesses where the owners didn't build so it really is of no consequence.

Shaw Kenawe said...

skud, do you know how to communicate in anything other than snark?

Les Carpenter said...

White is the presence of all color, black is the absence of color.

Your point skud?

Les Carpenter said...

Yeah skud do you have a snark obsession?

Your comment was on the mark, until the final sentence. There was so much you could have built on from your start. Yet you chose snark.

I don't get it I suppose.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Al Hill, it is curious how quickly some people have labeled Michael Brown a "thug," without knowing any details about his life.

Shaw Kenawe said...

RN, I always laughed at seeing the old Jim Crow signs for "coloreds," when I knew they should have indicated white people, the REAL "coloreds."

skudrunner said...


Apparently you don't listen to black comedians. On such routine was white people turn red when they are in the sun and pasty when not, turn yellow when you are sick and you call us colored. Funny routine.

Ms Shaw,
You really need to watch something other than FOX news so you can get a different perspective on things.


That was not my saying but just quoting obama and his feelings about small businesses.

Jimmy-for ID purposes said...

Troll seems to be a word used by those who disagree with what an anon said. We are all anons and I have no way of checking to see if you are who you claim to be. I don't need to. I react to whatever is said. If you have a public blog why not post opinions you disagree with? Otherwise you should just have your blog set on invited readers only. Or is it if one does not have a blog their opinion means less, or nothing?
Your blog is liberal, just as conservative blogs are conservative. They quote FOX, you cite MSNBC. Doesn't that mean your are an extremist as much as the FOX conservatives you always criticize as extremists? Where does a moderate fit in if they disagree with both (FOX and MSNBC) liberals and conservatives?

DS, Rev. Al is a fraud who seeks to stir the pot. Tawanna Brawley is my example, prove me wrong.

Shaw Kenawe said...

" cite MSNBC."

This isn't true. You can search my blog and not find anything by any MSNBC pundit quoted here.

I am not an extremist because I do not espouse extremist ideas anywhere on this blog. But I docriticize extreme right politicians and pundits and other personalities.

Also I do not attack the conservatives who comment here. I give them counter arguments and sometimes use strong language, but that's not extremism, that's a human reaction when one is passionate about a subject.

If you take the time to visit blogs like AOW's, Lisa's, and even Mr. F.T.'s you will see it is filled with PERSONAL attacks and insults targeting me (even when I'm not there) and anyone who holds liberal ideas or philosophy. You will routinely see the terms "libtard," "Communist," "America-hater," and even worse slurs describing the president and his wife.

The conservative blog that does not allow any diverse opinion is the one who disallows anyone who doesn't agree with her POV. That is an echo chamber of conservatives telling themselves how perfectly correct they are in everything. It's hilarious. Insecure people can't handle differing opinions.

I've had to institute "comment moderation" because of a sick troll who leaves disgusting pornographic statements on my blog and because a frequent commenter on conservative blogs who calls himself "Thersities" spammed and has plagued this blog for two years.

So "Jimmy for ID purposes, you're welcome here, but please read my blog before you make an unsubstantiated claim like the one you did about MSNBC.


Shaw Kenawe said...

skud, my favorite all-time comedian was and still is Richard Pryor, followed by George Carlin, Robin Williams, and Chris Rock. But I'm not familiar with the routine you mentioned.

I don't watch FAUX NOOZ, I learn about their awful reporting and constant disinformation propaganda through the internet and YouTube.

Jimmy-for ID purposes said...

On this post you quote Huffpo, a liberal slanted blog which you quote quite often. Not much different than MSNBC.

From your blog which you took from MSNBC just the other day, so I didn't have to go to far to see where you used and quoted information from MSNBC:
"The officer in question, who I repeatedly later asked for his name, grabbed my things and shoved them into my bag," said Reilly, who appeared on MSNBC's "All In with Chris Hayes" shortly after his release to recount the arrest."

So you have quoted from MSNBC. You quote many liberal sources. Are you trying to say you are not liberal slanted?
Point is you use liberal sources and the conservative use conservative sources. No surprise there, but you seem to think you are less an extremist than they are.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Jimmy-for ID purposes", are you deliberately being obtuse? That quote you presented as some sort of proof of my using MSNBC is embedded within a Huffington Post article that I linked to. I DID NOT QUOTE ANYTHING FROM MSNBC IN MY POST, AND HERE'S THE PROOF.

Your greasy deceit in trying to pull off a GOTCHA! is an epic fail.

You are a troll, and not a very smart one. But like most of the trolls who come here you're pathetically clumsy when you try to prove your point by being underhanded.

Have you ever considered writing for Jim Hoft @Gateway Pundit?

You'd fit right in with that crowd.

Les Carpenter said...

Shaw, you didn't give Red Skelton honory mention. A true travesty and miscarriage of justice methinks.