Patterico’s read on his saga has been, by far, the most riveting non-reported in the media story this week.Â For anyone who has blogged for any length of time, the constant threat of lawfare comes with the territory but the notion that someone is spoofing your telephone number and calling an armed SWAT Team to you door is domestic terrorism as a reward for indulging in your hobby.
Thanks to godawful technology and enemies of anonymity on both sides of the aisle, the Wild West days of the Internet are rapidly drawing to a close to the detriment of us all.
With anonymity, you can say what needs to be said without having to risk your livelihood, your life or the safety of people you care about.Â Your opinions only carry as much weight as the argument that is made.Â It’s not based on your job, education, your family history or station in life.Â Imagine that!Â Arguments being won based solely on merit.
By all means, terrorize this anonymous artifice of your face to the world to shreds.Â Tomorrow you can create a new one.Â It’s much harder to do so when forced to flee your home or your wife is being targeted for your truth-telling.
The two most standard rejoinders to this idea being:
a)Â Well, *sniff* if you don’t have anything to hide then you don’t have anything to worry about.
b)Â That it’s cowardly because you’d never say to someone to their face what you’d say anonymously on the internet, blah, blah, blah.
While the latter can easily be proven in public, the former is beyond your control.
You don’t get to decide what someone else finds controversial.Â What may be totally unremarkable to you may be the thrown down gauntlet for the mildly derangedÂ Or, it may be the invitation to lawfare and harassment by the professionally deranged who are usually under the employ of the media in one form or fashion, to destroy the lives of people they politically disagree with.
And for what?Â Your personal vanity?Â To like being talked about?
As technology is becoming so pervasive in every aspect of our lives from an early age, it is going to be more and more important to maintain separate identities in public and private.Â It’s nothing new and what’s always been done whether you guarded your opinions at workÂ or whether you maintained a close circle of friends and kept acquaintances out of the loop on certain details of your life.
It needs to be a conscious decision very early on or you are walking unprepared into a future where nothing is ever forgotten and poor choices or unpopular candor as a teenager or young adult will haunt you for the rest of your life.
You can fool yourselves and think that people on the other side of the ideological spectrum disagree with this campaign of terror waged in their names but their silence always endorses it.
The First Amendment protects you from the government trying to intimidate you into silence.Â The unreliable criminal justice system is all that stands between you and a lunatic with 8 fingers because he blew 2 of them off building a bomb so he’d be the most popular rapist at the Occupy Wall Street camp.
If the 2nd Amendment is required to protect the 1st, everyone should exercise a natural right to protect your identity from all threats foreign but in most cases domestic.