Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Digital Lynch Mob

Adrian Peterson, Ray Rice, Donald Sterling, Brendan Eich, Vivian Schiller, well you get the idea and the actual list is long.  In some cases it involves a violation of the law, in others it is no more than a contrary opinion, in all cases the subjects were tried, convicted, and sentenced in the court of public opinion. One could call it a mob, or more accurately it should be referred to as a pack, a pack of rabid ravenous wolves.

In Adrian Peterson and Ray Rice's cases they've committed acts defined as criminal by society, acts that if and when committed and convicted result in punishment defined by law and limited by the constitution.  The lynch mob is different, the end results often extreme, far exceeding the crime in terms of viciousness and brutality and certainly in excess of the limits imposed on the state in the administration of punishment.  

In the other cases they're guilty of a far more heinous crime, holding a contrary opinion.  Ask yourself, is Vivian Schiller's crime half as bad as Hester Prynne's? Aided and abetted by the paparazzi, social media and the internet is the whiskey that fires this mob complete with digital torches and pitchforks.

Is this the society you want to live in?  Is this the path to civilization or to bedlam? Left or Right, no one is safe from the inquisition. Ray Rice punched his fiance, Adrian Peterson whipped his child with a switch, both abhorable acts, but who should decide punishment? The State or the Mob?

What are your thoughts?


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