Monday, October 18, 2004

"Dear Limey A-holes"

(Please read my DISCLAIMER/COMMENTARY before you get upset at any of content in the suggested link.) The Guardian Unlimited -- which is published in the UK and claims to be the "Best daily newspaper on the world wide web" -- recently undertook a project in which they tried to influence swing voters in the upcoming US Election. It was less an article and more a collection of the responses they received from those who had been contaced. I quote from the article:
"Last week G2 launched Operation Clark County to help readers have a say in the American election by writing to undecided voters in the crucial state of Ohio. In the first three days, more than 11,000 people requested addresses. Here is some of the reaction to the project that we received from the US."
------------------------------------------------- DISCLAIMER/COMMENTARY: Neither the project nor the responses it generated reflect the thoughts or opinions of this blogger. Some of the responses were polite, others ... not so much. If you click the link to go read the responses, you will be taken to a completely different site that beyond my -- and Blogger's -- control. And while there, you may encounter language that, well, it might be language that you would rather not encounter. I guess some folks in Clark County are angrier -- and franker -- than others. I believe these harsher responses are yet another example of a dark side effect that can influence people when they feel the sense of anonymity that email and chat seem to provide. [Of course, there is no true Internet anonymity, but that is a subject for another time.] I would like to think that the authors of the harsher emails would not actually lash out at strangers face-to-face with the same intense venom as they did in their letters. However, I have no evidence either way. If the crude letters actually do reflect the speaking habits of their writers, then I truly feel sorry for them, as well as their friends, family, and co-workers. Yes, there are harsh words exchanged. And this is illustrative of in and of itself: It's another example of just how bitterly entrenched folks are in their political polarity.

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