self-quarantine diary #2: keyboard thugs in the age of self-isolation aka stop sharing that bull***t

Photo Credit: Poster House NYC

The thing about social media has always been this – it’s a tool, and how you use it matters. And in these past years, we’ve seen both the good side and the awful side of how social media has been utilized by people. You would think that the presence of a global pandemic on these shores means that there’s going to be many who are banding together to recognize that we’re going through something very serious in this country and that they could actually try to not be that THAT PERSON. To not be a total crusty scalawag out here on the web. But unfortunately, this brigade of keyboard thugs is still working hard at stirring up hateful behavior and being dumpster fires in Dockers even as many are in self-isolation. And they’re taking their cues from the *President of The United States. As a result, this is how some of them look:

Yeah. I notice some of y’all taking this time to be EXTRA STUPID when it comes to how this coronavirus is spreading. I wrote about this happening over here as it was apparent that the United States was going to get hit hard with COVID-19. But there’s STILL a lot of deliberate racism directed against Chinese people and those who from other countries of Asian descent tying them to how the virus occurred and how it spread. It ranges from those who insist on sharing those videos of people eating bat soup in another country months ago to those who are now sharing videos of someone cooking a live dog in a kitchen. I had to put someone on snooze on Facebook and mute a couple people on Twitter for sharing that last video. Yes, you’ve got a lot of people who tend to say the quiet stuff out loud sharing these things without any shame. Shame. Remember when that was a thing here?

Now, you’ve literally got someone who’s supposed to be the “leader of the free world” sitting up there going from calling COVID-19 “a hoax” 2 weeks ago to now beginning all of these daily press conferences from his task force calling it “the Chinese virus”. He’s even doubled down on defending it. It’s gotten so ridiculous that there was a reporter who literally asked him today “is it safe to eat Chinese food?” More proof that all of those who voted to have this current administration basically voted for ignorance. There’s even those people from my own community sharing these sentiments trying to justify that “hey, they’ve been racist towards us for so many years, so I don’t feel bad.” Hiding behind some backwards-ass Black nationalism stance. And this is why you fauxteps online get clowned like this:

The thing about this rise in racism against Chinese people and other Asians is that it isn’t entirely new – you all have heard this expressed in jokes and memes but it takes on a more dangerous feel in these times. There’s people literally getting threatened and hurt over this. Yes, the pandemic had its origins in a province of China, and the details behind that are still sketchy. Do we know if there was animal-to-human transmission? There’s reports but none of them have been absolutely verified. What I’m saying is, have some damn sense. There’s some of you out there who want to rush online to prove your worth by sharing things that are hateful or haven’t been verified and all you’re doing is showing your unwashed ass might have really thought you won a lottery from a Nigerian prince at one point. Don’t think we don’t see that you’re not talking trash about some of these folks who flew from Italy all over the place being asymptomatic carriers. But your internalized white supremacy will have you talk out of the side of your neck about Chinese people and Asians on a whole. To them I say, you’re better than that.

There’s historical precedent for this too, with the Influenza Pandemic, otherwise known as the Spanish Influenza epidemic of 1918. It got labeled that despite the fact that it really originated on an Army base in Kansas. It got to the point that the Spanish government literally had to protest to the other nations of the world like, “don’t put that bullshit on us, yo.” But the newspapers of the time persisted because of a little trend back then called yellow journalism. Some of that is highly evident among a cross-section of people today in the way this stuff is shared online. Don’t be part of that crowd. Stop sharing it, call out people that do share it. Because that’s not going to make anyone feel safer during these times and those that are doing it need to do something more productive with their ashy-ass lives anyway.

Until the next time, thanks for reading and walk good.

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