Like the real world, the Internet is wild.
As someone who is required by their work in media to be publicly present in both offline and online contexts, this means I get the occasional cheer and jeer in my inbox. The most notable example of this was an email I got last August that claimed I was a closeted homophobe which is the funniest, funniest, funniest thing someone has ever said about me. Today, that claim may have been one upped as I got a great, great, great email to tell me who I am and what I mean to the world.
The message comes in reaction to a Popsugar story I wrote about how it is assumed that Donald Trump hates dogs. The story was originally published on March 28, 2017 and was republished today via Yahoo News. Republishings happen as evergreen items like dogs and the president trend, the story getting reupped as the news has not changed and people are still searching for answers on the subject. Trying to catch these eye by republishing posts as such is the nature of online media. While the story is not new – and a whopping 9,738 reactions on the Yahoo reposting proves – the story breaks the surface every few weeks after enough people search for answers on both Trump and dogs. All this is to say: a lot of people have read the story and it was high time for someone to reach out, to share some wild personal hot take on the matter.
The thought? An email explaining that I am sexist and racist. With the subject “u r a sexist racist,” I received a tirade from someone by the name of “dyablo” telling me how terrible I am. Here is the email, in its alphanumeric entirety.
u wrote an article complaining about the fact the us president does not have a dog…hate 2 break it 2 u but this is not newsworthy whatsoever…but ur right…every1 who doesnt own a dog is crazy & not worthy of human life…every1 who doesnt own a dog is a bad person & it should b illegal 2 NOT own a dog bcuz if u dont ppl will talk about all the negative things about u that they completely create & fabricate 2 spin there own negative narrative & agenda
irony is even if the us president had a dog the media would still b writing what they consider “news” about all the negative things 4 owning a dog…1 things 4 sure…ur right about being obsessed w/ dogs…u might want 2 use ur obsession 4 something positive rather than this garbage
First, this has nothing to do with sexism or racism, which I applaud them because that is one successful subject line to hook a reader in (and suggests they might work in online article packaging). Secondly, delicious use of irony in the first paragraph that is upended – And called out! – in the second. I truly was hooked into the double talk, dyablo. Third, thank you for calling me out for who I am: a person obsessed with dogs. I was worried that wasn’t coming across in my work! And, lastly, I would like to think that I am quite positive? Now I’m going to have to bring this up to my therapist. As if we didn’t have enough to worry about! Fuck.
Anyway, I’m going to send this person back a thank you note and will update if this saga continues which – Really. – I am doubtful of. Like spam email, there is a wall of engagement. Regardless, what fun it is to live a life online! I can’t imagine what it would feel like to be any more “public” than I am now. Here’s to you, dyablo!