Twitter may not be the best place to go if you’re looking for people that are truly representative of the real world, but it’s certainly a great place to go if you want to see all the worst features of humanity on show.
Something that particular bothers me on social media is how ready people seem to be to wish death, disease and/or destruction on those that they disagree with. Of course, many among us are very aware that this kind of comment is the kind of one used by somebody that has not got the brain cells to form a proper, well articulated, opinion and instead has to resort to this kind of response in an attempt to get the last word, however this meanness is completely unnecessary and not appropriate in modern day society.
One of the most recent examples of this was when the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, fell ill with COVID-19 and was very close to death’s door. When news of Boris Johnson’s condition broke, the internet was flooded with people wishing the Prime Minister well. However, there were also many comments wishing quite the opposite. Actress Miriam Margolyes is just one well-known example among many, that did herself a great dishonour, and perhaps revealed her true colours, when she admitted that she wanted “Boris Johnson to die” on national TV.
These kind of comments reveal a level of intellectual immaturity that we should be more actively discouraging and drawing attention to when it does reveal itself. This, however, is not a new phenomenon. I remember, in 2013, being confused and absolutely appalled at the amount of people that decided it was appropriate to celebrate the death of Margaret Thatcher. Of course, I can appreciate that she was a controversial figure and that many people have many, perhaps, valid reasons to dislike Margaret Thatcher as a politician, but there is still a part of me that believes that the loss of human life is a tragedy that should be anything but celebrated. Whilst others celebrated, some even holding street parties, I couldn’t help but to think of her family and the great sadness that they must have been going through.
These people that wish death on others, and celebrate the deaths of those that they disagree with, are often the very same people that proclaim themselves to be staunch defenders of progressive values. Their opposition to Boris Johnson, and Margaret Thatcher, are often based (or so they claim) on their belief in the value of human life. Clearly this is a facade and these individuals are closer to the mindset of wretched individuals such as Stalin and Mao, than those of peace loving individuals. For these people, human life is valuable unless it’s the life of someone that they disagree with. It’s this kind of thinking that tears countries apart and destroys civilisations.
With the recent news that Jair Bolsonaro, President of Brazil, has contracted COVID-19, certain members of the “progressive” Left movement will once again rear their ugly heads and show the world their demonstrable disregard for the value of human life. Even if we disagree completely with every single policy position of the Brazilian President who has undoubtedly mismanaged the COVID crisis in his country, let’s make sure that we call out these individuals and wish everyone (including President Bolsonaro) that contracts this horrible deadly disease a speedy return to good health.