EDITORIAL: Disappointing comments

Caustic online retorts happen far too frequently

A tweet posted last week by former Prime Minister Kim Campbell was disappointing, but not surprising.

In the tweet, Campbell stated that she was “rooting” for Hurricane Dorian to hit U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort.

She later apologized and said her comment was in extremely poor taste.

But the damage had already been done.

READ ALSO: Former PM apologizes after ‘rooting’ for hurricane to hit Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort

The comment was completely inappropriate, and by posting it, Campbell appeared cruel and mean-spirited.

Wishing a hurricane on Florida, a state which has experienced hurricane damage in each of the past four years, shows an incomprehensible level of insensitivity.

Mar-a-Lago, on Florida’s east coast, is in a heavily populated area. A hurricane hitting this resort would also cause substantial damage and devastation to properties and communities, affecting millions of people in this state.

Campbell is not the only one to have posted a blunt, caustic comment.

We have seen too many racist, sexist or homophobic slurs as well as insults directed at those who hold certain views on politics or any number of social issues.

Posting such a statement should not be seen as “telling it like it is” or “speaking truth to power.”

READ ALSO: Twitter taps Canada as test market for new ‘hide’ tweet feature

There is nothing wrong with taking issue over a policy or an action. In fact, we encourage people to speak out when they notice something wrong.

And everyone deserves the right to hold to an opinion or a belief, even if it is not popular.

But resorting to insults and slurs, or expressing wishes for disaster cannot bring about positive change.

Those who hold differing views will not be persuaded to change their minds by comments taking issue with their character or intelligence.

The only thing such comments can accomplish is to encourage a move towards belligerence rather than discourse.

It’s time for a higher standard of commenting.

— Black Press

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