Thursday, May 23, 2013

To the Creep Who Threatened Me on Facebook Last Night

I knew when I started blogging about politics a few years ago that I would likely ruffle some feathers from time to time. That's fine. Politics ain't beanbag, or however the saying goes.

I've had angry comments left by grammatically-challenged trolls, been threatened with lawsuits a few times, and actually had to defend myself against several complaints  filed against me with the Florida Bar and Florida Division of Elections (all of which were found to be without merit and dismissed entirely, with no finding of any wrongdoing on my part). That was some annoying paperwork and took a few months to clear up, but not too bad.

Then, yesterday, I got a message on Facebook from someone unhappy with an old blog post of mine. Someone who thought it was OK to threaten me. 

Cliff notes version of the back-story:  in an old post, I had criticized some people's actions regarding a local election and someone I'll refer to as "The Creep" (whom I have never met) was mentioned in the post. 

Months later, someone I knew contacted me and asked if I would remove The Creep's name from the post. Since The Creep wasn't central to the story, I removed most mentions of his name but the post was accurate, and pointed out some actions that I strongly believed were unethical, so I was not willing to take the post down.

Fast forward to today. Apparently The Creep is looking for a job, and oh, what a shame, my old blog post shows up fairly high in the Google results for his name. 

[Side note: personally, if I were The Creep and looking for work, I'd be more worried about the multiple spelling and grammar errors in my LinkedIn profile than what one little blogger was writing, but maybe that's just me.]

Anyway, The Creep sent me a Facebook message last night, wanting me to take the post down. The message ended with these two paragraphs:

Screencap of Facebook message received at 8:46 pm CT 5/22/2013

Well, Mr. Creep, I wasn't using your name to further any "cause," unless you count as "causes" my desire that elections should be as ethical and transparent as possible, with as many people able to participate in our political process as possible, and my strong opposition to anyone who seeks to intimidate others from participating or speaking their opinions. In fact, I am using your name a lot less than the original post. Just think how much more annoying it would be if I hadn't edited the post already at the request of your friend?

Also, you might want to do some basic research on what exactly the Nazis did. The word "Nazi" is a synonym for hate and evil because of all the murdering of millions of innocents and years of attempting to conquer the entire world, not because of discussions of ethical conduct during elections. Duh. 

In the immortal words of former Senator Scott Brown, "bqhatevwr," I've been called names before, some worse than Nazi. So go ahead and call me a Nazi if it makes you feel better, that's fine. I'm not taking the post down.

But it's that last sentence of the message that shocked me. 

"The 2nd Amendment applies to us all." 

Seriously? Are you telling me you have a gun? The Second Amendment only addresses one topic: the right to bear arms. I don't know how else to interpret this message as anything other than a threat to my safety and life.

So, Mr. Creep, let me be very clear: I don't like bullies, and I don't appreciate your threat. 
You had better hope that nothing happens to me or anyone I care about, because you're the only one who has sent me any threats, and as any viewer of Law & Order can explain, you might just look a bit suspicious, hmmm?

Your messages to me have all been screencapped and provided to the appropriate people, including your full name and other information about you that I found on Google. 

I absolutely stand by my original post and have no intention of taking it down. In fact, Mr. Creep, if you continue to threaten and harass me or anyone I know, I have no problem going back and re-editing the post to include the original mentions of your name again, posting your real name here, or posting the full screencap of last night's message, including where you included your name.

Don't like your Google search results now? Well then, it might not have been smart to send a threat in writing to someone who works in social media and SEO for a living and who has an extensive nationwide online network.

Truth is a defense to libel and defamation, Mr. Creep. You have threatened me in an attempt to silence me, but it isn't going to work. Your threat makes it all the more clear to me that my original instinct was correct and that post is staying up.

Mr. Creep, the smartest move for you now is to just move on. Eventually that old post will drift lower and lower in SEO rankings and you'll figure out how to spell correctly most of the words in your LinkedIn profile. Any further attempts to threaten me or anyone I know, or otherwise escalate this matter will not be positive for you.

Follow me on Twitter at @rumpfshaker


  1. Another unfortunate soon-to-be target of the Streisand Effect...

  2. Old saying- never start fights with folks who buy ink by the barrel

  3. Mr. Creep,

    If you go after Sarah Rumpf, then you go after me as well. I'd just like to add that any further insinuation of threats to Sarah will be taken as a threat to me.

    In the interest of clarity,

    Nick Zoller


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