Last night I was subject to what I can only describe as ‘Comment Bombing’ on this blog. I have never experienced this before and I can only assume I was the target of an organised campaign designed to intimidate and silence me because of views I had expressed opposing the decriminalisation of cannabis.
It was a shocking attempt to prevent free expression.
It started at 9.21pm when an email alert popped into my inbox telling me that a comment had been left on my blog. I was quite pleased because I had had, until that point, just some limited interest in Saturday’s post opposing the call by a local Member of Parliament for the decriminalisation of cannabis.
The comment, from a Mike Brody, wasn’t quite what I expected. It simply read: “Burn in HELL”. I dismissed it, thinking that Mr Brody must be a rather sad individual.
Two minutes later a second comment arrived. A co-incidence, no doubt. Then another, and another and another. They came in think and fast. Some were reasonably argued, some not so. Most demanded a response. After half an hour or so I stopped approving the comments as it was clear there was an orchestrated campaign underway. As the volume of comments from the USA increased, the quality deteriorated!
When I woke this morning there were too many comments to count. Some demanded to know why I had not responded to comments left a couple of hours earlier – in the middle of the night. Perhaps it is because I was otherwise engaged …. sleeping.
To be honest I haven’t bothered to read the overwhelming majority. The majority did not appear to be abusive. The majority I am sure were not unreasonable. However, the sustained and un-relentless nature of this campaign, sustained now for almost 24 hours, has rendered some of the comments worthless.
I’m all for debate, but not with dozens and dozens of people hunting as a pack, trying to intimidate and deter me from expressing one particular view on the debate around the decriminalisation of cannabis. You really do no service to other, more principled, advocates for a change in the law. These bully boy tactics won’t work.