I never quite understood the mentality of changing ones profile pic on facebook to a cartoon character. It was initially portrayed as a way to empathize with the plight of child abuse. I guess that would sense to some people. It's relatively easy to convince people to take benign action when faced with an evasive, emotional issue. Supporting the troops, cutting the size of government, railing against childhood obesity, keeping pedophiles away from playgrounds, improving K-12 education, expressing love for your country, prayers to trapped miners, etc. All these are no-brainer issues, very Palinesque.
But something happened along the way with the cartoon profile pic. Someone out there in cyberworld made an allegation...
The people that started posting this thread/status update were pedophiles. That's right! They were trying to entice young children into "friending" them. Personally, when I first read that, I thought that sounded like a bit of a stretch. Fascinating though how quickly the non-snoped anti-cartoon profile thread is making the rounds. Probably because child abuse is such an enormous, hot-button issue.
It got me to thinking though. Mostly about the awesome power one could potentially harness by starting one of these status updates. When faced with an emotional statement, so many people make knee-jerk reactions rather than ask questions. I'm also guilty of this.
But the million dollar question, could people be motivated to commit random acts of violence or vandalism (much easier) based on one of these simplistic updates? Could you tactically phrase one of these updates concerning gay marriage, abortion, terrorism and then literally "pull the rug out from people" with some kind of counter-update conclusion? Could people be encouraged to turn on their "friends." Let's be blunt, most people have a few friends who they really don't know that well. Personally, I use the following scenario to gauge friendship - "have they ever been in my home" or "do I enjoy your presence" is a fairly good barometer. My point - when people have over 400 or so friends, most of these facebook friendships could easily be thrown out the window. You simply don't know them so it might be incredibly easy to turn on one of these acquaintances.
I'd like to create a status update based on my revulsion toward those idiot Hummer vehicles driven by wannabe, rugged trophy wives. I think they speak volumes about a person. The trick would be to make people believe that based on their purchase of a "knock-off" military vehicle that they have some kind of predisposition to believe something about our aggressive war policy. Perhaps a specific aspect about torture or enhanced interrogation techniques. Then, in a follow up post, you encourage people to throw eggs at the monster SUVs. This is a softer form of vandalism; thus, not as objectionable as say slashing tires.
I'd love to witness the universal "egging of Hummers." Has a nice ring to it aside from the strange, pseudo-sexual overtones. Just something to think about - an emotional appeal/facebook status update that encourages people to egg Hummers. The best place would be in grocery store parking lots since the availability of eggs is so convenient. And the act itself, not exactly a hate crime. More of a weak, random political statement. Shouldn't have bought one of those obnoxious gas guzzlers in the first place.
Maybe something like...
To everyone who owns a Hummer... Did you know that the creators of the Hummer brand were a group of militant Muslims? Their purpose was to increase our dependency on foreign oil. They purposely designed it to resemble our military vehicles as an inside joke on stupid Americans. If you see a Hummer in a grocery store parking lot, throw an egg at it. Copy and paste this to show your support for our troops and veterans!
Alright, now granted, that is a bit of a stretch. But you see where I'm heading. If anyone can come up with a better call to action, lemme know. By the time I leave this planet (I don't believe in silly notions of heaven or hell, and in all likelihood, I'll most likely be buried... so conventional wisdom says that I'll never "leave" the planet earth, unless NASA or the Virgin Atlantic dude offers assistance - proud distinction of the first atheist jew in orbit), I need to witness the egging of Hummers. It would be a source of tremendous pride to know that I was the one who got the ball (or for that matter, egg) rolling.