How to Deal with Internet Trolls

The MHA recently published a blog post titled, “Brett Kavanaugh Terrifies Me, and You Should Be Scared, Too.” This post highlighted some of Kavanaugh’s rulings related to abortion, LGBT people, and the Americans with Disabilities Act and talked about why his nomination is unsettling to so many people.

It didn’t take long for right-wing religious extremists to find our post and leave their comments on it. Here are some of the ugliest of those comments. Please note that we have removed the profane language and last names from these posts, but we did not edit for grammar or spelling.

David: The only reason that Kavanaugh 'frightens' you is because he will NOT tow the liberal line and vote to take America from Americans and give it to BHO's Muslim brothers and backers...

Robert: Bunch of libtards get back under your rock

Debbie: Amy Blue please shut up. We all have our reasons to not want muslims in this country. 911
We all want babies to STOP being MURDERED. Abortion and we want the wall to guard against ILLEGALS. Crime drugs etc.. Does any of this ring a bell?? Do you stand for ANY of these??

Richard: You want to spread your legs for any man willing and then wait until you’re about to deliver and decide to murder the human child. Special place for women like this. And it should be prison.

Rebecca: F@@K you and the evil you rode in on liar

Rodney: If you are so scared please leave the country after all we do not want you to feel unsafe.

Gregg: The author of this liberal pos needs to take her unicorn and dildo and head to a safe space.

As the MHA continues to grow, our blog posts will reach more people, and these type of comments will likely continue to get worse. Because of that, we have come up with a little guide for dealing with mean online commenters.

Use Facts Instead of Personal Attacks

Personal attacks hurt, even whey come from strangers hiding behind a keyboard.

As the author of the previously mentioned blog post, some of the personal attacks were lobbed directly at me, and I’m not going to lie.

It hurt to read the cruel things people wrote about my sexuality.

It hurt to see people type awful things about my trans friends, and to watch religious extremists hurl insults at the brave women who walk through shouting anti-abortion zealots to have a medical procedure.

It hurt, and when we are hurt, our immediate response is to lash out.

We have to fight that urge, though, and use facts instead of personal attacks.

Will the other side listen to facts?

Time and time again, they have proven that no, they will not.

However, those who visit our page can usually scroll through the comments and quickly see the difference between a humanist and someone on the religious right.

We don’t call names.

We don’t hurl insults.

We state our claim and back it up with facts and evidence.

As long as we keep our cool and fight with facts, we will prevail in the end. 

Report Abusive Comments

Our board members have discussed how to handle the most vicious of personal attacks on our website and Facebook page. We think there is a line that should not be crossed. For instance, someone called Dr. Ford a slur on our page, and we blocked that user.

If you see something that you believe has crossed a line in the comments on our website or Facebook page, please flag it and report it to the page administrators so we can look into it. We do our best to stay on top of all the comments, but please let us know if something slips through the cracks.

Post Positive Comments

One of the best things we can do is fight back with positivity. If the MHA posts something that you agree with, please let us know and leave a positive message in the comment section. This is an excellent way for our voices to be heard, and it also balances out the negativity.

This is a great strategy for people who get upset by the negativity. Simply ignore the trolls and leave a comment of support about the topic at hand.

Thank You to Our Members and Allies

We would also like to thank our members and our allies. MHA members and supporters came out in full force, pushing back on the awful comments left by some religious extremists. Our supporters didn’t resort to name calling or personal attacks, but stated their positions respectfully. The religious extremists might have the loudest voices, but you don’t have to scream when you have reason and facts on your side.