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Laurie Penny tells someone they are an ‘hopeless inadequate’ as well some from worse things. Harsh.

Sometimes life is hard. We all know that. Sometimes we say things we didn’t mean but if we say them on a social networking site the odds are that someone will notice. When you just being you draws the ire of many fellows you have to be very safe with your social networking words. This is something Laurie Penny may have forgotten earlier today when she tweeted the following:

(Screenshot courtesy of twitter user @Parlez_Me_nTory)

Penny Red Tweet
Penny Red seemingly has a potty mouth...

Is this the voice of someone who is a columnist over at The New Statesman and has written for several upmarket publications?

The tweet was deleted within moments but it had been seen. Clearly the person in question has pissed her off royally but telling someone to ‘fuck off and die’ is disgraceful and when you tell someone that they are a ‘hopeless inadequate’ it says more about the person saying those words than it does the person saying them.

Look I know I’m not Laurie’s biggest fan but I do respect her to some degree that she has strong opinions and isn’t afraid to stick by them through thick and thin. Having said that though you can’t go around saying such things about people – certainly not in a public forum anyway. She has a career and has put herself in an interesting position for the future however the more she uses bad language and direct insults at people who disagree with her the less support she’ll get.

She has something about her as a writer. There is little doubt about that. Her latest post in the New Statesman about Dignity in life, dignity in death has a lot of merit but she can’t help herself but drag it back to politics. Not everything in this world is about politics. Her conclusion that the way the government are killing the welfare state will lead to more suicides is so far removed from what the piece was seemingly about sums her up totally.

Love her or loathe her she is here to stay. However many more foul mouthed tirades and editors will start getting twitchy.

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  1. Matt Matt

    I would, I suppose, make one exception – and that is where she is commenting on her specialist area, detailed bits of gender and orientation politics.

  2. Matt Matt

    The person in question was Damian Thompson, the editor of the Daily Telegraph blogs.

    Personally, I respect LP hardly at all as she seems unable to report a simple fact without traducing it much of the time, and has a habit of shooting conclusions from the hip before thinking.

    I’d say that she has firmly nailed her credibility in its coffin, with or without any help from critics.

  3. Perhaps someone should invent a cooling-off period for Twitter so that people can set a delay before their tweets actually get sent? Laurie Penny is far from the only person to have tweeted something unacceptable in the heat of the moment.

    Also, I think it is a good thing that pointlessly offensive tweets are deleted by their authors. Ideally they should apologise too. Sometimes I wonder whether the endless screengrabs of them just make matters worse rather than better by spreading an intemperate outburst (that the author regrets).

    When I make mistakes on Twitter (so far they have only been factual rather than foul-mouthed) I try to correct them. In fact only today I deleted a tweet because I’d mixed up the private Oratory School with the state (but RC-aided) London Oratory School.

    This is an open invitation to hold me to account 🙂

    • admin admin

      I have written offensive tweets but when I do I look at it closely before I click send. Often they are deleted before being published and therefore never seen. I have seen it with many people – often American sports stars who are in general idiots who tweet something then find out its offensive when the sports media crush them in their sports talk culture they have.

      Quite possibly this blog was harsh on said author and I understand that. However the moment you say something that offensive and condesending then its pretty much fair game for anyone who sees it. As I said she is a fantastic writer but the whole ‘everything in the world is wrong and we need to change everything to how I see it’ gets boring and cumbersome after a while.

      I suspect I have spelled several words wrong in this comment…

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