The messages are shocking in their insensitivity.
“Eat the poor, disabled and hopeless. It's the only way we can insure our future,” one read.
"AIDS is a gift from God. I don't know why people are still so backward in their thinking about this," said another.
"My grandchildren had better be WHITE. And I mean PURE WHITE, or we're not going to have a country anymore. #tolerance," said a third.
All told, almost a dozen messages posted to the twitter account of so-called "comedian" Patton Oswalt this weekend contained some kind of virulent hate speech, revealing the true, twisted ideology of an actor most famous for his voice over work in a children's movie. The shocking defrocking of a celebrity who has in the past aligned himself to a variety of liberal causes should remind us all of the danger of placing our faith in those whose profession is built upon trickery and deception.
That's one way of looking at it. Another, more careful analysis could lead to the conclusion that, over the weekend, Patton Oswalt successfully executed one of the most brilliant trolling exercises in the history of the medium.
You see, there are many intellectual-masochists who use Twitter/ the internet as a means of getting themselves offended by something. Suffering under confirmation bias, these people tend not to look for nuance or context, but rather raw rhetorical nourishment that can fuel their outrage. So while many people were responding with understandable disgust to tweets like "whites and "darks" should be kept separate. Sorry if that sounds too "tree-huggy" to my conservative followers," far fewer cited the tweet which immediately proceeded it: "When it comes to doing laundry, I firmly believe in using environment-friendly detergent and I ALSO believe." This continued for quite some time and the number of people who missed the joke was stupefying (here is the context for the tweets listed above).