When Elizabeth Edwards died on Tuesday, it made me think about death again. Our 13-year-old dog died recently, and it caused some serious grief. Yet, I felt nothing for Edwards. I didn’t know her. I didn’t even know *of* her, but for the fact that she was married to a guy who ran for president and who was unfaithful to her. I also knew she had cancer, but that’s about it. 

So I tweeted:

When I hit ‘send’ I knew it could possibly be misconstrued. I didn’t want anyone to think I was trivializing the death of a human being or comparing the death of a human to the death of an animal. When I originally wrote it, I indeed did write ‘Sarah Palin lives’ – but thought better of that. I also don’t want to be seen as someone who wishes anyone dead. So I figured ‘thrives’ was a better choice. 

The tweet got RT’d a little bit, but evidently made it into the stream of some very, very angry people. People who immediately tweeted me that I was a sicko for wishing Palin dead:

Since Tuesday, I’ve continued to receive intermittent tweets from angry Palin supporters. But none angrier than this guy on Wednesday: 


I was going to explain to him how to best use language so that he could fit his entire tweet into 140 characters, but instead decided to tell him “I love you.” To which he replied: 

I hand’t said anything in response to any of the haters until the ‘I love you’ tweet to this guy. I just assumed that if these people were real conservatives, then they’re real Christians and would get the whole ‘love’ angle. Evidently not. Also, I’m smart enough to know that people like this only want you to engage them directly – and so I figured the ‘love’ tweet would help settle him down. I’ve been attacked by haters on Twitter before, as documented in Shel Israel’s book “Twitterville” – so I didn’t let these Palin people affect me. Besides, most of them had less than 100 followers and I didn’t want to help increase their Klout score by replying. 

Anyway, after letting things settle for a day, I have a few things to say to the Palin army. Listen carefully:

1) Please consider taking up smoking pot, or see a doctor about medication to calm down. And then take a course in literature deconstruction. Your knee-jerk reaction makes you look more ignorant than necessary. Especially since I didn’t say I hated or wished Sarah Palin dead. Do I like her? Well, I don’t know. I don’t know her. But I do know that she’s something of a media maven who has done a fantastic job with her fifteen minutes. However, I did have a dream about her once.

2) I’m not a democrat. I’m not a republican, either. I’m unaffiliated. I also served in the US Air Force – under Reagan. I’m a fucking real American, you soft, white underbellies. And if you don’t like that we have a black president who happens to be from a different political party than you – I suggest you spend a year in Chad or Congo for some perspective on what a privilege it is to be an American. Otherwise shut the fuck up and go back to curing squirrel meat in your smokehouse. 

3) I still love you. 

Whew. I’m glad I got that off my chest. Thank you. 
Jim Mitchem/@jmitchem
Private Sauna
Little White Flowers

Jim Mitchem

Writer. Father to daughters. Husband. Ad man. Raised by wolves. @jmitchem on twitter. First novel, Minor King, out now.