Monday, September 28, 2009

Should Creator of Should Obama Be Killed Poll Be Arrested?

Somebody on Facebook created a disturbing poll using the question "Should Obama Be Killed?" reports Huffington Post. Now the Secret Service is investigating, and GottaLaff @ The Political Carnival says she's gotten a "thank you" call from the agency for supplying it with a screen shot, and the agency caller said, "without it, they wouldn't have been able to address the matter." She writes:
Last night I posted about a scary Facebook entry, specifically a poll asking whether Obama should be killed. ... (The caller) thanked me over and over, emphatically, saying that there would be no way for the Secret Service to catch something like this without assistance. The Internets are too vast for that. (Read more by GottaLaff)
The assassination poll's question's potential answers were "yes," "maybe," "if he cuts my health care," and "no," per HP. At one point the poll had more than 730 responses, about 10 percent advocating violence, reports Raw Story.

Raw Story also reports that the "Should Obama be killed?" poll appeared Sunday night, and while Facebook removed it, the social website has not issued a statement.
One Facebook user posted in the poll’s comments area: “What kind of sicko even puts up a poll like this? Where are the moderators of Facebook, don’t they even monitor some of this crap? I am stunned!”

“It’s scary that 10 percent agreed on some level,” another user commented.

As of press time, Facebook had not responded to RAW STORY’s inquiries, and there was no mention of the poll on Facebook’s own Facebook page, or on its press releases page.
I don't think the social networking site has to issue a statement unless this story gets picked up by more of the press asking questions about Facebook moderation. The site's not responsible for some wackadoo posting a crazy poll and has done what it can by taking it down. All any website can do is warn users that if they violate guidelines, the site will remove their content and possibly block them, and then enforce the guidelines. I assume the person has been kicked off Facebook (maybe FB should say that), but getting kicked off FB is nothing compared to the heat the Secret Service will bring.

Asking people to vote on the potential assassination of any president is not a joke, not parody, not satire. The creator should be investigated and if there's a legal penalty, face it.

I'm glad GottaLaff, who first posted on the poll under "This is NOT okay," took action.
The hate speech, the threats have gotten completely out of hand. And those who have incited viewers and listeners-- and you know who you are Glenn Beck, Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Fox News, etc.-- are responsible for a good part of this horrific activity.

No, it is not "grassroots", not even close. It is a sick, terrifying, dangerous movement toward violence and the worst kind of civil unrest.
I'm glad citizens notified the Secret Service and that Raw Story and HP reported the poll to the larger public.

Five minutes ago, Public Record reported that Facebook has responded.
“The application that enabled a user to create the offensive poll was brought to our attention this morning and was disabled,” Barry Schnitt, director of policy communications for Facebook, told Raw Story. “We’re following up [with] the developer to ensure the offending content has been removed and that they have better procedures in place going forward to monitor their user-generated content.”
So, the ball's in the application developer's court.

PlumLine at Who Runs Gov has confirmed that the Secret Service is investigating and has a statement from agency spokesperson Ed Donovan. I wonder what the poll's creator is doing right now.

Update: CNN and ABC now report this story.

My update is now at


underOvr (aka The U) said...


This is just one more step down a dangerous path Americans are being emboldened to walk on. Respect for the office of the Presidency is at an all time low. People who incite violence against the President need to be prosecuted; I'd feel that way if George Bush were still President.

But of course, if Bush were still President, these same people wouldn't engage in these embarrassing acts.


Hamster said...

The right wing nuts that bombed the Oklahoma federal building are alive and well and being fueled hate talk radio and Fox news.
Made us stories that Obama is not an American citizen, pictures depicting him as Hitler and Baby Killer, accusations that he is driving American into socialism, that he is a closet Muslim…even a recent poll showing that many conservatives think he is the Anti Christ
will probably congeal soon in the form of a gun crazy messiah who will attempt to save the world by assassinating the President.

The right wing talk show boobs pretend to know nohting of the sort…but in their minds that’s their hope…that a bullet will bring them back to power.

le0pard13 said...

This is absolutely crazy stuff that the right is espousing to regain power. And it just confirms they have zero constructive ideas to put forward. Are there no adults remaining on that side of the aisle? Criminy! At least people are bringing this the attention it needs. Thanks, Nordette, for the post.