Recently, in the Australian electoral campaign, several politicians have been outted for saying some pretty shitty stuff online years ago. It’s forced a lot of people to withdraw from the race. It’s also forcing a lot of politicians to start purging their social media.
I understand why, but I also find this concerning.
When James Gunn got the sack it rang to many on the left as being unfair. The tweets were old. He’s progressive. Etc etc. The decision to fire him was overturned, eventually, but it all happened.
Although I don’t like a lot of the politicians that have said horrible shit online (a lot of it’s Islamophobic garbage), I’m concerned about this new movement to trawl social media for gems.
Have I said things online that were terrible? Most certainly. I’ve said horrific things. I also don’t agree with many of those things, years after the statements were made. I know Patrick had expressed similar concerns on the podcast in relation to his old online activity.
At which point is the past the past, or must we always carry it around like a Mark of Cain for all to bare witness?
Unless we purge it, then it never happened.