A lot of people have expressed concern for my safety as a result of the latest round of death threats on my blog.
People wondered why I thought I needed a concealed carry license… hmmm. Well, during the first year of my blog, I received 6 death threats via email, and one that came in the mail to my house. You’d carry a gun, too.
Obviously I take death threats seriously. I realize that there’s a 99% chance that the person is just a doofus trying to upset me, but that 1% chance makes it worth paying attention. I always report death threats to the police. Always before, it turned out to be some hapless moron from hundreds or thousands of miles away from where I live. Needless to say, the police take death threats fairly seriously as well. That’s good for me.
The latest death threat, however, turned out to be from someone I went to high school with. Yup, at the Christian school. Apparently he wants to kill be because I am not sad about Tiller’s untimely demise, and apparently me not being upset is judgmental behavior worthy of death.
I will refrain from pointing out the irony of that thought process.
Making terroristic threats is actually quite illegal, and even if you don’t mean it, you’re going to get in trouble. The fact is, no matter how well you think you’re hiding your tracks, you can’t cover up your online activity. Even the most novice website owner can track you down, so you can be sure that the police will have no trouble.
A few years ago, I had another blog site that I didn’t widely advertise. I was trying to be anonymous with it so I could “let my hair down” so to speak. I did give out the site to a few people, one of whom was quite judgmental (feigning shock) about the site. She claimed she had no interest in visiting the site, and then promptly visited the site using a craptastic proxy site called http://the-cloak.com.
This was quite amusing to me because the stats software I’ve been using on all my sites from the beginning detects proxy servers and shows the originating IP as well as the proxy IP. Being the nice guy I am, I never called her out, just shook my head in wonderment. People always assume I’m stupid, and some people even tease me about keeping stats on my sites. Little do they know how entertaining and useful it can be. I’ve since shut down that other site, by the way, so you can try to search for it, but it no longer exists.
Well, all that is to lead to the fact that the moron who sent the death threat last week used the same proxy site (the-cloak.com) to send it. The police didn’t even have to try hard to find the guy. I just downloaded the stats for them and they contacted the ISP. Total time spent tracking down moron: 10 minutes. I’m sure he thought his plan was fool-proof. Certainly, if my stats program couldn’t detect proxy IP’s, the police would have had the hassle of working with the-cloak.com, but even then… they would have found him.
I have no idea what’s going to happen to the moron, but I know it’s not going to look good on his resume’.
If we ignore the criminal element for the moment, I also have a pretty fair amount of idiots reading and commenting on the site. You know what I mean… the people who leave obnoxious insulting comments that generally display a complete lack of reading comprehension. Whenever I post something controversial, I always get at least one idiot hollering at me. They never address what I actually said, they just tell me I suck.
Those people are entertaining as well, because they usually get so offended they never come back (or they just lurk… and my stats package tells me THAT, too). I have had to ban a few repeat offenders over the years, but as I looked today, I realized there are only 4 banned IP’s on my server. Three of those 4 were from death threats. The fourth was someone who repeatedly tried to post comments giving out personal information about me.
The idiots are fun. The criminals, however, are not.