Covering the Collapse 280 Characters at a Time - OZY | A Modern Media Company
A protestor holding a Black Lives Matter / Dump Trump sign stands in front of a Florida State Troopers line on a highway during a rally in response to the recent death of George Floyd in Miami, Florida on May 31, 2020.
SourceRICARDO ARDUENGO/Getty

WHY YOU SHOULD CARE

If you’re not paying attention, you may miss it all.

By Eugene S. Robinson

If you’re a Twitter fanatic it was a minor cause for celebration when a tweet went from 140 to 280 characters back in 2017. Since then, courtesy of a president who relies on Twitter as a conduit straight into the body politic, it’s increasingly where we go to put our finger on the pulse of just about everything. And now with the streets and sidewalks of the U.S. in a very long overdue uproar over a wide variety of social inequities and a very specific take on the civil rights afforded to people being choked to death by officers of the peace (and to those not being choked to death by them), we wondered what Twitter had to say and to show us, both by people who can afford to ignore the imbroglio and those who cannot.

Kicking things off, Mr. Intensity himself, James Woods, spent more than half his character allotment excoriating non–Wall Street looters, just to remind America that not all of Hollywood is full of people who are not fans of QAnon.

And in a search for liberal media enablers we found Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters, who, despite being involved in race kerfuffles of his own, ended up finding common cause with none other than Shaun King on at least one of the factors that got us here in the first place.

From the front lines, a salty reminder that you don’t have to be Black to be appalled by tear gas.

Because it’s not always true that once an ass always an ass, internet “prankster” Logan Paul surprises the hell out of the world by actually managing to say something significant for very possibly the first time ever.

And in a spiritually refreshing turn of events, Naomi Campbell for the win.

Because we’re not all celebrities (or quasi-celebrities), here are some compelling voices in the crowd.

As George Floyd’s death has placed celebs, brands and companies at a moral crossroads, it’s probably inevitable that many have been dropping the ball in crunchtime, from Louis Vuitton’s first African American creative director, Virgil Abloh, to singer B. Simone. While the world is watching the world burn, it is also watching those who are fretting over their material status in the face of it. 

And in the face of whom to believe and how much to believe?

As many industries look to show solidarity by “blacking out” their social media pages, a question is posed as to whether that could have a damaging effect on information. Moreover, all of this is in the face of heavy skepticism about propaganda and which news outlets to trust.

Especially in the face of the only reporting being stuff like Blacks being attacked by Mexicans during the riots/looting in the name of “protecting their neighborhood” or how violent the police have been or images of the police being violent. There have also been reports of rocks and bricks being planted

Has social media gone guerrilla? And is that really what we want to call the only truly unfiltered news we get, especially when we hear so little about protestors policing their own?

Solutions? Yeah, we have a few ideas.

Sign up for the weekly newsletter!

Related Stories