Today’s Twitter brouhaha over Mark Duplass’ apology for suggesting liberals interested in “crossing the aisle” might consider following the right-wing pundit Ben Shapiro is still going strong. Glenn Beck has just weighed in, if you were waiting (he thinks it’s “sad” that Duplass was “swayed by the mob”).
Last night, Duplass, actor and co-creator (with brother Jay Duplass) of, among other credits, HBO’s Togetherness, in a since-deleted tweet, wrote, “Fellow liberal: If you are interested at all in ‘crossing the aisle’ you should consider following @BenShapiro. I don’t agree with him on much but he’s a genuine person who once helped me for no other reason than to be nice. He doesn’t bend the truth. His intentions are good.”
The anti-Shapiro response was swift, as Twitterdom exploded with some of Shapiro’s greatest crummy hits. “In a free country, if you fail, it’s probably your own fault.” Transgender soldiers are mentally ill. “Nancy Pelosi, with whom I disagree on literally every issue it is possible to disagree on, including the proper use of Botox.” “Trayvon Martin would have turned 21 today if he hadn’t taken a man’s head and beaten it on the pavement before being shot.”
Duplass reconsidered, deleting his original tweet and sending out this apology:
So that tweet was a disaster on many levels. I want to be clear that I in no way endorse hatred, racism, homophobia, xenophobia, or any such form of intolerance. My goal has always been to spread unity, understanding and kindness. But I am going to make mistakes along the way. Sometimes I move too quickly when I get excited, or fail to do enough research, or I don’t communicant myself clearly. I’m really sorry. I now understand that I have to be more diligent and careful. I’m working on that. But, I do believe deeply in bi-partisan understanding and I will continue to do my best to promote peace and decency in the world right now,” he continued. “That said, I hear you. And I want to say thank you to those who reached out with constructive criticism. I have genuinely learned so much and wish everyone all the best.
Shapiro, a radio host and editor of Dailywire.com, responded, “So in 24 hours I apparently went from being a person with good intentions to a racist sexist bigot. Twitter toxifies any attempt to cross the aisle. There’s no conservative Mark could have recommended who wouldn’t receive the same blowback.”
James Gunn, Tom Arnold, author Mark Harris and others offered their takes. Take a look here. And if you want to see a relatively restrained Shapiro, check out his recent appearance on HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher, posted below.