My friend Evan and I have been building a Facebook group called “The Idiocy of Donald Trump’s America.” Evan has a special knack for naming things, and the group has been exploding with requests. We’re currently adding in over 4,000 new members every week.
I haven’t calculated an official percentage, but a good many of the weekly requests are Trump trolls looking to wreak havoc. Maybe…1/5? Just a guess. Once one gets in, they start adding their friends, admins trust the add, and they start their personal attacks along with posting egregious memes.
After doing tens of thousands of these group requests, you start picking up on tell-tale signs that someone is just looking to start trouble. I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but there are red flags you start picking up on. So, what do I look for? Here are a few of the recent bans.
Many are obvious. If you have a Confederate flag somewhere in your profile picture, it’s an auto-ban. While there may be one or two out there, I have yet to meet a liberal who would self-identify with that flag. Same goes with the Gadsden flag, the one that says “don’t tread on me.”
American flags still make me suspicious, especially when they have an angry eagle in front of them. If I had to guess, I’d venture to say that 80% (pure conjecture) of those who have an American flag as a profile pic are going to be Trump trolls. I’m not implying that you’re a ‘bad liberal’ if you feel the need to make your profile look like some kind of fascist Fox News set, I’m just saying it raises suspicions and you’ll be further investigated. Now if the flag is upside down, it’s usually an auto-approval. That’s always a liberal who realizes we’re a nation under distress.
People holding guns aren’t an automatic disqualifier, but I’d guess 90% of those requests end up being trolls. Odds are, if you’re grinning ear-to-ear while holding up a dead animal, I’m almost always going to find some Trump supporting crap in your timeline. Still, I do have a handful of liberal friends who love to hunt and love their guns. One told me “it makes me feel powerful.” How shooting a defenseless creature with a high powered rifle makes you feel powerful is beyond me. The lines in politics remain blurry, but if you’re up for killing things, you’re up for further inspection.
Proudly displayed middle fingers are usually a huge giveaway for a Trump troll. While conservatives love to tell me how angry liberals are, they always seem to be the ones holding up middle fingers in their pictures.
There are two ‘schools’ out there who are usually a dead giveaway for Trumpers. No, not Trump University, because those poor unemployed suckers already learned their lesson. Instead, it seems most have gone to the “University of Hard Knocks” or “Go Fuck Yourself University.” Both of these schools seem to not stress the importance of grammar.
Then you have a few who just make it far too easy.
On the other end of the spectrum, it’s often easy to spot liberals and quickly approve them. If I hover over your profile and see anything about “peace,” love,” etc, you’re approved. If I click your profile and see spot the LGBT flag, which happens very often, it’s an instant in. Anyone identifying as PhDs, professors, scientists, artists, etc, are almost always instant approvals. It’s pretty easy to spot a liberal.
Once in a while I make the wrong call but there seem to be so many traits that obviously put you on a particular side of the political spectrum. If you love to drape flags over yourself, while killing things, flipping the bird, and attended “Fuck Off University,” then you probably won’t get the chance to troll in our group. If you can’t get over the fact that the South lost the Civil War, you’re not welcome. If you think wealth inequality is caused by immigrants, who work for little, while paying more taxes than billionaires, then you better go find another group for your idiocy.
Again, it’s not always so clear. Hitler was a huge animal lover. I once saw a University of Hard Knocks graduate who supported Hillary. But all in all, I’ve become a lot faster at banning Trump trolls by looking for these red flags.