The strange world of Herald comments

Could there be another Rick Meltz among them?

If you want to see the sick side of human behavior -- the jealousy, spite, and rage that lurks behind those Sussex County smiles -- you need go no further than the webpage of the New Jersey Herald.  A recent story about Assemblywoman Alison Littell McHose accepting a job as the town manager in the town she was born, raised, resides, and is raising her three children in brought out those rage drunks who have made Littell-hating a sport since before old Sheriff Littell tried to close down that Nazi Bund camp near Newton.

Many of those posting were probably in attendance at the funeral of the late Senator Bob Littell, who died in November of last year.  They stood in line and swapped stories about how the old Senator had come to their town's rescue with needed money.  About how much their property taxes would have had to go up if the Senator had not come through for them.  They reminded each other about how he helped them all and they consoled his widow, embraced her, smiled.

Now two months later they were in a hot sweat posting anonymous hate-barbs against Bob Littell's widow, barely managing to suppress orgasms.  Calling her the "wicked witch" they even attacked the late Senator's son, who many of them had forgotten until seeing him again at his father's funeral.  One anonymous commenter dug up a lawsuit against the son -- someone with no connection to politics at all -- and the Herald left it on its website.  As if the Herald and its owners and employees had never had a lawsuit to contend with.

Deep into their orgasmic, head-thumping rage, the Herald web comment team even attacked County Clerk Jeff Parrott and Surrogate Gary Chiusano with a vicious old lie hatched during the 2013 primary between Chiusano and lawyer Alicia Ferrante.  When Gary Chiusano tried to politely correct them, they lost it, they popped their corks and released an ocean of hate-filled spew.

About the only person some of those commenting appear to like is former Freeholder Glen Vetrano, whose six-figure pension was defended on the grounds that he had been a public employee in Paterson. While there can be a reasonable difference of opinion on the state's pension laws, it is unreasonable to defend a six-figure pension for a state employee while attacking the much smaller pension of a soldier just returning from Afghanistan.  Paterson may not be the safest city in America, but it is not Afghanistan. 

There is a lot of dark, closeted rage out there.  We see it come out from time to time in forums such as that provided by the New Jersey Herald.  What other forms it takes may be less obvious but could be more serious.