George V. Reilly

Debunking Memes

Some days on Facebook, it seems like I spend half my time being that guy, the killjoy who debunks the false memes. One that I've debunked many times in the last few weeks is the one that claims Sandra Day O'Connor called the GOP a group of "vile, petulant, hateful" ob­struc­tion­ists. Although I (and many of my friends) agree with that sentiment, O'Connor never said it. Snopes—as usual— is on the job and points out that the GOP Ob­struc­tion­ists meme is due to sloppy punc­tu­a­tion that then went viral.

In the last week, I've seen what purports to be a poster from a 1970s anti-drink driving campaign, often supposedly in Ireland, which says, “Driving? Don't continue.

Chain Mail Hoaxes

I got an email earlier today from one of my relatives who has ties to South Africa, which read:

Last week a 3 year old girl (in South Africa ) was beaten and raped. She is still alive. The man re­spon­si­ble was released on bail yesterday. He is walking the streets. If you are too busy to read this then just sign your name and forward this on. The Government is planning to close the child protection unit and this is a petition against it. This is a very important petition. It is an essential part of the justice system for children. You may have already heard that continue.