Paging Anonymous: Can you identify the Ice Bucket Assholes?
Over the weekend “The Price Is Right” host Drew Carey offered a $10,000 reward to identify the Ice Bucket Prankster kids who pulled one of the vilest acts to hit the internet in 2014: They fooled a classmate with Autism into thinking he was participating in an Ice Bucket Challenge, and then instead dumped a bucket filled with feces, urine, spit and cigarette butts over his head.
If the Bay Village PD wants to start a reward fund to find who did this, contact me. I’ll donate $10k. http://t.co/ugqeLbu5ob
— Drew Carey (@DrewFromTV) September 6, 2014
In 2011 after the phenomenon of leaking and whistleblowing for the greater good came to the fore with WikiLeaks, Anonymous put itself on the map by correctly identifying NYPD officer Anthony Bologna, who pepper sprayed Occupy Wall Street protesters for no reason. The Anonymous dox led to a civil lawsuit, and a year later the city announced it wouldn’t stand behind Bologna or fund his defense.
It was an unmitigated victory for Anonymous and they became the internet’s own superhero—a masked vigilante whose superpower was superior knowledge, who would protect the masses from evildoers by exposing them.
After teenager Michael Brown was shot and killed by police in Ferguson, Missouri this summer Anonymous made a misstep, identifying the wrong officer. Initially releasing the officer’s identity as Byran Willman, the collective lost some credibility and gave police the upper hand when they denounced the false ID and came forward (probably realizing it was only a matter of time anyway) and identified the shooter as Darren Wilson.
Drew Carey’s call for the Ice Bucket Assholes to be identified and held accountable was met skeptically by some who questioned the wisdom of a 56-year-old man going on the warpath after a couple of kids. After all, these are minors. Do they deserve to be arrested and and have their names dragged out on public display?
A couple arguments for the affirmative:
First, minors are arrested all the time, for far lesser offenses. Just last month a freshman was arrested for writing a fictional story about killing a dinosaur for a school assignment. For that he was arrested and suspended from school. But we can’t arrest some kids for torturing an autistic kid by dumping shit over his head?
Second, I think we all learned in the 2012 bullying of school bus monitor Karen Klein that little kids can be truly despicable and need to be held responsible for their actions. When they issued an apology to Klein, she rejected it, and she was well within her right. The kids may have been minors, but they had the cognitive acuity to understand the harm they were inflicting and chose to do it anyway. Youth shouldn’t excuse anyone from being a monster.
Anonymous, if you’re listening, consider Drew Carey’s reward offer your bat signal blazing in the night sky. Someone needs to take these assholes down, and you need to reassert that you’ve still got the stuff. Let’s get this done.