You don’t have to like Lily Allen to think the way she was attacked on Twitter last night was wrong


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You don’t have to like Lily Allen to think the way she was attacked on Twitter last night was wrong

‘Her timeline right now is something we should all be ashamed of’

You don’t have to like Lily Allen. You don’t have to enjoy her music (although she does have some bangers), you don’t have to agree with her pseudo-political turn recently (a lot of it is quite cringe), you don’t have to be a fan. But disliking her doesn’t give you the right to attack her as personally and violently as happened on Twitter last night.

After revealing her experience with stillbirth and the death of her son in 2010, the singer was targeted by trolls who told her “if you didn’t take drugs you wouldn’t have miscarried”. When she explained: “I didn’t miscarry, I went into early labour and my son died from his cord wrapped round his neck”, another man messaged her saying: “The baby knew you were going to be such a horrible mother.”

Although in the furore which followed many people jumped to her defence, the fact that Lily Allen was targeted like this for sharing a painful experience just reveals that the dark underside of Twitter, full of trolls, alt-right boys and meninists who get off on the discomfort of others, is more common and outspoken than ever. The only positive thing to come out of watching this uncomfortable exchange take place is the knowledge that wherever those cretins exist, there will always be people willing to shout them down.

Advocating for more stringent controls on social media is a strange idea, because if you as much as whisper an idea of it it immediately becomes a battle of free speech and censorship, but when comments like this happen, it’s easy for the people attacked to feel left out in the cold by a website who won’t condemn or ban them. In most instances we’re forced to do what Lily has now done, remove herself from the situation and in doing so take full responsibility for a situation where they’re a victim.

She’s now taken a break from Twitter, writing: “My timeline is full of the most disgusting, sexist, misogynistic, racist… Really, new levels. I’m no masochist so I’ll be back x,”