As the founder of The Trolling Academy, I found it disturbing that a piece of kudos trolling in the form of a joke made by an Assembly Member to her friends on Facebook was considered so newsworthy for publication (‘Minister in online holiday romance joke’, May 2011). Even so, I felt I had to reply.
When Plaid’s Bethan Jenkins AM said that she “may not return” from a holiday to Denmark in June, she said something that we say in Wales so often it is almost a cliché. It is a proven fact that the greatest advocates of our nation are those who move away from it and long for their homeland from the point of view of all good things they remember and exclusion of the bad.
One might see why this is common if one looks at the origin of the word ‘troll’. It comes from the same troll in the Three Billy Goats Gruff who stops the billy-goats getting to ‘where the grass is greener’. This is very much the case in our country today – anyone who tries to do anything worthwhile is either given an excuse why they can’t, or called names such as “grandiose” or “deluded” when they do.
Our politicians are elected by us, often because they reflect us in some way. From that perspective we will have to accept that they might say publically the things we would privately, and we should applaud them for this and not castigate them.