Roger Ebert is trying to clear the air regarding his tweet about the death of “Jackass” star Ryan Dunn.
After a plethora of stories popped up saying the film critic refused to apologise for writing “Friends don’t let jackasses drink and drive” — and his Facebook page was taken down (now back up) because of “malicious comments” — he took to his blog to explain.
He expressed his sympathy to Dunn’s family as well as that of Zachary Hartwell, who died as well.
Then, he explained that he wasn’t accusing Dunn of drunk driving, he was just saying that he read the star drank three beers and took three shots.
“I wasn’t calling Ryan Dunn a jackass. In Twitter shorthand, I was referring to his association with “Jackass.” I thought that was clear,” he writes.
Judging from the response on the internet, his intention was not clear. (Nor do we think was the explanation.)
Ebert also regrets tweeting so soon after the news.
I don’t know what happened in this case, and I was probably too quick to tweet. That was unseemly. I do know that nobody has any business driving on a public highway at 110 mph, as some estimated — or fast enough, anyway, to leave a highway and fly through 40 yards of trees before crashing. That is true in any event. It is especially true if the driver has had three shots and three beers. Two people were killed. What if the car had crashed into another car?
And those are all good points but, as Ebert admits, the tweet came too soon. And this is one of the difficulties with Twitter. It’s immediate, not subtle, and easily misconstrued.
The real story, which we are getting distracted from, is that two young men are gone too soon. And that’s sad for all of us.
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