The Rev. Jesse Jackson said in a tweet Wednesday that the killing of an Australian baseball player, allegedly by three Oklahoma teenagers who were bored, is "senseless violence" and should be "frowned upon."
Conservatives and others on social media immediately criticized the remark as tepid and insincere — especially in light of Jackson's and other black leaders' strong reactions to the killing of Trayvon Martin, a young black man, by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman last year.
Praying for the family of Chris Lane. This senseless violence is frowned upon and the justice system must prevail.
— Rev Jesse Jackson Sr (@RevJJackson) August 21, 2013
The teens who stand accused of the crime include two who appear to be African American.
Even before Jackson's tweet, conservative media criticized civil rights leaders for not offering a similar response to Lane's murder as Martin's.
One of the three teenagers involved said they were bored and decided to kill somebody, according to police.
Critics of Jackson's remark began tweeting with the hashtag #frownedupon, noting other far-less-severe things that are "frowned upon."
A sampling of the response to Jackson's tweet:
. @RevJJackson Thanks for that tepid, milquetoast response. 'Frowned upon'?? Why not be REALLY harsh and call the boys 'naughty' or 'fresh'?
— Jim Norton (@JimNorton) August 21, 2013
Just so there's no confusion: @RevJJackson isn't saying HE frowns upon Chris Lane's murder. He's just noting the breach in etiquette.
— Jim Treacher (@jtLOL) August 21, 2013
.@RevJJackson Also frowned upon: race-baiting. In polite circles, at least.
— Charly J. (@chuck_dizzle) August 21, 2013
I was 4 and got frowned upon digging in my mom's flower beds when she told me not to. Who knew senseless violence gets the same response?
— Nathan Wurtzel (@NathanWurtzel) August 21, 2013
Not picking up your dog's poop at a public park is #FrownedUpon Jesse Jackson
— Melissa Clouthier (@MelissaTweets) August 21, 2013