Sean Penn Laughs Off Twitter Outrage

He calls it "flagrant stupidity." We prefer tweetrage.

Tweetrage is not a word. But it needs to be.

The hallmarks of this 140-characters-or-less mutation of outrage, proper, include anger without full knowledge and split-second pontificating. And, in a great many cases, humble acknowledgement of a more temperate context once all the facts are known. Or a full world view is re-embraced.

That’s why it was so refreshing to see Sean Penn kiss off his social media critics. As this year’s Best Picture trophies were being carried backstage, a tidal wave of tweetrage was surging over the actor’s “green card” crack. But Penn stood firm during a subsequent interview with the AP’s Lindsay Bahr to promote his new film The Gunman and, several days later, those remarks are still news:

“I’m always surprised by flagrant stupidity. I keep having more hope,” said Penn of the widespread outrage that followed the moment.

“The fact is that I understand it. I see it all the time. When somebody sees the opportunity to frame something in the comfort that it will be common, that they can do that and they can get a group to look at them and that they will take on those positions and never really think about what it was,” he added.

“I have absolutely no apologies,” Penn said with calm resolve.

Bravo. In this regard, we can be certain of two things: there will be plenty more tweetrage in the weeks, months and years to come. And no blue check mark next to @SeanPenn.

[Photo of (l to r) James W. Skotchdopole, Penn, Iñárritu and John Lesher: Tinseltown/]

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