If you’re an elected representative, you can expect to get a few letters and emails from constituents who sound unhinged, but constituents don’t expect the unhinged emails to come from the other direction. Brian Nieves, a state senator from Missouri, has hit the headlines in the US for just this reason – after his vicious and bonkers exchange with a constituent went viral.
The disagreement started when Bart Cohn, a local resident and former politician, discovered that he was on the mailing list for Nieves (a man on the other end of the political spectrum), despite having never signed up for it. Replying to an unsolicited newsletter, with the subject line “Is Your Privacy Being Violated??”, Cohn wrote bluntly: “Take me off your mailing list. Freak.”
Nieves sent a series of angry emails in which he insulted Cohn, questioned his sexuality and, at a quarter to one in the morning, insulted his beard (“BTW... You really don’t look good with a beard”), something Cohn said he could only know if he had searched on Facebook.
After a couple of emails, Cohn (who, for balance, called his correspondent a “douchetard”), asked Nieves to “stop harassing me or I’ll make an issue of it”. To which the senator replied: “Are you threatening an elected official? I’m sure your very Big & Bad & Tuff.”
It appeared that Nieves had set up his mailing list so that anyone who emailed him was automatically put on the list (so much for privacy violation). In one of his last messages, the senator says: “You are way out of your league with me.”
It seems that few people are even playing the same game.Reuse content