South Dakotans, Others Taking to Twitter to Kvetch about Shutdown
(NPN) – The halls of Congress and the nation’s airwaves are not the only places where partisans and citizens argue about the federal government shutdown. The “Twitterverse,” and in particular, the South Dakota subset, is also alive with debate, strong statements, complaints—and some instances, just plain silliness.
South Dakota’s three members of Congress (or at least their staffs) haven’t been shy about blasting 140 character shots at their opponents’ party.
Tuesday, Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) (@SenJohnsonSD) twittered, “The House chose ideology over responsible governing last night by refusing to vote on the Senate-passed clean CR to fund the government.”
Meanwhile, his Senate colleague, Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) (@SenJohnThune) took to the Twitterverse Thursday to bemoan the defeat of one of his initiatives dealing with at least part of the shutdown.
Over in the House, Rep. Kristi Noem (R-S.D.) (@KristiNoem), one of her tweets Thursday got personal.
“Seriously, Mr. President? Why is denying memorial access to veterans a sudden priority? Completely unacceptable. http://tinyurl.com/qyxtd9a”.
Like the citizen/twitters that elected them, Thune and Noem used their tweets to embed other web addresses that take readers to fuller “takes” on their positions. The “#shutdown” is called a “hashtag” and is used on Twitter as a means of categorizing tweets on different topics or “memes.”
But it isn’t just South Dakota’s elected officials who have taken to Twitter to make their points. “Regular” citizens have also added their 140 characters.
A larry kurtz (@larry_kurtz) who says he is from the Black Hills and Santa Fe, N.M., noted somewhat cryptically Monday, “Shut down the government: it only affects military families in #southdakota http://interested-party.blogspot.com/2013/08/future-of-powder-river-training-complex.html?spref=tw … #sdsen #sdal”
However, it appears many of the Twitter comments are from people who were hoping to see Mount Rushmore and the other national parks in the state but can’t now because of the shutdown.
One past tourist to South Dakota, a Dave Lang (@DLang_GC) who says he’s from Ajax, Ontario, Canada said Wednesday, “Very lucky I didn't take my trip to south dakota (sic) this month. I wouldn't be able to see mount rushmore (sic) since government shut down!"
A Sir Zimbrakman (@Sir_Zimbrakman), purportedly from Milwaukee, Wis. expressed similar relief.
One well-known state magazine expressed South Dakota’s zeitgeist over the shutdown.
SouthDakotaMagazine (@SDMagazine20h) noted “Ten things #SouthDakota does not want the federal government to shut down. http://southdakotamagazine.com/federal-shutdown-and-south-dakota … @coralhei."
Meanwhile, one can-do South Dakotan Wednesday tried to make virtual lemonade from the shutdown lemons.
“There is more to do in #SouthDakota than what Congress can #shutdown !” tweeted ProAg Richard (@ProAgRichard), “Come see our great places... http://www.travelsd.com/Newsroom#.Ukz3c8W7_T0.Twitter …”
And as can be expected online, where no one knows you’re a dog, as the Internet adage goes, there’s always the silly and the just plain wrong. One out of state Twitter tried to rouse the rabble with an unsubstantiated post. Or maybe it was just a joke?
“Breaking--a South Dakota man has been arrested,” the Twitter who shall remain names wrote Tuesday. “Police caught him looking at Mount Rushmore after the #shutdown.”
Northern Plains News could not find any other media reports of an arrest for unlawful looking at Mount Rushmore. However, the Casper Star Tribune reported that there were unhappy tourists at Grand Teton National Park, Wyo. who got heated with NPS rangers but there were no arrests.
While getting away from the constant discussion about the shutdown might seem impossible, there is one hashtag on Twitter that will likely take readers far away from the controversy: try #twerking. Unless, of course, Miley Cyrus has an opinion about what’s going on in Washington, D.C.