mothers of sassy children, McDaniel chose to take her son's show on the
road via Twitter, sharing his daily one-liners and tossing in a few of her
own. It was a way for her to chronicle his humor while entertaining other moms
with similar issues.
something unexpected happened.
After an amusing
but frustrating interaction with her son, McDaniel followed up on Twitter for
some comic relief. Her tweet was 30 characters long, barely even a sentence, but
it prompted one follower to contact authorities and change her life forever.
“3yo for sale.
$12 OBO (or best offer),” she wrote.
A few days
later, investigators from Child Protection Services showed up at her office. She
had been reported for suspected child abuse and human trafficking by an
social media overanalyzed a brilliantly crafted tweet and turned it into a
nightmare that would cost more than a lawyer to fix. After
interviewing both mother and son, inspecting her home and
finding zero evidence of abuse, investigators closed their case and said goodbye.
McDaniel, however, still had a lot of work to do before letting go of what
Recently, she came
forward to share
her experience publically in hopes that it might help others who are dealing with
Photograph by Twitter
“What upsets me
more is the idea of anyone using an agency designed to protect Mississippi’s
most vulnerable children as a weapon to take someone down for no legitimate
reason,” she said. “Time and resources that should have been spent on children
and families who genuinely need it were instead dedicated to a tweet, and all
because someone out there probably got bent out of shape that I don’t see the
world the way he does.”
She went on to
say, “It is one thing to come after me, a grown adult woman who
enthusiastically signed up for a career that comes with a large amount of
exposure and criticism. Coming after my son is utterly despicable.”
Social media is
a vast wonderland surrounded by toxic people. As engaging and harmless as it
may seem, this is good example of how dangerous it can be.