Twitter has a much-deserved reputation for being a hellworld of trolls, idiots, bad-faith arguments, and ad hominem attacks. But every once in a while, it can still deliver. Like when a college professor, an essayist, and a TV showrunner debate each other about journalism late at night. Last night, Wire creator David Simon decided to pick a fight with Roxane Gay, the author of Bad Feminist, and Tressie Cottom, a professor at Virginia Commonwealth University (and one of the sharpest people on Twitter). What came out of it was exactly the kind of thing you might hope to find on a social network like Twitter: A good debate.
“Good” is relative, obviously; sadly, we also got what you’d expect out of Twitter — Cottom and Gay’s mentions are now filled with much less capable men than Simon attempting debate. But last night’s conversation, which essentially doubled Simon’s output on the social network, is worth preserving, no matter who you think won. Here’s a Storify: