I Got Into A Twitter Fight With A Guy Worse Than Donald Trump


Robert Morrow’s Twitter game is ruthless. (PHOTO BY ANDIE ZIMMERMAN/THE OBSERVER)


It is not every day that someone you know gets elected to a political party office. It is also not every day that he happens to be an internet troll who claims to be more politically incorrect than Donald Trump.

While sifting through the posts on my Facebook newsfeed on Mar. 3, flicking past myriad memes of Bernie Sanders, a New York Times article caught my eye: “Texas Republicans Disavow Foul-Mouthed Election Winner.”

The thing that drew my attention more, however, was the picture of the election winner: a man with awkwardly cut bangs, an unusually long nose and blank expression on a face whose complexion verged on jaundiced.

This article was not the first time that I had seen Texas Republican Robert Morrow. A year prior, I had been the target of one his signature Twitter tirades, often laden with conspiracy theories and statements that make Donald Trump seem docile.

During my senior year of high school, I decided to take a swing at writing a blog post for the Huffington Post’s teen page. What resulted was an article discussing the portrayal of President Lyndon Johnson in the critically acclaimed movie, Selma. As a part of my argument, I asserted the importance of historically accurate portrayals in nonfiction movies, particularly in ones that deal with major moments in our country’s history.

When the article was published, I was overjoyed. Although it did not get much attention, seeing my work on a site such as the Huffington Post was exhilarating.

The day after the story went live, however, unusual comments started to appear on my piece by a man named Robert Morrow.

The first, simply stating “You, my friend, have a lot to learn about LBJ” seemed like a genuine statement by someone trying to assert a counter argument to my article.

I could have never expected what followed.

After commenting four more times on the article, Morrow proceeded to tweet at me approximately seven times a day for the next three days. His tweets, using some choice colorful words about the government and the Johnson presidency, contained links to conspiracy websites claiming that President Johnson was behind both the Martin Luther King, Jr. and John F. Kennedy assassinations. One was even named LBJkilledJFK.com, and if that does not have crazy conspiracy theorist written all over it, I do not know what does.

Being the target of an internet troll is a confusing experience, to say the least. Evoking a mixture of surprise, fear and anger, Morrow and similar sowers of discord take it upon themselves to be as unpleasant to as many of the people on the internet as possible.

After doing some digging, I found that I was not the only individual targeted by Morrow’s incessant Twitter rants. Other journalists and prominent figures were targeted via Twitter in the same fashion. For a few choice individuals, such as the Clintons and Bushes, Morrow would even resort to insults involving race, murder, sexuality and genitalia. He was also an ardent supporter of Charles Johnson, an infamous Twitter troll whose banning from Twitter was celebrated by journalists.

Fast forward one year to the present – Morrow was elected on Super Tuesday as chairman for the Travis County Republicans, which happens to be the county where the notably liberal city of Austin is located. Unsurprisingly, his Vice chairman, Matt Mackowiak, as well as several other Republicans in Travis County, are trying to get him removed from his new position of authority.

To say that chills went down my spine as I read the New York Times article reporting this incident would be an understatement. A notorious internet troll who calls himself “more politically incorrect than Donald Trump” being elected to an office is terrifying, to say the least.

When I saw that his Twitter tirades were going as strong as ever, however, I was not surprised. They only brought back memories of the rant I was the target of last year.

While I usually enjoy reminiscing about the interactions I’ve had with people, that is not the case with Morrow. I can only echo the sentiments of the local Republicans as stated by Mackowiak to the New York Times. “Sheer horror. People are stunned. They don’t know how it happened. They can’t believe it happened. They’re disgusted it happened.”