Ramping up the prosecution of people who threaten public officials will help stop threats before they happen.

Twenty-two years in to the 21st century, the shame of behaving badly seems to have vanished. Its disappearance has been aided and abetted by unfettered social media sites that fire up anger and inspire threats because of the willingness of their owners to tolerate vile language, anonymous bullying and threats of physical violence from people who have no shame.

Threats delivered in pixels, not in ink or by phone, are still threats. The internet has made lodging threats against public officials easier than ever before in human history, and the threats are piling up.

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