… And so far, to my knowledge, there has been no commentary by the Catholic League condemning these threats.

For example:

You have two choices my fucked up friend, first you can quit your job for the good of the
children. Or you can get your brains beat in….I give you till the first of the month, get that resignation in cunt

That one was from mkroll writing from 1800 Flowers.com

And this one from a somewhat more anonymous person:

You are a scumbag, may your insides rot, may your neck be snapped by an iron boot against a curb

Since the Catholic League has a hair trigger when it comes to condemnation, this means to me that they are in support of, if not compliant in, the threats of violence. Should the Catholic League be investigated as a hate-organization?

Everybody should call up 1-800 Flowers.com and order a “death threat bouquet by mkroll” then hang up.


I just recieved an email from Melanie Kroll (who’s email address was in the “from” line in the first death threat above). She claims to have not sent this email.

In truth, it is not hard to fake someone else’s email address in such a correspondence. There is a good chance that this was a two-fer. An angry crazy religious person going after two people at once. Who knows?


  1. #1 Armchair Dissident
    July 14, 2008

    It may not have been sent by Melanie Kroll, but it almost certainly was sent via her e-mail account at 1800-Flowers. Whilst it’s not hard to forge the From: or Return-to: headers, it is somewhat more difficult to forge the delivery route back through to their corporate servers.

    If it wasn’t her, she really needs to get on to her IT department to see who was in their building using her account at 9 O’clock, Sunday morning.

  2. #2 Blaidd Drwg
    July 14, 2008

    Can’t you just feel the Christian Love(TM) pouring in such abundance from those posts? Definitely people I would want living next to me, and even more so, spending eternity with!

    OT, you all might want to click on over to orac’s blog, he lost his 4-footed friend yesterday.

  3. #3 unicow
    July 14, 2008

    Really, 1800flowers just needs to know who had the IP address on their internal network at that time. You can’t trust email addresses one bit, but the headers should be reasonably reliable (unless we’re dealing with a zombie machine).

    I would think that if Ms. Kroll is uninvolved it would certainly be to her benefit to figure out who actually is behind things.

  4. #4 clinteas
    July 14, 2008

    For heavens sake,
    I have been saying this all day and night,there is no way anyone of the commenters here or on PZ’s blog can know for sure that mkroll is who sent the offending message.I just wish people would stop posting her name and details all over the web !

    Just fucking leave it to PZ to give those details to the authorities,will ya folks,its what he would like you to do,he posted it on his blog !

  5. #5 Adrian Thysse
    July 14, 2008

    My problem with the whole PZ Myers/holy crackers debate is that we don’t really know if it is a Catholic who is making these threats. It could be anyone who enjoys seen PZ with his hackles up. Real or not, need he and his many uncouth defenders always take the bait?

  6. #6 Tony P
    July 14, 2008

    That IP address says their NAT’ing all their traffic but you’re right, they need to look at the DHCP leases to find out what machine got that address.

  7. #7 Andrew
    July 14, 2008

    Adrian: Fine, but where is the Catholic League in this? Inciting violence. The old “oh, it wasn’t us, it was some crazy person” excuse is not acceptable, should they try to us that.

  8. #8 Todd D.
    July 14, 2008

    Which part of ‘Love thy neighbor’ are these religious folks forgetting? Which part of ‘judge not, lest ye be judged’ are they unable to comprehend?

    They can’t have this both ways. How much more hypocrisy do we need to witness, can they just shut up and go away?

    Oh it’s okay for the ultra religious to tell us what to do, how to eat, how to live, and have their rights protected, but not okay for anyone else to speak their mind? Lest we’ve all forgotten, free thought and speech were encouraged in this country and in fact protected under the 1st Amendment of the Constitution. I suppose there is a bit of irony in the fact that it would be the 1st Amendment that protects religion also being the same Amendment that is protecting the freedom of speech that those who disagree with PZ are so ardently and adamantly against.

  9. #9 Greg Laden
    July 14, 2008

    PZ is asking people to not carry out acts of harassment via the information he provided on his site (a bit of which I reproduced here). Good idea.

    I still think, however, that letting 1-800 flowers know that one is appalled that an act of terrrorism was carried out with their server is totally appropriate. Let them find out who did it, take the appropriate action, and let the world do the right thing.

    Consider this very simple thought experiment: Imagine that this was a falalfal company and the email sent form “1-800-falafal.com” was a death threat against, say, a major bishop and it was signed “Allah akbar.”

    Just think about it.

  10. #10 Mike Haubrich, FCD
    July 14, 2008

    And don’t forget to send letters to Bob Bruininks and send copies to Support PZ.

  11. #11 Jon H
    July 14, 2008

    “I still think, however, that letting 1-800 flowers know that one is appalled that an act of terrrorism was carried out with their server is totally appropriate.”

    Oh good lord, don’t be such a pathetic, immature fanboy. PZ’s a big boy he can take care of it himself. He’s not a damsel in distress.

  12. #12 Elizabeth
    July 14, 2008

    Hey john: How helpful of you to tell us all what to take seriously and what to not take seriously.

  13. #13 Jim
    July 14, 2008

    It is trivial to forge the From address in an email. Also 1-800-flowers may have an open relay and they may not have sent it.

  14. #14 Greg Laden
    July 14, 2008

    The open relay can be ruled out. UMN routinely trashes those emails. PZ would have to know it was coming to make the exception for it. My understanding is that the IP and the address match up. This was probably a person at 1800 flowers sending an email.

    A specific statement that you will get your brains beaten in by the first of the month, if it came from a Muslim name against a christian community leader or government official would warrent something like we saw with the two students trying to drive their car to Florida. Remember that?

    For this instance, I would say it calls for a few questions being asked.

  15. #15 Andrew
    July 15, 2008

    Joh H, you are obviously a terrorist sympathizer. The FBI is going to be on your ass by morning, no doubt.

  16. #16 Christian
    July 15, 2008

    For some perspective, I recommend yesterdays excellent post by Mark Chu-Carroll on the “PZ Cracker Mess”:


    Now – the people who are making the death threats are, of course, completely nuts – no doubt about that. But the issue – as MarkCC correctly notes – is not free speech, because PZ could have easily posted a hundred cracker jokes without receiving one single threat. The issue is his deliberate attempt to provoke such threats by making mysterious announcements about planned desecrations. This whole episode could have easily been avoided. Deliberately provoking people is probably the worst possible way to start any dialogue with them – so is there any othe purpose to this whole “cracker stunt” than just to make as many people as angry as possible and generate a huge ruckus? What for? Just because you can?

  17. #17 Jon H
    July 15, 2008

    “For this instance, I would say it calls for a few questions being asked.”

    And PZ is incapable of doing this himself? Why are you and your readers needed?

    Have you noticed PZ’s updates, and that you’re not doing him any favors?

  18. #18 Greg Laden
    July 15, 2008

    Jon, your requests for my readers and I to shut up will be heeded, I’m sure.


    Dear readers, I just want you to know that there are three distinctly different people named “Jon H” who comment on this blog. The other two are very different in approach (and other things)

  19. #19 Jon H
    July 15, 2008

    “Dear readers, I just want you to know that there are three distinctly different people named “Jon H” who comment on this blog.”

    Huh, I’d be surprised if that’s the case. I probably come through as a Verizon IP or a Harvard IP, depending on where I am sitting. Oh, and maybe whatever Southern New England Telephone is called these days, if I’m at my parents’ house.

    I just happen to dislike when ostensibly intelligent people start acting like juvenile thugs, trying to whip up silly behavior like mass-calling a 1-800 line.

    BTW, I’m not Catholic, nor Christian. At best I’m a slacker Buddhist. I have no quibble with the claim that a eucharist wafer is a cracker.

  20. #20 Greg Laden
    July 15, 2008

    Jon: Are you or are you not from Iceland? What about the southern US?

  21. #21 Jon H
    July 15, 2008

    “Jon: Are you or are you not from Iceland? What about the southern US?”

    Nope, New England.

  22. #22 JanieBelle
    July 15, 2008

    Well I’ve said it elsewhere and I’ll say it here:

    I hope he gets a big pile of them, glues them together in a sculpture of Jesus, takes a big pee on them, and then uploads the video to YouTube.

    The facts:

    A boy took a frackin’ cracker that had been given to him by a bunch of delusional people who protect child molesters.

    He took the frackin’ cracker from the delusional people who protect child molesters to show his curious friend.

    He was assaulted by a delusional child molester protector over the frackin’ cracker that had been given to him by the delusional child molester protectors.

    PZ called it idiotic because the idea that a frackin’ cracker turns into the body of a two thousand year old invisible zombie is, in fact, idiotic, and because assaulting someone over a frackin’ cracker is illegal, even for delusional people.

    Being delusional should not protect one from criticism by people who are not delusional. Respect? I got your respect right here.

    Delusional people need to be provoked, so we know exactly which ones are the most dangerous, and we can lock their freaky asses up, where they won’t be dangerous to normal people.

    There’s a phrase we use for “Oh, I don’t necessarily disagree with what you’re saying, I just think there’s a better way to say it to win more people over to our position.”

    It’s called Concern Trolling, and I expect such crap from creobots, not intelligent, thinking people.

  23. #23 Stephanie Z
    July 15, 2008

    Uh, Janie? You know it’s okay to use the real swear words here, right? I mean, I’d hate for you to feel you had to hold back. 🙂

  24. #24 Greg Laden
    July 15, 2008

    Nope, New England.

    Well, then there are at least two of you, if not three. I chose to point that out simply because it is not usually the case that so many different commenters are using the same name.

    Stephanie, Janie is trying to be a lady, obviously.

  25. #25 Stephanie Z
    July 15, 2008

    Eh, she’s got that down no matter what words she uses.

  26. #26 JanieBelle
    July 15, 2008


    I used the word for three reasons.

    1) I’m a geek and I like BSG.

    2) PZ used it.

    3) It’s got hook potential. Memeyness.


  27. #27 JanieBelle
    July 15, 2008

    …and thank you both.

    P.S. Greg, your flood control is pissing me off.

    Just so y’know.

  28. #28 Greg Laden
    July 16, 2008

    Its not mine. But since you mention it, I wonder if it can be adjusted

  29. #29 Genuinely Doug
    July 16, 2008

    This may be old news – it appears that Melanie Kroll was fired for that threat email to PZ.

    PZ’s reaction:

    Myers did not take any satisfaction in Kroll’s dismissal. “This was not my intent to get somebody fired,” he said. “She apparently did something stupid which I don’t have sympathy for. I would just rather not see people getting fired over an e-mail message.”

  30. #30 Greg Laden
    July 16, 2008

    It is not so simple. I believe that her husband (or another male in the household) sent the email on her account from Flowers, which was being used at home. But I’m not sure.

  31. #31 Genuinely Doug
    July 16, 2008

    I see your other post on her husband’s confession and your help in trying to get her job back. I think it’s a worthy effort.

    I used the term ‘that email’ rather than ‘her email’ for that very reason – it is possible (and now appears most likely that) it may not have been Melanie.