I hate to start your day sounding like a crank. But sometimes I just have to.

I'll begin at the beginning. Every summer for the last few years, CBS-TV has aired a program called Big Brother. They put a number of people into a small "house", gives them simple tasks to perform, then waits for them to start acting like rats in a maze. I can excuse the players [for it is, let us never forget, a contest] getting loopy.After all, they're in the maze.  But when the viewers lose their sense of reality, I lose it too. 

The woman pictured above, Shelly Moore, has been declared Public Enemy # 1 by many fans of Big Brother. Last Thursday, Moore double-crossed fan favorite Jeff Schroeder, helping to vote him off the show. Now, according to TMZ.com, Moore's family is receiving death threats, some of which are targeting Moore's  8-year-old daughter! (Before you start thinking it's some kind of publicity stunt [and how sick would that be!], know that the FBI is investigating the threats . The FBI does not get involved in publicity stunts. Further, a "BB" producer went on Twitter to beg an end to the "Get Moore" campaign.) 

I understand that any show like this one [American Idol, for instance] develops heroes and villains among the contestants. It's part of the attraction for viewers. But I think this is the first time that people have taken it to the "string 'em up" level [One of the focal points of the FBI probe is Facebook, where there are several Shelly Moore "hate" groups. Really.].

Is it fair to point out that, at 41, Moore is the oldest contestant in this year's edition? This isn't one of those age-ist things, is it? [Then again, at the risk of being accused of the same thing, Moore seems to be one of the more competent contestants in the game. Here she is answering viewer e-mails, probably before last week's events:]

{CBS-TV, via YouTube}

I don't know whether to laugh, cry, or join the anti-Moore faction (Nah. I don't believe in killing game show contestants. Even the really stupid ones.). Where do you come down on all this? Is this as insane as I think it is, or are the 'haters' justified in threatening anything, even death?  We need to hear from you, either here or on our Facebook page.