I usually avoid making political commentary, and definitely avoid getting into discussions about race, religion, and whatever else I know will make people lose their shit. I learned (the hard way) that coming from where I do, which is a position of privilege (racially) my opinion doesn’t hold much water with anyone but myself. I’m not saying that in a negative or sarcastic way either. I agree. My opinion is heavily biased, as I’ve never had people assume negative things about me because of my skin color (although, I have been lumped into a negative category periodically because I am white, but that’s still not the same thing), and I’ve never been fearful or been made to feel as “less than” because of the color of my skin. Gender is another issue, but not really related to this discussion. Yes, I’ve enjoyed white privilege, but I’m not apologetic about that. I can’t control the color of my skin or how it’s benefited me or what my ancestors did because of the power it gave them. It is what it is, and all I can do is try to be better than those that came before me.
More on that later. Let’s carry on with the shit we’ve been seeing on the news. Shall we? Okay.
I usually save my social commentary for my fiction, because I prefer to show all sides, whenever I can, and to avoid making assumptions. I do make the mistake of assuming from time to time, but I’d rather avoid it.
So, let’s tackle the first and easiest news item to discuss:
Since the launch of this game, people have found dead bodies, gotten into car crashes, engaged in some fighting over rare Pokemon (allegedly), fallen off cliffs (??) and gotten shot for trespassing. I’m sure that’s not all, but I think it’s enough to make my point. Yes, while playing this game, some idiots got hurt or hurt others. However, let’s keep in mind that far more people do these same things EVERY FUCKING DAY for no reason at all than those who’ve done them while playing Pokémon Go. The only reason you’re hearing about these morons now is because these people are playing a game everyone’s talking about, and some people are really angry about its very existence. That doesn’t really make sense to me. It’s just a game guys.
And as a side note, those dead bodies aren’t the worst thing that could happen. In my opinion, at least the families who’ve probably been searching for those people have closure and the authorities can investigate the deaths and maybe catch someone far more dangerous than a kid playing a video game.
I guess my point is you guys need to fucking relax. How does it affect you if a 40-year-old man enjoys catching invisible shit on his phone? “Oh, but he’s a pedophile, obviously, out to molest our children, who are out there, vulnerable, because they too are catching invisible shit on the phone I should never have bought them if they aren’t responsible enough to watch where they’re fucking going and avoid talking to random strangers who try to lure them into their cars or the woods or wherever the pedos do their thing.”
Okay, that was harsh, but my point is, a child raised properly isn’t going to walk off a cliff or into traffic chasing Pokémon shit. Why? Because said child will know that when crossing the road, he/she must look both ways, follow traffic signals, and just generally be aware of his/her surroundings. What I see with this game (more often than kids walking into traffic or off of cliffs) is kids and parents (as well as some adults without kids who just like to have fun) getting outside. I see them walking regularly to hatch their damn eggs (I’ve played, although it’s just not my thing, and it takes a long fucking time to walk far enough hatch one miserable egg). I see them exploring their neighborhoods and meeting other people. I see both kids and adults HAVING FUN. When did fun become something to be ashamed of?
And also, weren’t you all just shaming people for being inactive and obese? Weren’t you just saying kids these days are so out of shape and overweight it’s disgusting and that parents should take away electronics so they go outside? Well now they’re active. They’re moving around and getting exercise. MAKE UP YOUR MIND.
So fuck you and your Pokémon hate. If you have better things to do, then do them, instead of posting your arrogant bullshit on social media and making people feel bad for enjoying something. Jesus, I don’t think the Pokémon players are the ones who need to “grow up.”
Okay, I think that’s all I have to say on that news.
Canada is on FIRE
This is basically our weather forecast:
This isn’t related to anything but I thought you guys should know that it’s been FUCKING HOT here for months. I’m sick of it. Canada is clearly on fire and we’re all going to die. So, how’s that for perspective on other issues? Yeah.
The American Presidential Election and Trump
Sorry, America. I’ve got nothing. Just that I’m sorry. But chin up, guys, you could be dealing with this:
God, he sure is pretty.
Gun violence, terrorist attacks, and lives mattering or something
Author’s note: I contemplated deleting this several times, and postponed publishing this whole thing, because obviously, but then I realized I’d be a hypocrite if I did so for the reasons its inclusion made me hesitate, so here we go.
Why do we always have to go on the defensive about this stuff? Why are we so eager to lay blame at the feet of whoever looks like a good, solid target, rather than examine the facts and let law enforcement do its job? For example, I am not going to say one life matters over another, because that’s just not true. But let’s agree that a person can say “Black lives matter” without meaning that you, white person that you are, can just go die already. When you respond to Black Lives Matter with “All Lives Matter” you’re essentially telling people there isn’t a crisis in the black community that needs addressing. (It’s been suggested that “black” is not the PC word here, but I’m speaking of this race as a whole and not just African Americans, which is also not PC, I’m told, so forgive me if I’ve used the wrong term. I’m not sure what the right words are here, so anyone who can enlighten me, please do and don’t take offense at my ignorance on this. I lost track of what was PC a long time ago in many areas.)
When you reply to Black Lives Matter with All Lives Matter, you’re (maybe unintentionally) diminishing the message that the movement is trying to convey, and that message is that there is a problem with racism in America (in all of North America, really) that is not going away. It’s not about one life mattering more than another.
I’m not going to say I agree with the acts done in the name of this movement, because I don’t, but everyone needs to remember that at its inception, the Black Lives Matter movement was AGAINST ALL violence, and it had nothing to do with diminishing white people. It was about calling attention to issues that needed attention. It doesn’t mean that if you’re white, you matter less. It’s just saying look, we’ve got a problem with racism and we need to address it. Sadly, all forms of this message, be it black lives, all lives, or blue lives, have become so incendiary, they’re useless to helping their causes. We’ve done that, folks. So now, everyone is on the defensive, no one’s being heard and no one is trying to change.
And, as another example, let’s look at the terrorist attacks that seem way too common lately. These aren’t just the acts of refugees or a single religious group. First of all, granting someone in dire need of help a safe place to live is not inviting terrorism to your doorstep. It’s part of being a compassionate human being. It’s what both Canada and the United States were built on. Unless your ancestors were native to these regions (as in were here before all the rest arrived and tried to “civilize” shit) then they were all refugees or immigrants to a new country. Show some fucking empathy, people. I’m not saying “let them all in,” because obviously that’s reckless. I’m saying, don’t judge someone without having all the facts, and place the blame for the violence where it belongs. If you don’t know, then FIND OUT before you open your mouth or start spewing hate via the Internet. A lot, if not most, of the terrorism and/or violence that has happened in North America in recent years is homegrown. That means we’re doing it to ourselves.
Personally, I’m sick to death of humans hurting each other. I’m sick of reading/seeing news where someone has shot up a night club or a mother or father has murdered their children, or a stranger has raped and butchered a mother and her young child, or someone drove a truck into a crowd of people with the sole intention of killing as many as possible, or a kid who is bullied relentlessly, but whose pain is overlooked by society finally gives up and eats a bullet rather than remain in a life that is clearly too agonizing for him to endure. I’m sick of the hate and the fear and the blame game that follows these events, and the way we all seem to think we know it all. We don’t. We know nothing. I’m disgusted that a person could think his or her life is more valuable than the lives of everyone else and that we fear a group of people so much we have to diminish or stomp on that group’s attempt to make this world a better place.
We need to start being better. ALL OF US. Stop saying the world is going to shit “all of a sudden.” It already went there many times and we pulled ourselves out of it. The problem is, we forget that we promised to “be better” the last time and then this shit happens again. Also, our news media and social media makes it feel worse than it is, because we see these awful things more often than we see the good happening.
Actually, an author friend of mine, Forbes West, wrote something recently that gives perspective on what’s happening right now around the world. I’m going to share it here:
“EVERYONE ONE REMEMBER TO FREAK OUT ABOUT THE WORLD RIGHT NOW WE HAVE NEVER SEEN SUCH AWFUL TIMES EVER THIS IS ALL NEW AND THE END IS DEFINITELY NEAR
-except for the time we had the IRA terrorist campaign (1969-1994) to destroy Britain through multiple bombings, assassination of multiple politicians, British troops on the streets, and a mortar shot at the British Cabinet that (barely) missed in 1991.
-except that Turkey has been through 4 military coups, the last in 1997. (Edit: This post was written by Forbes prior to the most recent military coup attempt in Turkey, which was just this month (July 2016))
-Except for the time we had mass riots in the 1960s every summer, with 1968 ending in 100 cities burned.
-Except for the time we had two civil rights leaders, one President, and one Presidential candidate shot.
-Except for the time in the 1980s we had a nuclear armed power (the Soviet Union) supporting various revolutionary/terrorist movements all over the planet, run by senile old men with various health issues whose personal mentor was Joseph Stalin.
You know, the stuff most of us lived through already and came out fine. And was actually, much much worse. Thank you facebook, twitter and the 24 hour news cycle for ratcheting up fears. Your local gun store and survivalist book sellers appreciate the sales.”
You see what I’m saying?
Entitlement, trigger warnings, and being offended
Now, this is the part of the news cycle that irritates me the most, because no matter what the headline, these things are present. Sometimes they are the headline. Ever see a post/article/news headline that is followed by “trigger warning: blah, blah, blah” or read an article or social media post and then see just beneath or beside a button that says “report this content” or “is this content/post offensive”? Yeah. I fucking hate that warning and I hate the word “offensive,” because it’s like a beacon inviting every whiny bitch on the Internet to grasp for his/her chance at attention.
You’re all running around like,
This society (and not just one generation, I’m talking about all of it) has become one giant narcissistic asshole farting selfish nonsense and shitting negativity all over the place. Christ, it’s so bad I’ve added warnings to some of my book blurbs, caving to the general tendency to avoid pissing people off. I do this for my erotic horror books. EROTIC HORROR. Those two words, particularly when used together, should tell whoever is reading that this book is going to have shit that’s not butterflies and puppies. Why is the warning necessary? I don’t know. I do know we all need to stop finding reasons for people to feel sorry for us. Victims… no, that’s not right. I hate that word. It offends me. (see what I did there?) Survivors of trauma don’t need warnings or coddling. Why? They’re surviving and will continue to do so no matter what they see or read. They aren’t seeking attention. They’re not trying to make others feel bad for what happened to them. They’re too involved in trying to put their lives back together to demand trivial and frankly demeaning shit like pity.
Look, we have a serious problem in this world. It’s not the police that need to be taught how to behave. It’s not this race or that religion that needs to change its beliefs. The problem with most of the world today is that we’re a bunch of whiny, entitled brats who take responsibility for nothing. We think the world owes us something. We believe we have rights that supersede the rights of others. Yes, you’ve got a right to voice your opinion, but you do not have the right to spew hate; not without consequences anyway. You don’t have the right to an easy life just because you want it. Go out there and earn it. Stop being a lazy piece of shit. Did I offend you? I’m not sorry. You are not entitled to success. You are not entitled to feel special. That shit must be earned.
Stop with the damn trigger warnings and the oh, once I had a cat and it scratched my eye out so pictures of cats traumatize me now so you need to take that picture down from your newsfeed, or oh, one time when I was a kid, an adult swore at me because I was a terrible soccer player and it made me feel scared, so now I can’t handle the word fuck without curling into a ball and crying for my mommy, so stop using it in your social media posts, because it’s offensive to me. Some people have serious traumatic shit they’re working through, and you yahoos with your pussy, pretentious offendedness at everything are making those REAL issues meaningless.
Grow a pair and deal with your shit. Stop acting like princesses in need of attention. As for the news, let’s stop allowing the media to shape our opinions and start focusing on facts. Don’t let the Internet bias our reactions. Stop bandwagoning. Enough with the narcissism.
Be better and the rest of the world will follow. If it doesn’t, at least you can say you tried as we all go down in flames.
Which reminds me… Did I mention Canada is on fire? Yeah, that should be troubling, not Pokémon Go.