The Giving Lens

Monday, May 5, 2014

I kinda feel a bit sorry for the stereotypical American "racist"

The L.A Clippers (soon to be ex) owner, the various jokes during the White House Correspondence Dinner highlighting racial divisions, and this guy... 

I kinda feel a bit sorry for the stereotypical American "racist". 

Are these people vestiges of a bygone era? Sure. Society changes over time, for good or ill. Some people change with it. Others, not so much. However I do think there is a difference between ignorance based on a lack of education and social cohesion, and simple-minded, hateful people. 

Cliven Bundy doesn't strike me as a man with hatred for millions of people based only on their skin colour/culture, but a man who was raised in a country where people are constantly force fed opinions from both sides of a political system eternally at odds with one another, never stopping to think "Hey... can't we just try to get along and stop being dicks?"

One minute he was a champion of the people for one side of the coin; Conservatives in this case; the next, vilified by both camps as a repugnant racist. 

Would I like to live in a world where all my opinions are seen as the right way forward? Of course. Do I think that a lot of my views are just basic common sense and simply basic human ideals? Sure. However I sometimes have to ask myself what if I was someone who didn't agree with gay rights, or who thought that black people were inferior to white people? Not for any hateful reasons; that's just how I saw the world. How would I feel if I was told that I was disgusting for even thinking that way? 

Mr Bundy raises a good point when talking about Rosa Parks and MLK. That was that essentially, (at least in hindsight) it shouldn't matter where we sit on the bus, just so long as we all can sit on the bus together. (Incidentally Rosa Parks was a badass and what she did was awesome. It had to be done, at that time. Now though? Things like that should just be pizza at this stage.)

Do I agree with what he said in the various interviews? No. Do I agree with Donald Sterling's views? No. But I do think there is something to be said for the possibility that when a group of people speak with one voice and seek a change in a society, you have to be careful not to let that voice become an aggressive order. 

Naive as it is to hope for a truly democratic, cooperative and inclusive society, letting each one of us live in peace and harmony, it is my hope none the less. Free speech is as important as the air we breath. Silencing people who have different views (Just so long as they are not hateful and seeking your destruction; Religious fundamentalists for the most part) is not the way to go. 

Educating people, equipping them with the tools to critically think about why they think the way they do should be the first step toward maybe coming to an understanding, and possibly changing those views for the betterment of humanity should be the ultimate goal. 

It all just seems to me like the "media" built this man up for one reason, and then just tore him down the next. Not because he's a racist, but because they could. 

Are people like Mr Bundy and Mr Sterling racists? It's kind of hard to argue that they are not. Are they just people with different, now out of touch views in today's world, where even private opinions are the business of everyone? Well, that one is pretty clear to me.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Being Awesome: Ten things you need to know.

As I sit here in my pants, swigging Coke Zero from the bottle, Joe Satriani's orgasmic riffs seducing my ears, I felt compelled to share with you all what it is like to live life as a 29 year old Man-Child with no job, very little money and a metric fuck load of awesome.

"Awesome" you say? How can one such as you even know the meaning of the word? Well, it's simple really; I rule, there for I am. The trick, dear reader, of maintaining such an air of confidence (some may say arrogance) is to not let trivial things such as "reality" and "adult responsibility" get in the way of your carefully crafted self delusion. There are some simple, yet very important rules one must follow in order to achieve such a reality-spurning existence. Chief among these rules is to not let anything bother you. This is key! Letting things bother you is anathema to sustaining your brilliance.

If facts like being unemployed, hilariously immature, not having enough money to drink away the pain on a daily basis and being rejected by a shorter than average prostitute in Amsterdam just because you were stoned off your tits and wanted to try "The Helicopter" take control of you, nothing can stop that downward spiral of self-hate and depression. Luckily, reality is easily avoided if you remember to always stay at home and escape into the many dark recesses of the internet. If however you find yourself, for reasons unknown, in a social situation where someone has the audacity to question your glory it is imperative that you do one, if not all of the following things:

1) Ridicule them.
They are obviously inferior to you either intellectually and or physically. Perhaps they have an oddly-shaped nose, or a stupid hair cut. Maybe they have never spent an entire Tuesday watching consecutive episodes of  Battlestar Galactica, and as such, are not aware of the intricate subtext involving religion, philosophy and the concept of what it is to be human.

2) Flee.
Excuse yourself from said social situation so that you may go home, go online and troll videos on YouTube, thus re-enforcing your false sense of superiority.

3) Bullshit.
Claim to have read the entire A Song of Ice and Fire series of books and threaten to spoil both the books and television show for everyone unless they provide you with cake. Or possibly hookers. Or both. Mmm, hooker cake!

4) Lie about a serious medical condition.
Pretend to have a seizure so that everyone focuses on you and gives you the attention you so desperately crave while at the same time making everyone forget your awesomeness was ever called into question. Remember to really sell it. Go big or go home.

5) Be a dick.
Instigate a fight between two friends, preferably female friends. Then just sit back and watch the ensuing bloodbath. Excellent.

(Side note: remember to do your Monty Burns impression. It just doesn't have the same effect without it.)

6) Be an even bigger dick.
Tell the child of the person who dared doubt you that Jesus killed Santa Claus and as such, Christmas is forever cancelled. If said person does not have children, wait until they do. Revenge is as timeless as it is delicious.

7) Be a total Bad Ass.
Excuse yourself. Go to the bathroom. Return dressed like Snake Pliskin. Proceed to be a Bad Ass.

8) Be Cool.
Remember that one day you will have God-like powers. Make a list of everyone who doubts you and smite them when the time comes.

9) Profit!!*

10) If none of the above work, do nothing. 
Wait until you get home and write a lame blog post as the tears cascade down your face like a beautiful waterfall.

*Number 9 is also referred to as "Be cliché"