Tuesday, June 19, 2007

entertaining tragedy

“There is nothing so pathetic as a bore who claims attention... and gets it”-unknown
Do you know more about Paris Hilton or Polly Klaas?

Google results:
83,800,000 for Paris Hilton
78,700 for Polly Klaas.
Does anyone see the problem with that?

One of them is a tragedy. The other is just a tragic excuse for entertainment.

Does it seem strange to anyone else that subjects like Paris Hilton’s arrest, Al Gore’s doomsday prophecies, or Anna Nicole’s “baby daddy” drama make the headlines ahead of child sexual abuse cases?

What is wrong with us?

Maybe it’s because we have no idea what horrible crimes against kids really look like. Maybe it’s because we’d rather not think about it. I hope it’s not because we are such a shallow species that we need entertainment more than action. For God’s sake, we watch people cheat on their spouses for entertainment. And we can’t figure out why divorce rates are so high. When is the last time you saw a show about how to improve a marriage? Dr. Phil doesn’t count either...because no marriage, no family problem or other devastating issue is resolved in 30 minutes or an hour. You think that everything has to be solved in microwave form and if not, just give up on it.

Why do we not see the utter hypocrisy in some of some of these news stories? If we did maybe we would be able to focus on what matters. Al Gore is concerned about global warming. He tells us so from the seat of his luxury jet...pumping out God knows how much crap into the atmosphere. Paris Hilton ignores the law but you and I better not. Anna Nicole? Why even bother with that one? In one breath a newscaster talks about the death of a child at the hands of an abuser then in the next she is smiling talking about some “star” pissing their life away on drugs. Lindsey, your self debasement is not entertaining. You are killing yourself and the Enquirer is selling magazines off of your demise.

We are quick to forward emails to everyone in our address book telling the reader that for everyone they send this to, they will get good luck. As if there is such a thing. As if the act of sending notes electronically somehow changes people’s destiny. We are quick to turn on TV shows where the star of the show is some self centered, arrogant, and rude jackass that seems to enjoy berating people. Look up the definition of sociopath. Look at some of his qualities. And we can’t seem to figure out why kids are becoming more violent.

I used to think that TV didn’t have as great of an effect on kids’ being violent as everyone claims. In one way I am right. Watching violence on TV can make us desensitized true enough. But which makes us more violent? Being entertained by watching killing or being entertained by “heroes” or role models that are concerned only about themselves. Look at school shooters. Look at how they blame everyone else for their problems. Look at how they value themselves and their “poor me’ attitudes.

Sounds a whole lot like Paris, that idiot chef on Hell’s kitchen or 900 other morons on TV that get off running others into the ground.

Selfishness and valuing ourselves as more important than anything else. When a kid doesn’t get the attention that he thinks he should (he is more important than anyone else) then yeah, it makes it easier for him to lash out at those he thinks don’t value him as much as he values himself. When our entertainers don’t care about others, then why should we? We get off on being number one. It feeds an ego. Like the old saying goes, we begin to think “our shit don’t stink.” Don’t forget the other old saying...”Pride comes before a fall.”

So what kind of monsters are we ignoring, what kind of evil do we discard for the sake of a media inspired ego orgasm?

These are the things that people do to children. (from Anna Salter’s book, Predators: Pedophiles, Rapists, and Other Sex Offenders):

• A man shot off a teenage girl’s arm for the sexual thrill it gave him.
• A rapist of 13 year old girls preferred to anally rape them on cement floors so it would hurt more.
• A father would use lit candles to cauterize the cuts he would inflict to his daughter’s vagina and around her nipples.
• A father who knew his 9 year old daughter was afraid of the dark would tie her to a tree in the woods and allow different rapists to come into the woods and rape her in the night.

A father describes how he abused his son:

“I was putting a large Ziploc bag over his head and taping it around his neck with black duct tape and raping him to the point that he would turn blue, pass out. At that point I would rip the bag off his head, not for fear of hurting him, but for the excitement.”
“After seeing him pass out and ripping the bag off his head…I’d jump up on his chest and masturbate in his face and make him suck my penis…as he started to come back awake. While he was coughing and choking I would rape him in the mouth.”

That’s real reality. Not the IQ draining crap that we fill our lives with from Hollywood. Maybe, just maybe, if we could take a break from soap opera crap on TV and look at what is going on in our backyards, we might deal with the monsters living in our backyards.

Paris Hilton’s troubles don’t seem so damned important now do they?