Friday, April 7, 2017

Some Unhappy Thoughts

I was going to write about the current up-and-coming generation, whom I find rather interesting. But instead, I've been reading about this 11 year old kid who killed himself when his 13 year old "girlfriend" played a prank on him and convinced him that she has killed herself, and I have some thoughts.

● First, this is truly heartbreaking. Suicide is tragic and I can't imagine what brings people to that point, but I can understand how dark it must be. I also can't imagine what the parents are going through.

● I can say that I find it deeply sick that someone would even think to play a trick like this. There is something sub-humanly cruel in that little girl and others like her.

● I read the comments in some of the articles and I see the rotten side of humanity creeping out. The cynicism. The smug superiority. The knee-jerk smears of the innocent. This kid was eleven. He was probably dealing with his first crush. He had no idea how to handle the complete inversion of all that euphoria into a ripping sense of loss. How can anyone say he was stupid or should have known better? Fuck you. I doubt you're as competent as you think you are, trolls.

Some are blaming the parents because "how could the boy not feel he could go to them." I hate to break this to you, ignorants, but most suicides hide their sorrow. Their friends and family would love to help them, but they don't give anyone the chance. How can you cure what you don't even know is there? Moreover, as the father of an 11 year old who is hell bent on living her life without parental oversight, let me tell you that some kids are great at hiding what is going on with them. It's a puzzle, not a photograph with these kids because they are exploring the world and they want freedom to do it. I can tell you that my skills as a lawyer have helped immensely and I know a lot more about my daughter's friends than their parents do because I am a suspicious bastard. That's not to say they are bad parents, it's just how it is with kids. No matter how much they trust you or love you, many still want a private life and you have no control over what they choose to hide there.

● That said, I do blame the parents of the girl. One of the first things I learned about kids was that they are cruel little amoral monsters out of the box. You need to teach that out of them. You need to teach them to be selfless, to be kind, not to hurt others. At times, I've seen our kids do things that were shocking to me as a well-adjusted adult. Each time, I took them aside and explained how they could have injured XXX for the rest of their lives or ruined someone's life or destroyed a trust or a friendship, and I asked them how they would feel about that. And do you know what? It never happened again because they understood what they had done was wrong.

But other kids I see with sh*tty parents don't get those lessons. They grow up thinking cruelty is funny. They think hurting others makes them cool. This little girl lacks human decency. She thought nothing of trying to impose about as painful an emotional harm as you can on someone who cared about her -- the law calls that a fiduciary relationship because you have a heightened responsibility for such a person. She saw that as a weapon for a little fun rather than a trust. That's sick. And her parents are to blame for not teaching her enough right and wrong that she could understand just how f*cked up that was. Her friends are just as bad too for helping out. Not one of them thought this was cruel and tried to stop it? Really? Those parents really need to look at their little creatures and ask just what the hell kind of monster they've created.

● I think our culture encourages this kind of cruelty too. I look around and I see so much rage. The "mic drop" and the insulting exit has replaced the fond goodbye. You don't break up anymore, you "ghost" or you get even for whatever you didn't like. Ghetto culture (for all races) is about being tougher than everyone and making others feel weak. Movies and television shows glorify "pranks" that should be crimes. There is no sense of perspective in terms of the effects on the victims. Heck, you aren't cool on film if you don't hurt someone. Look at our politics, with the left trying desperately to destroy friends and family who voted the wrong way. Look at sports arenas where people cheer for opposing players to be injured. All of this, I think, makes our culture remarkably difficult for people in trouble. And I'm not talking about the narcissistic snowflakes, I mean people who don't know how to handle their problems and really need the support systems that we've systematically destroyed... church, families, friends, right and wrong, decency, good manners...

● Finally, I need to say that after several decades of feminism, I am shocked at what I see in young women these days. We are told how wonderful girls are: they aren't violent and cruel like icky boys, they are inherently good. Well, that's bull. I can tell you that I am routinely dealing with the fallout from acts of my daughter's friends and frenemies that are ruthless, cruel, cold-hearted and sadistic. Seemingly sweet girls when they talk to you, spend their time trying to destroy each other, even their friends, the moment backs are turned. Why? What in the past decade of liberal social engineering has caused this? What makes these modern girls think it's acceptable to try to break each other?

I don't get it. I never saw behavior like this growing up and, if I did, it was one person everyone knew to avoid. Today... today, this is herd behavior.

Sorry for the depressing post, but this bugs me.


Anthony said...

Trump's childhood was decades before I was born (I am 42) and at age 70 he apparently thinks its acceptable to ridicule the appearance of people he doesn't like ('Look at her face!')so I don't think jerks are recent inventions.

I was a guy on the low end of the social ladder in middle school and early high school (fat kid with a speech impediment who loved to read) and the 'girl who tells you she likes you only to set you up for pain and ridicule' is an old trick. The dead kid was at that vulnerable age where such things start happening and thus hit with full force.

I'd say the big social changes over time are the disintegration of the family and the community (which means kids are getting less help and supervision) and the rise of the internet (which immortalizes/spreads stupidity, cruelty and mistakes). A lot of adults get jammed up via the internet and kids are a lot more impulsive/less experienced.

Last but not least, I'll say most people don't kid themselves about girls. The general consensus is that girls are more reluctant to engage in physical violence(which tends to come to the attention of parents and other authorities faster), but more willing to play mind games (which are harder to pick up on/correct).

In short, I don't think people are getting worse, but the only thing getting smarter is our phones, which translates into people getting into trouble faster than ever.

Critch said...

It really bothers me too. I've seen kids who were cruel, cold around the heart and just plain many of them were little copies of their parents...terrible thing to happen. And no, yoiu cannot watch every single move kids make all the time...however, teaching them to hurt other people is unacceptable. Many years ago I responded to a bacar wreck as an EMT. A little boy and his mom were dead, the father was hurt very badly because a 16 year old girl took her dad's car w/o permission and was speeding when she lost control and hit the other car. She was in my ambulance and all that empty headed little twit was concerned about was whether or not her face would scar..

AndrewPrice said...

Sorry about that folks. Blogger has basically been down all day.

AndrewPrice said...

Interesting that the Alt-Right-(Delete) is wetting themselves over Trump dropping a few bombs on Syria (as are the Democrats of course). Funny how messed up some people are.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, I think there is a noticeable difference in what is considered acceptable today compared to two or three decades ago, and it's not a good difference.

AndrewPrice said...

Critch, I'm not surprised.

Kit said...


I've been disturbed, too.

ArgentGale said...

That whole thing is definitely sickening... I lost my grandmother to suicide and while she did give some hints in how she withdrew from things she loved she acted before the rest of us could figure out what she was up to. Doing something like that as a "prank" is absolutely unacceptable. I can't disagree with anything else you wrote, especially the disintegration of support systems for people who need it. It's a depressing world when something like that causes smug and snarky reactions instead of serious reflection on how things got to this point and how to rein this garbage in.

- Daniel

Koshcat said...

Prior to middle school, many of my best friends were girls. From that point on, most of them scared the crap out of me. It was after college that I started to enjoy their company as friends again. My point is I don't think it is new; only just more out in the open.

AndrewPrice said...

Kit, It's disturbing stuff.

AndrewPrice said...

Koshcat, It's possible, but I don't remember the level of viciousness before this. Girls could always be cruel, especially to each other, but this level of cruelty strikes me as something new.

AndrewPrice said...

Daniel, This ===> " It's a depressing world when something like that causes smug and snarky reactions instead of serious reflection on how things got to this point and how to rein this garbage in." Exactly.

It is depressing that we've reached a point where this is acceptable for snark. What a sick mind a person must have to think this is something to mock.

I'm sorry about your grandmother. My God mother killed herself but I was too young to know what that meant. Since that I haven't dealt with it, but I know people who have and it seems rather traumatic. I really can't understand the impulse, but I know it's real in some people.

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