Saturday, October 14, 2017

Don’t be a Dick

I was at the mall yesterday afternoon getting some bubble tea. I went up to the register, gave the young lady behind the counter my middle name, (mainly because I didn’t want to put her through the dance of trying to say and spell my name correctly) and then proceeded to wait a good long while because as it turns out, Fridays are high tea time days. In the queue ahead of me was a young man and his friend. Let’s say his name was Richard. Richard and his buddy were also waiting for what was probably some strange concoction of sugars and jellies that teens would order because with their metabolisms they could get away with it. From the outside, they seemed like typical teenage boys.

A group of girls walked by all of us, Richard, turns to one of the girls specifically and say “hello” to her. She gives home a look, and says to him,

“Leave me alone, Richard (again, not his name), I hate you.” she continued on, didn’t miss a beat. Richard turns to his friend smiling, talking and chopping it up like any other Friday. I thought she was a little hard on Richard, but assumed it was just the typical high school tomfoolery.

A few minutes went by, and another group of girls came along, this group had a girl in a shopping cart. Richard, says something inaudible to the young lady in the cart, to which she responded,

“Fuck you, Richard. Leave me alone, I hate you.”

Okay, so here is where my curiosity is piqued. The group of girls have come and gone, yet the young lady’s words are still hanging around my head. But to my surprise, they haven’t seemed to phase Richard one bit. He has yet again, turned to his friend and continued on his jabbering without a care in the world.

This is where my story should end. But life decided to throw another group of girls in our direction. To which again, Richard says hello to one of all of them. I wasn’t paying too much attention, because there was no way that...

...”Leave me alone, Richard. I hate you.”

Like after Peter denouncing Christ three times, I swore I heard a rooster crow.

I looked over at the blonde haired, blue eyed boy with the grin on his face. Yet again, no emotional response from either him or his friend. But this time, I didn’t see a good kid. This time, I saw a kid who was going to grow up harassing women and getting his rocks off doing it.

In my head, I went over every possible scenario I could think of; was Richard being picked on? Maybe he’s trying to be nice, maybe this is just the shenanigans that friends get into with their friends?

Nope. He went out of his way to look for the encounters and he showed no shock or discouragement after each encounter. Also, none of those girls were in the same group of friends. They obviously knew him from school but they rocked different social groups. And none of them acknowledged Richard’s friend, so Richard didn’t hang out with any of those girls.

I even played a little devil’s advocate, tried to see if the girls were the ones at fault. And as soon as I tried to suss out that scenario, I realized what I was doing. I was victim blaming.

Those girls were being completely and totally straightforward with Richard. For whatever reason, they hated Richard, and they wanted him to leave them alone.

And as I looked at Richard’s face, as tried to make sense out of this kid, he stopped being Richard. Richard was a Dick.

Dick went beyond pulling pigtails on girls in the playground. Dick got off on getting any reaction from women. He took negative responses not as deterrents, but as welcomed invitations to harass them further.

I looked into Dick’s future and I saw every asshole comment I’ve seen online to women from guys who pretend to be “good guys”. I saw the women that would actually give this guy a chance and the terrible way he would treat them because Dick didn’t ever learn to respect them. I saw a scary future that, without someone setting this kid straight, would send him and someone else down a terrible path.

I wanted to tell Dick not to be a dick, but it would have fallen on deaf ears. After all, three young ladies straight up told this kid to leave them alone, and all he did was smile and shrug it off.

Don’t be a Dick.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

A Prelude to Civil War

There is a reality that people need to accept. We are at the beginning of a war. A tyrant has come into power over America, and within one week of his reign, he has attacked the American people. The freedoms that we hold dear, the ideals that we believe to be the greatest aspects of America have been stripped away from her citizens. He has attacked the lands of the Native Americans, he has blocked the entry of people based on their religion. He has taken away the liberties of women. And for what? To further his business relations overseas, to make it hard for women and minorities to take care of themselves and their loved ones. He's a puppet, and his strings are being pulled by the people he's appointed to the highest offices of the land. I know that part of this sounds like the endless prattling of the far right. But there's a difference; everything I've said is a reality, not an "alternate fact".

Trump is going after those who can't defend themselves. He's going after refugees, children, families, women, minorities, and everyone else that doesn't fit into a white American standard. They are taking the Bill of Rights and tossing them out, the same document they claim to uphold, they're using it to wipe the blood from their hands and saying it's for the betterment of America.

But the people, the real American people know better. Our political leaders have been great in yelling at the regime, at stating how saddened and disgusted they are. Sadly, that doesn't free the poor folks stuck in limbo at airport terminals. That doesn't stop him cutting funding from people who will die without the help they need. Trump and his new nazi regime are the ones who fired the first shot, the time for talking has passed, the dictator has come to power. Now is the time we fight back, and not in a metaphorical sense and not in a passive marching sense. Now is the time to fight back with a show of force.

"Here, in the dread tribunal of last resort, valor contended against valor. Here brave men struggled and died for the right as God gave them to see the right."
-Adlai E. Stevenson I
We need proper leaders. Activists are fine, but our side needs a polarizing force to get behind. Politicians who are willing to bargain by giving up everything and receiving nothing are going to get us nowhere. We need a spearhead, a face to drive deep into the heart of the beast. We need a general.

I know it's easy to call for war and not have a means to back it up, the right have been doing it for years. But they finally got their leader, and they're happy as a pig in shit to watch America burn. We can't let them, and I know I can't be the only one that feels this way.

"I abhor war and view it as the greatest scourge of mankind." - Thomas Jefferson

In 1942, Frank Capra was commissioned to do a documentary series called "Why We Fight: Prelude to War" in which he outlines the reasons why it was necessary for America to fight against Hitler. Social media pretty much covers why Trump and Co. need to be stopped before they get any further. I challenge you to watch Carpa's video and ask yourself how far are we from this becoming a reality again.

Then I ask you, and those that we see as leaders: Is it not time to prepare for war?