Things in the News That are Pissing Me Off

Since I got to the gym today and got to watch 45 minutes of the news while on the treadmill, I figured that now would be as good a time as ever to bitch about a few things. Maybe it’s just because I’m in the middle of reading Stupid White Men, but I’m feeling particularily vexed tonight.

  • Apparently Kobe Bryant had to leave Hawaii to attend a preliminary hearing into his rape case. Or is it “just” sexual assault? I’m not sure, but last time I checked if a normal person (read: non multi-million dollar athlete) was accused of sexually assaulting someone they weren’t allowed to boogie off to Hawaii to shoot hoops.
  • Roy, of Siegfried and Roy survived an attack from a tiger in the middle of one of their shows. PETA, in a fit of… well, something… is now going to protest. No, not for the tigers (directly), but for the people. “What if it was a child the tiger attacked?” is the question. The irony of all this is that the tigers can’t be put back into the wild, because they have about as much chance of not getting shot for their coat by some greedy bastard as an email address posted to the newsgroups has of not getting spam. PETA probably wouldn’t want them kept in captivity either, but maybe I’m not sure what “retired” means.
  • This is a local one, and I can’t find any web references for it. A lady got on the bus and was told by the driver that she didn’t like her perfume by the bus driver. The driver apparently then continued to verbally abuse her, hurling racial slurs at her until the bus stopped outside a skytrain station and everyone got off. The lady stayed behind in hopes to clear things up with the driver. The driver then proceeded to close the doors and drive off with the lady until she stopped somewhere and dropped her off.

    Now, that’s strange in itself, but the thing that got me was that when they interviewed the head of the bussing company and inquired as to how the woman driver might be punished, they said that it would depend (obviously), but could go as far as termination. “As far”? Assuming that the story is true, the minimum that would be done would be immediate termination, pack your bags you’re outta here sis! If I was in charge and I ever heard of an employee of mine acting in such a rude/dangerous/emberassing/horrible manner I would go and kick their asses personally!

  • The woman on the bus story then merged into a story on how some places are now “scent free” zones. Soon the handy-dart (transport for the elderly or disabled) will be banning the wearing of perfume or oders, sighting people who have “multiple chemical sensitivity” where some chemicals can cause them varying degrees of reactions. Apparently some hospitals are “scent free” and they are talking about making federal buildings the same way. Now, I’m all for protecting people who have problems. I am for wheelchair enabled buildings and non-smoking in pubs, as well as not kicking puppies or knocking old people on their asses and stealing their purses. However, there is a certain point where you have to say “stop” or else you will be living in a society that might not be desirable. How low is the lowest common denominator? Should we put escalators everywhere because some people are too weak to walk far? Will reading be banned because we don’t want to make some people who read uncomfortable? It’s stupid. I think that if you are that sensitive to chemicals that you can’t be in the same room as someone who has perfume on, I think you are going to have more serious problems than perfume just getting to wherever it is that is “scent free”.
  • Teenager depression was the next one on the list, an expose (well,not really) on how teenagers are suffering in silence, and the symptoms of depression might be going unnoticed. The list they had for ways to recognize depression was quite honestly, a great description of pretty much every teenager I’ve met, including myself. Now I know that depression is a real thing, and is a real illness. I knew a girl once who had it pretty bad and had some serious issues (turned out to be an allergic reaction to a bunch of things, but that’s another story). However, I stared at the screen and practically yelled out “drug ’em up boys!”

    Have a weight problem? Must be your thyroid (note: I know someone who does have thyroid problems, but I have also seen more “energize your thyroid” articles on the covers of magazines at the supermarket checkout than I care to count). Not feeling good? Best to get no prozac or ritalin as soon as possible. Kids not doing well in school? Must be an imbalance of some kind, give them some pills and hope for the best. Society is in this strange “it’s not my fault” phase right now. Everyone is blaming someone else, or something else, instead of looking to see what the real problem is. If your kids can’t read maybe it’s your fault, not the school board, or the teachers, or even your kids?

    However, it’s also the start of depression awareness week, so I’m sure the coucilers offices will be packed with people hoping to find out it’s not their fault. Hey, I was depressed in school. I don’t think you can claim to be normal and not be. High school sucks, and the only people who don’t think so are the ones that are out of it! However, it’s something you can deal with. I managed to get through all of it without killing anyone (though I wanted to on occassion), or resorting to drugs, recreational or pharmaceutical. Of course, I didn’t know that maybe it wasn’t something I had to deal with without being behind a happy pink haze.

9 Comments on “Things in the News That are Pissing Me Off”

  1. Behavioral therapy, time with a physcologist, is very expensive. Chemical therapy is cheap. The side effect is that chemicals will fix everything becomes the norm.
    So how is Stupid White Men?

  2. Actually really interesting. Even though MM may
    not be considered the most unbiased observer, if even 1% of what he says just about how bush stole the election, it’s enough to make you cry for the state of democracy in the free world. Also has good stuff on race relations and the state of education (where I am now). Very interesting and scary stuff.

  3. I agree … absolutely on most points. A portion of society is trying to use science as a crutch to provide quick fixes for their personal issues.
    On the opposite side are the people who have become completely cynical towards medication, doctors and science. (I think most of us are somewhere inbetween)
    My wife has depression, clinical depression, and she’s apparently had it since she was a little kid, she was never aware that she had it. When she went on her medication the first week she noticed an incredible difference, she felt like she used to when she was 19. She no longer was afraid to do a variety of everyday things, and she had incentive to do things she wanted to do, instead of automatically thinking “what’s the use”.
    An interesting study I read in “Scientific American” suggested that under constant intense stress, the human mind can actually become depressive. A totally “normal” brain can become numb to pleasure, and happiness if devoid of it for an extended period. Personally, from experience, I can absolutely see how this would happen.

  4. re: Chemical sensitivity. The problem with many of the perfumes on the market today is that they are made from chemicals that are synthesized, and don’t occur naturally. Some people also wear far too much perfume. This, combined with the huge amount of chemicals in the atmosphere (pollution) and you get people in record numbers developing sensitivities.
    The argument can be made that, just as second-hand smoke in the workplace infringes on the rights of non-smokers, so does second-hand perfume infringe the rights of people with chemical sensitivities. Perfumes are not a necessity, and can be a serious health hazard. Therefore, they should not be worn at work.

  5. Michael – agree totally. But how far do we take it? If I had a bad experience with say, someone with glasses that traumatized me as a youth, should I be able to demand that bespecticled peopel are infringing on my rights, and therefor should not wear there glasses? I know it’s an exaggeration, but if you’d told me a year ago that people would be banning the wearing of perfume in the future (in some areas), I’d have thought the same thing!

  6. Oh yea, the other thing in the smelly story that made me laugh was that they were considering banning them at gyms as well, but said that most people were considerate to others in this regard.
    Last time I was at a gym (that’d be last night after work) people stank of sweat, not perfume, not that you could tell over the smell of yourself of course.
    Who the hell wears perfume to the gym anyway???

  7. gee, first time I’ve ever thought; “go to hell Arc”
    obviously you’ve hit on a subject that is very dear to me. Regarding “everyone is depressed in High school”. Did you ever contemplate suicide in school? That (to me) is a serious situation. I understand what you meant, but the more correct statement is “many kids in school feel down at some point”. Depression is a serious illness that effects many people and can be fatal.
    I also agree that many kids are being overly drugged, but if we’re not carefull we may loose them. If given the option of a little prozac or a dead child, I’d take the prozac.

  8. Totally agree with you raskal (on the got to hell and the options of suicide vs drugs). I know that depression is a serious illness, but it also looks like it, and bad thyroids, or whatever, are being used as an excuse to medicate, or to get out of something that might be your own fault (ie: bad eating habits). Basically it’s not something to be taken trivially or without medical advice. And yes, bad wording on my part. My impression from the newscast was that “hey, if you feel down you might be depressed and need some medication!” and I thought that was alarmist.
    Of course, this is the news we’re talking about.
    Sorry if I offended.