Monday, April 20, 2015

Mea culpa

Last week, ESPN reporter Britt McHenry got herself in a whole lot of trouble by getting caught on video berating a woman and insulting her personal appearance. In case you missed it somehow, here's a link to the video. As you might imagine, response from the internet was swift, vicious and overwhelming. I jumped in with a series of sarcastic Tweets last Friday. I didn't resort to B-words, C-words, W-words or near-death threats (not my style) but I was pretty nasty about it, in my own way.
And I deeply regret it.
Not because I think Britt McHenry is being unfairly judged. I don't buy a word of her obviously-written-by-some-PR-flack "apology"; having watched the video, she's angry but clearly in control of her emotions and it's also apparent that she believes her being born with good looks entitles her to look down on certain other people. Screw her, she's a piece of crap.
Plus, this will always be funny.

Also, for what it's worth, I have a pretty low opinion of these towing companies too, an opinion based on my own personal experiences. Sure, there are some companies that go out and do road-ranger service and help people in need, but there are lots of them that sit back and operate as predators. I have a feeling that's the kind of scumbag company McHenry is dealing with in this scenario (the video is heavily edited and contains almost none of what was said to McHenry), so screw them too.
No, what I feel bad about is weighing in on this particular, high-profile issue (it's yet another "news" story that only exists because there's video) when I've witnessed several similar incidents in person and haven't said a word. I don't even know how many times I've seen people be shitty to waiters, store clerks, fast-food workers, stadium and theater ushers etc. Hundreds? Maybe. I do know that every single time, I've stared at my feet, waited for the unpleasantness to pass and been somewhat annoyed that I had to be witness to something that made me uncomfortable.
"How dare something like this happen when I'm nearby enough to have to know about it?!?"

But seeing the McHenry story cross my screen while I'm sitting at my keyboard and all of a sudden I, along with apparently everybody else, am imbued with righteous indignation to the point that I just can't accept such horrible treatment of our poor, downtrodden hourly wage slaves and that I simply must spew forth wordage in their defense.
"Look at me. I'm helping!"

That's hypocritical chickenshit and I'm sorry I allowed myself to being drawn into participating. It's a classic case of Internet Muscles and I would have liked to have believed I was above such nonsense. I mean, at least I didn't go this route...
Jesus, man!
...but I'm capable of doing better and I should do better, especially when I'm sure I'll have plenty of opportunities to get involved in a situation like this on a personal, face-to-face basis. And if I fail at that level, then it's double shame on me.


Jeff Hickmott said...

Geez, though. She's a real charmer.

Clark Brooks said...

No question. She deserves all kinds of bad things to happen to her (although I'll draw the line at cancer, cervical or otherwise). But I think I can be more effective, and feel better too, if I choose battles that take place in the "real world" involving people I can see and talk to, as opposed to some cardboard cartoons on the internet.

sandys said...

The universe has a way of doling out justice- but wishing bad on others, no matter how ugly or cruel they are- is just bad karma

Clark Brooks said...

Yep, that's a valid point too. At best, my words just join the spew that nobody's listening to/reading anyway. At worst, I temp bad Ju-Ju. Not worth it in either case.