Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Things That Piss Me Off Tuesday - the child protective services, gay ballers and fancy racists edition

There is SO much in the news right now that pisses me right off. I had to cut the list down out of necessity because otherwise, I'd be drafting a dissertation here...and I get the sense that nobody ain't got time for that.

Seriously, what did we do before Sweet Brown?

Please tell me you know who Sweet Brown is. If you don't, go watch this real quick.


Okay. Now that we got that out of the way, let's get on with the business of the day.

Child Protective Services
There is something very wrong with the way that we handle suspected child abuse and neglect in this country when one set of parents has their child taken just because they sought a second opinion, but another couple is permitted to let their second child die because they refused to seek medical treatment.

Then there is the matter of the hundreds or thousands of kids that slip through the cracks and continue to be abused even though they are in the system.  Or the issue of the legal barriers in some states that make it impossible for kids to get protective orders against abusive family members unless they can afford $3,000 for a lawyer.

Do NOT even get me started on that last one. I cannot wrap my head around the idea that there are no attorneys in the area willing to take on pro bono cases to protect kids, when all that is required is filing a motion and showing up for maybe one appearance. I am fired up. FIRED UP.

Gay Ballers
If you think Jason Collins is the first gay NBA player, I've got some swampland you might be interested in buying. He isn't, he's just the first one who had the cajones to come out publicly. Something like 10% of the population is gay....and that includes people who happen to be good at sports too.

Our society isn't the most open and accepting for homosexual people in the first place, but the world of professional sports is probably one of the areas with the most glaring problem of outright homophobia. These are, after all, the manliest of men, right?  So what if they routinely shower together and congratulate each other for a job well done with a nice slap on the ass?  There's nothing gay about that at all....

Right.

The environment in professional sports is one of the most intolerant in the world when it comes to sexual orientation, easily one of the most homophobic, and I commend Jason for coming out. He's one ridiculously brave guy.

The thing that bothered me the most when the news broke yesterday, aside from the fact that most sports news outlets were covering Tebow's release from the Jets as the lead story when it's clearly not (I mean, come on....the guy isn't good enough to play QB in the NFL, and it has nothing to do with all the personality traits he possesses that gain him fans and enemies. He got released because he's not good enough. Move on.), was the fact that people immediately started jumping all over the coverage claiming that it's not news.

Really??? It's not news when one guy stands up to an entire culture and declares who he is in the face of decades of accepted, institutionalized oppression?  That's pretty much the definition of news.

Fancy Racists
A while back, a reader asked me to write about the notion of white privilege. I haven't, primarily because I'm pretty sure that it wasn't going to go down the way the person who asked was hoping. White privilege very much exists in our society, and stories like the one that broke this week in Georgia are glaring evidence of that.

This year, a school in Georgia sponsored the first integrated prom.  What the what????  It's 2013. Schools were desegregated generations ago. To combat the illegality of segregated proms, the schools down south solved the problem by just making them private, invitation only events that weren't affiliated officially with the school. The white parents happily went on planning their segregated proms.  For almost 60 years.

The white parents still planned their own prom this year.

Oh, and in case you didn't know, Mississippi didn't ratify the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery until this year.

Don't try and tell me that discrimination is a thing of the past, that the races are equal and that we are all supposed to labor under an illusion of fairness.

2 comments:

  1. We had CPS called on us once and the investigator turned out to be the parent of a child I used to provide daycare for. She was like, "Seriously? I have to waste my time on this?". I was a mandated reporter for years and saw so many children fall through the cracks, even after I carefully documented and reported every incident. It's so frustrating and sad.

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  2. Also, I think Nike should get some props on Collins coming out. They said they would sponsor the first ball player to come out and he was exactly what they were looking for. Excellent incentive for a player, I'd say.

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