Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Things That Piss Me Off Tuesday - the Judgy McJudgerson edition

Hi. I'll warn you in advance that I'm in a mood today. One of those moods where I really just need to avoid looking at my fb newsfeed because I'm virtually certain that it will be filled with more things that will just piss me off.

I'm sitting here in the dark with my coffee, listening to the baby swing creak back and forth, the washing machine spin. In the background, The Crow. One of the best movies ever. Also one of the movies that some Hollywood executive has decided to remake. I'm not pleased. Sure, they could make it so that it is closer to the comics, less related to the original version of the film. Here's the thing, though. Brandon Lee died making that epic film, and I think we should all just agree to leave it alone.

But no one asked me.

Anyway, off to some of the other things pissing me off this week.

Bill Cosby
So, it turns out that America's Dad in the ugly sweater is also a rather rapey guy. Vomit.

He's done his fair share poking bears and pissing people off in recent years with his outspoken nature about race relations, welfare and more...but the recent news he's made is the worst yet. Apparently, he has a long sordid personal history of bad bad things, not the least of which are rape allegations.

For some bizarre reason, either he or his handlers decided to ask people to make Cosby memes this week, and it backfired in the most spectacular way. Check out some of the images people made here.

I'm disappointed. Sigh.

Ebola, still
This is something that will in all likelihood piss me off for a very long time. Now that we've dealt with a threat of this disease on our shores and it suddenly hit the radar of the millions of people who live here, we care about it as a society. Well, sort of. We are totally paranoid about getting it ourselves.

The last Ebola patient being treated in the United States was released today. No one else is sick, though there are some still waiting out quarantine periods. I'm sure that there will be some more people who contract the disease, and I'm sure that the media will pounce all over it again and scare the shit out of everyone because that's what they do, even if it is completely irresponsible.

I want to know when they're going to apologize for scaring the shit out of the American public.

Don't worry. I won't hold my breath.

Speaking of infectious disease...
There was a minor outbreak of a stomach virus last week at the school that my kids attend. Bad enough that they sanitized the entire school over the weekend. Bad enough that the health office was overflowing with kids who needed sent home when I was called in to pick up one of mine.

Schools are giant petri dishes, truly.

Don't lick anything, you guys.

What pisses me off are the parents who send their kids to school knowing that they are sick. Who dose them intentionally with fever reducing meds and send them on their way, knowing full well that those meds are going to wear off at some point during the day and will do nothing at all to address the fact that their kid is probably contagious. I cannot even tell you how many times I'll hear about this kid or that one running a high fever or barfing or whatever, only to see that kid at school the following day (or even later the same day in some cases).

Criminalizing Compassion
There is a very disturbing movement nationwide going on right now, one having to do with criminalizing homelessness and poverty. Some areas are putting spikes on sidewalks to keep people from sleeping near buildings, others are enacting ordinances that criminalize feeding the homeless. One such law is on the books in Florida. There, a 90 year old man has been arrested repeatedly for feeding the homeless.

As soon as he gets out of jail, he goes right back to doing it too. Because he's a compassionate man, a kind soul who has been doing this for years and a badass. Because the law is asinine. Because there is something very, very, very wrong with the powers that be enacting a law like that in the first place.

The Mother Who Threw Her Son Off a Bridge
If I have a chance, I will likely be writing a post exclusively about this, mostly because I have a lot to say about it and the short little TTPMOT snippet won't be enough. I'll try to summarize my thoughts here just in case I don't get to it.

By now, you've probably heard about this disturbing case. A mother in Oregon threw her 6 year old son off a bridge. She had a long history with mental illness and a sick husband. She had asked for help with her son, who was autistic, in the past and those calls had gone largely unanswered. She was arrested and has been charged in his murder. 

As seems to be the case when something like this happens, people rush to vilify the parent or defend them. I try the best I can to look at the entirety of the situation, learn from what happened, see how we can do things different going forward so that tragedies like this don't happen in the future. Many say that the son's autism is irrelevant, that the diagnosis of the victim shouldn't matter. Many say that her mental health shouldn't be a consideration if she failed to get treatment. Some say they understand what drove her to this place. Some say they will never understand it. I'd never do that, they say...except none of them know what was going on in her head at the time.

Ultimately, there are some uncomfortable truths we as a society need to face when something like this happens, aside from the ugly reality of a mother taking her child's life. We need to admit that there are not enough resources to help parents who have children that place more demands on them. We need to admit that our mental health system sucks and fails people all the time. We need to understand the burdens placed on caregivers of those with serious health conditions like what her husband faced. We need to stop being a society so hell bent on blame and judgment and somehow start to give a shit about other people again, before they get to the place she did where she did what she did. We need to ask people if they need help, what they need help with...and then there needs to be a system in place so that they can actually get that help. Period.

Standing around and pointing fingers won't get us anywhere, and it won't bring this little boy back. 

The Bandwagon to Judgyville
This was really pissing me off yesterday. I've learned through years and years of human interaction, that sometimes I just really need to keep my damn mouth shut and not get involved in arguments. So I don't. Or at least I try not to.

There is this lovely phenomenon in the blogging/fb world of bandwagon riding. Someone starts talking about some controversial subject, then everyone with a keyboard has to weigh in. Last month, everyone cared about the inseam length of their daughters' shorts. Next month will bring the obligatory posts about Christmas as it always does.

Right now, for whatever reason, the internet is full of posts and rants about the mommy wars and dad bashing. It's the topic of the month, and it's a particularly frustrating one because it seems like there are two main groups of people involved. First, those who have an opinion about everything and want to impose it on everyone. Second, those who advocate for supporting the differences in parenting styles and decisions.

Except, here's what happens fairly often, even with that second group of people, the ones who want people to leave other people alone and stop judging....wait for it....the judging starts.

I totally respect the right of parents to make all their decisions and I won't impose my opinion on them or shame them or insist that I'm right except with ______, because well, that's just unacceptable. 


I saw it SO many times yesterday in particular because there is a post on Jezebel about how people don't get to have opinions about how women give birth. It's gone viral, not so much because of the point she is trying to make, but because of her insistence that people don't get to have opinions.

People absolutely do get to have opinions about everything. It's human nature to opine on things.

What isn't cool, though, is burdening other people with your opinions.

If you don't want people judging you, you can't turn around and bash others for their choices. As a doula especially, this pisses me off because pregnancy and childbirth and parenting are all things that are hugely important in our lives. We have some degree of control over the things that happen, the choices we make. Sometimes, though, we don't get a choice.

To have self righteous people condemn how things played out for you isn't helping. I wrote a post about the mommy wars a while back - a tongue in cheek sarcastic bit. You can read it here if you are interested. Suffice to say that if you're running around telling people not to judge how a woman delivered, where she delivered or how she feeds her child, but if she eats her placenta, she's disgusting because that's just nasty....you're absolutely part of the problem.

Go buy a mirror and look in it for a hot second. You're just as bad as everyone else you are condemning.

I ate my placenta. Get over it. I'm not telling anyone that they are less of a mom because they didn't eat theirs. Stop telling me that I'm gross. SMH.

I really need to stop reading the comment sections.

For the love.

1 comment:

  1. I have a comment on just about everything you've touched upon, but right now I'm reeling about Cosby because I didn't know . . .


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