Sunday Morning Coming Down – Opinions vs. Experience, 20 Questions and STFU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieFxaj1DUbI

Woody Allen once summed up the behaviors and qualifications of most people with this simple bit of logic:  “Those who can, do.  Those who can’t do, teach.  Those who can’t teach, teach gym…” to which I would add, “…Those who can’t teach gym, find careers in administration.”

This last week there have been a few comment string dust ups on several posts here on Our Salon with several folks suggesting that other folks don’t have the intelligence or experience to hold a valid opinion about much of anything.  Some have expressed opinions that white folks are somehow directly responsible for excessive (brutal) police violence (abuse) on children (high school students) of color (black, brown, white and other).  Others convey opinions that most white folk are hard working benign bystanders and almost all uses of force by law enforcement and school administration can be justified responses to “disrespectful” or “threatening” behaviors and are necessary to maintain discipline and teach “these kids” a lesson.  A quick sample of commentary (in no particular order or context) reveals the breadth of these opinions:

[Who]…would have imagined that in late 2015, the Federal Bureau of Investigation would be doing its thing in connection with a routine exercise in classroom discipline occurring this week in South Carolina?

Many here are early bandwagon jumpers, based on partial information and their own bias.  Some called those of us warning that the Trayvon Martin encounter might have multiple dimensions "idiots" because we "obviously" were blind to what could easily be deduced from the early news reports.  Not sure if the same is going on here, but I'm comfortable letting things play out without passing early judgment.

When, oh when, will you white people put a stop to this shit?!

One youngster, a black girl, was being disobedient/defiant.  The other, a Muslim boy, who manifested youthful curiosity and scientific ingenuity were each treated in a manner that would be absolutely unthinkable had either been a white student....

It was brought out the Muslim clock boy's father is a highly controversial sensationalist Islamic Iman who more than likely coached the boy to bring the bomb clock to school to evoke controversy and open up possibility for lawsuit.  Yes, I believe that's exactly what they planned… One should look to the end game for what an ideology or religion is trying to achieve.  End game of Buddhism?  To pass into parinirvana while leading a low impact calm and peaceful life.  End game of Islam?  To subjugate the world at knife point and ride off in glory with a harem of wives.

BTW: There is every strain of media BS in this world, including "proof" that the 9-11 tragedy of the World Trade Center was an inside job perpetrated by Zionist Jews in coordination with the Bush Administration.  You're making no sense with Islamic conspiracy theory here.  After visiting the White House as part of 300 visitors to “Astronomy Night” and meeting with President Obama and his family, Ahmed Mohamed and his family are on their way to Qatar where he has a full boat scholarship with the Qatar Foundation Young Innovators Program.

“I'm also sick of hearing about black people in America.  I don't give a shit about black people in America.”  And I am sick of you not giving a shit.  Fuck you and the horse you rode in on.  Find something else to do.

Safe Bet Amy is a just a pissed off lesbian who hates men and Israel.  The rest of you are now focused on "Police Violence Against Citizens".  Yeah right.  Give me a fucking break.  Y'all don't give a rat's ass about the police and how they treat people.  Most of you have had no interaction with the police and wouldn't hesitate for a moment to call them when you're in need.  You're fed the propaganda, and you just want something to bitch about...

"So fuck Jonathan Wolfman, Fuck Kosher Salammi, Fuck Safe Bet Amy and Fuck anyone talking about black people.  If that's all this site is about...then I'm out."

I still see her resisting, and the cause for her desk toppling over.  Then he got out of control and dragged her.  I also totally don't think it had anything to do with her race.  It had to do with the fact that her teacher called in the officer, to have her removed.  His technique left something to be desired, but SHE was the cause of the altercation.

The point isn't who started the altercation. The point, the entire point, is how unjustified the cop was in how far he took it.  If a guy drives twelve MPH over the limit, is pulled over, and the arresting officer shoots him for it, the appropriate response is not, "The guy shouldn't have been speeding."

The good old days had nothing to do with discipline and everything to do with neurotic dip shit adults who could barely find their butts with both hands yet demanded “respect for authority”.  They were, for the most part, idiots who showed up forty hours a week to collect a check.

I had not thought about it much.  I was raised in a strict German family.  I was brought up to have respect for my elders, NO MATTER WHO THEY WERE.  I was always told, "children are to be seen and not heard" as well.  The question you answered is this: How did Hitler and the Nazis manage to totally take over a people, without as much as a peep out of them.  It all goes back to what I said about respecting authority.  Germans were taught always to have respect for authority. (I know, I had it drummed into me) You never questioned a leader.  The leader ( Führer ) demanded uncompromising respect and obedience.  People simply did as they were told!  So I guess I see the point being made here, by all.  It is perhaps also the reason I am so damned stubborn in my ways.  I was brought up to believe the way I was raised, was the correct way.  Maybe it wasn't.

nerd cred or which ever fat balding bastard you happen to be hiding behind your false avatar your response is a predictable regurgitation of anti-conservative rhetoric that relies on pointless allegations and opinion based upon ideology.

… and one my favorites:

Oh how precious.  Here's where the "community" decides to collectively "Punish" the transgressor by the good old Amish practice of "ostracizing".  It's hilarious, how my genius and your pettiness have somehow butted heads.

…this is one of my last contributions:

...or as Hannibal Lecter said:

Art James summed it all up with:

I Blame Fakers?

Phony. no blame.

Just Be Honest?

Look at Self?

Examine Self.

No go Loco?

Out of Here...

With all that said I invite everyone who reads and comments on this post to play a quick game of twenty some questions:

  1. As a child, were you ever whipped with a switch, belt, paddle, until you pissed yourself?  Did either of your parents ever strike you in the face?
  2. Did you ever have to physically threaten either or both of your parents to get them to stop beating on you?
  3. As an adult have you ever looked up the wrong end of the barrel of a gun held by a criminal?  By a police officer?
  4. Have you ever been upbraided by a cop with verbal epithets and insults to provoke you into doing something that would give him the excuse to beat the crap out of you and charge you with a crime?
  5. Have you ever slept on the street because you had no other place to go?
  6. Have you ever lost thirty pounds because you couldn’t put together enough money to buy food?  Have you ever stolen money or food?
  7. Have you ever been arrested on suspicion of a crime you didn’t commit and taken to jail?
  8. Have you ever faced a cadre of police in riot gear and taken a beating from a cop with a nightstick?
  9. Have you ever committed a crime of conscience and lived as a fugitive under another identity?
  10. Have you ever depended on the kindness and trust of strangers?
  11. Have you ever fallen in love and/or had sex with a person of your own sex?
  12. Have you ever felt so hurt, alone, lost and worthless that all you could do was crawl into bed and sob?
  13. Has anyone threatened to kill you or attacked you or seriously wounded you with a weapon in a fight?
  14. Have you ever ended up in surgery and the hospital with a life threatening injury or illness?
  15. Have you ever become so frustrated and angry that: You destroyed the place where you worked?  That you considered killing someone or killing yourself?
  16. Have you ever refused to make an investment in a company that could return millions of dollars because you found the behavior of the CEO to be unethical?
  17. Have you ever supported a friend or a relative up to the point where you discovered that you could no longer help them and had to ask them to leave?
  18. Have you ever found what you needed in the eyes of a child?
  19. Or in the company of a person who was over twice your age?
  20. Have you ever reached a point in your life where you have lost nearly all your friends and acquaintances?

I doubt that there are very many OS folk of either gender or any political philosophy who could answer more than a half of these questions in the affirmative.  My answer to all of them is: “Yes,” and so I have the benefit of some very visceral life experience to support my opinions.  Keeping in mind my father’s observation that opinions are like assholes, everybody’s got one, I seldom presume to tell anyone, other than some perverse dismissive ideologue, to STFU.  If I find anyone's opinion offensive I’m more likely to turn around and just walk away.  Rather when I encounter people who are wrapped up around the axle with personal hubris, I tend to refer them to the older, mellower Kris Kristofferson.  Try not to let all the references to Jesus get in the way and just listen to the words:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2u_rEcWW8M

A bit of humble gratitude can some times lead to the grace that allows us to appreciate what we have experienced in life.

Except for attributed photos and text, all content is copyrighted © 2015 JKM (an apparently ineffectual boilerplate joke?)

Views: 688

Comment by Safe Bet's Amy on November 1, 2015 at 6:24am

  • As a child, were you ever whipped with a switch, belt, paddle, until you pissed yourself?  Did either of your parents ever strike you in the face? Yes to both
  • Did you ever have to physically threaten either or both of your parents to get them to stop beating on you? No, I was too young
  • As an adult have you ever looked up the wrong end of the barrel of a gun held by a criminal?  By a police officer? Yes to the first, no to the second (unless you count a cop's club, tazer and peppe rspray)
  • Have you ever been upbraided by a cop with verbal epithets and insults to provoke you into doing something that would give him the excuse to beat the crap out of you and charge you with a crime? Yes 
  • Have you ever slept on the street because you had no other place to go? Yes 
  • Have you ever lost thirty pounds because you couldn’t put together enough money to buy food?  Have you ever stolen money or food? No (I didn't have that much to lose). Yes.
  • Have you ever been arrested on suspicion of a crime you didn’t commit and taken to jail?  Yes 
  • Have you ever faced a cadre of police in riot gear and taken a beating from a cop with a nightstick? Yes 
  • Have you ever committed a crime of conscience and lived as a fugitive under another identity? No.
  • Have you ever depended on the kindness and trust of strangers? Yes 
  • Have you ever fallen in love and/or had sex with a person of your own sex? Yes 
  • Have you ever felt so hurt, alone, lost and worthless that all you could do was crawl into bed and sob? Yes 
  • Has anyone threatened to kill you or attacked you or seriously wounded you with a weapon in a fight? Yes 
  • Have you ever ended up in surgery and the hospital with a life threatening injury or illness? Yes 
  • Have you ever become so frustrated and angry that: You destroyed the place where you worked?  That you considered killing someone or killing yourself? No.
  • Have you ever refused to make an investment in a company that could return millions of dollars because you found the behavior of the CEO to be unethical? Yes 
  • Have you ever supported a friend or a relative up to the point where you discovered that you could no longer help them and had to ask them to leave? Yes 
  • Have you ever found what you needed in the eyes of a child? Yes 
  • Or in the company of a person who was over twice your age? Yes 
  • Have you ever reached a point in your life where you have lost nearly all your friends and acquaintances? Yes 
Comment by JMac1949 Today on November 1, 2015 at 6:33am

Welcome to the world. What does not kill us only makes us stronger and the bastards can never grind us down.  :-)

Comment by koshersalaami on November 1, 2015 at 7:10am

I like your selection. I was certainly in the thick of a lot of these and one of them is, in this case proudly, mine. And, just so you know, one of these was later edited. It originally read:

Safe Bet Amy is a just a pissed off dyke who hates Israel

That warranted participation in a dust up. 

I like what your musical selection says, and I understand the point you're making with your list, but that list comes with an inherent danger: It looks like pulling rank and it invites comparison. Amy, for example, could add a few of her own:

  • Have you spent a good part of your life being rejected for who/what you are, particularly by people in authority and including members of your own family?
  • Have you been orphaned at a young age?
  • Have you ever been sexually abused?
  • Have you ever lived with someone who sexually abused you regularly?
  • Have you ever lost a spouse?
  • Have you ever had to raise children alone?

In some respects, she may have gone through more than any of us. 

Adversity leads different people into different directions, different kinds of adversity has different consequences, and the timing of adversity has consequences. You and I I think grew up loved and supported. Many here didn't.

Some of us have had good relationships with significant others. I've known some on line who have had horrific ones. Like with having a childhood where you faced more rejection than love, it has to be awful to go home to Hell. 

Some have had wartime experiences. I would not want Arthur's experiences. Or David McClain's. 

Some are experiencing or have experienced a spouse going through Alzheimer's. 

Forgive the imagery, particularly from me, but we all have our own crosses to bear.




Comment by JMac1949 Today on November 1, 2015 at 7:13am

SB, I'm sure that there many experiences that you've endured and survived that I can not imagine.  I'd have to be a fool to question how you see the world.  Thanks for reading and commenting.

Comment by JMac1949 Today on November 1, 2015 at 7:28am

Kosh, Points well made.  I never intended the answers to my questions to be the sole or even primary qualifications for authentic experience.  Every person has their own challenges and rewards, and that was the point of my list of twenty some questions.  I could never compare my experience with what you and your family have learned from  J. 

Thanks as always for reading, questioning and commenting.

Comment by Foolish Monkey on November 1, 2015 at 7:33am

(missed one)

Oh fun!  We're reminiscing about our "good old days"!

  1. As a child, were you ever whipped with a switch, belt, paddle, until you pissed yourself?  YES but I didn't piss myself. I just dragged myself to bed.  Did either of your parents ever strike you in the face?  YES.
  2. Did you ever have to physically threaten either or both of your parents to get them to stop beating on you?  Oh yes. 
  3. As an adult have you ever looked up the wrong end of the barrel of a gun held by a criminal?  A knife.  By a police officer?  No
  4. Have you ever been upbraided by a cop with verbal epithets and insults to provoke you into doing something that would give him the excuse to beat the crap out of you and charge you with a crime?  Because I was a minor, they didn't bother with threats - they just put me away.  
  5. Have you ever slept on the street because you had no other place to go?  Yes.
  6. Have you ever lost thirty pounds because you couldn’t put together enough money to buy food?  No.  Have you ever stolen money or food?  Yes.
  7. Have you ever been arrested on suspicion of a crime you didn’t commit and taken to jail? No.
  8. Have you ever faced a cadre of police in riot gear and taken a beating from a cop with a nightstick?  Yes to the first part, no to the second.  I used to move like the wind!
  9. Have you ever committed a crime of conscience and lived as a fugitive under another identity? (what an interesting question - I'm looking forward to reading the answers) No.
  10. Have you ever depended on the kindness and trust of strangers?  Oh yes.  Strangers have never let me down.
  11. Have you ever fallen in love and/or had sex with a person of your own sex?  Yes. 
  12. Have you ever felt so hurt, alone, lost and worthless that all you could do was crawl into bed and sob? Yes. Too many times. 
  13. Has anyone threatened to kill you or attacked you or seriously wounded you with a weapon in a fight?  Yes.
  14. Have you ever ended up in surgery and the hospital with a life threatening injury or illness?  No.
  15. Have you ever become so frustrated and angry that: You destroyed the place where you worked? No. That you considered killing someone or killing yourself? I've considered murder more than once.  Violence begets violence.  
  16. Have you ever refused to make an investment in a company that could return millions of dollars because you found the behavior of the CEO to be unethical?  No investments but I don't do business with douchebags if I can help it. 
  17. Have you ever supported a friend or a relative up to the point where you discovered that you could no longer help them and had to ask them to leave?  Sadly yes.
  18. Have you ever found what you needed in the eyes of a child?  Routinely.
  19. Or in the company of a person who was over twice your age?  Yes.
  20. Have you ever reached a point in your life where you have lost nearly all your friends and acquaintances? Yes.
Comment by JMac1949 Today on November 1, 2015 at 7:38am

Joisy,  While I was growing up with my dysfunctional family in the white bread suburbs of Florida and Texas, I'd watch "Leave it to Beaver," and "Father Knows Best," and somehow believed that somewhere there were families who lived like that.  My parents had a second chance when they spent years helping to raise my niece and nephews and they turned out to be wonderful grandparents.  Thanks reading and commenting.

Comment by Foolish Monkey on November 1, 2015 at 7:40am

Amy is smart and tough.  She's also gentle and sweet and she has a grand heart and I am very fond of her.  She argues like hell unleashed.  I used to find it unnerving but once I understood where she's coming from, I realized this is because she does not compromise her beliefs.  She's real.  I wish she lived close.  I think we'd be great friends.  :)

Comment by JMac1949 Today on November 1, 2015 at 8:03am

FM, Thanks for reading and commenting.  Hope you continue to post.  I like reading what you have to say.

Comment by Myriad on November 1, 2015 at 8:10am

People can have valid opinions without traumatic experience - such opinions may even be more realistic because more objective.  Bad experiences do not always result in generous or even sane personalities - can in fact have quite the opposite effect. 

It is to your credit that you survived your checklist and are here, being decent, kind, wise, entertaining, still extending a helping hand, etc.  

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