Where’s our moral compass?
I had the confluence of two events take place in one day and couldn’t resist the urge to write about them. I was sitting in my car, waiting for a tumbling session to end, when an incensed woman came running towards me. When she got close enough, I could finally hear that she was yelling for me to move because she was in a hurry and I was blocking her. It turned out that there was a car directly to my right, and he was blocking her. Realizing her error, she changed direction and started screaming at this guy, and the next thing I know, he gets in his car and moves it out of her way.
After he moved his car, he gave me a goofy look and told me that he was the high school football coach and just needed that spot for a few minutes to unload gear. I said, “Way better you than me. I would never have moved my car for someone who screamed at me like that.” She was unreasonable, irrational, and just plain rude. The whole incident put a bad taste in my mouth.
Later that evening, I was doing my usual scan of the news and happened to catch a video of a reporter going off on a garage attendant. If you haven’t seen it, here is a general idea: An ESPN reporter, Britt McHenry, went to dinner, and while she was eating, her car got towed. I’m human, I get it, nobody wants to have his or her car towed. But this reporter went on a tirade, in a very personal and inhumane manner, to a garage attendant who was simply doing her job.
Here is some of what she said: “I wouldn’t work at a place like this. It makes my skin crawl even being here. I have a brain, you don’t. Maybe if I were missing teeth, they would hire me too. I’m in television, you’re in a trailer, honey.” And my personal favorite, “Lose some weight, baby girl.”
Now I don’t know about you, but on my worst day, in my worst hour, at my lowest low, my brain still has a filter that would physically not allow my mouth to utter those atrocities towards another person.
But wait, this is 2015 and everyone forgives. Britt McHenry later tweeted out to her followers, “In an intense and stressful moment, I allowed my emotions to get the best of me and said some regrettable and insulting things. I am sorry for my actions and will learn from my mistakes.” Hmm, sounds pretty disingenuous to me.
What makes this worse is that she knew she was being filmed. At one point, she looked directly into the camera, and just kept spewing her venom. You look at her and she’s clearly young and beautiful. I’m going to go out on a limb and hypothesize that she hasn’t faced a lot of obstacles in her life. Her behavior clearly reflects her belief that she can treat people with utter disrespect.
I have so many questions for these two women. I want to start with — what makes you so important and better than everyone else that they should cater to you? Is this your parents’ fault? Did you get everything you ever wanted as a child and don’t know how to accept “no”? Is this simply a case of bad manners? Is this teaching our kids that they can attack someone and then apologize on social media and it will all be OK? Do we need to add a class on “good manners” to our current school curriculum, or is this learned at home?
To add insult to injury, Britt McHenry got suspended from her job for one week. To me, this is as disappointing as her behavior. Is ESPN out of their minds? This gal should have been fired on the spot. We will absolutely never watch or support this girl on ESPN in our home.
My hope is that collectively, as a society, we start to hold people accountable for their actions. I’m sick of reading social media apologies that publicists write in order to get their celebrity clients out of trouble. The next time Kanye West runs on stage to ruin the moment for the real Grammy winner (e.g.,Taylor Swift), stop downloading his music. If you get mad at something, stop supporting it, period.
That’s two articles in a row — I’m really hoping my next rant is something on a much more positive note.
Are you as fed up as I am? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.