Currently, the Internets have been abuzz with a new drama and resulting digital witch hunt. Paul Walker, an actor from the popular movie series “Fast and Furious,” was killed in a horrible car accident earlier this week that also took the life of the fellow rider, Roger Rodas (and of course there are almost no posts honoring his death). Fans quickly paid tribute to him at the scene of his death and over the Internets via Facebook postings, Twitter hashtags, and of course 9gag. While somewhat superficial in nature, people were trying their best to announce that they cared, and for some this was indeed genuine grief.
Now, not everyone was a fan of this man. I didn’t even know who he was, probably because I have never seen Fast and Furious and was never interested in doing so (though I do love me a Vin Diesel movie from time to time). Yet there is one individual in particular who has decided to voice a less-than-popular opinion and, as a result, is currently undergoing vicious verbal attacks and death threats from the self-righteous hypocrites that are the general population of Internet users. Why such a galvanized reaction to a mere article published on an online journal lacking in overall popularity? Should the Internet populace again try to cool their jets and find something better to do? The answer to the last question is a huge YES.
I read Bull’s article about a day ago, right when the hate mail had started coming in. At first, I thought: She must be joking. This must be some form of sarcasm. Using words like “libtards” and suggesting that people dying overseas is not worth media attention must be her attempt at being a troll. If this woman claims to be a journalist, she would realize the inaccuracies of everything she is writing, so this must be satire. But of course, after reading the whole article and perusing the rest of her work, I realized the terrible truth: She is a young, immature, and close-minded recent high school graduate. There are many of these on the Internet, and as my alternative title suggests, the best action is to ignore them. Don’t give them the views and attention they crave. Basically, find the mature, adult patience to ignore them until they go away. I’m not even going to post direct links to her work because she doesn’t deserve the views. Her work is generally filled with false information, a lack of research to back her claims, a haughty holier-than-though tone, and proof of an uneducated mind.
However, the resulting backlash has been absolutely horrifying and completely unjustified. The amount of death threats and hate she was receiving literally prompted police to put her into protective custody. It has also been reported that she has threatened to take her own life due to the damage she is sustaining psychologically and to her “career” (I use this term lightly since she doesn’t seem to really have what we would call a career, but it’s all she has and matters to her so it counts). I’ve read the comments on her article, her Facebook (created only 17 hours ago? Interesting…), and anywhere else her Googled name produced results. Not only do complete strangers strongly tell her to kill herself or threaten to do so themselves, but they have also resorted to attacking her as a woman, suggesting that all kinds of disgusting and terrible things happen to her body. These include rape, various injuries and mutilations, and cancer. These attacks are 100% unjustified no matter how big of a “fan” these evil people think they are of the late Paul Walker or how stupid her article truly was. Truly, this is another example of how horrible many of the human race have become as they hide behind the shroud of anonymity that the Internet provides.
So, we’ll put Adora Bull on the top of our list of People We Should Ignore Until They Go Away. I understand the irony of posting about her when we should instead ignore her, but there is a significant lack of people coming out and saying that the commentators and attackers are completely wrong and should be ashamed of themselves. Let’s hope this blows over soon and that her name will fade from public awareness and memory swiftly as an obnoxious smell. Concerning her attackers, some were foolish enough to leave personal information in their messages, so let’s hope the police visit them soon enough. There are better things for them to do such as clicking “like” to cure disease and drawing penises on YouTube comments. Or, better yet, produce something worthwhile that actually deserves widespread attention. Just stop this stupidity. Everyone else, stay strong during this current wave of human idiocy.
In our next edition: Miley Cyrus! Why the lovers and haters keep talking about her and why it’s time to cease and desist. We’ll tackle “Beiber Fever” and hate soon! Oh the delicious irony!
Recently, my Dad called me up around 9pm, about the beginning of that iffy time between mid evening and god-awful early morning where any phone call you get has a high likelihood of being a bad one. My Dad usually leaves the bad-news-breaking to my Mom. Usually, Dad calls to say hi, check how I’m doing, make sure I’m eating healthy (most def not gonna happen on a college budget), and otherwise remind me that anything standing in my way or hurting me can go f&*% itself and he’ll be the one to throw the first punch. My Dad is the picture of stubbornness, orneriness, toughness, and fart-ness.
He is also a cancer patient now.
When he first started to explain it, I struggled not to cry. He’s 50 years old, already heavily beset by arthritis and a spinal injury, and I can’t imagine his body taking any more blows like this. After the initial shock of the first few days was over, I began to re-assess who my Father is to me. Not just “my Father” and whom I’ve had a rocky relationship with, but “the Man who is my Father.”
It’s so mind blowing when we reach that age of adulthood and we realize that our parents, the ones who were our closest allies and yet so far from us, separated by decades of age and worlds of experience, are in fact just like us. Not to say we are exact replicas of our parents (even though the similarities can be astounding, and not just the physical ones) but that they are as much adult, struggling, persevering, questioning, doubting, feeling humans as we are. We no longer identify them in the order of 1) Dad 2) John Howard 3) Husband 4) Man, etc, even though these are important co-identities, but now it feels like my Dad is “the Man who is my Dad,” listed as 1) John Howard 2) Man *all the other things he is that I can’t even begin to comprehend* ??) Dad.
My explanation doesn’t do the experience and epiphany justice, and I know many people probably come to this conclusion long before I did, but it is profoundly amazing to me that an entire cosmos of experience and ideas exist within this Man who is my Father and I’ll never come close to truly knowing who he is. Especially with the current threat to his life, I am made even more aware of how unlikely it is that our minds and souls can ever fully comprehend each other.
Anytime we may be in disagreement with our Dads or hate them or think they are completely ridiculous because we in our omniscient youthfulness know the answer to everything, we need to stop and remember this: our Fathers are Human Beings first and our Fathers second. Whether or not they rate these identities in that order, we must have a new level of respect for these Men who became our Fathers through multitudes upon multitudes of different reasons and circumstances.
It is through this discovery, not just the threat to his life, that I’ve come to love my Dad that much more and so much deeper. It’s an extra piece of human dignity and respect I was too naive to grant him before. Hopefully, now as an adult, I can begin to understand the Man who gave me half of what I am and decided to help raise me rather than eat me or something. It’s a morbid thought, but I want to be able to say to myself at his funeral one day in the very, very FAR future:
I knew this Man. He was my Father, a loving one and a pillar of strength. What he truly is was beyond my comprehension, but I was fortunate to get a privileged glimpse into the vastness that is a single human being’s lifetime of experiences. I am privileged to carry these centuries old genes which were, statistically, miraculously passed on to me by this Man. Through his actions, I exist, I have being, and yet we have passed each other on the river of time just a hair’s width away, a brushing past of destinies on our way to the incomprehensible eternity that is the future. I knew him, and now I carry him with me forever.
You know you truly are and should probably remain a dancer when the time comes that you are unable to dance and you question who you really are, how does your heart still function and your soul find release? It’s almost an identity crisis.