Here’s a couple examples I’ve noticed of late.
A new term has cropped up recently to describe the act of publishing a person’s real name, address and other personal information on the internet with the intent to cause harm.
Yes, it happens so much there’s a word for it now.
The term is “dox.”
Years ago, long before it was trendy, I was doxxed. I had banned a couple of racists from an online forum and they were none too happy about it. So they threatened to kill me. “You have 24 hours to get out of town. Or else.” Seriously? You just did that? I didn’t realize I lived in the town of Tombstone. Oh, look. There goes a tumbleweed. Somewhere a chicken clucks.
I reported the emails to the police. They contacted me and I showed them the printouts. “That happened online? That’s not real. There’s nothing we can do.” True story. Good times.
Later the racists doxxed me on Craigslist, published photoshopped pictures of me and my wife, and took credit for killing my missing cat. Craigslist wouldn’t reply to my requests for help. Remember, I was years ahead of my time. Again, I turned to the police. I had proof I had been doxxed. Their reply? “Nothing we can do about that. It’s not illegal. That’s public information.”
Fast-forward to today and the Topsy-Turvy part: Oregon currently has about 55 “juvenile sex offenders” attending class in 24 different school districts. Parents and other students are not notified of their presence. Why? Because of federal and state laws that protect the privacy of the sex offender student.
How do you know when a situation is Topsy-Turvy? When it only flows one way – against you – at every possible turn. That’s Topsy-Turvy!
You may remember the name Ethan Couch. Recently his name has been coming up in the news again. He’s the Texas teenager who used the “affluenza” defense to get out of serving jail time for killing four persons while driving drunk at over three times the legal limit. He was 16 at the time when he crashed into a stalled pickup on the side of the road.
A CBS television station in Dallas, Texas, reported yesterday that Ethan will be released “very soon” from about a year spent in rehabilitation. Once released, he will be on ten years of probation. He will not have served any jail time for his actions.
And now some Topsy-Turvy: A 90-year man was arrested and taken away, in handcuffs, by Fort Lauderdale police. His crime? Feeding the homeless.
For 23-years Arnold Abbott has operated a non-profit organization called “Love Thy Neighbor” which distributes hundreds of meals per week to the needy. The mayor of Ft. Lauderdale supports a city ordinance that essentially bans food sharing among local citizens.
The mayor was initially defiant. “Just because of media attention, we don’t stop enforcing the law,” he said. Now, in light of media attention that threatens tourism and the local economy (which consists primarily of horny millennials drinking lots and lots of booze and having gratuitous sexual relations with each other and inanimate objects like fire hydrants) he has adopted a more conciliatory tone.
A killer of four walks free among us while a 90-year old man is “dragged away in cuffs” for feeding hungry people and threatening the rights of young people to act like assholes. That’s a whoop ass can full of fucking Topsy-Turvy.
I’d like to start today with a little personal info about yours truly: I have never owned a lighter. Emphasis on “never.” And I’ve never carried matches. Ever. I’ve never kept either on my person in my entire life. The only exception has been when we go camping and a starter we keep for lighting the BBQ. There have been times in my life when having the means to make fire would have been convenient, but that’s not the way I roll. I want nothing to do with either.
I’m not what you’d call a big fan of smoking. Somehow I escaped the gravitational pull of my entire family unit and went on to become the only one of us who doesn’t smoke. Mom, dad and sister. Everyone smokes but me. I guess that makes me the special one.
My thoughts about the human experience today have to do with someone I bumped into recently. It was a simple random encounter and over in a matter of moments. She was a street person who lived on the street. She was clearly beset with extremely serious mental problems and her face was more weathered and aged than the Grand Canyon – I’d bet she’s about twice as young as she looked. Seeing her was heartbreaking and raised serious questions like, “Why doesn’t society do something for someone like her?”
My wife was in the store and I was waiting in our car in a parking lot when this lady approached me. She never once stopped talking to herself. She knocked on the window of my car. A few feet away her possessions were sitting on the sidewalk. I opened the door and she asked me for matches. I told her I didn’t have any. She left and went inside. She came out with a beverage and headed my way again. At the last second she realized she’d already hit me up and reacted with a start, then turned away and headed back to the sidewalk. There, I assumed, sat most likely everything she owned. A laundry basket and a box.
She proceeded to move along down the street, but she couldn’t carry both items at the same time. Cars whizzed by as she dragged the box about 50′ on the sidewalk. Then she slowly shuffled back and did the same with the basket.
And so she went on down the street, moving 50′ at a time and retracing her steps each time. Two steps forward and one step back, only she wasn’t really going anywhere.
Why don’t we as society do something more for someone like her?