Friday, September 25, 2009

Stupid people do stupid things...

...and then blame others for their stupidity. It's sad, really. I have two stories courtesy of our local NBC affiliate, WITN, which show people doing incredibly stupid things most of us would not think twice about, and they're looking for anyone to blame but themselves.

This first one should be an easier sell than the next one. Down in Florida (surprise surprise) a teacher spiked her soda with hot sauce. The parents of the kid who stole the soda are all upset. I suppose it would do to point out that the kid is autistic. OK, he has a learning ability. OK, the teacher knew he'd steal the soda, which is why she spiked it. Still, hot sauce never killed anybody. And still, if he hadn't stolen the soda, he wouldn't have gotten - wait, the kid wasn't even harmed. He was embarrassed. That's it. Anyway, this actually went to trial, and she was found guilty, and faces up to five years in jail. And in 10 years when this kid's legal, he'll be behind bars because, first, his parents taught him it was OK to steal, and the system taught him that if you try to protect your stuff from getting stolen, you can do some serious time even if nobody gets hurt. Freakin' stupid.

Might not be able to convince those of you who have kids, but a couple down in Arizona took some nudie pictures of their kids - three young daughters, it says, ages aren't given - and then tried to develop the pictures at Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart called the FBI, I suppose, and the state brought them up on charges, and took their kids. Now they are countersuing the state as well as Wal-Mart for defamation and some other crap. First of all, naked pictures of kids are contraband in the United States, with some exceptions given. Typically parents are allowed a few of their own kids, up to a certain age. Usually a judgment call is made at the photo counter. But it is the policy of any photo lab - and I worked at one, so I know this firsthand - to call the FBI for pictures including any child nudity, and then they make the call. (There is another number for bestiality photos.) Now, I know anyone, say 15 or older, knows their parents have naked pictures of them. It's a given. My mom even sent my wife a couple. Insert eye-rolling emoticon here. But let's be serious. People know that crimes against kids have risen in the last 15-20 years. It's all over the news. More people are aware, and more people are sensitive to rights people never attributed to kids before. And one of those rights is the right to not be photographed in the nude. Pictures don't get lost or disappear anymore. Did I mention that they used a digital camera? They could have printed these pictures at home. Digital cameras are the new Polaroids, they're great for those taboo sex pictures and videos you don't want to take to a lab to get developed. They could have emailed those pictures to all their family members and the FBI likely would never have found out. But no, they took them to Wal-Mart. So they got caught, got busted. But rather than plead their case, they're suing. First of all, Wal-Mart is in the clear. They did their job. They did what they were supposed to do. Now, the state may have overreacted. I don't know. But I'm pretty sure these people aren't going to win their lawsuit. Then again...

Anyway, if you look through the comments on those articles, I post as "Nathan" from "Eastern NC". I pretty much said what I said here, just in 1000 characters or less per comment.

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