Friday, February 09, 2007

The Darkness Falls

We've all heard about the overreaction of the city of Boston to a guerilla marketing campaign for a cartoon show.  Today, we learn that the head of Cartoon Network is resigning over it.  And today, I'm going to comment on it.

Boston should slip into the sea.  Cleanse the idiocy with cold salt water and lobsters.  I'm sorry to say I lived there for a time, went to school there for a time, and enjoyed it - I'll certainly never go back now.

What happened to our collective common sense, people?  Ever since 9/11, were' so afraid of our own shadows that anyone walking down the street with a boxcutter in his back pocket, or two turbaned and robed men talking to one another quietly in the subway, or a Lite Brite on a street corner, is now considered a terrorist threat that demands some sort of response.  I guess we're lucky that the response was just a bunch of paranoid morons calling the authorities, and not some whack-job rounding up a vigilante posse.  Funny, I don't feel lucky - I feel dirty.

Turner Broadcasting, owner of Cartoon Network, apologized and has paid US$2 million to Boston to compensate them for the emergency response they took.  I'm sorry, but if I overreact to a situation and incur personal costs, why should anyone else but me be responsible for my actions?  Oh, that's right, I forgot - this is the New America, where personal responsibility is neither taught nor practiced.  Those few of us with this rare commodity are sitting back, shaking our heads, and wondering where the hell our country got off to.

Our elected leaders have paid lip service for five years that we should not lose the American Way of Life (tm) because of terrorism.  All this time, however, the American Way of Life has been slowly slipping away, slowly boiling to death like a frog in a pot of cool water over a Bunsen burner, as we submit to random searches and pat down on subways, invasive searches of our bags and limits on our speech as we try to board airplanes, and compilation of our personal data into lists that tell us where and how we can't travel.  We've lost our common sense to fear-based irrationality wrapped in the blanket of "security concerns".  We've lost our rational thought and replaced with jingoism.  We've lost our sense of humour and replaced it with self-importance as a cog in the great machine.

In my opinion, the head of Cartoon Network should still be in his role, and the head of Turner Broadcasting shouldn't be writing checks.  They should both be looking at the knee-jerkers and bureaucrats in Boston and asking them, "Why is your stupidity our problem?  Why should we pay for your actions?  Stupidity should be painful - more correctly, your stupidity should be painful to you."  And the people of Boston should be looking hard and asking hard questions at these mental midgets come next election day.

No comments: