Wednesday, July 25, 2007

"Dateline NBC: To Catch a Predator" Perp Commits Suicide

(I originally posted this on another blog, for which I am sure I am about to get flamed. However, this post conveys my feelings not about sexual predators, but about the Constitution and our civil liberties. It is in reference to the NBC story linked here.)

I want to make something clear right off the bat: I am all for the police doing anything they can to protect our children, and to arrest the predators that have committed crimes against them.

However, I have a feeling the rest of my opinion will not be very popular here.

I have never liked the NBC show nor the legal aspect of these "stings" (please see link above). I believe that if there is a crime:

1. It has to actually be committed, and
2. There has to be an actual victim.

I know these people are the scum of the Earth, and I don't really feel all that bad about the ones they do bust and prosecute, but there is a serious slippery slope here when it comes to the Constitution and our civil liberties. Think about this: when a guy gets arrested in one of these stings, the "victim" is an adult playing the part of a child, AND there was never a possibility that the crime would have taken place. Repeat: no victim ever exists, no crime was ever committed.

Do you realize what that means?

That means people are being arrested for their thoughts.

This means they have now made it legal to arrest and convict people for what is going on in their heads. I am extremely uncomfortable with the government having that much power. Where do you draw the line? Can I someday soon get a ticket because it was overheard that I plan on speeding today? This sounds like something straight from Orwell's "1984". And it frightens me.

As for the guy who committed suicide, that was a poorly written article, so it is hard to gauge what exactly happened, but I really think that sister has a case. Again, I'm not defending that sick bastard, but not only was there no crime and no victim, there was no intent! Maybe he thought about molesting a kid, but he decided not to do it. So now it is a crime to even make an illegal consideration in your head, even if you decide against it later? How many people have ever thought of doing something illegal and then decided against it?

I actually DO feel bad for the guy. Maybe he had a lapse of reason, came to his senses and decided not to do it!

Again, since I know I'm going to get flamed, I want to make it clear: I am all for nailing these sick people and protecting our children. I am just highly uncomfortable with the way it is currently being executed.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Since I’m Still Awake…Something I Noticed About Race on Comedy Central

I watch a lot of standup comedy. I mean, a LOT. I am basically a standup fanatic. Other than the Daily Show with Jon Stewart, I don’t think there is anything on TV I watch more.

This means I watch “Comedy Central Presents” nearly every day, and I have seen several comedians multiple times. One thing I’ve noticed is that every time a comedian makes any kind of joke that makes fun of a particular race, a camera will always go to the audience and show a member of that race laughing.

It almost never fails. If you watch the show, pay attention next time. Especially if it is a black comedian making fun of white people or vice versa. Just today I watched comedian Greg Fitzsimmons, who is white, make a joke about black people, and immediately the camera went to a black man in the front row who was laughing. It’s as if Comedy Central is trying to send us the subliminal message:

Hey, it’s okay to laugh! We know it’s a racial joke, but look here, he’s black and he’s laughing at it. So, no need to be offended and change the channel. Enjoy the rest of the show!

I can’t help but be a little offended that they do this. It’s as if I am too dumb to figure out what is supposed to be funny and what is supposed to be offensive on my own.

My two cents, anyway.

This Confusing Ride Called Joe's Life

It was 3 am, and I was in sort of a crappy mood. Confused about my life, I wanted to get some emotions out. My main blog is a humor website, so I didn't want to post anything unfunny there, and my MySpace blog has become more or less an even crazier humor blog, so I didn't want it to be a downer there either. So I ended up just writing it and posting it as a "MySpace bulletin", which for those that aren't on MySpace, is simply a message that goes out to all your "friends" on a bulletin board.

I was pretty astonished by the result. By the next day I had received about fifty e-mails showing support. I was at work and had no time to reply to that many, so I posted another bulletin thanking everyone...which only made those that didn't see it the night before go looking for it and then sending their own e-mails. All told, I received over 150 e-mails due to that bulletin, which only now, three weeks later, have I finally replied to all the senders.

Anyway, the text of the bulletin was this:

Sorry, but for some reason I'm in a crappy mood. Very unlike me. I'm usually pretty upbeat and positive, no matter what. I have no idea why I would choose 2:47 am on a Wednesday night to get into a shit mood. I guess so I can post a bulletin about it without anyone actually reading it.

I need something. Rather, I need to need something.

I need a purpose.

I want to be responsible.

I don't want responsibilities.

I want to have a girlfriend. Marry her. Settle down. Have kids.

I want to be single. Not own a home. Not even HAVE a home. Travel the world. Have adventures. On my own.

I want to make more money. Save for a healthy, wealthy retirement.

I don't care about money or material things.

I want someone to tell me what path to take so I can take it.

I want the freedom to choose my own path.

I want to have a successful career in one field.

I get bored if I do any one job more than a few years.

I know exactly where I am.

I am lost.

I have heard several times that about the time you become a teenager, you think you know everything. As you grow, your conceit worsens because you learn more and more. However, you don't truly mature until you make the realization that you really don't know shit. If this is the case, I must be the most mature jackass on the face of this planet, because I've never known less than I do right now. The more I learn, the more I realize how ludicrous and nonsensical life is.

I thought about changing a few things on there before posting this, but I decided against it. It is a piece in and of itself, representing what was going through my mind three weeks ago. If I want to write it again later, I'll write it again later.

Funny...I'm not any less confused now.