#snowflakes

Did you put on your bulletproof vest sweetheart?

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Is this the next school uniform? As written yesterday, gun violence in US schools has been a problem for decades. Metal detectors have been installed at certain schools since the 1990s. Gun massacres have still occurred. The problem stems from a growing tide of broken homes and kids venting out. The Zero Hour documentary on the Columbine massacre reveals in chilling details how premeditated and well prepared (not to mention preventable) the attack was – propane bombs, pipe bombs, machine guns, pistols and even handgrenades. Perpetrator Eric Harris’s father called up the police on hearing of the shooting fearing his son maybe behind it. The police had received multiple enquiries from concerned parents over death threats Harris had made online to students yet chose to do nothing. Harris and Klebold openly documented their intent in videos and diaries. It is patently clear they wanted revenge for their subjective feelings of having had their esteem crushed by society, especially by more popular class mates. It is clear there were no role models trying to pull them back from the brink.

Still the ‘banning guns will solve it all’ solutions still avoid dealing with the real problem. The psychology of kids lost in a world where they feel outcasts. Feelings of rejection, loss and trodden on self esteem are shown to be time and time again to be a leading factor in kids picking up a weapon and seeking to right perceived wrongs. Many American high school kids drive to school. Can we envisage one deciding to drive a car on campus mowing down students at lunch time? Will banning cars be a solution?

What next? Will parents be decking out kids in bulletproof vests and hoping teachers who are incentived to arm themselves in the class room step up if all hell breaks loose? One wonders whether kids like Harris & Klebold would have been deterred by teachers packing heat. Even worse, SWAT snipers at a distance of 500 meters may not be able to determine at the time who are the ‘bad guys’. Even worse, how terrible it would be for a teacher to be tasked with ‘offing’ a student who he or she teaches in remedial maths class. One would hope the motivation of teachers is to want to educate students to get ahead rather than aim at their head. Or have things got so bad in some schools that such a remedy gets leant a sympathetic ear. Having armed security at schools is less and less a rare occurrence.

In 2015, about 3,000,000 teens ages 12 to 17 had had at least one major depressive episode over the year according to the Department of Health and Human Services. More than 2 million admitted they were experiencing depression in ways that impair daily function. The National Institute of Mental Health reported about 30% of girls and 20% of boys– some 6.3 million teens–have had an anxiety disorder.

A Seattle Children’s Hospital study tracked hashtags people use on Instagram to talk about self-harm. It noted a dramatic increase over the past two years. In 2014 researchers got 1.7 million search results for “#selfharmmm”. By 2015 that number had surged to over 2.4 million.

The American Psychological Association (APA) released a report several years ago during the school year saying that teens report their stress level is higher than levels reported by adults in the past month. Many teens admitted feeling overwhelmed (31%) and depressed or sad (30%) as a result of stress. More than one-third of teens report fatigue or feeling tired (36%).

Sales of antidepressant drugs is expected to be a $17bn industry in the US in 2020, up $3bn from 2015. The National Center of Health Statistics reports the prevalence of teenagers taking such drugs has grown to 13%, in 2015 up from 11% in 2008. 68% of people ages 12 and up said they had been taking their antidepressant for two years or more. A quarter who took antidepressants reported taking them for 10 years or more. Clinical depression affects about 16mn people in the U.S. and is estimated to cost the U.S. about $210 billion a year in productivity loss and health care.

Is this honestly seen as the best way to tackle a mental health crisis? Just dope up teenagers and hope they are comfortably numb so as to not want to do harm to themselves or others? It was shown that Harris had switched antidepressants which could have fueled not quelled his homicidal and suicidal tendencies. This isn’t about guns. It is about ignoring the elephant in the room – stressed out kids with no mentors or role models to coax them out of their problems.

In some respects, schools are only making it worse by pandering to safe spaces and enforcing trigger warnings. Instead of dealing with the psychological problems at source and proactively targeting attention starved kids growing up in broken homes by counselling them in ways to build self esteem and how to get on in the “real” world, the problem will only fester because irrational feelings of hopelessness will get reinforced by ignoring the real issue.

Tranquilizing people with mental issues by molly-coddling them is also the mantra in the world of identity politics. By muzzling people from speaking truths we only build barriers around effective solutions. That regulations around hurting people’s feelings are increasingly being enforced, is it any wonder we are growing a generation of victims who can pin the blame on irrelevant and unrelated things? Healing comes through listening and understanding by open and transparent dialogue. Not by banning it.

Will an hypothetical ban on guns prevent the growing trend of kids growing up in single-parent households (and all of the psychological data which shows clear evidence of a higher rate of delinquency in children) from committing  such terrible acts of violence because they have no access to firearms? Feelings of desperation will only lead them to find other ways of seeking their distorted view of attaining inner peace. More kids will die and at the end the exact same problems will manifest themselves again – what lead to the act? At least in this case, Parkland, Florida shooter Nikolas Cruz survived. Perhaps we will learn much more about the psychological timeline of him if the press can wake up for 5 minutes and stop trying to link the act purely to white supremacy because it fits a narrative.

Twitter – why Stephen Fry quit

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Stephen Fry quit Twitter two years ago and so eloquently explained why:

What fun twitter was in the early days, a secret bathing-pool in a magical glade in an enchanted forest. It was glorious ‘to turn as swimmers into cleanness leaping.’ We frolicked and water-bombed and sometimes, in the moonlight, skinny-dipped. We chattered and laughed and put the world to rights and shared thoughts sacred, silly and profane. But now the pool is stagnant. It is frothy with scum, clogged with weeds and littered with broken glass, sharp rocks and slimy rubbish. If you don’t watch yourself, with every move you’ll end up being gashed, broken, bruised or contused … The fun is over…

…To leave that metaphor, let us grieve at what Twitter has become. A stalking ground for the sanctimoniously self-righteous who love to second-guess, to leap to conclusions and be offended – worse, to be offended on behalf of others they do not even know. It’s as nasty and unwholesome a characteristic as can be imagined. It doesn’t matter whether they think they’re defending women, men, transgender people, Muslims, humanists … the ghastliness is absolutely the same. It makes sensible people want to take an absolutely opposite point of view.

Zip It or be Zapped

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It seems that everywhere we turn these days someone else is raising a flag to suggest “we need to move with the times.”  What are “the times?” Whose times are we required to move for? Mine? Yours? Theirs? A chat on social media the other day raised the conversation of an HR director saying that he would not sign off on a hire who didn’t agree with his subjective view over a trivial subject. He argued that it was for the best interests of diversity and inclusion not to hire someone who wasn’t offended by said subject. CM retorted “so if I don’t agree with your thinking on a topic which is completely unrelated to the job task that I might be hypothetically the most qualified for, you’ll sink it on that alone…sounds like a totalitarian power trip.” This confirmed the ‘unconscious bias, conscious bias‘ piece on HR last week.’ 2+2=5. HR departments are becoming all powerful autocrats.

It is hard to know whether to laugh or cry! The conversation went further to suggest that I simply must accept change on the grounds of diversity. That word is chucked around as loosely as a Casanova saying “I love you” to his multiple conquests. It simply seeks to force compliance. Surely all things work better when there is mutual buy-in rather than threatening to burn people at the stake. Why is my subjectivity any more or less valuable than someone else’s?

The idea of forcing conformity is dangerous ground. As long as one’s views don’t openly impact others why should it matter? Why should HR apparatchiks use bullying behaviour which goes against the grain of every appropriate workplace behaviour training seminar staff are required to take? Well it is only “some” behaviour. So much for equality in the workplace.

Just like the same sex marriage (SSM) debate. Anyone with a rainbow screen saver could proudly display it in the office without attracting a whimper because they were ‘on message’. Anyone that didn’t believe it and had a “Vote NO” as a computer screen background would have been summoned before HR for hate speech and reprimanded or worse, sacked. Is that freedom of opinion? Is that diversity? Or inclusion? Accept or face the consequences is hardly a way to encourage it. Diversity and inclusion only creates division and exclusion because only some people are allowed to voice free speech.  When the government funded Diversity Council tells Australian workers that the use of the word ‘guys’ is offensive then just how far are we willing to trade everyday freedoms and cultural norms? If one is triggered by the use of the word ‘guys’ or a preferred pronoun then they need a shrink not an HR department to help them.

The sad reality is that diversity should be won on the grounds of the argument rather than legislation. Just like the F1 race queen ban from this year. It doesn’t much matter to CM personally on what the F1 wants to do. Go on the MotoGP website and there is a “Paddock GirlssectionTo suddenly reverse a decision it so actively promotes would be utter hypocrisy. While the need to halt the objectification of women argument is bandied about, the women who do it are clearly happy to be objectified for a price. Instead of viewers being told to “get with the times” shouldn’t they be hammering the message to the umbrella girls to tell them they’re letting down their own side? Could it be they can exploit their beauty for some decent coin because they don’t share offense over the issue? Their looks are a virtue in their eyes. Are they wrong to use it their advantage? Would a Harvard MBA graduate apply to McDonalds for a cash register role so as to check his or her privelege to those that weren’t so lucky to study there?

Whether one likes it or not why not let sponsors decide how they want to spend their ad dollars and let consumers bury them if they find the use of advertising across a cleavage as “not with the times”? Why state control? Casey Stoner ended up marrying his pit girl and has a wonderful family now. If 10% of teams decided to keep pit girls but got 75% of the TV coverage before the start of the race could you blame them? Advertising is literally all about ‘exposure’. Or would race control demand the camera operators avoid them?

Further to that, perhaps F1 should ban the popular cockpit radio transmissions of drivers like Kimi Raikkonen who drop the F-bomb every other lap. Or is profanity now ‘in with the times’?

Should the forthcoming Tokyo Motor Show ban the use of scantily clad women standing next to cars? Last year Porsche, VW and Audi had several slick cut male models parading their products. Ladies were lining up to take selfies with these foreign himbos. If not for objectification, then what? Girls could be heard saying “cho kakkoi” (so handsome). As a male was I feeling insulted and triggered? No. I figured it was time to sign up for the gym, visit Hugo Boss for a sharp suit and book an appointment at a $300 hair stylist after I got back in shape. If I had made a song and dance about feeling uncomfortable at handsome men being treated like slabs of meat would I be granted the same rights to being offended? Not for a second.

Should pretty women be banned from starring in adverts?  Cosmetics companies have products that are pitched pretty much solely toward women but no one bats an eyelid when Giselle pouts a lipstick. Luxury goods stores also cater predominantly to women. No shortage of flesh showing off shoes, handbags or miniskirts. Why no outrage? Should Subaru be raked over coals for targeting same sex couples in its adverts? No. If it feels that is a market it wishes to tap then it should feel free to push for it. If I was offended then I could simply refuse to buy an Impreza WRX. I shouldn’t have a right to tell Subaru who it can and can’t sell to. That’s accepting diversity. Not enforcing my view of the world on others with respect to Subaru. Choice.

Put simply why should the subjective opinions of people (within reason) be such that we must comfort the wowsers at all times? Yarra Council is telling it’s 1,000 staff it mustn’t use the word “Australia Day” to refer to Janury 26, a Day celebrated since 1815! Aussie nurses and midwives are being told to check their white privelege and admit their colonial roots should a patient demand so. Shouldn’t the safe delivery of children be the only priority than have a “code of conduct” to force behaviours that have probably never if ever been an issue in decades? Bad bedside manner for healthcarers is one thing less likely to do with race, gender or sexual orientation than individual attitudes.

Still the message is zip it or be zapped. Next time you’re being told it is for diversity start running for the hills. Your subjective opinion is as equal as anyone elses provided you don’t disagree with the Marxist’s definition of ‘with the times

 

2+2=5

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It is no surprise that The Guardian has published a review like this. It is yet another reason why it still begs for donations at the end of every article. Instead of thinking the content might be the problem the paper still thinks it’s readers “just haven’t come around yet”.  It’s consistent with leftist thinking.

Buckmaster writes,

Designed to appeal to US audiences first and foremost, and subsequently exploiting Australia’s inferiority complex, Crocodile Dundee confirmed false preconceptions Americans had (and perhaps still have) about Australia and Australians. These movies constructed a conservative fantasy, where white hetero males do all the hard work and are justly rewarded, and where everybody else, including “the sheilas”, “the Aborigines” and “the gays”, understand their place in the pecking order – which is somewhere below people like Dundee.”

Doesn’t the $700mn that the Crocodile Dundee franchise earned speak volumes of is popularity? Was it a surprise to see Tourism Australia make Paul Hogan (Crocodile Dundee) it’s pin up boy to tell Yanks he’ll “put another shrimp on the barbie”? The Guardian should take note.  Is it that many people see beyond all of these stereotypes because of the comedy within it? Why would people pay to watch a comedy film if it must walk on egg shells over every potential grievance? Maybe it would please Buckmaster if signs lit up telling audiences when they should applaud and boo? That way we could be indoctrinated inside the theatre. Perhaps filmmakers should pool all revenues at the box office and divide them evenly so those that didn’t do very well get equal pay?

Will The Guardian protest in ways that force the film content approval boards to edit out any “insensitive comments” against minorities? Jerry Seinfeld used to make fun of our differences all the time. One episode saw Jerry asking a mailman who happened to be of Chinese origin whether he knew where a Chinese restaurant was. “Do you think because I’m Chinese that I know where the Chinese restaurant is?” “No I thought you’d know because you’re a mailman” Two perspectives hidden in the comedy. If Jerry Seinfeld wasn’t funny he wouldn’t have been paid millions per episode. The viewers spoke and the network listened.

The problem with the left is that they can’t laugh at themselves let alone life. Most good humour is achieved by making fun of people. Ricky Gervais made a whole comedy series ‘The Office’ which poked fun of the horrible boss most of us had encountered while tackling all the issues around race, gender, sexual orientation, office romances, hierarchies and the politics inside the workplace. It was so funny because the viewer could laugh at the truth behind the storyline as they could rattle off names of their own colleagues who were just like the characters.

But no, humour must be surgically removed by the state. Rules must be put in place to protect people that aren’t necessarily asking for it.  Were Aborigines outraged after the first Crocodile Dundee? No. Should they and other minorities that supposedly had their feelings hurt retroactively seek compensation from Paul Hogan? Should he be dragged in front of the Australian Human Rights Commission?

What Buckmaster overlooks is the hypocrisy of Hollywood. As the #METOO scandal broke, celebrities might have worn black but so short of material were most of the dress makers one would be hard pressed to see it as a legitimate protest against sexual harassment. That’s ok though as their acceptance speeches spoke of gender pay gaps and all the other champagne socialist causes. That’s the difference. Because they support the leftist causes that’s alright even though half of those in the room are perfect examples of ignoring causes until it affects them. Surprise surprise to see the ratings of Hollywood award ceremonies  plummet. Ringing any bells Mr Buckmaster?

So to  Buckmaster’s  hope that the next Croc Dundee film removes the very things that made the franchise such a hit. Why not just let the box office tell the story of what people are prepared to pay for? People can make up their own minds on what they’re offended by. They don’t need the state to control language and thought. Look at all the howls of protest from the left about Tommy Robinson being a hateful racist bigot. Then look to why he has two #1 best selling books on Amazon? Could it be more people actually agree with him but keep quiet to avoid endless tirades from the left? Then they wonder why Trump won. In a sense the president is a Crocodile Dundee. He portrays himself as a silverback who grabs crotches and throws caution to the wind at political correctness.

2+2=5

Totalistralian Open

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From today’s papers – “Stacy Cole and his husband Brian Hewitt have travelled from Dallas, Texas for the first Grand Slam of the year but won’t be buying tickets to Margaret Court Arena after the stadium’s namesake expressed her views on same-sex marriage.”

CM thoroughly endorses their right to choose not to watch matches in it. What CM doesn’t endorse is the motive behind the action. The Margaret Court Arena was named after her for sporting achievements. Period. Just because she possesses different values on marriage is not an excuse to go down the path of vilification which seeks to remove the name. As they said,

I hope that the Australian Open takes the fact that her name is on his Court very seriously and maybe considers having another name because it does make us feel a little uncomfortable buying tickets to go in.

As John McEnroe would say, “YOU CAN’T BE SERIOUS!!!?” Uncomfortable? Perhaps the Australian Open can compensate them for their trauma. Had they stayed in Texas, would they have turned off the TV were any matches played on the Margaret Court Arena? Give me a break.

Stacy & Brian identify their same sex union as a traditional husband and wife sense. The 2016 Census highlighted same sex couples as 0.7% of total relationships. Those identifying as husband & wife in same sex couple relationships was less than 0.03%. So the media are giving Stacy & Brian a platform to shove a message down people who voted overwhelmingly to support SSM in a plebiscite. What purpose does it serve? Surely victory is already theirs on SSM? They can toast the fact that all of Margaret Court’s activism on the NO campaign was fruitless and now a law confirms her lost cause. Yet the left can’t let go. True victory only comes when the enemy is completely crushed, humiliated and stripped of any accolades richly deserved for the manner in which they were awarded.

What the left consistently forget is that they only push the very people they are trying to bring around to their way of thinking further away. What can’t be argued with reasoned logic must be protested with threats or acts of force.

Welcome to the tolerant left. Margaret Court should be forced to watch her name being removed from the stadium for extra effect. Maybe the International Tennis Federation should retroactively strip all of her championships and prize money indexed with inflation? Setting examples is the only way forward for totalitarians.

An end to sex segregation in sports?

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The ever impartial and balanced ABC posted an article talking about how it is time to eradicate sex segregation in sports by using formulas/classification systems to ‘even it out’. Were these social experiements warranted, how was it that Michele Mouton finished runner up in the 1982 World Rally Championship against an all male field with zero free kicks? She won four races in the season. Call it raw talent. She didn’t require complex formulas and spreadsheets to give her a handicap. She won on her own merits. No system required. Isn’t that the thrill of competition?

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In the Moto 3 motorcycle championship, Maria Herrera competes against an all male field. She is not a championship contender but she isn’t always last. Still she has no handicap. If she wants to race with the men then accept all the same rules of competition. You won’t find Maria moaning about being hard done by.

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Ana Carrasco, a 20-year-old from Spain, became the first woman to win a world championship motorcycle race last year. No sex segregation but grit, hunger and determination. No handicaps.

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Still, the driving factor (no pun intended) behind these three women has been the machines which level the playing field but the importance was they won on their own skill.

Sadly, it is an inescapable fact that men and women are different physiologically. Especially in sports which rely solely on the physicality of the athlete. Should Merlene Ottey have been pitted against Usain Bolt in the 100m? Give her a size, weight and twitch fibre handicap? However shouldn’t whites or Asians be equally justified to complain that black athletes tend to dominate track and field. Perhaps they should be given race based handicaps? Perhaps a flyweight female boxer be given a 20 point start against a flyweight male boxer? Whatever it takes. So much for betting agencies setting fair prices (although what a way to match fix by a subtle tweak to a handicap formula).

Then we switch into the transgender athletes e.g. males who identify as females. So let’s say a former 125kg All Black wants to play for a women’s rugby team. Apart from the health and safety aspects of such a move, there is no logic or fairness. Or perhaps to avoid health risks give Serena Williams a two set head start against Roger Federer? Make him play with a racket head half the size.

Since the first Olympics in Athens in 1896 the world has had over 100 years of sex segregated sports. No one has really complained. Drug cheating is a bigger issue to be fair. Having said that people want to see athletes break records unhindered by spreadsheet based technicalities. Usain Bolt trained for 16 years to remain at the top of his game. Would FloJo be satisfied to say she ran an adjusted 9.57s to be the world’s fastest sprinter when she only managed 10.49 in real money? Or is it worth setting her starting blocks to run 92m so as to even it out. Talk about hollow victories.

Seriously though, what is wrong with athletes training their hearts out to win glory? What is it with the left that insists on trying to even out absolutely everything. Why not allow women hammer throwers to do the men’s 100m? Surely they can derive a formula for that? Or perhaps the Jamaican 4x100m men’s relay team should complete against the Japanese women’s group synchronized swimming in their respective sports? Why not give the weight of a Djibouti gold medal 10x that of the US or China?

This thirst for loony social experiments is really going too far. The outward push for diversity continues unabated. Yet once again the hypocrisy of the left calls for ‘differences’ to be eradicated so everyone can be a winner. Equality without a level playing field. Now that is straight out of the socialist playbook.