The other day, a friend on Facebook posted a video taken by a father waiting for his daughter to come out of school. It features numerous kids walking past, many of them slipping and falling on the icy ground. All the while, the father is laughing and commenting about it. My friend comments that this is a sign of the father’s psychopathic behaviour.
I agreed, sort of.
First off, the father is probably a tool. Adults are supposed to be better than moronic teenagers when it comes to these kind of things. I could definitely see a teen and his or her buddies sitting in their car doing this. They’d laugh their asses off, post it on whatever social media outlet is cool right now, and share happy-fun time with all the other equally moronic friends.
But this is a father, supposedly an “adult”. He should know better. If it was his wife (probably ex-wife, because, honestly, who’d want this douche as their husband!), or an elderly person, or a woman with her young/ infant child, I doubt you’d see this video anywhere. If he did post such a video, then maybe I’d totally agree that the guy is a psychopath.
Secondly, no one was hurt. No broken limbs, twisted ankles, or concussions supposedly occurred. The only thing damaged was some kid’s egos… at least until the video was posted online. Remembering back as a teen, one that was quite reclusive and shy, slipping on ice in public would have been very embarrassing. Even the slightest laugh would have hurt. These days, I just have a chuckle at myself. But if I had been the teen I was back then, slipping in front of that lame-ass father and his camera today, then having it posted and reposted, I’d have been upset.
I don’t know if they’d call that “cyber bullying”, but I know if it was my teenaged-self, I wouldn’t have been happy at all. But since it’s a parent doing it to a bunch of kids, it’s ok. Sort of like that father who forced his 5 or 6-year son to run along beside his pick-up as punishment or something equally stupid. When that little boy glances back at his father, he doesn’t look happy, or that he’s having a grand time. He looks scared, especially when the boy is in front of his father’s truck, and he revs the engine.
I’m pretty sure there have always been parents that had poor decision-making skills. But these days, they seem to want to post such stupid choices online, where all decent people can look on and be mortified.
Which brings me to my third point, that everyone are psychopaths. The Facebook friend who posted the father’s video of the kids slipping on ice commented that this guy has no empathic tendencies, and has the makings of a great psychopath. Here was my comment to their post…
“So all the people who watch this video, and share it, what kind of people are they? In my uneducated opinion, they must have some deep-seeded problems as well.”
Here’s my layman’s logic: If the person who shot the video thought it was funny enough to post and share is a “psychopath”, wouldn’t that mean others who laughed at it, re-posted it, and shared it, be considered psychopaths, or at least without empathy?
The answer is no, of course. Because if that were true, the internet would be chock fulla crazy! Go to YouTube, type in “person falls on ice” (78,000+ videos), or “person falls down” (268,000 videos), or “person hit by car” (409,000 videos). I’m pretty sure that there are some videos where people may actually get hurt, unlike the kids on the ice. So that would make all those people psychopaths, and lacking empathy. Bring out the butterfly net!
But seriously, are these people psychopaths, or without empathy? Oh I’m sure there are a few out there, but the rest of them are like kids who find dad’s gun in the closest when the parents aren’t home. It’s something new and different! Something you know you shouldn’t play with… but ya do anyways. It’s only afterwards tat you realize that maybe it wasn’t the best idea. And if afterwards you still think it was funny, you’re probably not a psychopath. You’re just a tool.
Fortunately, the universe is all about balance. So one day, when something stupid or embarrassing happens to that father, it’ll be on YouTube… or he’ll be badly hurt because he was hit by a car (video 409,001!).
I’m reminded of a quote: “Just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should.” I know Dr. Ian Malcolm from “Jurassic Park” said that, but everyone knows what happened afterwards. Just because he’s a fictional character, doesn’t mean it isn’t true.