The Internet (and the American public) are never short of scandals. We peddle them like fruits, always calling a new celebrity out on their addiction, affair, private text messages or offensive jokes. While we are busy paying attention to crap that really doesn’t matter, we’re distracted from larger (and more important) issues at hand. Here are 11 ‘scandals’ that dumb us down, and 15 actually significant problems to counter each one.
Lindsay’s Liquor Problem vs. All the Black Crackheads in Jail
Lindsay Lohan’s life is so hard. Being told not to party, partying anyway, getting caught, being subjected to house ‘arrest’ in your awful(ly) spacious duplex (complete with a terrible balcony), and being subjected to constant paparazzi harassment after leaving Whole Foods is all very tragic. However, it’s not a very exciting news story. No one would care about some bratty little girl’s alcoholic trials and tribulations while growing up, right? Actually, it’s making a lot of stupid headlines. When will this boring charade finally end?
Lindsay Lohan’s choice of cocktail is definitely less important than:
The US Sentencing Commission’s decision to allow up to 12k federal crack offenders to become eligible for release or a reduced sentence under the Fair Sentencing Act. Although the prison industrial complex retains its retard-strength, the Fair Sentencing Act is at least a little progressive. In some areas, possession of only 5 grams held a minimum five year sentence…the same mandatory sentence for possession of 100x more (500 grams) powder cocaine. This law will save an estimated $200 million dollars over the next five years. It’s a start. It’s also worth noting that the userbase of crack is mostly black, while that of cocaine is mostly white. Racist laws much?
Casey Anthony’s OJ Verdict vs. Our Crappy Justice System
Whether she did it or not, she was found not guilty. She may not have been rich like OJ, but she was pretty and white.
Maybe we should stop talking specifically about Casey Anthony, and more about:
The fact that the justice system is incredibly flawed. Restraining Orders are often useless against the people they’re meant to deter. Sentences faced by the prosecuted are often unfairly distributed, such as an 18 year old facing up to 8 years for placing a blowup doll in his high school as a prank as compared to the high school rapist who was not only freed but allowed to play varsity basketball, where his victim was asked to cheer for him. She was removed from the squad when she refused — then ordered to pay $45,000 of the school’s attorney’s fees for filing a “frivolous” lawsuit about the matter. Racist and prejudice judges are more common than we’d like to think. It seems like our laws and standards are the things that need revising. Maybe then there would have been enough evidence to convict Anthony of what common sense would tell you was a filicide.
Gottfried’s Insensitivity vs. No More Spicy Tuna Rolls
Gilbert Gottfried was recently fired by AFLAC for making some pretty insensitive jokes about Japan’s tragic earthquake and tsunami mega combo. It seems that celebrities sometimes forget that everyone is watching them with hawk eyes, waiting for a slip-up that can be sold or used to publicly humiliate the mistaken. Gottfried’s jokes were definitely in poor taste and made him look like a total jerk. Sometimes people are only able to deal with serious issues by trying to lighten the problem with humor. Sometimes people say things casually when others are taking them seriously. Whatever the reason, a little humor never hurt anyone. Gottfried wasn’t responsible for any deaths in Japan, nor did he seem to be joking in a hateful or prejudice manner. If Japan had an extra donated dollar for every person who complained about Gottfried’s comments, how much more do you think they’d have?
Maybe we should ignore the (ignorant? mean? thoughtless?) people we don’t like and pay a little more attention to more important issues at hand, such as:
Tuna are on their way to dodo-dom. It might sound stupid, but Japan is facing Tuna extinction. A multi-billion dollar industry, Tuna fishing in the Mediterranean may come to an end within the next five years. Not only would this effect the economy of a number of countries, but the ecosystem as well.
Additionally, your tuna salad or spicy tuna roll may be farmed, and therefore fed a whole bunch of crap you probably wish never existed.
Tracy Morgan Deserves Death Penalty vs. Those Sick and Blasphemous Homosexuals
Tracy Morgan is in trouble again, and not for joking to stab his imaginary homosexual son. Only a few weeks after the media frenzy inspired by his homophobic ranting, he made jokes during a stand-up routine about ‘retard strength’ and referred to a woman he dated as “a cripple.” Although these comments were far from PC, Morgan, like many other comedians, is known for making lewd and inappropriate jokes. He’s a comedian. He was in a comedy club. Although his comments were nonviolent (albeit rude, as is his nature) and non-hateful, the media went nuts. Also, a person with a crippled limb is technically a cripple. If Tracy Morgan is crucified for remarks against any special interest group, what about every other comedian?
Maybe we should be paying less attention to Morgan’s declining ability to write jokes and more attention to:
Pennsylvania state senator Rick Santorum thinks “the right to privacy doesn’t exist in the United States Constitution” and called bans on gay marriage “common sense.”
“I do believe the family, integrity of the family is important for the future of our country. But that does not mean that, that I don’t like people or I hate people or that there’s something wrong. The only thing that’s wrong is their opinion.”
– Rick Santorum
Oh, and he also blamed victims (see: children) who were sexually assaulted by priests for engaging in “a basic homosexual relationship.”
Weiner Overdoses on Penis Jokes vs. Rapist Politician, NH
Anthony Weiner was recently caught sending dick pics and sexually suggestive messages to a stripper in Las Vegas. Big deal. It’s not like most Americans haven’t ever done a selfish thing. That’s not to condone cheating, but it is to say that the harsh judgment passed on him and the media circus surrounding his personal life are disgustingly hypocritical. Famous people are only here to serve and entertain the rest of us paupers, and damn their normal-people lives! They are expected to apologize for personal mistakes which don’t affect anyone who would be reading about them in a newspaper.
Maybe we should be paying less attention to Weiner’s Weiner and more attention to:
Rapist politician Jeffrey Gray. Gray is a man convicted of stalking and assault. He is also accused of a kidnapping, assault and rape (which he apparently accomplished with the help of Craigslist) and is an elected board member in New Hampshire. Gray has a storied criminal history, including three misdemeanors involving an ex-girlfriend who took a restraining order out against him — and later renewed it, reporting new instances of harassment and threats of suicide. Despite his repeated domestic violence offenses and accusations of rape, Gray was elected anyway. Way to go, New Hampshire.
Octomom vs. Crevice Groping, Coming to an Airline Near You
Octomom is an idiot. That’s no secret. She’s also terribly amusing in the way only a burning bus full of your worst enemies could be. You feel bad, but you can’t really help, so why not enjoy it a little? Octomom has recently admitted to literally hating all of her children. She told The Daily Mail that she wishes her octopussy was nothing more than a regular, un-prefaced one. We all knew she couldn’t pay adequate attention to fourteen little “animals”, as she so affectionately called them while one child was being photographed eating paint chips.
Octomom’s vaginal lamenting is disgustingly funny (and kind of infuriating), but we have reason to be suicidal as well:
TSA is threatening to invade our crevices like so many unwanted babies because “the government” (whoever that is) has warned that terrorists plan to surgically implant explosives on their bodies in order to surpass airport security. “Experts” said that scanners might not be able to detect bombs placed under the skin, so new screening procedures may be developed to thwart those pesky suicide bombers. Prepare to clench your jaw.
Arnold, The Violator vs. Religious People Ruining the World
Arnold Schwarzenneger recently came under public scrutiny when he was found to have fathered a bastard child with his housekeeper, a woman with whom he was having an affair for possibly longer than a decade. Mildred Baena sold her story to the tabloids, successfully screwing over Schwarzenegger in the process. His private life instantly became a hot topic in tabloids and on the news, where news reporters everywhere paused to consider not only the standards of their station, but the definition of the word ‘news’. There were exclusive photos, interviews, talk of lawsuits and a divorce. Schwarzenegger’s choice to cheat and refusal to admit paternity to his illegitimate child may have been hurtful to his immediate family, but it was a little less socially significant than dozens of events which do effect the public at large.
Maybe we should be less concerned with Arnold Schwarzenegger’s lucky bastard and more concerned with:
Ohio named as one of the ‘worst states in terms of women’s access to abortion and contraceptive services’, and seem to enjoy the title as well. How else would one explain the state’s choice to ignore a bill designed to assist rape victims in preventing unwanted pregnancies and therefore avoiding an even more unwanted abortion? Not only was the bill ignored, receiving little media coverage, but it was also berated by Ohio Right to Life. Right to Life claims that the bill would force religious hospitals and ‘pro-life taxpayers’ to prescribe the drug. The stupidity is astounding. Either way, even the recent discovery that fish can use tools is more interesting than Arnold’s Anthony Weiner.
Charlie Sheen’s Boring Rants vs. Corporate Personhood Actually Being a Real Thing
Charlie Sheen is kind of funny, but he’s not vastly different from any other drunk or drug addicted attention whore who’s given attention and decides to run with it. Tiger blood, winning, magically curing addiction using only brain power and a lot of other almost immediately played out jokes were spawned from Charlie Sheen’s somewhat humorous rantings. People began paying to see him ‘perform’ on stage. He was a billion new memes at once. People argued over whether he was a junkie lunatic, a really cool guy, or a little of both. Ultimately, who cares? The craziest thing he did was have the courage to be honest about his drug use without apologizing to a bunch of people who don’t deserve it (that’s us! the public!).
While Charlie Sheen is making videos on The YouTubes, we should really be watching:
The movement to abolish corporate personhood, which sounds a lot more boring but is more important than any viral Internet video you’ll ever watch. American laws protect corporations, and corporations own (and pwn) the crap out of the American people. As ruled by the U.S. Supreme Court in Citizens United v. FEC, unlimited amounts of cash can be funneled into political campaigns from companies or richer-than-God individuals. It’s no secret that companies basically try to ‘buy’ laws that favor their businesses, and the government is protecting their right to do so by allowing corporations to maintain the same rights as a legal person.
Wes Cage vs. Our Police State
Weston Cage likes airing out his dirty laundry on Facebook, and has made a bunch of derogatory remarks about his wife via status updates, which he also used to announce his divorce. He’s like the character his father plays in that terrible Wicker Man remake: a little crazy, unattractive, violent, and unable to hold anyone’s attention span for longer than ten minutes. Unless that ‘anyone’ is a crazed (Nu-Metal) death cult trying to burn him at the stake.
It’s unclear whether or not anyone actually cares about Cage’s Facebook drama. While Cage enjoys the attention, there are more important people who do not:
The police, who are now trying to make it illegal for you to watch them. An Illinois man was facing a possible 4 to 15 year sentence because he recorded his own arrest. Although a few states’ laws maintain that both parties must consent to videotaping for it to be legal, this law has been twisted and misconstrued by the police in more than just the said states. If they want to, the police can easily find a way to arrest you for looking at them the wrong way. Just look at Emily Good, who was arrested for filming police from her front yard even though she was clearly posing no threat. Charges were dismissed, but the police remain the only people who manage to harass and detain innocent people without consequence.
Roger Ebert’s Smart Mouth-Thing vs. Modern Slavery
Ryan Dunn broke the hearts of CKY/Jackass fans across the nation when he crashed his Porche in a drunk driving accident and died. He had been bringing laughter and fun to some for over 10 years, and the attachment to the cheery and ridiculous Jackass crew was understandable… But not so much for Roger Ebert, who posted a snarky tweet about Dunn’s death before it was confirmed that he was, indeed, very drunk at the time of the accident.
“Friends don’t let jackasses drink and drive”, he wrote. This one person’s stupid opinion caused a lot of backlash, getting lambasted as insensitive and mean. Some people even went as far as to make fun of Ebert’s medical condition, which really isn’t any better than making a general comment about the dangers and consequences of drunk driving. Ebert was basically saying “driving drunk is stupid and has dire consequences, as you can see.” He had a bit of an attitude when he said it. He made it into a bit of a semantics joke. Whatever. Celebrating Ryan Dunn’s life through screenings of his videos/movies would have been a lot more productive than whining about someone else’s opinion.
Either way, maybe we should care less about Ebert’s aggressive stance against drunk driving and more about:
Modern day slavery. The government is using prisoners as slave labor. In U.S. Federal prisons, inmates are being paid pennies an hour to do work for military corporations. They often work in dangerous and toxic environments without safety equipment and receive no benefits or vacation days. Oh, and if it weren’t pretty much like old-fashioned slavery already, guess what else reeks of history repeating itself? According to a U.S. Bureau of Justice Department report there were 846,000 black men in prison in 2008. That means that there are likely more African American men doing slave labor in prisons right now than there were actual African American men who were slaves.
Tobey Maguire Plays Poker or Something vs. Arizona Town Council Members Stealing Millions of Dollars
Tobey Maguire has a lot of money. He gambled a bunch of it away in high-stakes poker games, but also won a lot of it back. Maguire also fought with convicted Ponzi scheme felon Brad Ruderman about who owed who thousands of thousands of dollars. No one wrote a bunch of articles about that time you drunkenly lost ten dollars at poker in your basement, forgot about it, and then fought with your friend for ‘stealing’, so why is this any more sensational? The money is higher, but none of it belongs to anyone except Tobey (and possibly Ruderman, but probably not since he lost the legal battle and was filing for bankruptcy anyway). A bunch of scans of Tobey’s checks later and the scandal is all but settled.
Maybe we should care less about Tobey’s leisure activities and more about the crazy money laundering coverups happening in Arizona right now:
Quartzsite, Arizona, has up to $250,000 in checks disappear mysteriously per year… only to reappear in the pockets of allegedly corrupt council members. After a council meeting in which a woman was arrested for speaking out against corrupt council and police activities during her allotted floor time. The woman, Jennifer Jones, is arrested despite protests from the mayor, who is also being persecuted for trying to uncover the truth about the missing money and illegal scandals that may be happening behind closed doors.
After the event, the town inappropriately declared a state of emergency during which Foster was basically stripped of his title as mayor, and council meetings were held without public comment/notice/viewing. Although a recording of the impromptu meetings were set to be released on Monday, no such documentation has surfaced.