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Hell is not Hot Enough

I’m finding the story about Tyler Clementi’s suicide profoundly depressing, especially as it develops in the media. The backlash has already started, no surprise, but the news that Ravi and Wei have received praise from some quarters, as well as racist threats, only compounds the issue. It would be so simple to turn this into an act of pure malice, but what, I think, makes it all the worse, is that it wasn’t, it wasn’t at all. I would like to believe that, rather than be forced to consider it an act of deliberate cruelty and hatred. I’m not looking to defend the indefensible. In the end, I suspect that this is the banality of evil of evil in action, nothing more, nothing less.

There’s a lot of it around these days. It’s on the news every fucking morning and night, it’s on the web, it’s everywhere. And it’s getting to me, I have to admit it. I want to be informed about the happenings in the world, not only for professional reasons, but for the personal. Maybe it’s how I was raised, but I believe there’s an obligation to be informed, to be aware, to know what is going on,not only in one’s own community, but in the larger world, as well.

But the news, in the main, is unrelentingly depressing.

I suppose this explains, in part, the frenzied need to turn molehills into mountains, to treat entertainment news as if the LHC has actually managed to find the Higgs boson.

But some days…some days, it’s so damn hard to let the rest of the world in. Some days, I just want to lock the door, turn up the stereo, and drown it all out.

This is one of those days.

5 Responses to Hell is not Hot Enough

  1. Nick

    Hi Greg, this is Holiday from the old Comicbloc writing to see how things are going. Sorry to hear that things are depressing you. It is very true that it is tough to turn on the television or open a newspaper anymore and not be depressed.

    Being a teacher, I can see where having your children back in school is helping to get things on track with your work. It has however increased my workload. Such is life they say. I love what I do and I am sure that you do so that is always a good thing.

    Hope things get better in the meantime and I await to see what the rest of the year brings.

  2. Josh

    Greg,

    I understand what you are talking about. The news is always such a hard thing for me to watch also. That is why as people we have to step up and try to make changes in the world. Sometimes it just takes one and other times it takes many of us to give a damn. This is also something that gets me down. At times I feel like this world is void of anyone who just cares about anyone else.

    As a christian this is one of the hardest things for me. Jesus implored us to love and help each other and we as people, and the church included, does such a poor job at this.

    I hope that it will get better and I will be praying for you.

    Thank you for your work and giving a damn.

  3. Erica

    What you said is so profound, that “there’s an OBLIGATION to be informed, to be aware, to know what is going on,not only in one’s own community, but in the larger world”. Perhaps if more individuals had this outlook then the news wouldn’t be as depressing as it is and we wouldn’t see some of the worst in humanity; we wouldn’t treat one another with such lack of consideration and common decency. We can’t be the change we want to see if we aren’t willing to understand people’s plight, especially when it’s outside the peripheral of our comfortable existence.

  4. Chris

    I don’t watch the news- I read it. By doing so I can easily avoid, by the headlines, the difference bewteen news, sensationalism, gossip and garbage. Any suicide is tragic for the loved ones of the victum. Beyond that I don’t think we, the rest of the world, as any need to know aything about it at all no matter our desire to be ‘informed” turning pesonal tragedies into ‘news’ is the real issue. How do I know anything about the world when “news” consists of fires, car crashes, shootings and weather? People seem to like hearing about that stuff to reiterate their worldview that people suck, to push them to be thankful that didn’t happen to them, to pass judgement armed with a small silver of information or some combo of all three. Pesonally the above sounds like a personal matter for the victims famlty and none of my business.

  5. Peter

    What was particularly depressing about Tyler Clementi’s suicide (and took it way out of the “it’s a private matter” sphere) was that it was the latest in a string of LGBT suicides in recent weeks. Things have not been made better by a recent editorial in Rutgers’ college paper which a) essentially blamed Clementi for not manning up and embracing his “hardship” and b) blamed outside agitators for hyping the story. Shades of the Civil Rights Era struggle in the South.

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