The Shrubbery
August 1999
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Incorrectly Political #-1
"I don't feel sorry for you, and it's not my fault!"

by P. Kellach Waddle

Perhaps its a sign of aging. Perhaps it just the normal political lifecycle where we begin to slough off some of the leftisms of our impassioned youth to find ourselves spouting rants that are none too liberal. Whatever the reason, I have found myself lately voicing to others (and now in this column) some sentiments that may frighteningly sound more like Archie Bunker than Abbie Hoffman.

I have always previously considered myself SOMEWHAT of a compassionate person when it comes to the horrors some fellow human beings endure. But enough is enough. I have now had my blood pressure rise to stroke level on a number of occasions when some folks start in on their "poor me" dissertations. Not because my jaded self has lost every shred of my humanitarianism, but because I'm sick TO DEATH of certain morons' whining.

Moaning and Bitching that for one, their problems are caused by EVERYTHING ELSE imaginable and never possibly caused by their own ludicrously poor judgment or behavior; and two, that their problems are the fault of evil incarnate: The white, middle-class, heterosexual male.

These feelings sparked most recently in a chat I had with a colleague who is, (was?) an eloquent, sophisticated and otherwise seemingly intelligent lady. This woman is NOT a child or Gen-X person, she is a 55-yr old woman ( A point which, to silly me, meant perhaps this woman has answered her clue phone before, alas now I believe its still off the hook.) She came to me to whine that someone had called her a slut. Now, my response was basically the following :" Ahem.. look.. I am not God, nor Jury. But since you ASKED...You are #1 constantly making moves on people, both on line and in person; #2 you are the writer of a bunch of poetry posted online that deals with NOTHING but sex; #3 you have an "open" marriage where both you and your husband both sleep with members of both sexes; and #4 you have in one of your online biographies that when God handed out sex drives, you got 10 extra. So, " I DON"T FEEL SORRY FOR YOU!!" ( Only my MINIMAL tact kept me from saying, "Well, you ARE a slut.")

And indeed her response was yes, somehow people thinking she was a slut was MY FAULT. It's MY fault she isn't "understood" by the "narrow-minded" masses, especially men. Uh..yeah. This lady old enough to be a grandma, whose first comment to me ever was "You look like a nice piece of ass," seems to think it's everyone else's fault she has been denoted by an ex-lover as.. well.. a SLUT.

The abject ridiculousness of that notion actually astounded me. One, I am in THREE careers where straight men are by FAR the minority. If I were to be homophobic, I would have to be "phobic" of 80% of everyone I work with. Two, I never once (despite my obvious personal feelings about such morality, or lack of it) got in this woman's face and said "Look wench, you have the morals of an alley cat and I think you're gross." Yet, when she comes to me and asks what I think about someone basically calling a spade a spade, suddenly the reason her libertine self is ostracized isn't because she has a neon sign above her vagina. It's because I, and everyone like me, are Neanderthals.

This unpleasant and blood-boiling exchange led me to two other examples of these sorts of whiners. As I militantly said, I am not a homophobe.

I also feel that AIDS is truly the modern plague and its devastation among members of ALL communities is something to never be taken lightly. But wait a minute. I am supposed to feel sorry for Thad who had unprotected sex with 15 strangers a day in the sadly revived bathhouses that we thought went out when people started putting the word "safe" in front of "sex"? And Jimmy Joe's AIDS he got from his sharing of Heroin needles on the street is somehow the government's fault? Much less my fault? Please.

Finally, I know in my heart there are down-on their-luck folks with big families who deserve every penny of welfare they get. But look Shaniquakeesha/Raylene-Mabel/Conseulo,when you get on television and SAY you have no aspirations for a job or GED, and that you continue to have 12 kids by 11 different fathers whose last names you never knew so you can get bigger checks so you can stand in line at the grocery and purchase lobsters and steaks my budgeted self can only longingly leer at, then don't insult my intelligence by telling me I am "da Man" who beat you down and got you in that position (Lest anyone want to firebomb my house for insinuating every welfare-abusing woman is African-American, a hick, or Hispanic .. I am sorry folks, the sadly stereotype-supporting statistics of the backgrounds of the majority of said welfare abusers speak for themselves. That isn't my opinion, its a sad fact. And yours truly is also major hick with a ton of white trash distant relatives, so don't think that rant is coming from an ivory tower.)

To conclude, I reiterate that I do indeed try to make every effort to empathize with those wrongly judged. People with odd lifestyles who are abused deserve our sympathy as the abusers deserve our derision. People who are dying as the result of one mistake as well as those people who simply need the government's help to get back on their feet need and deserve our compassion and prayers. ( Hey, I have inquired at times how one gets food stamps myself.)

But those people who end up in dire circumstances by their own idiocy and happen to think they have a political leg to stand on by trying to indict me for avowing to not let my (still mostly liberal) heart bleed for them.. I got two sentences for ya, folks....

I don't feel sorry for you! and It's not my fault!

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