So, by now, we’ve all heard about that horrible man who made a video shooting his daughter’s laptop because… he was upset over something she said about him on Facebook. Something he only even knew about because he hacked into her account somehow, apparently.
Perhaps even more disturbing than the idea this even happened is that so many people out there are praising him for doing this! Even that article, while condemning his actions, comes at it from an angle of “we understand, teenagers are such awful people and it’s tough to get through to them!”
So, let’s review. Man gets upset that his daughter got frustrated with him. (A daughter frustrated with her father about something! So unheard of!). Daughter vented her frustrations on Facebook in an apparently non-public message (because it’s not like looking down your Facebook feed at any given time won’t turn up at least ten similar vents about someone’s family or friends!). Daughter is apparently also not helping around the house as much as her father would like (again, such unheard of problems! Good God!). So far, the daughter’s whole “crime” seems to be… speaking freely and not being subject to unpaid, pointless, unappreciated labor. Surely she must have done something else… no, that’s about it. So what does her supposedly mature and responsible dad do? He steals and destroys her property (yes, her property), destroys it with a deadly weapon, and does so in a video he uploads publicly. Remember, her Facebook posting was non-public, but his video is public. She just didn’t do some chores, but he took something of hers and destroyed it.
Yet, considering all this… so many people think HE is the hero here?
It is such a sobering reminder of, really, just how hated teenagers are. I shouldn’t even need to point out that he’s the one who’s completely out of control here. But so many support him. Why? Because for some reason she deserved it because she was “disrespectful to her parents”. It’s an obligation of respect that serves only to make adults happy and comfortable and preserving what they think is a “right” to maintain superiority over those younger, just because they lived longer. In reality, there is absolutely no other “value” to maintaining blind respect or reverence towards parents.
And parents who steal and destroy your property because you vented to your friends about them are not people deserving of respect, ever. It doesn’t matter how “spoiled” everyone thinks the girl must be, and they’re hearing only from her dad on that one anyway. And it’s common to think of teens in general as spoiled and therefore deserving of bad things that happen to them. And a lot of bad things do happen to them, usually because of or perpetuated by this very mindset.
But there’s another thing about this that terrifies me. That is that it will happen again and this is not the first time. Just a few months ago, there was another viral video depicting child abuse, of Texas family court judge William Adams beating his 16-year-old daughter (who has cerebral palsy) for being online and downloading things. The daughter herself put that video up in that case, and thankfully, the judge did not get nearly the accolades the above laptop shooter did, but there were some. Numerous stories come out of parents forcing their teens to stand on the side of the road holding a sign saying “I Get Bad Grades” or something similar. There’s Amy Chua, too, proudly talking about her excruciating control of her children. A few years back, there was Jane Hambleton who stole and sold her son’s car because she saw a beer bottle in it. And every single one of these parents wears proudly the title of being “mean” and “tough” toward their kids, and they have a fair share of teen-hating fans out there praising them and, sooner or later, perhaps emulating them. And they probably are, as there are so many more YouTube videos of parents humiliating their kids, whether for discipline or just some sick pleasure. They don’t all go viral, but it’s frighteningly condoned.
This is why we have to continue to say a big loud NO to all of this. You don’t need to be a parent to see this kind of treatment is wrong. Lots of parents would never dream of doing something like any of this, no matter how frustrating the family environment gets. Here’s one great parent who knows full well this sort of thing is horrible!
And, parent or not, we all need to call out people who refuse to accept the fact that teenagers are respectable people, no matter how “surly” or “bratty” or “impossible” their parents or others think they might be. There’s no reason that innocent young girl has to have her father (someone who’s supposed to be loving and nurturing, right?) and millions of his sadistic online fans do this to her. How many more like her will there be? When will this stop?