I’m sick of people dying. For one thing, it’s sad. I’d even go as far to say that death sucks. Death is a bummer if only because it reminds us all that the clock is constantly ticking and time is running out (and we’re a self-obsessed species to the last). But if people were allowed to just die, with perhaps only a few leaving mournful comments or others taking the opportunity to comment on an issue or some aspect of society, I don’t think I’d mind it too much. And for those who don’t know me, that’s huge. I am obsessed with death. I obsess over death. It terrifies me constantly – and as someone who is neither religious nor immortal, I am offered very little relief from it.
But often, death just disgusts me.
As it stands, loss of life is being paraded around as a soapbox for everyone’s own arrogant opinions, which would also be fine (I don’t care what you spend your time on) if they weren’t so f’ing boring. Every time someone dies or tragedy strikes, a million people make jokes, a million people argue jokes can’t be made, and a million people sit smugly as they refrain from commenting all together. A few will ask why hate is flourishing at such a rate that almost 100 people have been killed in Oslo. Someone might care that our entertainment industry simultaneously flaunted and condemned her actions, while doing nothing to actually prevent the death of 27 year old Amy Winehouse. But for the most part we’ll each use these as an excuse to preach about whatever B.S. springs to our heads in the moment.
I was taught in high school to never write “use” in an essay. Well, I think I was also told never to use the passive “was” either, but I was probably asleep for that part of class anyway. Yet “use” is the only way I can describe what we are doing here. It is the only way I can convey what I feel to be a blatant disregard for life. When a tragedy strikes, make your jokes or mourn your perceived losses. Be aware of how people are reacting and learn about one another. Maybe you find out someone you respected acts callously towards drug overdoses. Don’t write them off or fire back, take a second to ask them about why they feel that way. Maybe you’ll learn something new that deepens your bond. Maybe you’ll learn they’re a petty a-hole. Either way, I’m begging, from the bottom of my heart, that you shut up.
You are not the first person in history to make a joke.
You are not the first person in history to say “too soon.”
And I am certainly not the first person to say this.