What’s Wrong With People?

I should really be cleaning up the house and getting supper started, but instead I’m sitting here trying to hammer this post out in an efficient manner that still is understandable!  Yesterday, we had a tragedy in our little town.  An awful auto accident that happened just west of town on a major highway that involved 2 cars.  Both cars were heading eastbound when car #1 slowed and was going to make a left hand turn onto a county road.  Car #2 rear ended car #1 and the driver of car #1 was killed.  Sadly, driver of car #1 was from our little town and has many family still in the area.  Driver of car #2 is ok and is from a neighboring town.

The St Cloud Times covered the story (briefly) and as all the condolences went up on FB to those relatives of the man who died, comments started rolling in on the St Cloud Times website.  Stupid comments.  Irrelevant comments.  Comments that made the family members say how disrespectful can people be.  Here is the link to the story and the comments are at the bottom…

My question is why do people have to be so dumb about some things?  Why do people make comments that make no sense and seem to be in complete disregard to all involved?  Do you not realize a family tragedy is not something people take lightly?  That family members will read the story and see the comments?  A simple “condolences to the family” or “sorry for your loss” is what’s appropriate in a story like this period.  In my opinion, stories like this shouldn’t have a comments section because someone is going to get off topic and say stupid things just because they can.

Do you comment on your local news website?  Have you ever made a comment on any site and then thought WTH was I thinking?  Have your comments ever gotten you “in trouble”?

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21 Responses to What’s Wrong With People?

  1. Joy says:

    Your title says it all Sue. What’s wrong with people is right. What a tragedy. I hadn’t heard about this. It started right at comment 4. The accusations. Can you tell me that it makes a difference what happened? That poor family now has to read about his “stupidity?” That’s just downright rude and very disrespectful. It makes no difference now.

    I think there are people on this information highway who have nothing better to do that go from blog to blog making stupid comments and causing problems. I think a lot of them are just attention seekers and like to cause problems and start arguments with people. It’s really sad though that they find “fun” in a death like this.

    I did write one day to that bus top forecast guy because Trinity was here one morning (years ago) and she argued with me over what to wear and that guy was wearing a parka and told us the kids only needed a light jacket and it was so cold out. He did answer me back but defended what he said but I did it in private. I didn’t call him a sharleton in public.

    I did say things on that “other” blog that I’d wished later I hadn’t said. It was so easy to get heated up over there. Like I said, some people are just spoiling for a good fight and I think they feel so much braver sitting behind their monitor.

  2. Jason says:

    I think some people just have nothing better to do than stir up trouble. Just like when someone stages a protest and you get the idiots who choose to break windows, flipover cars and basically start trouble wherever they can.

    • Joy says:

      I never understood the concept of winning a sporting event and walking the streets rioting and vandalizing like happens in some big cities. Horns honking and waving homer hankies out the windows is what we do.

  3. Laura says:

    I read every stupid, disrespectful and narcissistic comment on there. And there’s one word that stands out above the others, here: narcissistic. Those commenters – the ones who kept hitting “reply” and then adding a snarky response – were there for themselves. They wanted to get the last word in, wanted to make sure they got the *snap*, even when another poster called them on it, reminding them that a man had died! And they come back with, “what’s that got to do with it?” Really? Are you that stupid? (and yes, i know the answer to that)

    I think the solution would be one of two things. Either shut down comments altogether, like you mentioned, Sue, or hire someone to be the Blog Troll for the paper. Someone who would, literally, troll along the blogs and remove inappropriate comments. The site belongs to the paper, they can certainly regulate the content – even when it’s posted by someone else. They do it all the time when people swear.

    Like Joy, there is another site where we used to get into heated debates. The thing is, in the “old days,” those debates may have heated up, but they rarely got mean. Occasionally someone would misspeak, or get a little cranky, but more often than not, they’d go back later and retract/apologize. Now, it just seems like we’ve unleashed on each other. It seems to get that way with the larger blogs – once that “other site” was picked up by AOL, the comments got stupid and mean. I see it at nwp and major news sites, all the time. And it’s almost always a “troll” who starts it, and instead of just ignoring – people just keep engaging. And it becomes a vicious circle.

    The sad part in all of this is that a man died, many other’s lives have irrevocably changed, and those people thought only of themselves and their two minutes of “fame”.

  4. Jenny says:

    The whole situation is quite sad. My question is why do people feel they need to turn a bad situation into something about them that’s totally not related to the subject? Why can’t people keep their assumptions to themselves? Yes the driver in the truck could’ve been on the cell phone or distracted…well the report did not say that! So why bring it up? People should be respectful for the man who just died. Family & friends are gonna have to read all the disrespectful and stupid comments that people have written. UGH people are just stupid!!!

  5. SKL says:

    Yeah, I don’t think people are taught nowadays to consider others’ feelings before they spout off.

    On our local news, I’ve only commented on a few “discussion” threads about particularly interesting controversies. The threads are started by the news folks so one would hope they were not horribly offensive. However, I recall that one of them was about that brain-damaged Florida woman who was made to starve to death in what they termed a “right to die” case. (Schiavo?)

    Have I ever made a blogging comment I regretted? Yes. I sometimes forget that some of the readers are going to take what I say personally, even if I don’t mean it personally. Also, there are some things that I have taken too personally, and commented in a fiery way, only to re-read and realize that my comment was uncalled for. If I hurt someone in that way I will apologize, even if that makes me feel twice as stupid.

    Have I ever gotten “in trouble” for something I’ve written? Other than feeling kinda stupid? Well, once I was surfing around on the topic of conjoined twins, and I landed at a Website someone had set up about a particular pair of such twins. At the time the twins were in their mid-teens and there was a thread going on and on with people wondering about their sexuality. I thought that was just horrible and I wrote a comment to that effect. The blog owner responded with an insult and put my email address in the text of his email. That gave me the shivers. You would think nobody would do that, but you’d be wrong.

    But more directly on your story, I think that is so sad. It seemed like the first guy was just feeling kinda sad about the whole thing. He did mention that he thought the dead guy might have made a mistake, but not in a mean way. But most of the comments after that were borderline psychotic. Seriously, I think there is a little group of socially backward nerds in that neck of the woods who do this without realizing that they are on the fringe of humanity. It is sad, but hopefully the family will be able to ignore these obviously idiotic comments.

  6. Vicki says:

    Sue, OMG I was reading those comments today and thought to myself, what the hell is wrong with those people..I was getting pissed off, this wasnt about “assuming” what the other guy might’ve been doing when he hit the car that was turning, it was about a man losing his life cause of a terrible accident..I was tempted to make a user name and comment.
    I have always read comments in the Litchfield Independant Review, usually the big ones come out when it has something to do with the Sheriff’s Department, hardly ever does anyone ever have anything good to say, they are a bunch of haters, so prior to the primary election time i couldnt take sitting back and just reading the crap and felt the need to start commenting myself.. In the most positive way but got my point across, I felt better after doing that.

  7. Sue says:

    I couldn’t believe it when I finally found the story this afternoon and saw there were 10 pages of comments! Most of them were stupid tit-for-tat comments like SKL said, people trying to get the last word in. I would normally let something like this go, but when I saw a family member of the man who died on FB commenting how stupid the people were being on the newspaper website, I thought oh hell no!

    I haven’t commented on anything other than our blogs. Too many weirdo’s out there for me!

  8. SKL says:

    I forgot to say: some sites are not accepting comments unless people leave their name and address, which is posted publicly. That’s one way to keep things mostly civil.

  9. joanharvest says:

    I read the comments made at the newspaper site. I don’t understand how people can be so callous. My son’s ex-girlfriend died of a heroin overdose a couple of years ago. I was really upset at some of the comments about her death. Some wrote that she deserved to die and others wrote things that were even worse. Her parents saw those comments. Yes, she was an addict but that didn’t make her a bad person, sad maybe but not bad. My son is a recovering heroin addict. My son is also a very sweet man who will do anything for anybody. Many times in the past I waited to get that ophone call. The one when they tell you your child is dead. Her parents loved her like we all love our children. So yeah, I too always wonder what’s wrong with people. How and why are some people so mean, so uncaring, so intolerant, so insensitive and the list goes on. I guess I will never understand. Thanks Sue for writing this post.

  10. starlaschat says:

    I agree the comment section should not be turned on with stories of local tragedy! We recently lost one of Navars work mates to an auto accident it made the front page of our news. I also had a long time friend who was in an motorcycle accident he was recently releaced from ICU. Seems like there are more auto accidents these days. I never leave random comments, I only comment to people I know like blogs. The story is very sad.

  11. mssc54 says:

    I’m (not) sorry but I don’t even want to read those comments. Being stupid is one thing but bringing it to the level of CRUEL is quite another.

    I know FIRST HAND just how cruel and stupid people can be.

    Not long after our son-in-law was KIA in Afghanistan we received a “letter” in the mail. The envelope did not have a return address on it and it was written on the back of a grocery store reciept. The receipt had a code from where the person had used their stor saving card thingy.

    The “letter” said that Buddy deserved what he got because he was no different than those boot strapped Nazzis who invaded other foreign countries. The writer went on to rail against President Bush in very threatening tones.

    Coincidentally President Bush was scheduled to visit our city the next week. So I called the FBI and they put me in contact with the our local Secre Service office.

    The letter writer had also made reference to a recent Letter to the Editor that I had written the previous week.

    The Secret Service called me and asked me to bring the letter and envelope in. So I went down to their unmarked, super-secret office and the brought me into this room. After a minute another guy comes in with his CSI gloves on and takes the envelope and letter from me. They made me a copy of the letter and kept the original letter and envelope.

    I don’t know what ever happened but I figure they found out who the guy was since it had his info on his grocery coupon card thingy.

    Let’s just face it. People can just be reas @$$e$!

    • mssc54 says:

      OH! And we also had a tragic event in our community night before last. It happened less than 3 miles from our home (about 5 minutes drive).

      It was just after 9:00p.m. when a woman in her thirties decieded it would be a good thing to leave dinner cooking on the stove, with her TWIN 3 YEAR OLD BBOYS ASLEEP in their bed while she drove the two or so miles (one way) to pick up her male friend. Yeh you guessed it. Upon returning home they found that the kitchen was on fire and the house was full of smoke. The mother ran into the burning home, grabbed one of the twins, threw him out the door to her male friend and went in to get the second twin. They never came out.


      Additioally the day before during morning traffic a Hispanic woman crossed the center line on Historic Hwy 61 near Magnolia Plantation and hit another vehicle head on killing the woman in the other vehicle.

      The Hispanic woman was driving a big SUV and lives in a (paid for) Habitat For Humanity home. Investigation is still ongoing.

      Stupid people. At least they could kill themself instead of the innocent people! I’m sorry but I’m just sick and tired of all of this!!

      • Joy says:

        That’s awful. How sad.

      • SKL says:

        That’s horrible. Of course we don’t know what went wrong with the traffic incident but with the twins – wow. It’s so hard when you hear about babies and toddlers dying because of either bad choices by the parents or just a moment of inattention. Which among us has not made a foolish parenting choice, then later thanked God when we realize what He got us out of? I know I have. I feel badly for parents who lose their children due to something the parents could have avoided (in retrospect), and then have the whole world joining the sport of trashing them. I personally think that parents who lose their children in an accident have suffered enough. If they intentionally committed abuse or gross neglect, thats a different story.

        • mssc54 says:

          SKL; I agree for the most part. However there is a HUGE difference in turning your back absentmindedly and making a deliberate decision to take off with the kids asleep. Perhaps the stove was left on by mistake. I’ll give her that much.

    • Joy says:

      I never knew that before Michael. I’m so sorry. So now after everything else, you had to deal with that. People can really be assholes.

      • mssc54 says:

        Yeh Joy, I was hurt beyond beliefe. I think that was the day that I realized that there are some REALLY hateful people in this world. How could any decent human being send us a letter like that?!

        • Jason says:

          It is ignorant people like that, that talk trash about the very same people that are risking their lives so that they have the right to freedom of speech, and all they get in return is someone dumb enough to abuse the freedom they have been granted. Mike I am truely sorry for the loss that your family had. I have several family members and friends that are in the armed forces and I don’t know how I would have reacted if put in that situation.

        • Laura says:

          I hope the Feds caught that dirtbag and threw him UNDER the jail.

  12. Nikki says:

    That just made me sick to my stomach. How can people feel good about themselves after making comments like that. Some were so irrelevant I couldn’t believe it. Some were just down right stupid. Someone lost a special person in their lives, and to read comments of love and appreciation for the person they lost can be very comforting. Then they go there and read those comments, how in the world do these people think this can make anyone who is grieving feel better?!

    I’m sorry for those who were affected by this mans death. And I feel bad for those who truly think stupid comments help those in need of condolences. They need help, serious help! It’s times like these I seriously question man kind.

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