Left Coast Voices

"I would hurl words into the darkness and wait for an echo. If an echo sounded, no matter how faintly, I would send other words to tell, to march, to fight." Richard Wright, American Hunger

Archive for the tag “reality tv”

What Should We Declare War on Next? – Tom Rossi

America seems to love wars. Not just the war wars, but the wars on this and that, as well. We have the war on terrorism and the war on drugs, these are official, government propaganda. And we also have the Fox “News” variety, like the war on Christmas.

Most of these conceptual wars are either colossal wastes of money that hide their real purpose or they’re just made up baloney.

A lot has been said about what “wars” might be more useful than drugs or terrorism… a war on homelessness, for example. In 2001, 42,196 people died in traffic accidents – over ten times the number of fatalities from our biggest loss to terrorism ever. Why not a war on accidents?

Naaaaah. That’d never fly. Too practical and sensible. In other words, boring.

Let’s have some wars that we can all relate to – wars against the things that really annoy us.

How about a war on awful cell-phone ring tones? I once knew someone with, “I’m a Barbi Girl, ” or whatever that crappy song by Aqua is called. I’d like never to hear that again… ever.

A war on Velcro. When you pull it apart, it sounds like a combination of sizzling bacon and unzipping a zipper – without the satisfaction that inevitably follows either of those things.

A war on noisy neighbors. My upstairs neighbor at my last apartment was evidently a furniture wrestler. That’s what it sounded like! Three falls with a chest of drawers. That’s the only explanation that would fit what I heard almost every day.

Speaking of noise, let’s have a war on ridiculous, thumpin’ and bumpin’ car stereos. How many times have I been listening to the radio or trying to have a conversation when one of these guys pulls up next to me at a stoplight? Sometimes I can actually hear his car falling apart from the vibration. Who are you impressing, buddy? Grow up and get a life.

A war on stupid machines that take away jobs and screw up all the time anyway. I NEVER go to the automated checkout machine at the grocery store. I want them all torn out and burned.

A war on the use of the word “custom” for something you buy off the shelf. Helllllo! It’s not custom if it’s not made specifically for you! The same goes for words like “fresh” or “homemade” on a freakin’ can or frozen dinner. It burned George Carlin up and it burns me up too.

How about a war on that disgusting green hair they always put in salads these days? It’s not lettuce. It’s not spinach. It’s some stringy crap that makes me choke. Again, who are you impressing? Not me.

A war on so-called “reality” TV shows where they pick the biggest pricks they can possibly find to make it interesting and only eliminate contestants who aren’t big enough drama-queens. Yes, I’m picking on Trump again, but there are many more.

I want a war on celery in soup. Almost every damn soup has celery and it’s gross. It makes every soup taste like, well, celery. For those who like it, let’s have a celery soup, and leave it out of everything else.

A war on those stupid, “tribute” shows where they hype up someone like Burt Bacharach as God’s gift to music and humanity. He composed elevator music. The world would look exactly the same if he hadn’t.

A war on the NRA apparently bribing every TV show and even a lot of news broadcasts to show cool women shooting guns for fun. I guess they feel like the male market is pretty much tapped out. I’m more offended by this as a writer than anything else. If you’re a writer on a TV show and someone tells you to work women and guns into a show like “Modern Family,” just say no. Heck, why not use the phrase, “We’ll head ’em off at the pass!” Hacky writing ticks me off – especially when it seems there are political motives.

A war on car alarms. They go off constantly, especially because of the douchebags that think they’re impressing someone with their loud exhausts (another war!) that drive by creating their own annoyance. They go off so damn often that nobody pays any attention. I’ll tell you what though… If I see someone stealing a car with the alarm going off, I’ll give him directions to the nearest freeway onramp because he is preventing the crime of disturbing the peace by taking the noisemaker away.

Finally, I’d like a war on political advertising. I suppose advertising is a perverse form of free speech, but allowing people and organizations to just lie through their teeth with no consequences is contrary to any kind of democratic value system I can imagine.

These just came off the top of my head. I like wars. I’m going to go declare war on a certain bottlecap right now. It’s been imprisoning a very important beer for too long.

-Tom Rossi


Tom Rossi is a commentator on politics and social issues. He is a Ph.D. student in International Sustainable Development, concentrating in natural resource and economic policy. Tom greatly enjoys a hearty debate, especially over a hearty pint of Guinness.


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