It's not like there's not plenty of irritants to choose from. I was mildly annoyed at reporters shoving a mic into a grieving parent's face, until it came out that Martinez is welcoming the attention. That shifted into reiterating that policy based on emotion has never been a good idea. "Not one more" makes for a great sound bite, but ain't encouraging as far as "how." More restrictions on weapons are a long line of proven failures and bad ideas. More restrictions on the mentally ill and unpopular of opinion are VERY bad ideas. I can agree with a sentiment of "not one more." But I don't see a policy-driven solution that would both achieve it and leave us recognizably human, let alone American.
But the real irritation for me has been the Men's Right's Activists and the "good guy" criers. Keep in mind, I still got beef with victimhood cultists, but that's mostly my disdain for anyone who demands that the world should mold itself around their ideas with no more effort than it takes to order a latte.
But the MRA bubbas and the constant collective whining of "But I'M no predator! Why are you treating me like one?!"
Assholes, welcome to Every Day of My Life Since Puberty.
Look, I get a lot of time playing villains. There's a reason for that. Mainly, I'm huge, broad-shouldered, have a thousand-yard stare and a resting face that looks like I get up in the morning and take my coffee with 2 sugars and 3 souls of the innocent. And the easy smile I got has a very "have them bathed and brought to my tent!" kinda look.
If I walk down the street in my "natural" look and gait, it's like watching a black hat show up in an old cowboy movie. I've seen cops drop hands closer to weapons, parents pull their children closer, and passersby cross the fucking street. They see a potential monster en route, and respond accordingly.
I'm going to forestall the protests that usually crop up around now. I never said I WAS a monster. I said they saw a *potential* one and reacted accordingly.
And I don't hold that against them. It's not discriminatory, it's fucking smart. It's sense. Humans see potential danger and they avoid it.
Is it frustrating at times? Oh hell yes. Has it done a number on my social life? Fuck yes.
But since trading in this body for a new one is out of the question, I could either be as scary as some think I am, sit on my ass and soak in my own bitter, or I could adapt.
Part of it is perception. And there's a lot of little ways I adjust my look and walk every day to look like less of a threat. I'm NOT naturally soft-spoken and it's only been in recent years that I've been easygoing. I'm both today because loud, angry-seeming people that look like me get cops called on them. Adjusting my mannerisms, while annoying, is much less of a hassle than waiting for the authorities.
And a big part of it is just being the person I like being instead of the monster I can look like. The words "but I'm a nice guy" don't cross my fucking lips because I'm too busy being the kind of person I like being. I'm too busy *showing* to waste time *telling*.
In other words, telling doesn't do a thing because talk is cheap. *Showing* takes time. *Proving* takes time AND effort and *still* might not happen.
And sometimes I fail. The fuckup fairy visits us all, and I'm no exception. Sometimes amends can be made, and sometimes the only welcome that isn't worn out is the path somewhere else, and having the smarts to turn and walk that path is the best possible option.
Still worth the effort. It's worth it in every friend and loved one I've ever made.
I'm going to spend the rest of my life proving I'm not a monster. Beats the alternatives.
So suck it the fuck up, gents. To a growing segment of the population, you're a potential threat. You can be a threat, complain about it, or live your life in a way that proves you're neither one. Your call.