Of all the Things in Creation, I say these three are the dumbest creatures to ever walk the Planet: Liberal Democrats, Irish Setters...and the American College Student.
The Overlord is displeased.
In fact, he is livid. Spitting mad. Red with Rage. Ready to chew vulcanized rubber. Why, if his powers over time, space, and matter were not -- as yet -- limited by the Laws of Physics, there would be an awful lot of dead people littering the landscape this day.
And most would be dead simply because they cannot muster the intellectual firepower to burn calories.
From the beginning:
Saturday morn found your Galactic Ruler in fine spirits. His coffee was just perfect; the croissant he'd selected at the bakery was, indeed, fine. Perhaps the best he'd eaten in quite some time. The weather was foul, but your Overlord enjoys rainy, foggy days, for they bring with them a sense of quiet that is otherwise unusual in this part of the Galaxy, with the added benefit that they keep the truly obnoxiously stupid indoors and out of his sight.
And then he called his sister so as to confirm their Mother's Day dinner plans.
The Rage Begins.
The Overlord is informed that his 20-year-old nephew, a college student and promising baseball player, has been taken to the hospital for the second time in three weeks. But, unlike the previous hospital visit -- to treat a broken hand caused by an errant, inside fastball, for which the team waited 12 hours before providing treatment in a hospital, so as to not miss their bus back from New England -- this one was way too serious.
And, sadly, all-too-avoidable.
The Overlord is told that this time the boy has broken his neck, and the seriousness of the situation is currently unknown, because the hospital is having trouble treating him.
Because he's fucking drunk. Four-sheets-to-the-wind, pissing 80-proof, swallowing and regurgitating his own vomit, practically-embalmed, Blood Type Stolichnaya, drunk. So drunk that he has not realized he has fractured the C6 vertebra in his neck, so drunk that he keeps ripping off the brace the hospital staff has put on him to immobilize his neck. So outrageously bombed that his blood pressure is extraordinarily low, preventing the hospital from applying other, necessary treatments; his blood alcohol content so high that it interferes with the results of blood tests.
Which brings us to another observation regarding American College Students,
Considering today's propensity for American College Campuses to transform themselves from institutions of higher learning into poorly-managed Day Care Centers with a Football Team, what with their "safe spaces", and "trigger warnings", and the daily vomit in the newspapers regarding all manner of seeming mental retardation encapsulating everything from issues of gender, race, sexual dysfunction, mental disorder, rest room confusion, and general dumbassery, it becomes shockingly apparent that perhaps the worst thing you can do to your children -- apart from sending them to a government-run Public School -- is to send them to a government-supported-and-subsidized, so-called "University".
For the purpose of college, nowadays, it would seem, is NOT to turn out educated adults, imbued with knowledge and a sense of responsibility, but to instead churn out, like a factory, brain-dead zombies, properly indoctrinated in the subtle nuances of political correctness through a carefully-constructed, and lavishly-funded, program of social and political intimidation, all of it awash in an atmosphere of alcohol, consequence-free sex, and a Romper-Room level of discourse, with hot-and-cold-running illiteracy and three decades of debt.
We're sending complete idiots into the system, and harvesting a crop of even bigger idiots that emerges from the other end.
And while the highest-quality idiots in the process seem to come from a few, particular sources (feminists, affirmative action enrollments, dissolute and disaffected youths raised by alley cats), nowhere will you find pinheads of such extraordinary nature than among the ranks of college athletes, particularly those on "scholarship". These are not kids in college because they happen to be smart; they are in college because their ability to hit home runs, dunk basketballs, or catch touchdown passes somehow benefits the University, or should we say, FINANCIALLY benefits the Administration.
Thus, we come to the toxic cocktail that leads to a broken neck:
* Irresponsible kids, typically watched over by other irresponsible kids (RA's).
* The easy availability of alcohol.
* The propensity for irresponsible kids watched over by other irresponsible kids to binge drink on readily-available alcohol.
* A Bunch of drunken jocks -- not the brightest bulbs on the Christmas Tree -- who find it necessary to roughhouse on a staircase in a complete abandonment of common sense, intoxication or no.
* An administration which, if it doesn't turn a blind eye to it, at least tolerates an atmosphere of readily-available alcohol, served to under-aged, binge drinking, doofuses, who are, in effect (through a "scholarship") paid employees of the University.
You can tell just how ridiculously insane this situation is when you stop to consider that ONLY ONE of these kids had the brains, and perhaps was sober enough, to recognize the severity of the injury, and take my nephew to the hospital of his own volition -- and to stay with him in the ER overnight -- while the others (I'm told) quaked in fear of the consequences, and held inebriated meetings on "what to tell Coach in the morning", i.e. how to cover their own asses.
The good news in all of this, is that the vertebra is fractured, not broken, and there appears to be no spinal cord or ligament damage. The C6 vertebra, however, has much to do with the control of the shoulders and upper arms, and while taking off the neck brace several times is a good indication that my nephew is not paralyzed or seriously, physically impaired, it remains to be seen if he will be able to throw a baseball or swing a bat with any sort of proficiency ever again. He was his team's starting shortstop and also threw relief out of the bullpen.
And while the loss of a potential career in the Major Leagues is not the greatest tragedy of all times, my nephew, through his own powers of dumbass, aided and abetted by the collective greater power of doltishness of an entire baseball team, the dereliction of duty by his coaches and the University, who have been given a responsibility to teach and care for other people's minor children, may all combine to deprive him of that opportunity.
There is nothing sadder than an opportunity wasted, except an opportunity lost through utter carelessness.
The Overlord is preaching, yes. Quite aware of it. If I regaled you with the litany of stupid that was my youth, complete with the (frequent) alcoholic misadventures of my hedonistic younger self, we might be here for many years. And you might not believe me; for the stupidity, indeed, ran deep, ran wide, and ran furiously.
However, there is something to be said for the old saw "Do as I say, not as I do", particularly when it comes from someone who has the experience to say and who has done way too much.
We don't send kids to college to play baseball and get drunk any more than we send them to college to wallow in the misery of being female, or gay, or black, or to invent new personal pronouns to address their mental disorders, or to protest against...nothing at all. That kids on campus do these things -- regularly, routinely, and have done so for generations -- reinforces the notion I've always held that most people under the age of 30 are fortunate they've managed to learn to eat with utensils, and perhaps been potty trained. Up until you begin to reach your third or fourth decade of life, these are really the only skills the average person finds it necessary to acquire.
True intelligence and wisdom only comes with age and experience, not some piece of paper that Mommy and Daddy paid for with three mortgages and which you didn't really earn, considering you spent the majority of your time majoring in Public Intoxication with a minor in Inability to chew gum and walk at the same time.
Take it from an old drunk, who has been to the wars, and lucky to survive them:
1) There is no practical NEED to drink alcohol until you pass out. If you acquire a physical or psychological NEED to do this, then you have a problem. If you do this to simply "fit in" or because you believe that it makes you more appealing, socially, you have a problem.
2) There is no reason on Earth why when alcohol is legally forbidden all across America to those under 21 that those under 21 often get it, anyway, with the foreknowledge and nodding-and-winking of those who have a responsibility -- morally and legally -- to keep them from getting it, and who are BEING PAID to provide a safe environment (as much as is humanly possible) where kids don't get broken necks, or sexually assaulted, or commit suicide, or break the law. Yes, I understand that administrator's hands are often tied by the need to provide a Club Med-like experience to legions of really stupid youngsters armed with "college loans" -- they might take that money elsewhere if they aren't given easy A's and allowed to engage in a modern-day alternating of Bacchanalia and Inquisition -- but one would think upholding the law would not, SHOULD NOT, be too much to ask.
Perhaps more lawsuits are in order?
3) Your children are retarded, America. They are completely lacking in basic intelligence, they recognize no boundaries, and they whine, cry and riot at the drop of a hat when they don't get their way. They have substance abuse problems, and limited faculties. They have been deprived -- through poor parenting -- of the basic coping skills; they have been deprived -- through a deliberate process of Public Education -- to have no understanding of context, to take everything literally, to virtue signal in place of having something meaningful to say, to get along by going along, exercising no personal judgement, at all. In fact, to be unable to formulate anything approaching a judgement.
They have turned the higher-education system into a giant playpen where anything goes...until it's your kid.
They are unthinking savages guided by their feelz, denied critical thinking faculties by a combination of bad parenting focused on self-esteem, an educational establishment guided by a combination of having to accommodate and assimilate the truly dumb in a holistic atmosphere where failure is not punished, and marinated in a pop culture that caters to the lowest common denominator. You have failed in your primary task as parents to raise anything approaching a functional human being.
Good going, Assholes.
4) University administrations are less-focused on providing a safe, informative college experience than they are in raking in billions of dollars. In the quest for these billions, they will allow destructive behavior to go unsanctioned and unpunished; they will allow students to harm themselves and each other; they will water down curriculum and eliminate informative courses for the sake of the feelings of the less-prepared; we have seen them defend employees ("student-athletes" on "scholarship") from the consequences of their actions on everything from armed robbery, to rape, to murder.
They will then waste enormous sums on therapeutic curriculum which appeals to those who otherwise have no reason to be in college, but which provides them with a means of achieving an easy degree, and later, perhaps the ability to extract a good living from society while doing nothing of practical value.
This all needs to stop.
My nephew is lucky. He's alive, and although he will probably be hampered by neck problems for the rest of his life, baseball was never as important as his education.
I wonder how many kids in similar circumstances wind up dead?
Author's Note: I have deliberately NOT used the University's name because the "facts" are not all in, or are confused. Also, this incident reminds me of something similarly stupid involving college kids and alcohol that I wrote about several years ago, as my Alter Ego.
A Majority of One is a weekly diatribe about things most people are probably thinking, but afraid to say out loud.