Failing hope, wasted patience

Ryan Houk

This week, I wanted to pen a humorous allegory about the decline of modern television programming and its consequence on all humanity. After reading the Sunday paper, I changed my mind.

Television’s not the problem. People are. I used to say: When it comes to mankind, I have lots of hope and little patience. Now even my hope is waning.

One reason is Sarah Kolb. Sarah is an 18-year-old Illinois resident with an extremely bad haircut who was recently sentenced to 53 years in prison for murdering a classmate who liked her ex-boyfriend.

Sarah lured 16-year-old Adrianne Reynolds to her car, killed her, chopped her up into little pieces, set those pieces on fire and then buried them at the state park. Talk about dedication. Sarah’s excuse: She was picked on in school, and her folks used to lock her in her room.

Ryan’s view: Sometimes people are mean. Sometimes people get picked on. Neither of these are sufficient reasons to reduce your rivals to finger food.

Next, we travel to Shepherdstown, W.Va., where tragedy struck a local university.

Douglas Pennington was found dead in a parking lot next to the bodies of his sons Logan and Benjamin. All three had suffered fatal .38 caliber bullet wounds.

The popular theory states Douglas visited his sons – both students at Shepherd University – and shot them in the parking lot before turning the gun on himself. No one yet knows why he did it.

Ryan’s view: I won’t say suicide is not an option for certain people in certain circumstances. I will say taking others with you against their will is pretty rude. And leave a note. It’s just common courtesy to the folks who clean up after you.

If that weren’t enough, I had another joust with blatant human folly Monday morning.

While walking to my car, I noticed two rather large dents in the driver’s side doors and a little note from the Kent P.D. under the windshield wiper.

Apparently, a group of drunken hooligans decided Sunday night it would be fun to flip a stranger’s car completely off its base and onto its hood. In the process of this rip-roaring good time, they dented my vehicle not once, but two separate times.

The police said not to worry, that the hooligans in question are responsible for the damage. If they’re ever caught.

Ryan’s view: If I do find out who’s responsible, I’ll flip them all onto their heads. It’s not a revenge thing; I just want them to know how the car felt.

Add to this the passing of Steve Irwin at the hands of a dead-eye stingray and a case of Hepatitis A involving someone who serves food on campus,and you’ll start to see why I’m disheartened.

The worst thing is: These aren’t great leaps in logic. In fact, everything you need to know to avoid this behavior, you learned at a very young age. Don’t kill other people. Don’t ruin other people’s property. Don’t leave the bathroom without washing your hands.

If you can’t abide by these simple human rules, I’d like to politely ask you now to get off my planet.

Ryan Houk is a junior English major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].