March 30, 2010

Death to Violence!

Editor's Warning: This post will meander in an aimless, disjointed, almost incoherent fashion.

I'm giving up violence.


I'm not a big Three Stooges fan, never have been really.  Maybe they were funny, but I didn't get the point and/or entertainment value with all the poking and bashing and gouging.  Never have really enjoyed professional wrestling either, and I could do without horror films. Maybe reading The Exorcist under the covers when I was 14 scared and scarred me enough.  I love my rock 'n roll, but would never buy an Iron Maiden or Marilyn Manson album.

The point is, I have seen/heard/read about more than enough violence in my life, and I want it to stop.  I'm not naive enough to think it will stop, violence is a fact of life and an ever present element of our American culture.  Violence dominates the real world as well as almost every "escape" from the real world, from music to cartoons to fashion to religion. Is it even possible to be free from the endless barrage of violence?

I want to try.

Several factors have inspired this... exercise? quest? misguided and ill fated attempt to turn my sons into anti-war pacifists?  There is the couple here in SoCal eating on $1 a day and an article in Time magazine about deprivation experiments (and the blogs they are chronicled in), plus my own recent attempts to lose some middle-age poundage by not eating bread for a month and giving up cereal (I was up to a 2 bowl per morning habit, not to mention weekends and late night Capt Crunch).  Then there was the combination* of the movie 2012 and Stephen King's Gunslinger stories which involved me in approximately 6 billion deaths in a matter of one evening.  My cup, as the saying goes, runneth over -- and then some.

So what do I do now?

I'm going to try an avoid, eliminate, and not participate in anything containing or implying violence of any sort.  This immediately poses threats a dilemma in regards to my weekly television viewing: Lost (the final episodes!) and Flash Forward, not to mention the ESPN and the NFL Network .**  My sons and I are reading a children's book, Freak the Mighty, which involves bullies and threats (so far) -- does it get re-shelved?  Netflix just sent us Area 51 -- any aliens get shot at in there?  Does shooting at aliens, or even asteroids, count as violence?

We'll see how this goes...

*I was going to say "lethal combination" -- violence is prevalent in everyday speech.
**Reconciling the football coach part of me with the No Violence Quest will be a subject to explore another day.

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