29 thoughts on “This Week’s Open Forum…

  1. One enduring temptation is to give up our civil rights so the state can keep us safe from the street thug and the gangbanger.

    Imagine if the police can punish people for speaking out in favor of the street thug or the gangbanger. Imagine if the police could punish the street thug or the gangbanger for the mere peaceful possession of a firearm? Imagine if the police can search street thugs and gangbangers just because they felt like it? Or if they could punish street thugs and gangbangers without going through the motions of a fair trial? Or if they could torture street thugs and gangbangers as punishment for their crimes?

    How much safer would we be?

    Of course, this assumes that if we waive these civil rights, the state will use these new powers tio go after the street thug and the gangbanger.

    We can not make this assumption.

  2. Recently I was led to the Facebook profile of a local Alder for the City of Madison, WI to leave him a message related to a vote that was cast on an entirely different subject. After I left the message I scrolled through his profile page to read some of the posts. The following post caught my eye.

    FIRST THE FACTS
    On July 2, 2021 this Alder posted the following statement on Facebook followed by a link to a video that contained the 1936 poem Let America Be America Again by Langston Hughes.

    THE POST
    As I age, I become more aware and misinformed at the same time. I used to celebrate the 4th with fantastical, flag waving, fervor and fireworks. Now, I use it as a day of mourning and reflection.  While our republic is relatively young, the insidious histories of attempted genocide against BIPOC people, here at home, and around the world, forever stains the collective soul of this nation.

    THE POEM
    Let America Be America Again

    Let America be America again.
    Let it be the dream it used to be.
    Let it be the pioneer on the plain
    Seeking a home where he himself is free.

    (America never was America to me.)

    Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed—
    Let it be that great strong land of love
    Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme
    That any man be crushed by one above.

    (It never was America to me.)

    O, let my land be a land where Liberty
    Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath,
    But opportunity is real, and life is free,
    Equality is in the air we breathe.

    (There’s never been equality for me,
    Nor freedom in this “homeland of the free.”)

    Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark?
    And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?

    I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart,
    I am the Negro bearing slavery’s scars.
    I am the red man driven from the land,
    I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek—
    And finding only the same old stupid plan
    Of dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak.

    I am the young man, full of strength and hope,
    Tangled in that ancient endless chain
    Of profit, power, gain, of grab the land!
    Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need!
    Of work the men! Of take the pay!
    Of owning everything for one’s own greed!

    I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil.
    I am the worker sold to the machine.
    I am the Negro, servant to you all.
    I am the people, humble, hungry, mean—
    Hungry yet today despite the dream.
    Beaten yet today—O, Pioneers!
    I am the man who never got ahead,
    The poorest worker bartered through the years.

    Yet I’m the one who dreamt our basic dream
    In the Old World while still a serf of kings,
    Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true,
    That even yet its mighty daring sings
    In every brick and stone, in every furrow turned
    That’s made America the land it has become.
    O, I’m the man who sailed those early seas
    In search of what I meant to be my home—
    For I’m the one who left dark Ireland’s shore,
    And Poland’s plain, and England’s grassy lea,
    And torn from Black Africa’s strand I came
    To build a “homeland of the free.”

    The free?

    Who said the free? Not me?
    Surely not me? The millions on relief today?
    The millions shot down when we strike?
    The millions who have nothing for our pay?
    For all the dreams we’ve dreamed
    And all the songs we’ve sung
    And all the hopes we’ve held
    And all the flags we’ve hung,
    The millions who have nothing for our pay—
    Except the dream that’s almost dead today.

    O, let America be America again—
    The land that never has been yet—
    And yet must be—the land where every man is free.
    The land that’s mine—the poor man’s, Indian’s, Negro’s, ME—
    Who made America,
    Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain,
    Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain,
    Must bring back our mighty dream again.

    Sure, call me any ugly name you choose—
    The steel of freedom does not stain.
    From those who live like leeches on the people’s lives,
    We must take back our land again,
    America!

    O, yes,
    I say it plain,
    America never was America to me,
    And yet I swear this oath—
    America will be!

    Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death,
    The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies,
    We, the people, must redeem
    The land, the mines, the plants, the rivers.
    The mountains and the endless plain—
    All, all the stretch of these great green states—
    And make America again!

    Langston Hughes – 1902-1967

    My reply to this publicly elected official was the following…

    You posted that poem as if its words accurately reflect 2021 as opposed to 1936 when it was published.

    Slavery was a scourge upon humanity, but for the most part it’s gone across the globe, it’s certainly gone in the USA.

    Denial of basic civil rights for black people was a scourge in the USA, but it is gone in the USA.

    Blind bigotry of black people consumed far too many people for far too long, but that is basically gone here in the USA.

    Freedom exists here in the USA.

    Equal rights exist here in the USA.

    The American Dream exists here in the USA.

    The Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution exists to protect “We the People” and without them we would not enjoy the freedoms we have here in the USA. Celebration of these things is fully appropriate.

    We have come a long, Long LONG way since that poem was written in 1936. Is there more we can do to improve the USA, you bet there is but you don’t improve the USA by tearing it down, burning it up and inspiring racial division. What do you think Martin Luther King Jr would say about how his dreams have been twisted into racial division?

    Let your refusal to celebrate the 4th of July and your “mourning and reflection” will swallow you whole and blind you to the things that the USA has done for you and you will live in a woe-be-unto-me world of depression and despair and that will drag you away from the coveted American Dream.  [ADDED 7/9/2021] You are a publicly elected official in a major Wisconsin city and you are a Black and Indigenous person of color (BIPOC), that sir would not have happened in 1936. You are literally living the American Dream.

    CONCLUSION
    Those are the facts as they happened, now for my opinion.

    What immoral hive minded brainwashing consumes people like this, they are literally living the American Dream and yet they go out of their way to promote a verifiably false narrative that things are terrible and people should mourn in despair because the American Dream hasn’t been individually achieved by some. I think it’s very disingenuous and unethical for a BIPOC publicly elected Alder for the City of Madison, or any BIPOC elected official, that is literally living the American Dream to intentionally sow discord and division among his constituents with hypocritical hyperbolic posts such as this Alder’s post.

  3. I feel like the Homer Shining image above is really on the nose. It feels like I’m going insane.

    Take for instance the recent example of the San Francisco Gay Men’s Choir(GMC); They recently released a video (which is getting notoriously hard to find) with lyrics that are…. questionable, at best. I’ll post them in full at the end of this comment (because they say they’re being taken out of context.) Against the backdrop of conservatives generally becoming aware that their children are being taught in ways that they don’t approve of, the discussions surrounding curriculums, CRT, the 1619 project, the impressions we get out of media et al, this seems *AMAZINGLY* tone deaf. And that’s kind of the theme we’re going to vary off of.

    So Act 1: The video drops. I saw it and was like: “Oh God… this is so cringy, and that guy needs a vocal coach.” But I didn’t think too much more into it than that. There’s this godawful subculture of political music, it’s new-ish… I remember during the 2016 election cycle there was this woman who sang a political ditty to the tune of Modern Major General, and I thought she was going to die by the end of it, either because she was pushing herself into a hemorrhage, or from shame. Regardless, this didn’t seem particularly more egregious than most. But perhaps I missed how literally singing “We’re coming for your children” was going to play in the mainstream. Because…

    Act 2: Fox et al ran with it. Now, the whiners at the GMC say that the song was made “tongue-in-cheek”, and that the mean old pouncey conservatives were taking it out of context…. This would be much more believable if in response to this, the GMC didn’t release a statement saying (in part):

    “The negative, even threatening responses prove that this music and our mission are critically necessary in today’s world. Many children are not being taught the truth. Our message to you from the gay community; We will continue to do our best to counter the message of hate by teaching young people to be tolerant and fair. It is obvious the tongue-in-cheek humor is lost on many, especially the ones spewing death threats. Please take a moment and read the entire text: We’ll make an ally of you yet. We’re proud of who we are. We’re proud of what we sing.”

    Emphasis mine. Basically…. “You’re taking this out of context, we’re not coming for your kids, we’re just going to teach them the truth that you refuse to teach them.” Because that really fucking clears that up, eh? *AMAZINGLY* tone deaf.

    Act 3: Because no one bought that clarification, we’ve gone 48 hours with conservatives basically having their way with this narrative. The GMC has pulled the video down, because nothing says “We want the whole context out there” like removing the whole context and are actively DMCAing anyone who hosts it. They say that their members are receiving threats and are concerned about safety (I believe this, but more on it later). So they tweeted this:

    To which I quote tweeted:

    “It’s amazing to me how unaware these guys are…. If you want to make the argument that this was all “tongue in cheek humor” (paragraph 2), then maybe don’t follow that up with “it’s our turn to indoctrinate” (paragraph 3). This reads like something out of the Bee.”

    I’m loathe to type out their full message, but I have the expectation that tweet might disappear from the internet, so read it now. The passage I’m referencing in paragraph three is;

    “After decades of children being indoctrinated and taught intolerance for anyone who is “other,” from using the Bible as a weapon to reparative therapy, it’s our turn.”

    Well… That sure clears that up then, doesn’t it?

    Act 4: Because of course, there’s one more act. Almost all of the responses to that tweet were calling the members of the GMC pedophiles. I was like: Jesus guys… They’re being stupid assholes, the correct response to that is not to also be a stupid asshole.

    Well the joke is on me. Of the 50 or so members who took part in this, more than 10% appear to be registered sex offender’s on The Megan’s Law website. When I was first made aware of this, my original thought was: “Nah, these images are just flying around the internet, people are being shit.” So I verified that these names do in fact appear on Megan’s Law, that they were listed on the GMC website (names now taken down) and that in the case of David Wallace, his mugshot matched the picture from the video almost exactly. The names are Earl Friedberg, Raymond Gonzales, Chris Smith, David Wallace, Keith Pepper, and Luis Cuadra. All of which are registered for “Lewd or lascivious acts with a child under 14 years of age.”

    And that’s just fucking awesome.

    […][…][…][…]

    A Message From The Gay Community

    You think we’re sinful
    You fight against our rights
    You say we all lead live you can’t respect
    But you’re just frightened
    You think that we’ll corrupt your kids
    If our agenda goes unchecked
    Funny, just this once, you’re correct

    We’ll convert your children
    Happens bit by bit
    Quietly and subtlely
    And you will barely notice it
    You can keep them from disco
    Warn about San Francisco
    Make ’em wear pleated pants
    We don’t care…
    We’ll convert your children…
    We’ll make them tolerant and fair

    Just like you worriеd
    They’ll change their group of friеnds
    You won’t approve of where they go at night
    (to protests)
    Oh, and you’ll be disgusted
    (so gross)
    When they start finding things online
    That you’ve kept far from their sight
    (like information…)
    Guess what?
    You’ll still be alright!

    We’ll convert your children
    Reaching one and all
    There’s really no escaping it
    ’cause even grandma likes Rupaul
    And the world’s getting kinder
    Gen Z’s gayer than Grindr
    Learn to love
    Learn to vogue
    Face your fate!
    We’ll convert your children
    Someone’s gotta teach them not to hate

    We’re coming for them
    We’re coming for your children
    We’re coming for them
    We’re coming for them
    We’re coming for your children
    For your children

    You’re children will care about
    Fairness and justice for others
    Your children will work to convert
    All their sisters and brothers
    Then, soon, we’re almost certain
    You’re kids will start convertin’ you!

    • Wonderful post, HT—I’m trying to figure out what to do with it. I might graft it into what I had already started writing on this topic and post it with us as co-authors, if that would be all right. Then Steve-O, right on cue, followed with exactly the reaction that a lot of conservatives will have (and have had) to this.

      The thing is astoundingly foolish, and requires not just dead ethics alarms, but insane hubris. It reminds me of the cackling villains in bad sci-fi movie, who spill their entire plot to the captured hero (who isn’t as defeated as they think.) It reminds me of a prominent hard right wing leader on the night Reagan was elected, who looked into the camera and said, “And I have this warning for weak Republicans like George Bush: “We’re watching you!” And I thought, wow, nothing like announcing “We’re assholes and aspiring dictators, just like the Democrats said!” on national TV.

      The actual message of the song is not as sinister as it is being made out to be. “Old biases and bigotry are fading away, as people become less ignorant and fearful, and your children will be kinder and more accepting than your generation was” happens to be true, but stating it comes off as spiking the ball in the end zone, and is certain to inspire resentment. Why do that? Who does that,except toxic jerks? And then the cognitive dissonance scale kicks in. “THESE people are influencing OUR children? Fuck that!”

      In the end this is just arrogance and hubris, and a fine way to snatch defeat from the jaws of cultural victory. “Ha ha, stupid straight people, religious people, conservatives! We’ve won, and there’s nothing you can do about it! We’re converting your children right in your faces, and we LIKE watching the pain it causes you!”

      • As long as being outrageous and “in your face” is a nearly obligatory aspect of being gay, these sorts of things are going to continue to occur. A lesbian friend spoke of a woman who wasn’t comfortable being lesbian. The friend dismissed the woman saying, “She’s not willing to take a walk on the wild side.” Why should wanting to have homosexual sex and have a homosexual life partner be any more wild than wanting to have heterosexual sex and have a heterosexual life partner if we’re all equal? Aren’t we past that point? Yo, guys, you’ve won. Do I really have to vogue to make you feel better? Can’t you do your thing and I’ll do mine?

        • But, you know, it isn’t obligatory, and the vast, vast VAST majority of gay Americans are anything but “in your face.” Those who are, however, naturally are the most visible.

          • “Nearly obligatory.”

            My current piano teacher Jim is married (for upwards of forty years) to his gay husband who has dementia. If there’s a more devoted husband than Jim, I’ve yet to see him. Jim would never, ever go anywhere near a gay pride parade or event.

              • A proposal: A not insignificant number of heterosexual guys are inclined to take sexual advantage of under-aged girls. Society doesn’t approve of the abuse of minors and this sort of behavior is illegal and subject to punishment. This is a recognized problem for which society has developed a response. Is it unreasonable to assume that a not insignificant number of homosexual men are inclined to take sexual advantage of under-aged boys? This sort of behavior is illegal and subject to punishment. Why is the gay “community” so coy about this? Why are we not allowed to believe a not insignificant number of homosexual men are inclined to take sexual advantage of under-aged boys? Can’t we just say it’s a problem of some dimension and deal with it and move on? Why do we have to all nod our heads and say all gay men are wonderful and certainly vastly superior to straight men? Is there a movement or underlying desire to legalize and legitimize pederasty? Probably not of any viability or consequence, but one wonders. Once rights campaigns achieve their initial objectives, they seem to have to move on to the next hill to keep the donation dollars sloshing around.

      • 100%

        I’m still picking skull shrapnel out of my carpet. I don’t know how reasonable it is to run a CRC on people in your groups… But how the actual hell do you get a group with a >10% registered sex offender rate? Did they advertise in prisons?

      • Over the last few years, “do not forget that these people want you broke, dead, your kids raped and brainwashed, and they think it’s funny”, as it was so eloquently put by comedian Sam Hyde, has grown consistently in popularity as a right-wing catchphrase. Seldom do you see a group so eager to confirm – seemingly – every word in it.

        My reaction to the video paralleled Steve-O’s. At some part, you have to believe what people are eager to tell you about themselves, especially if the sex offenders’ registry is there to back you up.

  4. Damn. I tried my best to step back from the 1980s teenage attitude that gay people are pedophiles, exhibitionists, and disease spreaders, not to mention disgusting people who perform disgusting acts and need to be beaten. I tried to accept that gay people are similar to if not 100% the same as the rest of us. I was hoping that once the gay marriage issue was settled gay people, or at least a lot of them, would settle down to marrying, buying houses, raising kids, etc.

    I can shrug and walk past the two guys holding hands, same as I shrug and walk past the guy and gal holding hands. Someone wants to put the rainbow flag on the porch, ok, just don’t complain when someone else puts the Gadsden flag or the thin blue line flag out. I DO get a little annoyed at the rainbow flag being out in some places for the whole month of June (after a week we “get it”), when almost no other group is afforded the privilege and some are denied (Newark grudgingly raises the Portuguese flag at the time of the festival, Jersey City does one-day raisings of the Italian and Irish tricolors on the appropriate days), and the painting of rainbow crosswalks (it’s the street, not a damn billboard) but whatever, eventually it will become passe’.

    Shit like this, though, makes it awfully hard to maintain that tolerance. This plays into all the worst stereotypes about gay people – they’re looking to capture kids and teach them their ways, whatever you might think about it, they’re going to destroy whatever traditional values you might have instilled, they’re going to use your kids to get to you, and some of them might even use your kids, period.

    Is what I just said ugly? Damn right it’s ugly. However, all the evidence is right there printed out. I am not a parent, but if I were, my attitude would be that I am going to teach my kids the facts about different kinds of sexual behavior at the time and in the place and manner I deem appropriate. My attitude would also be that I am entitled to go my way, whatever that is, and I’m not required to be a straight ally, a white ally, a Christian ally, or any other damn kind of ally. White, straight, Christian men don’t exist just to be allies to those who are not. I find the idea both insulting to us (we owe something to those different) and kinda patronizing to others (they somehow need allies to give them legitimacy). And yes, my eyebrows are going to go up when I see the fact that this group, or at least the participating section, is over 10% registered sex offenders, all of whom did stuff with middle schoolers. There’s going to be a real question in parents’ minds when they see that. After years and years of saying there’s no danger from gay man being around kids, trust them with your Scout age sons, your aspiring young athletes, etc., now they read this? Do you blame them for saying “wait a minute here, it looks like someone is trying to pull a fast one?”

    In the end, they may have set back not just their own cause, but the causes of those gay people who really DO just want to live like everyone else except the one major difference.

    • Part of why this pissed me off so much (to the point of putting possessive apostrophes in the wrong place, apparently.) is because I don’t think that this attitude is unreasonable. It’s why I hate pride month. Just like Jack said above, most gay people go their entire life under the radar not because (or not just because) they’re in the closet, but because we really are just like you. And then these lisping fuckers do shit like this and blow up all the good work people have put in, doing this ridiculously “mission accomplished”-esque pseudo-victory lap when they never put an iota of the work in.

      And knowing that “we’re coming for your children” was BOUND to have a reaction. The brainless audacity it takes to have a not-marginal fraction of your group be made up of honest to God registered sex offenders. I mean…. Can those assholes even legally attend those choir events? There’s bound to be a couple of gay kids in the group! Look at the promotional material on their website! What’s next, group ankle monitor pictures?! Every part of this makes me livid.

  5. I no longer accept the excuse that something was said “tongue in cheek”. This is the standard response when someone gets called out for statements they make which are not received well by the public. It is a variant if “I was just kidding”. To that I say BS.
    My question to the GMC is why they have so much hatred for those who disagree with the lifestyle they lead. Why the hell should they give a damn what others think. They have legal protections I do not have.

  6. The Euro 2020 semi-final match between England and Denmark was de facto decided by a questionable foul call, resulting in a penalty kick for the home side, England. Raheem Sterling, one of England’s leading goal-scoring threats, went down “in the box” after some contact with a Danish defender. Was it a foul? Maybe. Watching the replay, I thought that it would be impossible to overturn the call, but it would also have been impossible to overturn a no-call. What the video review did not do, contrary to the article linked below, was “confirm” the call. It didn’t overturn the call; there’s a difference. Plus, of course, there’s one of those unwritten laws that referees don’t call penalty kicks late in a game unless there’s absolutely no question.

    Anyway, there’s a standing joke in Ireland that when it comes to international sporting events, an Irishman’s favorite team, of course, is Ireland. His second favorite team is whoever is playing England. So it’s not surprising that Bernard O’Byrne, the CEO of Ireland’s basketball program viewed the episode, shall we say, through green-colored glasses. And Sterling is black, So when the BBC posted on Facebook about the English victory, O’Byrne responded “BLACK DIVES MATTER!!!”

    I think it’s a pretty clever line, especially since the call was so marginal (and Sterling has something of a reputation for, well, diving). On the other hand, it does bring controversial politics into an arena where it doesn’t belong. (Side note: the English side has been sanctioned because a fan shone a laser pointer into the face of the Danish goalkeeper as he was preparing to defend that penalty kick, and there have been numerous problems with racist and homophobic chants in a number of venues throughout the world.)

    Naturally, there has been much posturing, groveling, and general consternation all around.

    I rather think this is an over-reaction but not a huge one. I could be convinced, however, that O’Byrne really was out of line, or that his critics need more bran in their diets. Whadya think?

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ireland-sports-executive-apologizes-for-post-saying-black-dives-matter/?ftag=CNM-00-10aab8d&linkId=123691552&fbclid=IwAR06PQuKpJuSYVZj1t6HzdoyPEpH74q6rCFzN8wHhixS2OqXAMewrdomsQQ

    • I think it’s a great line and I bet all the players thought it was really clever and funny. Not that they’d admit it. And wait, aren’t the Irish oppressed? Shouldn’t the English check their privilege? All the British had to do to ameliorate the famine was bring in a different variety of potato. It was genocide. Where’s my reparations check anyway? I’m half Irish, which makes me a hundred percent oppressed.

      • Well, the English certainly did make the Famine (or The Great Hunger as many of my Irish friends call it) far worse than it needed to be. Charles Trevelyan, the English baronet in charge of the administering the crisis saw Irish starvation as an “effective mechanism for reducing surplus population.” Even in “Black ’47,” Ireland produced 700 pounds of grain per capita… but on average 10 shiploads of Irish-produced food left the island for England every day. Let’s just say there’s a reason most of Ireland was cheering for Denmark.

        • Because they can’t stop chewing those old, bitter bones? Yes, the Great Famine was a humanitarian disaster that was handled about as badly as it could be. Actually it came on top of years of stagnation in which tenant farmers did not try to do better, because if they did better one year, their landlord would bump the rent up, and there it would stay, even if the next year wasn’t as good. If today ordinary people were starving to death because of the failure of one particular crop while the rulers exported every other crop and foodstuff, we’d call it a crime against humanity. This is why there are more Irish living outside Ireland than inside, and few desire to return. This was also over 150 years ago, but the Irish won’t let go. I have been to Ireland twice, and I don’t think I’ll go again. I suppose the B&B owner thought she was being charming and traditional when she handed me a crust of home-baked bread as I left to go about my sightseeing, telling me to carry it in my pocket in case I wandered onto “hungry grass,” meaning variously a mass grave of those who died during the famine or a place where grass was eaten by those desperate, lest I be cursed, but as soon as I was out of sight I rolled my eyes in disgust.

          • I. on the other hand, have been to Ireland numerous times, and will return as soon as conditions allow. (This is partially but by no means exclusively a result of my research interest in Irish culture.) Chacun à son goût.
            But it’s worth mentioning that whereas the Famine was over a century and a half ago, a number of other incidents are far more recent: the cover-up of the actual events of Bloody Sunday (the one U2 sings about, not the first one in 1913), for example, lasted until 2010. Of course, that was about the North, but I know nary an Irish person who doesn’t regard Northern Ireland as part of their homeland, irrespective of what the politicians and cartographers may say.

            • I’ve been three or four times. I found it much more welcoming than the U.K. The last visit, six or seven years ago, was not very pleasant. They’d taken all that EU money and spent it on roads to nowhere and vacant vacation homes and houses and prams for unwed mothers.

              Told me by an Irish businessman we shared a chat with in our hotel on our last visit: You want to know the difference between an American boy and an Irish boy? The American boy dates a pretty girl who lives in a nice house provided by her successful, present father. The American boy sees this and says to himself, “I want to be like that girl’s father some day.” The Irish kid dates the girl and says to himself of the father, “I’ll get even with that guy one day.”

              I shared that with an Irish American businessman a week ago who responded, “Truer words were never spoke.”

              • You want to know the difference between an American boy and an Irish boy? The American boy dates a pretty girl who lives in a nice house provided by her successful, present father. The American boy sees this and says to himself, “I want to be like that girl’s father some day.” The Irish kid dates the girl and says to himself of the father, “I’ll get even with that guy one day.”

                That’s why eventually the American boy gets the girl and the Irish boy gets thrown out and sent on his way. Get even for what? It is the girl’s dad’s fault that he actually worked hard and was present in his daughter’s life? I’m sorry Sean. Let me apologize on behalf of intelligent, hardworking people with intact families everywhere. I’m sorry that your mom was a slag who opened her legs for the first guy from the wrong side of the tracks who excited her. I’m sorry that your dad was a POS who fooked and got spooked. I’m sorry that you grew up close to the edge of failure and poverty because of this. I’m sorry that you were a problem kid in school who left without a leaving certificate because you were more interested in macho posturing, smoking, and drinking cheap spirits straight with your crew of losers than in studying. I’m sorry you can’t get a real job because you have neither the qualifications nor the work ethic for it and no one is going to waste time giving you a chance. I’m sorry that this girl’s dad is going to see you for what you are and send you on your way before you can “score” with his daughter, because that’s all you’re looking to do. Oh come on, admit it. You’re almost exclusively interested in the physical side of the relationship and boasting to your friends what you did. You’re not interested in getting a good job or buying a house or raising a family with this girl.

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