Friday, February 10, 2012

Gun-toting Disciplinarian Dad is an Idjit

You've probably seen this video elsewhere since it's been on about a million websites, and even all up on the Tee Vee too.  Let me warn you, if you haven't seen it yet, that you might not want to watch it.  It's very long, boring, and even the end where [SPOILER ALERT] the dad pumps his daughter's laptop full of lead, is anticlimactic. 

Despite all his macho posturing and promise of the obliterating power of his .45 caliber hollow-points, all he does is shoot some little holes in a computer.  A shotgun would have been much more dramatic.

 

Obviously, in addition to the cinematic failure of this video, the guy is demonstrating some patently crappy parenting skills.  The reason he kills his daughter's laptop is because she was being a rude little ingrate on Facebook and complaining about what tyrants her parents are.  In the video, he reads the post that was the death-knell of his daughter's machine, and sure, she sounds kind of like a bratty 15-year-old.  But his response to her grievances hardly sets a good example for how to properly resolve familial differences.

This grown-ass man sits there on camera, cig in hand, and addresses his daughter's complaints, essentially explaining why she is full of crap on each account.  You know, kind of like a 15-year-old who got dissed on Facebook would.  I don't think he ever refers to her as a "hater," but I had to fast-forward through much of his monologue, so he very well may have.

Finally, he pulls out his pistol, and continues his monotonous diatribe as he pops a bunch of rounds into her laptop.

I've gotten angry at my kids before.  I'm sure I'll get angry at them in much more complex ways by the time they're teenagers.  I've acted childish and vindictive in the moments of pure frustration a couple toddlers can cause over the stupidest things in the world (OH...YOU DON'T WANT TO WEAR YOUR NEW SPARKLY SNEAKERS?! HUH?! HOW 'BOUT IF I JUST *THROW* THEM ACROSS THE ROOM FOR YOU?!  YOU LIKE THAT?!).  And then I skulk around and clean up after my moment of impotent rage, feeling like a total asshole, thanking god that no adults witnessed my outburst, and hoping that my kids will forget about it, even though I never will.

The computer shooter, though, coldly calculates his tantrum, and arranges for it to be made visible to the largest audience possible.  At some point--while he was scouting locations for the carnage, printing out the Facebook post, setting up the tripod for his camera, loading his pistol--did he not cool down enough to think, "Wait a second...what am I doing?  This is ridiculous."  Not even, "What kind of person humiliates his own daughter publicly?" (because he clearly thinks he's doing her a favor); just: "How much of a douchebag am I gonna look like?"

Not surprisingly, out of the few dozen responses I could bear reading to various postings of this video online, most of them have been in support of the gunslinging dad.  This turd is an internet hero now.  Which, I suspect, was as much his ambition as was "teaching" his daughter a "lesson."

I feel bad for this guy's daughter, of course.  Not that, as most of the commenters on the YouTube video suggest, her dad exposed her for the horrible, entitled punk she really was, but for having to live under the rule of a such a childish egomaniac.  I hope for her sake that after the inevitable father-and-daughter morning talk-show appearances and celebrity family counseling sessions they'll undergo, her dad realizes that bitching about your parents on Facebook is age appropriate, but taking violent (if only symbolically), public revenge when your child hurts your feelings is just plain shitty.


          

50 comments:

  1. Again, super post. I hadn't seen this before, (head-in-sand syndrome in full effect here) and didn't bother to watch it for the first time, for time is . . . short.

    Suffice it to say that as a dad of teenagers, I get those feelings of being snubbed. But I've learned to live with them and realize that my kids really don't mean most of what they do and say. I don't negate their frustrations, I just seek to help them work them out in healthy ways, like talking with me, a conversation, with the speaking and the listening. And if they occasionally feel the need to write "I hate you, Dad!" on their wall, I roll with that too and realize that I'd rather see that then have them hold it all inside.

    It's pre-coffee and I'm rambling, so I'll leave it at that.

    So glad I took the time to stop by after reading your post on DC. I've seen your name around but never really given your posts a chance. My mistake . . .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, dude! I'm also of the opinion that the talking and the listening is the way to go. And if that doesn't work, then the taking away of things and privileges.

      Delete
  2. I haven't watched the video but yeah... I'm with ya. Kids bitch about their parents to their friends, even as adults we do it. Parents, on the other hand have to be the "better man" and through our words and actions show our kids what we think is acceptable behavior.

    And yes, we all have "those" moments where our kid drives us insane and we react in kind, but hopefully we feel as you do and clean up after ourselves and try really hard not to do it again.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow, you really make the vidja sound enticing. I think I'll watch it right around never.

    ReplyDelete
  4. ah, what about the mother of the daughter? THAT woman married him and had his child... do you think mama knew how hubby was? could he be treating his wife and if he has other children the same way? Guess the man is a reflection on maybe his parents and the way he was brought up. Just sayin'.....

    ReplyDelete
  5. I haven't even seen the video but totally agree with you. Poor kid; does he not realize/remember that age 15 is the time when kids naturally feel oppressed by the rule of their parents. And, painful though it may be, you WANT them to have this normal reaction so they can stretch their wings and, soon enough, fly?
    Oh, wait, of course he doesn't realize. Way to complex. Must. Shoot. Things.
    WTF?

    ReplyDelete
  6. I haven't seen the video, but this goes against every parenting grain in my body. Geez... instead of publicly humiliating her, he could maybe, I don't know... TALK to her? Ground her, sure, take her off facebook if you must, but this is crossing so many lines and failing to repair so much that I wouldn't be surprised if she doesn't move out!

    ReplyDelete
  7. so everyone says that he shouldn't have done this -- So what SHOULD he have done? Should he have allowed her to continue to be a disrespectful little snot? Should he have just ignored her rantings? Perhaps he went to far - but perhaps this was the ONLY thing that would get his daughters attention. It's easy to sit back and sat that we would handle things differently and likely each family would, but we don't know how many times this young lady was grounded or had her "electronics" taken from her because of her behavior. We don't know how many doors were slammed in Mom and Dad's face when they tried to talk it out. We don't know how frustrated Mom was about the whole situation. We don't know how she treated her brother or the hired help - except by what she says in her post and through her father. While I wouldn't take a gun to a lap that I likely paid for - apparently that is what this dad thought it would take to get her attention. I actually commend him for standing up to his daughter in a way that didn't physically harm her! Sure it embarrassed her - but she did the same to him and her mother AND she was rude too. But that's just me. I'm not Ty's daddy - but I'm posting in his name -- I am his wife -- Arynsmom!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. See my response to your husband's comment. Basically, I think parents should act like grownups if they want their children's respect. Taking away the laptop would have been a quite severe punishment, and I'm pretty sure it would have gotten her attention. What they really need is therapy.

      Delete
  8. Me again. The real me. Not my wife. Who convinced me to watch the video.

    First, the dad did not come off as a hillbilly bumpkin, like others said he did and so I naturally imagined he would. He came across as calm and articulate, yet frustrated. At his wit's end.

    Second, the kid posted this as a letter to her parents, yet never came to them with her complaints personally. I am assuming here. Maybe she has and they brushed her off, or yelled at her, or belittled her. Again, not sure. But she took it online first, hoping to get some sort of affirmation with regards to her feelings, and so dad played her game.

    Even a child, who has every right to be treated with dignity and respect, should be expected to show courtesy toward others. This teenage girl DID NOT do so.

    Did dad overreact? Perhaps. But I wonder what would happen had he gone to her and confronted her in person about her letter. If he had told her these things privately. Would she have listened? Respected him more? Or would she have crossed her arms, rolled her eyes, showed him the hand, said "Whatevs!" Taken to the FB and been even more disrespectful and inaccurate in belittling her parents. For where else can half-truths and pats on the back spread quicker than on the FB?

    Interesting. I look forward to seeing how this plays out. I hope they get together, reconcile, and post something together. Now THAT would be something worth watching . . .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't dispute that this girl's actions were wrong and I can totally see how Dad would be furious. I also can imagine, as you suggest, that normal reactions may have had no effect on her. But do you really think making this huge public scene and *shooting* her laptop could possibly have a positive effect? Wouldn't taking the machine away, donating or selling it, achieve the exact same thing, without the drama? I just can't imagine that Dad's tantrum would inspire any respect from the kid.

      Delete
    2. Interestingly, I don't think he wanted respect at all. Like her, he is looking for a reaction. This is how shit gets handled in this day and age . . . make it viral and gather the troops around your own point of view, regardless of whether it's right or not. Forget reason. Or discussion. Or being quiet instead of all chest-thumpy. It's about making noise, and both can sleep tonight knowing that they did just that . . .

      Delete
  9. I just occurred to me that you might misunderstand something that I wrote in my original comment, about my kid writing "I hate you!" on his wall. I'm not talking about a FB wall. He actually took a pencil and wrote it in his bedroom wall. So there's that . . .

    Also? For the record? I have four children, ages 18, 14, 12, 11, so I kinda sorta get all this.

    Again, great post and conversation starter. I can see this one getting hashed and rehashed in the days ahead . . .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ay yi yi. That's gotta be rough with all those teenagers in the house. I taught high school for a while, so I kinda get it too.

      Delete
  10. I really, really don't want to watch that video. I mean, the poor laptop. What harm did it ever do?

    Meanwhile, I'm still stunned that people like this are actually allowed, let alone encouraged, to carry guns around.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That computer was threatening his family! It was comin' right at him!

      Delete
  11. One of my facebook friends just posted a link to an article about this with the words 'Yeah....I could see me doing this....'. This man is a retired police officer. Scary!

    ReplyDelete
  12. So you're telling me that the use of fire arms isn't a regular part of your parenting repertoire? Why just the other day my three year old was refusing to eat his grilled cheese sandwich so I shot that sandwich to hell.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha...since watching this video, I've been threatening to shoot my kids' blankies all day.

      Delete
  13. Gives gun owners a bad name :-(
    We aren't all like that. I agree with you on this one. All this does is inflame the situation, not fix it. Yes, I understand teenagers don't get it and can be rude, but all this does is incite more addittude and make things worse!!
    He's telling his daughter violence/humiliation/anger is the way to deal with things.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree. And I don't think this guy would have been any less of an a-hole without the gun.

      Delete
  14. Jeez, and I was afraid I might be an asshole. Not compared to this guy. Phew! Imagine my relief.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, this guy really raises the asshole bar!

      Delete
  15. I totally see where you're coming from on this, and it's exactly how I thought I would react when I first heard about the video. After watching the entire thing, I came out with a different opinion, though. I don't condone gun use in the situation...what I do appreciate - and actually admire him for - is his follow-through on a disciplinary threat.

    So often, I hear parents say, "If you [do such-and-such] one more time, I'm going to [discipline you in this manner]." They say it repeatedly, with no consequence ever being displayed. Did this guy overreact? Possibly - okay, probably - but he was following through on a consequence made during an earlier conversation with his daughter: "If you do this kind of thing again, I'm going to put a bullet through your laptop."

    It's worth reading his response to the media reaction and viral nature of the video; he does address his daughter's reaction, as well: https://www.facebook.com/tommyjordaniii/posts/105495699574209

    As I said, I completely understand your take on it. Just thought I'd offer up another one. (FTR, I wouldn't freak out over my kids swearing, don't own a gun and wouldn't care to, and probably have very little in common with the man in the video. Except, I do try to follow through. It's a good reminder to me to never threaten to throw my kid's computer out the window.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, following through is admirable. But following through on a completely stupid threat ("I will put a bullet through your laptop") is completely stupid. I read his post defending his actions, and some of it was not insane. (He's oddly focused on her using swear words, though, which seem much less concerning than bullets.) He could have very easily followed through on the spirit of the threat by putting a metaphorical bullet (selling or donating it) through it. As for the matter of doing this in public, there's no justification for that unless you believe that revenge is a good parenting tactic. I'm paraphrasing here, but he lamely tried to defend this on his fb comments by saying something like, "I wasn't being childish, I was giving her a taste of her own medicine." Which to me equals "being childish."

      I do appreciate your take on this, and I am a big fan (but not the best practitioner) of following through with disciplinary strategies.

      Delete
  16. Thank you for being AGAINST "Facebook parenting for a troubled teen". (aka Jimmy Jordan who parents with his 45caliber handgun with hollow point bullets)

    Not only does his actions trouble me, but the fact that so many people are stroking his ego with back slapping comments. The fact that so few question his antics, makes me feel like I'm in crazy town!

    I've commented on several of my FB friends: "Such a loving family. The cigarette says a lot about this guy (endangers his own health and his family via second hand smoke). And destroying his own property is the sign of a true genius!"

    As you have mentioned, he behaved much like a spoiled teenager himself. Discharging a firearm in a residential neighborhood was not only over the top, but the extreme aggressiveness of it can easily be viewed as a threatening act. A happy safe home this appears not!

    Thanks again. I feel like I've left crazy town and found a sanctuary where people value things like communication, dignity, and love over authoritarian control via smoking guns.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've visited crazytown too. What is up with that? Lisa Belkin wrote a great piece on this on HuffPo http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-belkin/father-shoots-laptop_b_1267850.html?show_comment_id=0#comment_0 and sure enough, most of the comments are along the lines of "Shut up, lady! That guy is Dad of the Century." Sheesh.

      Glad there are some sane people here.

      Delete
  17. Hey, I'm not a fan of guns, and obviously I would have handled it differently, but I feel it's wrong to demonize him and make him a person chasing his 15 minutes, no matter who gets hurt.

    I read a little bit of his Facebook page, now that he's the most famous dad in the world (at least until this story dies). He has refused to give interviews to the media, fearing (actually, knowing) they would sensationalize what is actually a private family issue, and because he wants to protect his daughter, who--like him--doesn't know how to react to the attention.

    He explains a few things on Facebook: The only reason the video was on YouTube was because it's easier to upload vids to YouTube and then link them on Facebook than uploading directly to Facebook. He explains how he found out about the video, which is actually the funniest story I've read in a while. And he uses his 15 minutes to raise money for charity while avoiding getting into the hero/villain argument.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fair enough--I only made my accusations of him being a famewhore on a hunch. Nonetheless, everything else about making this video is indefensible.

      Delete
    2. Shouldn't he take it down now? (is he still teaching his daughter a lesson?) To not do so shows his true intent. He's a famewhore plain and simple.

      Delete
    3. I don't know what his spin is on leaving the video up, but I suspect he thinks he's doing parents and kids the world over a big favor.

      Delete
  18. I think the "Dad of the Century" comments are specifically in response to the fact that the girl got a significant consequence for her repeatedly inappropriate actions. Kids who earn consequences are an ever-increasing rarity in our society -- as a former public school teacher I speak from experience. I think most of the praise for this guy is really done for that reason.

    For me, I completely agree with what he was doing in PRINCIPLE, but his approach to the whole thing was a bit over the top for my taste.

    What made me confused was the way he commented on her foul language by dropping some profanities of his own. Wonder where she gets THAT...idjit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah--I've read about a million comments lauding him for following through with the promised consequences. But I maintain that when you promise a ridiculous consequence, it's better to back off a little bit than to do the stupid thing you threatened just for the sake of "sticking to your guns." So to speak.

      I read his explanation for what he did, and he seems obsessed with her cursing. Is "shit" even a curse word anymore?

      Delete
  19. Using a gun to teach a lesson is stupid and careless. It's parenting, not war (regardless of the fights and tensions). He can be all the right in the world, but in this case might is working against him.

    ReplyDelete
  20. It makes me happy to hear this perspective from one of my favorite dad bloggers (you too, Whit.)

    I understand frustration and being over belligerent behavior from a teenaged girl, but there is just something creepy about John Wayne IT Cowboy Dad and his whole "hey look at me and my gun and the laptop I bought!" approach that cancels out any positive result of his behavior, for me. If he'd taken it away and not shot it up on camera, I'd never have known about him, but things may have worked out better for him and his kid in the long run (minus the attention, which, well,I think that was the point.)

    I work with many, many teenagers. They can be a tough crowd, for sure, but I think the general outcry over how much they suck, in response to this guy's internet celebrity, is counterproductive too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "If he'd taken it away and not shot it up on camera, I'd never have known about him, but things may have worked out better for him and his kid in the long run." Exactly. Also, as a former high-school, and sometimes college teacher, I agree that teenagers get a bad rap. They're no worse than we were when we were kids. Just different in some ways.

      Delete
  21. You just know that anger-management is going to be a generational problem in this family. If a snarky Facebook post sets this guy off, how does he get by in the lunacy of daily life? Oh yeah, he's packin'. So why need to grow up?

    ReplyDelete
  22. Forgive me for being draconian, but I think neither of them deserve what they have. She doesn't deserve a father who can obviously provide for her (I barely had a phone when I was 15, but wow go ahead and get a laptop while you're at it), and he doesn't deserve to be a parent because he's clearly a "childish egomaniac" (as you've said). My parents annoyed me as a teenager simply because at that age, everything is annoying. But I never wanted to put into existence my temporal yet acerbic thoughts. Neither did my parents ever take my passive-aggressive tendencies too seriously.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't even think that her fb post was that terrible. I've known a lot of teenagers who said worse stuff than that regularly, and then came to their senses when they grew up. Pretty typical attitude, really. Kids always say that stuff to each other, it's just that she made the mistake of publishing it. It's a phase. Being vindictive toward your own kids, and then defending it, is much more concerning.

      Delete
  23. I can't believe you're shitting all over my new hero. Not cool.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Thank goodness for you. A parent is finally STEPPING UP to actually parent these out of control toddlers. No diaper? Well, eff you! More parents should send missiles into beloved childhood toys. Brava, Beta Dad. Brava.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Thank you. That video upset the hell out of me. Love your parody -- nothing like some satire to lighten up a situation.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I think the reason it's so popular is that parenting teens is frustrating, especially now that their volatile hormones can spew out onto public-facing sites like Facebook. So this dumbass did what a lot of parents probably fantasize about doing. But the point is it's a childish FANTASY - good parents act like grown ups even when they don't want to (barring a few slip ups of course) and they certainly don't put their own tantrums on YouTube.

    Great post.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Sorry I'm late to the party on this one (I'm new here), but as the parent of a teenager who has been known to be *gasp* rude, disrespectful, and act like a spoiled brat, I can't imagine taking to the internet to address those issues. She does know better than to post personal/family problems on Facebook (thank God), but I have to wonder what the dad in the video taught his daughter with his approach? He calls her out for posting the letter on Facebook, but then he posts his response/reaction on YouTube? Is this a "do as I say not as I do" kind of thing? I don't know. I'm not winning any Parent of the Year awards, to be sure, but I have to believe there was a better way deal with this.

    ReplyDelete
  28. watched this video and found it disturbing on every level....of course teenagers are difficult (I"ve got three) but surely we need some perspective and this guys video is just cringeworthy. It's hard to be grown up but if we cant manage it as adults why would we expect it of our children?

    ReplyDelete

Don't hold back.

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails