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Radio Free Barry - Rants and Raves
Barry Mitchell - the politically incorrect voice from a society called Normal.

... it wasmerely the problem of ignorant slobs in society like myself that couldn't look beyond the sheer beauty of human life. ya feel bad for retarded people? 888-555...
I don't know, was talking to a friend the other night, I do have 2. Best friends, elbows if you will, kids you grew up with that you'd kill for, lie in court, cheat, steal, not tell their wife about an affair and not think twice about the consequences. Condit's condoms, god if only they could talk. Hopefully he uses 'em, probably has stock in Durex. Anyhow... Alright, if the truth be known was actually speaking with a new acquaintance, have 4 of them. And this friend is going on and on about how retarded people are happy, content with their lives, that they really don't know any better to be sad or depressed. Course I was saying how I felt bad for them, that they can't enjoy the things we take for granted like reading a good book, or a night at the theatre, participating in sports, or even tying one's shoes in the morning.

And then when I see one on the street it makes me feel better about my own life, even though presently financially grim, could always be worse. At least I'm not a retard.

Guess the politically correct expression for Down syndrome these days is mentally "challenged" or "special", even so far as to say "gifted". Much nicer, more acceptable euphemisms for a tragic defect from birth. And then I asked him, "do ya feel sorry for their families?"

It's like I go insane if my daughter has a stomachache or son develops severe asthma and can hardly breathe for 3 days. Can't imagine the burden of taking care of a mentally retarded child day in and day out, year after year after... Do they pray to god daily for strength? My friend thought that the parents were also happy as larks and that the child was totally normal in their eyes. That it was merely the problem of ignorant slobs in society like myself that couldn't look beyond the sheer beauty of human life. That yes, their child was indeed alive and functioning and a glorious person just like the rest of us. God I hope he's right and they lead productive lives and enjoy life to the fullest and their families are so very proud of their accomplishments.

Reminded me of a happening this summer watching Richie Havens entertain in a little state park - and believe it or not Richie still has it after 40 years. Anyhow, there's this tiny stage and while he was performing, this group of teenagers walked by right in front of him during a classic tune, found it to be totally rude. Then this other teen walks by later, crouching very low as she went in front of him trying not to disturb his song or obstruct anyone's view in the audience. She was visibly Mongoloid and by far the most polite child there that had obviously learned a thing or two about manners and respect. Felt great when I saw that act, both Richie's and the young lady's. Still, when ya think about it, I'm sure it's not an easy road to travel Frostheads. But hopefully it's one that'll make all the difference in the long run.

Be Yourself
...maybe the Christian coalition, not to be confused with the Rainbow connection, can shed some light on of a touchy topic, always tends to upset people, but we're all friends here, aren't we? "You and I face to face". Seriously, what's the whole junior thing about? Comment, no comment. It's like, say you're making a business appointment or you call someone's house and you ask to speak to John, or Bill, or Frank, seems like 9 times out of 10 the ask "junior or senior?". And I think to myself how the hell am I supposed to know, he's Tommy to me, lady!

So I ask the question, why do people of the Christian Catholic, Babtist, and other persuasions give their children their own blankin' name? Sounds a bit egocentrical to me. I mean, say you want to name your son identically after yourself and your name's Ralph, couldn't you always have the family's last name, isn't that enough for traditional, carry on the name fahevah purposes? What's the deal with junior? Always thought it put a lot of pressure on the kid. Like say dad is a great figure in the community, has an awesome job, member of this board, that community organization, this soccer league, don't you think that puts a lot of pressure on the kid to live up to the father's name. He gets "Why can't you be more like Tony, Sr?" his whole life.

Don't you think it's undue pressure in an already over pressurized society? No matter what he does, he can never live up to dad, always being compared to senior's accomplishments. Never quite as good as the old man. Resentment 'r us may I help you? Check out serial killers and mass murderers and look for the Jr. at the end of the name next time. Happens more than you think. And then if dad's a loser, detriment to society like a drug dealer, alcoholic, womanizer, child molester, failed businessman, incoherent writer, then the kid has to live up to that stigma. "Feel so bad for junior, senior was so incorrigible" rings in his ears daily. No matter how much good he does in life he's always plagued with his father's exact name. The Jews, the Jews don't normally have that practice. They name their kid after a dead relative, but not always the exact name and sometimes use it as a middle name. If the dead person is Mildred they might name their kid Melissa or even Mitchell if it's a boy. I don't know, maybe that doesn't make any sense either, unless you're a Jew. And maybe that's the whole thing, that we can trace it back to various religious convictions, cultural practices and customs that have been passed down from generation to generation that make perfect sense to people that follow that ideological belief. Lot of times in fact the juniors actually turn out to be fourth's and fifth's. Interesting. Sounds like a Dylan song. Alls I'm sayin' is (and I like to say alls for my friends in Brooklyn) keep the emails comin' on the ongoing junior/senior debate. One final thang that's been botherin' me, forgot to mention previously. Sometimes when I would call up and ask to speak to Kathy they'd say "big Kathy or little Kathy?". Never junior or senior. Wassup with that? Comment, no comment. On that note..."Be Yourself" w/Mitch

You can bitch to Mitch at

© Barry Mitchell 2001

More controversial views: try Dermot Sullivan on Asylum Seekers

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