Dad Bullies and Intimidates Daughter, Posts on Facebook for All to See
February 13, 2012 13 Comments
This video has been making the rounds on facebook lately, accompanied with commentary like “best dad ever!” and “brilliant! Way to show that disrespectful teenager her place!” Okay, I thought, let’s see it. I was repulsed. I couldn’t articulate why. So I thought I’d check out the comments, to see how others felt.
Again, I felt repulsed.
A summary, for those who cannot or do not wish to watch: a middle-aged white man, is sitting on a lawn chair in a grassy field. He tells the viewer how his teenaged daughter posted a rant on her facebook page about her parents and the chores she’s made to do. He mocks her for trying to restrict her parents from being able to view said post, and brags how he was able to see it anyway, when he was updating the software on his daughter’s laptop. He’s an IT guy, you see. How foolish of her, thinking she could hide something from him.
He reads the rant from a printout. He tells the viewer that since she had the temerity to complain about her parents on facebook, he is going to show her up by recording this video and posting it on her facebook, to humiliate her in front of all her friends. He lists the chores his daughter must do every day, and mocks her for complaining about a paltry amount of work. He castigates his daughter for being disrespectful. Then he gets up and pans the camera to show a laptop sitting on the grass. He tells the viewer that it is his daughter’s laptop, that he’s going to destroy it, and that his daughter is going to have to work to pay for the destroyed laptop, and the software he just uploaded on it. He pulls out a handgun and shoots the laptop. He shoots it again. And again. All the while reveling in it and mocking his daughter: “your mother said to do one for her, too.” He shoots it again. “You’re going to pay for these bullets, too. These are two-dollar bullets.” He shoots again, until his clip is empty.
The comments were reminiscent of a bloodthirsty mob, cheering the destruction of the laptop, mocking the girl, and raging about “teenagers these days.”
I have a problem with the idea that teenagers must “respect” their parents, when “respect” means they are never to say or think a negative thing about their parents, never to express their feelings unless it’s unconditioned praise and adoration, and certainly never to say such things to their friends. This degree of control over another person’s thoughts and feelings, and the expression of the same, is borderline abusive.
This man’s complete lack of respect for his daughter’s privacy is astounding. I’m sure he felt he was well within his rights as the one who paid for the laptop–people like him always do–that is, feel that once they have paid for something, they own it forever, along with rights to control whatever is done with it. (Apparently the concept of gifts is far beyond this man.) I’m sure he was absolutely shocked when he found that status while snooping–people like him always are–because without a doubt his daughter has never felt safe or comfortable enough to speak to him directly. He snooped, he didn’t like what he found. Shocking. His daughter will never trust him again.
This man felt humiliated (and probably emasculated) because his daughter spoke negatively of him to all of her friends. His response was to humiliate her in front of the entire virtual world. He responds to criticism by bullying. What a fabulous lesson to teach a teenage girl!
Not to mention the implied threat of shooting up his daughter’s laptop. I find this to be the epitome of irresponsible gun ownership. Guns are deadly tools–dangerous, deadly tools, meant to be taken seriously. The only way they should be used is for sport target shooting, hunting, or self-defense. They are not to be used as an outlet for your frustrated emasculation. He felt embarrassed by his daughter, so he destroyed the tool she used to do it with a gun. That he went to his weapon as the answer to his anger is a sign of a lack of control, and a bad temper.
In fact, the very reason I was so frightened of guns for so long is that, as a teenager, someone close to me vented their frustration by going outside and shooting into the air. They would wave it around and describe how they should use it on people who wronged them. This made me afraid for my life. I felt threatened, despite that they never pointed it at me, or threatened me specifically. Just that their first action when they were angry was to grab their weapon was a very bad and scary thing.
This man does not respect his weapon.
He has no business owning a gun.
That he told the offending person that they must pay him back for the bullets he used is psychological abuse–making his daughter participate in her own intimidation.
I feel for this girl. I hope she gets as far away from this sorry man as soon as she possibly can.