[The following article was published by the UK's Guardian Unlimited newspaper. HT: Joe Carter].
A recent headline indicates a number of disturbing American trends: Father Kills Bear Charging At Son With Log.
First of all, who's giving these animals logs? There's nothing in the world a respectable bear needs with a log. If that bear has a log, he has it for one reason: to kill somebody.
It's clear to any American reader that our animals are going bad. Every day there's some story about out-of-control wildlife: Mother Kills Pit Bull Mauling Son With Spatula. Or: Lover Kills Shark Swimming Towards Daughter With Spear Gun. Or: Son Stops Mountain Lion Attacking Dad Using Judo.
What are these people thinking? Who gives a pit bull a spatula or a shark a spear gun? What kind of idiot enrolls a mountain lion in a judo class?
Oh, wait, hang on. I just went back and read the article. Turns out the father used the log, to kill the bear.
Actually, that's what's wrong with our country: sloppy journalism. That headline, properly written, would have read: Father Uses Log To Kill Bear, Bear That Was, At That Time, Sans Log Or Any Kind Of Weapon, Charging Son Of Man.
Although that makes it sound as if the bear was charging Christ. Which - I mean, the article gives no indication that this was the case. In my opinion, a bear would not last a minute versus Christ. Especially if you gave Christ a log.
Anyway: sloppy writing, that's our problem. Also failure to fact-check. Look at this one: Man Discovers Picasso Painting In Attic. Hello! Picasso's dead! If not, he's, like, 200 years old, and I doubt he can 1) climb the stairs into some dude's attic or 2) paint once he gets there.
In addition to poor fact-checking: bad journalistic ethics. Take this one: World's Tallest Man Saves Drowning Girl With Extremely Long Arm. Why do we need to know the length of the poor girl's arm? If she had a weird voice, would we say, World's Tallest Man Saves Drowning Girl Who Is Terrible Singer? What's next? Fireman Saves Baby Who Looks Exactly Like Yoda?
What bothers me about that bear story is this American tendency to step in and do everything for our kids. It would have been better if the father had just handed the kid the log, and said, "Son, throw this, hard, at that bear. Or you're dead." That way, the kid learns something. I'm sure we've all heard the biblical proverb, "If you teach me to fish, I fish for ever; if you kill my fish with your log, next time I'm hungry, I'm just going to come walking up to you with a log and a live fish."
Now I just need a title for this column. Ah, I've got it: Writer Proves Stupidity Of Americans With Guardian Column.