BE; Bad people making sense: Dear India: smarten the fuck up

May 1, 2008

*Watch this before proceding*

“Babies are dropped several stories for good health and good luck at a shrine in Solapur, in Maharastra, India.”

They drop babies off a fifty foot building…for luck…and good health.

What is the rational here: You do something so brutally unthinkable off the bat, that things are bound, statistical speaking, to improve for the child? Or perhaps the inevitable brain damage they suffer gives them a sunny disposition…that could be mistaken for life long happiness. Or, more likely, the process (and the concrete) simply weeds out unlucky children from their more fortunate brethren. Darwin’s retarded step sister at work.

I have seen crack addicted child mothers, on prom night, exercise more care and concern over their children[1]..

Now I realize people[2] are going to make the case for cultural variance, and religious tolerance: this is not a question of variance, but velocity. Lying about the Easter Bunny is an acceptable concession to superstition; whiplash is not an acceptable form of karmic adjustment. I don’t even like babies being dunked during baptism…flinging them naked off buildings, in the hopes that blanket wielding yokels will cushion their fall, is biblically irresponsible. Where are the mothers in this[3]?

How does a tradition like this even start:

Tushar: Hey Rajwant, congratulations! How is the new baby.

Rajwant: A blessing, truly a blessing. Only…and I hesitate to say this aloud…he is a tad sickly, and his luck…the worst I’ve seen.

Tushar: Rough deal. Hey…this is a little unconventional, but do you know what you should try?

Rajwant: What is that?

Tushar: You need to take that kid to the tallest building in town…and just drop it off the side.

Rajwant: Are you serious? How is that a good idea?

Tushar: let me tell you this: my cousins wife accidentally dropped her son off a cliff, and now he sells more clay pots than anyone else in town. You’d be a fool not to do it!

Rajwant: I see you no holes in your logic. Get the ladder.

And this is the country we trust to provide tech support for complicated IT enterprises. I don’t want my LAN support team firing our server off a bridge, in the hopes of ensuring future network stability…it’s just bad business.

Oh sure: in a perfect world we could all fling whoever we want, off whatever we want, without consequence. We, however, live a world where there are substantial Newtonian repercussions to launching children off shrines…and any culture aspiring to a level above barbarism should take those repercussions into account, before incorporating gang baby tossing into their religious observances.

The only good thing about this video is the dude at the end busting out a powerslide drum solo. He saw the camera and took a shot at making the big time. While I generally wouldn’t advise a scene of communal child abuse as a ideal venue for self promotion, you have to respect his moxie.

************

[1]Let me be the first to say I am not the best parent. I gave my children absurd names, am often drunk in their presence, and once forced them into a zeppelin race around the world to prove their love for me…and still, even I never considered hurling them off a five story tower for luck. All right…I did consider it…but I didn’t go through with it.

[2] Damn hippies, and closet babies flingers, for the most part

[3] Likely pressed beneath long poles, on a bonfire, to preserve their honor.

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30 Responses to “BE; Bad people making sense: Dear India: smarten the fuck up”

  1. Jennifer Lancey Says:

    Hello there. I was sent a link to your blog by a friend a while ago. I have been reading a long for a while now. Just wanted to say HI. Thanks for putting in all the hard work.

    Jennifer Lancey

  2. Pollyanna Sassmaster Says:

    I think it should be pointed out to anyone taking note of the possibly related posts, “Hey that looks great…Now let’s BEDAZZLE it!” is a highly inappropriate thing to say upon meeting someone’s baby for the first time.

  3. Sethwal Says:

    They toss children in burning building down to firemen like this all of the time. This is a sacred ritual done for hundreds of years. You are in no place to judge them, or their culture.


  4. “They toss children in burning building down to firemen like this all of the time”

    Yeah, they perform open heart surgery on Children all the time too…that doesn’t mean it should be done as an act of whimsy.

  5. w0rmwood Says:

    I’m not sure I can give you this one AJ.

    I mean sure, it seems sort of wacky, but what are the baby death/injury rates in this ceremony?

    I mean circumcision involves cutting a tip of penis skin off, and baptisms involve dunking kids in ‘holy’ (read stagnant) church water. But provided no injuries are generally had… does it really matter?

    Also, if you figure the average mortality rate of a child in impoverished India, its actually quite possible that this event – statistically speaking – may represent one of the safest moments of the child’s life.

  6. Jive Says:

    How do the survival rates of this baby tossing thing compare to good ol’ judaeo-christian genital mutilation?

  7. Jive Says:

    damnit wormwood why must you always upstage me by 1 minute?!… you kids and your new fangled digital watches


  8. “, and baptisms involve dunking kids in ‘holy’ (read stagnant) church water”

    The don’t drop the kids off the Chrysler building into the baptismal font.

    “what are the baby death/injury rates in this ceremony?”

    I doubt there is alot of medical followup, or double blind trial, to asses the long/short term impact. Which is sort of the problem. And, neck tramua aside, it just takes one stumble from the tosser to make that a lethal act… that is well beyond wacky.

  9. Jive Says:

    Now that I’m thinking about it I figure allowing Brittany Spears to reproduce revoked any parenting cred our culture may have had. Had she been tossed off a tower at a young age the world might be a better place.


  10. And I’m in no way advocating christian rituals….I even expressed a distaste of baptism…so I don’t feel any need to defend them.

    Regardless: Christian cultural practices* have no bearing on how advisable it is to throw an infant off a five story building, into a blanket. Are you guys really defending this as something a decent human being would consider?

    *And in terms of genital mutilation especially female: I consider it a crime on par with rape. So don’t try and pin that kind of trash on me.


  11. “I mean sure, it seems sort of wacky,”

    Sort of wacky? I shudder to think what kind of behaviour it would take to for you to consider it full on wacky…or god forbid, criminally negligent. Would someone need to fire their child into the heart of the sun, in a rocket full of broken glass and AIDS infected needles?

  12. Ellen Says:

    ” The only good thing about this video is the dude at the end busting out a powerslide drum solo. He saw the camera and took a shot at making the big time. While I generally wouldn’t advise a scene of communal child abuse as a ideal venue for self promotion, you have to respect his moxie.”

    *Throw up the horns* \w/

  13. w0rmwood Says:

    “Sort of wacky? I shudder to think what kind of behaviour it would take to for you to consider it full on wacky…or god forbid, criminally negligent.”

    I would agree, most of those things would probably make you shudder.

    There are truly ‘barbaric’ practices out there – for example, in some areas of south Africa, there is a belief that a cure for AIDS is to have sexual intercourse with an infant. Now that – and I stress here this is not a practice that should be equated with a whole culture – is BARBARIC. That is fucked up.

    A controlled drop is potentially dangerous. But as I said, given how dangerous being young and poor in India is generally, this may well be a pretty minor risk in comparison.

  14. w0rmwood Says:

    one thing we do agree on though, solid drum solo.

    =)


  15. “here are truly ‘barbaric’ practices out there – for example, in some areas of south Africa, there is a belief that a cure for AIDS is to have sexual intercourse with an infant”

    Or a virgin. Yeah, I’ve heard of that, and was near heartbroken over the thought of it. That, however, crosses well beyond barbarism, into inhuman cruelty. The blanket stuff I see as moronic and lacking all civil restraint, and reason…but not a hateful deed.

    Hence: Dear India, Smarten the fuck up. As opposed to Dear India: You’re inhuman monsters that need to be cleansed from the Earth.

    I don’t see those people in video as evil…just lacking in common sense to the point of being deranged.

  16. Travis Says:

    Could be worse. It could be a baptism by fire. Then there would my loads of trouble.

    I was expecting to see one of the babies miss, and hit the ground. Then some of the comments here about how you can’t say anything about another countries practices would change to “how dare they kill those babies”

  17. conundrum Says:

    I am totally on board with you on this one AJ. This baby tossing business lacks the element of intelligent adults but then this comes from a country that worships cows. Go figure – cows more revered than their own progeny.

    But this little nugget in your footnotes:

    “[1]Let me be the first to say I am not the best parent. I gave my children absurd names, am often drunk in their presence, and once forced them into a zeppelin race around the world to prove their love for me…”

    You have been clear in other posts that you are of the breeder persuasion but I don’t recall you acknowledging success in the reproductive arts. What gives? Is this tongue-in-cheek?


  18. “You have been clear in other posts that you are of the breeder persuasion but I don’t recall you acknowledging success in the reproductive arts. What gives? Is this tongue-in-cheek”

    I’ve spoken of my sons, Ricochet and Lucifer, many times. I’m just currently undergoing a terrible custody battle with their mother, my ex-wife Clophistra, so my lawyer advised me to keep them out of the narrative.

    http://beatsentropy.com/2006/10/19/bring-your-kids-to-work-day-part-1/

  19. baredfeetandteeth Says:

    It’s common practice in Canada to teach toddlers and infants (not that young, but close) to swim by just dropping them in the deep end of a pool in the direction of their parents and waiting for their reflexes to kick in. Or so the swim community in my area claims. I suppose it’s lucky if they surface.

  20. Rodney Says:

    I think they may have been pulling your chain. I have taken my son, who is under the age of 3, to 4 different swim classes, and not once was he out of my arms reach. They do ask them to jump, but in to your arms. It is not until they are older than three that they ask to children to go in to the pool without their parents, and in that case, they are wearing life jackets.

  21. Mike Says:

    “it’s common practice in Canada to teach toddlers and infants (not that young, but close) to swim by just dropping them in the deep end of a pool in the direction of their parents and waiting for their reflexes to kick in. Or so the swim community in my area claims. I suppose it’s lucky if they surface.”

    Tu quoque argument detected!!!!!!

  22. Emile Alara Says:

    As hate speech goes this was pretty funny.

  23. w0rmwood Says:

    “As hate speech goes this was pretty funny.”

    Ok, now lets not get over excited.

    I disagree here with AJ, and I would go as far as to say that AJ’s stance is pretty problematic, and comes from a deeply ethnocentric perspective.

    That said, I think AJ was pretty open about those biases.

    Regardless, while the post may be a bit insensitive, and certainly something worth arguing about… I think to call it hate speech means you’ve led a pretty sheltered life regarding true hate speech.

    I think, in the name of etymological correctness you should call this post mildly to moderately intolerant, belligerent, and potentially prickish. Hateful? I think thats a stretch.


  24. “As hate speech goes this was pretty funny.”

    You lynch more flies with honey.

  25. John Gap Says:

    To throw a child from a roof for good luck is completely ridiculous no matter the culture. Luck has never been proven to exist, whereas neck injuries have. That should end the debate. You don’t risk a child’s well-being for something as silly and abstract as good luck.


  26. …”look he made it down without any problems, and his neck is no where near as bad as Binash’s. He is truely lucky”…

    I can’t even bring myself to watch. It makes my heart sink… where to even begin. the drum dude seems a good thing to focus on instead.

    I like the defensive referances to other cultures/religions to make it ok. … sheesh… two wrongs dont make this ok.

    ….how did I end up in here…. was working away and here I am.

  27. engtech Says:

    unrelated.

    WWF has a new logo:

  28. Scott Says:

    I think we should step happily over cultural relativism in situations like these. You can cloak an activity like this in hundreds or thousands of years of tradition, but it’s still really dumb.

    At the very least, the parent of the child should have to make the jump first to ensure its safety.

  29. Scott Says:

    And I mean look at that picture of the baby falling it doesn’t even know how to fall properly what a doofus

  30. AHEM Says:

    Fisrt time i saw this shit & heard about it !!!
    &
    I live in India for past 34 year !

    But then India is a very vast country with billions of people so its absolutely DUMB to judge the whole country on the basis of some street acts & some religious acts ( i believe all religious thingummies SUCK )

    & believe me vallaient
    THEREs SHIT EVERYWHERE
    THERES SHIT IN THE USA
    & SHIT IN INDIA
    & ALL THE WORLD

    ALL OVER THERE ARE GOOD GUYS & BAD GUYS
    THERE IS EVIL & THERE IS GOOD
    THERE IS RIGHT & THERE IS WRONG

    ITS ON EVERY PLACE OF EARTH
    NOT GEOGRAPICALLY ALLIGNED !!!!


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