When You Just Want to Lash Out

I live in a neighborhood like many others. You have some great neighbors and then you have those inconsiderate ones who make your life miserable. Like say, for instance, they park their car illegally blocking a sidewalk and impeding on your driveway against a yellow curb and leave their car there for days on end. Then cops drive by said illegally parked car and do nothing. Then you can’t call the cops because your neighbors tend to get aggressive and make the neighborhood feel unsafe if you cross their ability to do whatever the hell they want. I’ve already made that mistake once. As my youngest son nearly fell into the car, since it blocks the sidewalk we and the other neighborhood kids use to get to and from school/bus stops, my oldest said “It’s kinda of a cool looking car. It would be a shame if someone towed it.” I narrowed my eyes, angrily, as dealing with people blocking the driveway and sidewalk for the past 4 months wasn’t annoying enough (expletive alert, and there will probably be a few more), my response was: “It’d be a shame if someone smashed their fucking tail lights.”

I wouldn’t actually smash the tail lights, though I’m not sure it’s because I can’t afford the lawsuit or because despite this pent up rage that I have for my neighbors, I was brought up to not feed into these violent and aggressive impulses that I admittedly fantasize about. Such as, smashing an asshole’s tail lights because I’m tired of the B.S. It wouldn’t set a good example for them if I did anyways, and going to jail wouldn’t work for me.

Sometimes you want to lash out. (And I don’t mean to compare my situation to the one I’m about to address.) Sometimes it just becomes too much. You’re tired of seeing these things on the news. You’re haunted by imagery of a cop kneeling on the neck of a guy pleading for help. Criminal or not, that imagery is horrifying and unacceptable and I honestly understand why people are lashing out. They’ve had enough of this madness. I’ve had enough of it. Every time that I hear a story like that or an elderly Asian person just being a random target of a hate crime, I just want to lash out. I want to scream. I do have an urge to cause some destruction because it’s completely normal to want someone else to feel the pain and anger that you do. I don’t mean that I think it’s okay to set the world on fire. But, I mean, sometimes you just want to set the world on fire. Because maybe from those ashes, we can create something better than it was.

If you can’t tell the difference between a taser and a gun, which I imagine has such a significant weight difference, in the heat of the moment, maybe you just shouldn’t be a cop. If you think it’s okay to shoot to kill first and ask questions/answer them yourself later, you probably shouldn’t be a cop. This goes without saying, but if you have any ounce of racism or hate in your heart, you probably shouldn’t be a cop. If you don’t want your douchey Ford Mustang towed, maybe you shouldn’t be an ass and park it illegally. Actions have consequences, some far worse than others. And at some point, people need to pay the piper for their actions.

The point of all this is that sometimes people want to lash out. Sometimes this lashing out is worse than others, just because frustration has a nasty way of just building up until you inevitably just boil over. When people have been legitimately wronged, they can only take so much before they finally lash out. Sometimes it’s by writing angry words in the hopes of inspiring change. Sometimes it’s smashing things. Sometimes it’s taking those risks and actions that they didn’t think that they were capable of because they no longer care about the consequences. Because why should they care about the consequences when no one else seems to/enforces them?

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