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'Meanest mom on planet' sells son's car


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#41 of 67 OFFLINE   Chris Lockwood

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Posted January 10 2008 - 05:32 AM

Sad that people are criticizing her for the ad (which didn't name the guy).

Would it have been better to have the kid in the paper for a DUI or perhaps an obituary?

I'm sure his friends know about the car regardless of the ad, so how exactly does the ad embarrass the kid?


> As long as its not an open container, again nothing indicates it was, then its both perfectly legal and understandable considering he has a mom who'd just as soon sell his car if she found out.

I seriously doubt it's legal for an underage kid to have alcohol in his car, sealed or not.

#42 of 67 OFFLINE   andrew markworthy

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Posted January 10 2008 - 05:34 AM

Quote:
The drinking age in the United States is 21. The boy is 19. It was already banned by society.
You know, for the land of the free and the home of the brave, you guys seem awfully concerned about what everybody else thinks of you ... Posted Image

I can't believe that this is the sole person in the USA aged 19 who is drinking. And I can't see that coming down all medieval about it will help - *IF* it's a case of the drinking and the driving being separate [please don't misinterpret this - if it's a case of DUI then I'd be thinking of disinheritance, let alone taking back the car].

But if the drinking and the driving are entirely separate issues, IMHO a calm rational discussion would be a better bet. Otherwise you run the risk of demonsing drink rather than civilising it. I think this is an occasion (a rare one, admittedly Posted Image) where we can learn something from France. Because in that country, alcohol in moderation is a part of everyday life, it ceases to be a big deal and so problem drinking is less common. But make it into something that is for special occasions and something that is rigidly proscribed, and you have the recipe for people seeking it out like forbidden fruit.

#43 of 67 OFFLINE   andrew markworthy

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Posted January 10 2008 - 05:51 AM

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The drinking age in the United States is 21.
Quick request for clarification. Does this mean that ALL drinking is banned for under-21s? The law in the UK is rather different, and allows for various convoluted exceptions (remember, we are the nation that invented cricket). Basically, there are situations where it's legal for a child to drink alcohol. For more details, see: Erowid Alcohol Vaults : Law : Alcohol Drinking Age in the U.K. (England, Scotland, Wales) and Alcohol, your child and the law : Directgov - Parents

#44 of 67 OFFLINE   SD_Brian

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Posted January 10 2008 - 06:06 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by andrew markworthy
Quick request for clarification. Does this mean that ALL drinking is banned for under-21s?
From a legal standpoint, yes. The buying, selling and serving of alcohol to/by those under 21 is prohibited. As for the actual drinking, however, if it's happening in a private residence and there are no complaints from the neighbors, it's not like the police are going to pound down someone's door and arrest them.

#45 of 67 OFFLINE   andrew markworthy

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Posted January 10 2008 - 06:36 AM

Thanks for the info.

#46 of 67 OFFLINE   troy evans

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Posted January 10 2008 - 06:44 AM

Sometimes you have to take a hard step to deal with a problem. The Mother here clearly loves her son. If she didn't she would not have cared to do anything at all. I find that lessons are learned best and are less frequent to repeat themselves when there is strict punishment. Agree or disagree, she could have kicked his ass out on the street and let him fend for himself. As of age 18 she is no longer responsible for his actions since legally he's an adult in the eyes of the law. Seems to me as much of a bitch as she may be, she could have been alot more severe in this case.
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#47 of 67 OFFLINE   SD_Brian

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Posted January 10 2008 - 06:58 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by nolesrule
Do you really think a 19 year old is going to make the distinction between his name being in the ad or not?

19 years old = legal adult. Unless he's mentally handicapped he should theoretically be able to make such a distinction.

#48 of 67 OFFLINE   Steve Schaffer

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Posted January 10 2008 - 07:14 AM

I think it would be safe to assume that the mom still had a set of keys to the '99 Olds Intrigue and could unlock it herself to do her snooping.

If the kid's 19 he's old enough to get a job and buy his own car, hopefully something less embarassing than his Mom's Oldsmobile.
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#49 of 67 OFFLINE   TravisR

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:06 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan Webel
Well, you tell me... Travis wrote twice:


What I read is that she's a bitch for taking out the ad. My response is that it's her right to do so, nothing more or less. Maybe I'm reading them wrong. It's not really that important in the grand scheme of things.
Yes, it's the content of the ad that makes me feel that the mom is a bitch. The mom's ad is self deprecating but it also humiliates the kid. If she found the booze and took out an ad to sell the car, that's one thing. However, she made sure to publicize the kid's misdeeds in the ad too. Now that this story is national news, the kid better move to another state because he's going to be a living joke in his town.

#50 of 67 OFFLINE   KurtEP

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:16 AM

It strikes me that this is more about the mom, and how "tough" she is, than about discipline or whatever (IMHO, once you're 18 or can join the military, you're an adult, and this guy is 19, too late, mom).

Of course, If my mother did something like this to me, it would be years before I spoke to her again. If my mother taught me anything, it's how to bear a grudge. Posted Image
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#51 of 67 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:20 AM

All this talk about the "humiliating" actions of the mom fascinates me. It seems that the last thing some people ever want to do in today's society is make someone feel ashamed of his or her actions. I think the opposite. We need more shame inflicted on people, not less. The rampant shamelessness in society is why you get morons not caring if they're being rude talking on cell phones in movie theaters, or shoplifting, or a myriad of other thoughtless, uncaring "I don't give a rat's ass how it bothers others" actions. So the kid doesn't want to be "humiliated"? He shouldn't have booze in the car . Don't want a kid to feel bad for getting bad grades? Tell him to work his ass off to get good ones. This "oh no, we must never damage someone's 'self esteem'" attitude is off-base.

#52 of 67 OFFLINE   TravisR

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:30 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertR
So the kid doesn't want to be "humiliated"? He shouldn't have booze in the car .
My thing is that he's getting punished enough by losing his car. Like you allude to, there isn't enough consequences for people acting like assholes today so it's great that a mother is laying down the law by taking the car away. Where my problem lies is that a public humiliation like this isn't going to teach the kid anything (except to hate his mother).

#53 of 67 OFFLINE   Nathan*W

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:34 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by TravisR
Yes, it's the content of the ad that makes me feel that the mom is a bitch. The mom's ad is self deprecating but it also humiliates the kid. If she found the booze and took out an ad to sell the car, that's one thing. However, she made sure to publicize the kid's misdeeds in the ad too. Now that this story is national news, the kid better move to another state because he's going to be a living joke in his town.
I see. Well, then I did read it wrong. Apologies to all.

I do agree with RobertR, shame can be a powerful motivator.
 

#54 of 67 OFFLINE   Joe S.

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:39 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zack Gibbs
If he was drinking and driving, and there's nothing to indicate he was, that would be one thing. But he's 19 years old for god's sake, what a bitch.

Maybe you missed this part:

"She says she set two rules when she bought the car at Thanksgiving: No booze, and always keep it locked."

So she paid for this car in full to give to her 19 yr old son living at home. 2 rules: no booze whatsoever and keep it locked. Not 3 weeks later she finds alcohol in there. He couldn't stick to the 2 rules for 3 weeks!

He earned every thing that happened IMHO. She just gave him the gift of discipline and responsibility so often lacking in parental guides these days. I think she was spot on.

If he doesn't like it, he can move out anytime he likes. But he'll have to borrow someone else's car to move all his stuff Posted Image

#55 of 67 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:39 AM

Quote:
My thing is that he's getting punished enough by losing his car
From what I read in the story, he didn't feel all that bad about what he had done. In fact, he was denying he had done anything wrong.

Quote:
Where my problem lies is that a public humiliation like this isn't going to teach the kid anything (except to hate his mother).
He may "hate" her in the sense of a five year old whining "I hate you!" to the mom who just spanked him, but if he has any rationality, that "hate" won't last.

#56 of 67 OFFLINE   Paul Padilla

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:44 AM

Quote:
Does this mean that ALL drinking is banned for under-21s?
It varies from state to state. Some technically bar consumption alltogether while others make exceptions for private property with clauses regarding direct supervision of a family member. Religious services get some leeway as well. None of which, of course, apply to the son in question.
APIS - Underage Consumption of Alcohol

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Quote:
Quote:

Originally Posted by nolesrule
Do you really think a 19 year old is going to make the distinction between his name being in the ad or not?

19 years old = legal adult. Unless he's mentally handicapped he should theoretically be able to make such a distinction.
He may very well understand the distinction that his name being omitted does virtually nothing to shield him from public ridicule.

Wire hanger lashings and meth theories aside, if we take a middle road assumption (purely speculative) then the mom is just average and the son is just average. As people do, regardless of age, the son makes a huge mistake and rightfully gets busted for it. It didn't lead to any actual harm, but it could have been an early step down an incredibly dangerous road, so decisive steps were called for. Clearly she felt that selling the car wasn't enough but just because she could have been more severe doesn't rationalize placing the ad. Less severe by comparison doesn't mean the ad was the right choice or won't have harmful results. Also, the notion of "Would we rather he end up with a DUI or dead on a slab" is unnecessary and only speculates on the most extreme outcome possible. That isn't a sound basis for decision making.

I also learned that despite the car already being sold, she is choosing to keep the ad running for the time being. What kind of lesson is the son supposed to take from this?

Quote:
All this talk about the "humiliating" actions of the mom fascinates me. It seems that the last thing some people ever want to do in today's society is make someone feel ashamed of his or her actions. I think the opposite. We need more shame inflicted on people, not less.
Accountability doesn't necessitate shame and humiliation. These are degrading states and can cause as much negative behavior as they can positive behavior. Chances are he was embarrassed and humiliated at getting caught in the first place which is perfectly normal and acceptable. (denying it doesn't mean he didn't regret it) However the mother chose to elevate it to a very public level. She may not have surmised the national and global attention it would get, but she knew that she was broadcasting a failure on her sons part to her entire city.
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#57 of 67 OFFLINE   TravisR

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:50 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan Webel
I see. Well, then I did read it wrong. Apologies to all.
No sweat. I'm certainly not the most articulate person. Posted Image

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertR
He may "hate" her in the sense of a five year old whining "I hate you!" to the mom who just spanked him, but if he has any rationality, that "hate" won't last.
And the mother is any more rational for taking out an ad to humiliate the kid? If the kid was unrepentant and didn't see anything wrong with what he did, what is this going to do? I really doubt he's going to see the error of his ways when he's being laughed at by every person who knows him.

#58 of 67 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:55 AM

Quote:
denying it doesn't mean he didn't regret it
It clearly means he regrets being CAUGHT, instead of being ashamed that he broke his promise, lied to his mother (in fact, he's STILL lying), and started down a path that could lead to tragedy.

Where do people get this idea that there should be no connection between shame and what an individual does, and that the worst thing one can do is be "mean" to the wrongdoer?

Quote:
I really doubt he's going to see the error of his ways when he's being laughed at by every person who knows him.
So you think he's going to engage in behavior that CONFIRMS the low opinion of him instead of CHANGING his ways so it has no basis?

#59 of 67 OFFLINE   BrianW

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Posted January 10 2008 - 08:57 AM

Count me as one who thinks that humiliation -- for adults only, mind you -- can be an appropriate and effective punishment. An increasing number of judges seem to agree. More and more, judges are finding that creative punishments involving public humilation have more of an effect on convicted nonviolent criminals than a jail sentence, and they claim that it reduces recidivism more than conventional punishments. Those judges who tailor the humiliating punishment to fit the crime (rather than hand down humilation as a punishment solely for gratuitous satisfaction of public moral outrage -- yes, there are some like that, unfortunately) get my vote of support.
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Also, the notion of "Would we rather he end up with a DUI or dead on a slab" is unnecessary and only speculates on the most extreme outcome possible.
Yes, but so does this:
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Sure, but why risk [humiliation]? If he goes on to shoot up a mall full of people because of this, guess who's getting dragged to court in a civil liability suit.
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#60 of 67 OFFLINE   KurtEP

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Posted January 10 2008 - 09:01 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertR
It clearly means he regrets being CAUGHT, instead of being ashamed that he broke his promise, lied to his mother (in fact, he's STILL lying), and started down a path that could lead to tragedy.

Question: Does this shame him to his friends, who probably don't care and are in his corner, or before the community, which makes it more likely he'll be marginalized and unable to be a productive citizen?
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