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Suicidal Woman Blocks Traffic, Angry Drivers Tell Her to Jump. She does.

By rebelcool in Culture
Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 06:04:08 AM EST
Tags: Culture (all tags)
Culture

A Fredericksburg, Virginia woman suicidal over a split with her husband sat on the edge of an interstate bridge contemplating suicide. A lone officer tried to persuade her away from the edge. However, drivers angry that they had been slowed by the events called on her to jump.

With an apology, she does.

Pictures, details and more


She sat on the barrier at the edge of the bridge positioned 80 feet above the Rappahannock River. She stared down at it, in her mind her life and future seemed as empty as the 80-foot drop.

A lone state policeman stood 15 feet away, coaxing her away from the edge, asking her to come off and talk to him about her life.

She cried as she recounted her story to him about her separation from her husband a month earlier. All was without purpose, it seemed.

The policeman listened, coming a little closer, assuring her that life was not empty. She had a future. There was more to it. He genuinely cared and sought to save her life.

Perhaps, she thought as she leaned back from the edge some, perhaps there is more.

80 feet became 82.

The policeman came closer still, as he held his hand out to her a driver on the southbound lanes called out for her to jump, angry at being slowed from 60 mph to 30.

She looked around at the traffic behind the roadblock. It stretched for miles. It would be hours before it would begin moving steadily again. Every one of them hates me for this.

82 feet became 80.

Another driver on the southbound lanes angrily yelled for her to jump.

As the policeman's hand reached to hers, she shied away and whispered, "I'm sorry" to the kind man who cared, stepped off the barrier, and completed the last 80 feet of her life.

I have taken an artistic license with this story. We cannot know for sure what went through her mind, or if no one had called for her to jump would change anything, though certainly that could be the straw that broke the camel's back.

One must wonder, what if this had been a footbridge instead of an interstate? Would the pedestrian's have been so callous? What would lead someone who had been merely slowed in their travel to encourage the death of another human? Is this a form of road rage? What does this really mean, if anything?

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Suicidal Woman Blocks Traffic, Angry Drivers Tell Her to Jump. She does. | 227 comments (207 topical, 20 editorial, 1 hidden)
Something similar... (4.08 / 12) (#7)
by binarygod on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 04:24:54 PM EST

If memory serves something similar happened last year in Seattle. A woman (I think) was on a bridge ready to jump. The traffic was being held up and similarly, the angry crowd shouted for her to jump. She of course did. This might be a good story, as it might provoke debate into why our 9-5 rush hour culture is making people so cruel. Well it might!

Ship Canal Bridge suicide attempt (4.16 / 6) (#16)
by pietra on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 05:29:46 PM EST

A woman did something similar on the Ship Canal Bridge in Seattle in late August 2001. Fortunately, she didn't die; even more fortunately, she didn't hear anyone urging her to jump, or at least she didn't remember it when she woke up in the hospital. Additional details can be found here.

[ Parent ]
Yup (3.66 / 3) (#59)
by Katt on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 12:28:17 AM EST

That also set off another controversy in Seattle. The Seattle press coverage decided to not identify the woman, but Tom Leykis did on his national radio show, prompting all kinds of criticism.

[ Parent ]
I seem to remember... (4.50 / 2) (#91)
by cr8dle2grave on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 11:35:41 AM EST

A similar event, which happened in the Seattle area about 4 years ago, but it was not a suicide. As I remember there was a pile up on the highway and a women got out of her car and jumped over the guard rail to avoid being crushed. Problem was she was on an overpass, but couldn't tell due to the typical foggy weather.

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
She didn't come there to sight-see (2.62 / 27) (#8)
by gibichung on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 04:24:55 PM EST

She came there to jump off the bridge.

You can't blame the motorists; what they did was irresponsible, but even if it did effect her, it was probably only the straw that broke the camel's back - she did come to the bridge for her own reasons, afterall.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt

Oh My GOD (3.85 / 28) (#21)
by revscat on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 06:07:54 PM EST

You can't blame the motorists; what they did was irresponsible,

Are you fucking kidding me? Egging someone on to kill themselves is "irresponsible"? Do you think that is in any way a humane attitude to take? What are you trying to prove? That's the most callous, unfeeling thing I've heard in a long, long time. That wasn't irresponsible, that was fucking criminal. And not in the legal sense of the word (although for all I know it might be that, as well), but in the more fundamental sense of the word. Where's your fucking heart, man? Do you have no compassion to spare for anyone, or must they obey certain rules before they will be given your compassion?

Who was responsible for her jumping? Her. No doubt about it. But the people who encouraged her had a part, however small, in her death or survival. By choosing to encourage her death they aligned themselves in the camp which considers human life to be worth less than the time they were stuck in traffic. I am not in that camp, and I am proud to say so.




- Rev.
Libertarianism is like communism: both look great on paper.
[ Parent ]
No (1.25 / 16) (#30)
by Kingmaker on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 08:00:01 PM EST

Gibichung's an asshole. What else would you expect, he's a conservative.

[ Parent ]
I'm an asshole... (4.00 / 2) (#51)
by gibichung on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:23:44 PM EST

You know what I'm gonna do? I'm gonna get myself a 1967 Cadillac El Dorado convertible, hot pink with whaleskin hub caps and all leather cow interior and big brown baby seal eyes for headlights, yeah! And I'm gonna drive around in that baby at 115mph getting one mile per gallon, sucking down quarter pounder cheese burgers from McDonald's in the old-fashioned non-biodegradable styrofoam containers and when I'm done sucking down those grease ball burgers, I'm gonna wipe my mouth with the American flag and then I'm gonna toss the styrofoam container right out the side and there ain't a God damned thing anybody can do about it. You know why? Because we got the bombs, that's why.

No, I wouldn't actually wipe my mouth with an American flag or litter, but whatever.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

But you _do_ understand... (3.00 / 1) (#162)
by tekue on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:00:37 AM EST

...that Denis Leary wouldn't really do that because he's a decent human being? And that he's rants are to open the eyes of the people who would?

Just so you don't feel too much at home.
--
Humanity has advanced, when it has advanced, not because it has been sober, responsible, and cautious, but because it has been playful, rebellious, and immature. --Tom Robbins
[ Parent ]

If (none / 0) (#201)
by gibichung on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:29:53 PM EST

you have a problem with what I've said, don't beat around the bush. Attack the argument; explain what I've said that so offends you and kindly refute it.

Until you've done that, keep your personal conclusions about me to yourself.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

My compassion (4.33 / 12) (#43)
by gibichung on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 10:53:27 PM EST

Comes second to my reason. I'm not going to blame society for the personal choices of one individual. If I have a philosophy, it's personal responsibility.

I honestly do feel sorry for this woman, but that doesn't mean that I have to excuse her selfishness. Yes, I believe that it is selfish to block an Interstate Highway for 90 minutes and leave traffic backed up for 10 miles. Assume that your average bumper-to-bumper traffic is 20 feet per car, on a two lane interstate highway. 10 miles is 5,280 cars. In one direction.

To be honest, I'm more like you than you give me credit for. I would never encourage a person to take their own life, but I can appreciate the difference between an accidental encounter and a person imposing on others for attention. Emotionally insecure people can use the threat of suicide to manipulate others.

When someone convinces themselves that their personal problems are worth imposing on tens of thousands of people, we have a problem. In an ideal world, every single one of them could patiently sit it out, like you or I. But how many fathers missed their sons' baseball games when Carlos Mejia (read the article) blocked traffic for four hours because his girlfriend left him?

Still, it is reprehensible to encourage suicide, I'll not argue with that point. But then, I doubt that many of these people really expected her to jump. She was just another in a long line of attention starved posers. I won't object to calling this whole affair reprehensible, but I'm not going to take an "artistic license" and blame it on some anonymous passer-by. If you want to believe that angry drivers had anything to do with this woman's death, blame Carlos Mejia.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

This Libertarian shit kills me (3.87 / 8) (#98)
by jcolter on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 02:25:37 PM EST

I think what disturbs others and myself about your attitude, is that we have a hard time taking a person's right to kill themselves seriously.

Death is some heavy shit man!!!

Her motivation (boyfriend, selfishness, etc.) is not all that important in the large scheme.

Do I theoretically think people should have the right to kill themselves? Sure

Would I stop someone (through physical coercion if necessary) every time? Absolutely


[ Parent ]
Truth be told (4.00 / 8) (#39)
by truth versus death on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 10:22:11 PM EST

I agree with you here. Not sure if our reasons are the same (I doubt they are). But she came to a bridge in public where attention would be highest to end her own life. She got negative feedback for doing something stupid in public. If this influenced her to the end, then it was a feedback loop she set up herself. Mental illness sucks. That's why it would be nice if people could get attention for their woes without having to huff it to the local bridge and try and make the evening news.

[ Parent ]
yes, you can blame them. they are stupid bastards (1.04 / 25) (#78)
by turmeric on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:39:11 AM EST

and they need to fucking learn how to be human beings instead of ROBOTS BEING SLAVES TO THEIR JOBS INPERVIOUS TO THE SUFFERING AROUND THEm. OTHERWISE WE ARE ALL LIKE NAZI CONCENTRATION CAMP GUARDS. WITHOUT EMOTION WITHOUT COMPASSION

[ Parent ]
Out of curiosity (2.58 / 24) (#11)
by spacejack on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 04:38:16 PM EST

Anyone hear from Signal 11 lately?

LoL! (1.90 / 10) (#40)
by truth versus death on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 10:23:20 PM EST

Now that is comedy!

[ Parent ]
Apparently (2.33 / 3) (#45)
by truth versus death on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:06:55 PM EST

Not to everyone ;-)

[ Parent ]
well, (2.66 / 3) (#104)
by spacejack on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:02:23 PM EST

It wasn't really supposed to be funny. It might've been blunt, but I was basically making the same point as ucblockhead -- we've seen posters here on K5 behave similarly to the impatient drivers.

[ Parent ]
You know... (2.87 / 8) (#15)
by Icehouseman on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 05:28:38 PM EST

I'd hate to be her Ex-Husband, because it would probably be on his head for the rest of his life, especially if he left her for another woman or something.
----------------
Bush's $3 trillion state is allegedly a mark of "anti-government bias" on the right. -- Anthony Gregory
That's one of the hidden motivations of suicide (4.57 / 7) (#35)
by pyramid termite on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 08:56:24 PM EST

It's a way to get back at people by heaping guilt on their head. It's not the only reason or motivation, and of course, things like this aren't often all that thought out, but it is part of it.
On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
I can't believe people (3.72 / 11) (#19)
by xrayspx on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 05:54:50 PM EST

People hate being inconvenienced so much that they yell at a woman to commit suicide? She easily might have been doing this for the attention, or trying to get help. People yell at her to jump and she understands that there may easily be no one willing to help her, so she jumps.

Those people yelling for her to jump should feel like they've done a service, they got traffic moving again, great.


"I see one maggot, it all gets thrown away" -- My Wife
People are amazingly desensitized (4.60 / 20) (#20)
by fluffy grue on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 05:55:53 PM EST

A couple years ago, here in Las Cruces, there was a man who was contemplating suicide and was hanging off the edge of an I-25 overpass near the university. Several police were involved in trying to calm him down and stop him from jumping, and several fratboys were repeatedly chanting, "Jump! Jump! Jump!"

Fortunately, the police won out. I think they also cited the fratboys for obstructing the police. Shortly after, the NMSU student paper had an editorial which started saying how disgusting the fratboys were, but then started to rail against the guy for considering hurling himself onto the freeway and possibly damaging someone else's car in the meantime.

The fact that anyone could be so cruel as to joke about someone else's life when they're at such a critical moment depresses me.
--
"#kuro5hin [is like] a daycare center [where] the babysitter had been viciously murdered." -- CaptainObvious (we

Suicide vs. murder-suicide (4.63 / 11) (#22)
by johnathan on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 06:18:04 PM EST

Shortly after, the NMSU student paper had an editorial which started saying how disgusting the fratboys were, but then started to rail against the guy for considering hurling himself onto the freeway and possibly damaging someone else's car in the meantime.
While the fratboys' actions were truly detestable, I believe the paper had a point. People have died as the result of objects much smaller than a person being thrown from overpasses. It's sad that anyone would want to kill himself, but that's his choice; to endanger others in the process is not excusable. He might as well shoot a gun at a few strangers before turning it on himself.

--
Her profession's her religion; her sin: her lifelessness.
[ Parent ]

I agree, but... (4.14 / 7) (#70)
by fluffy grue on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:46:31 AM EST

When someone is incredibly suicidal, do you really want to make them feel worse about what they were going to do? Okay, so he wouldn't have damaged someone else's car or potentially injured an innocent bystander, but if he actually read that editorial, then wouldn't he possibly feel even worse about the fact that he'd have done that and then just kill himself in a more quiet, private way? My belief is that if someone's making a show of trying to kill themselves in as public a way as possible, it's a cry for help.

I don't believe that this person actually wanted to die or hurt anyone else, and I think it was unfair of the paper to start railing against him when all he was trying to do was get some help, and if the fratboys had succeeded, they very well may have overridden that.
--
"#kuro5hin [is like] a daycare center [where] the babysitter had been viciously murdered." -- CaptainObvious (we
[ Parent ]

You act as though.. (none / 0) (#175)
by SPYvSPY on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 01:05:32 PM EST

You act as though suicide is something that can happen to anyone. That's nonsense. Except when faced with "lesser of two evils" scenarios (e.g., if I don't eat this cyanide cap, those enemy soldiers will torture me to death and cause my government to capitulate to the detriment of hundreds of thousands of innocent people including my family), only a very feebl person would kill themselves.
------------------------------------------------

By replying to this or any other comment in this thread, you assign an equal share of all worldwide copyright in such reply to each of the other readers of this site.
[ Parent ]

Not too suprising (4.34 / 23) (#23)
by xriso on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 06:31:21 PM EST

In a society where convenience takes precedence over human life.
--
*** Quits: xriso:#kuro5hin (Forever)
Our only hope (4.27 / 22) (#24)
by rodoke3 on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 06:32:20 PM EST

is that they caught some of those drivers on tape. The news link showed plenty of pictures of the policeman and the woman, but it didn't identify any of the drivers. I believe the best punishment anyone could give them for such immaturity is for them to walk into work the next morning and be known as the one who helped encourage a suicide.

I take umbrage with such statments and am induced to pull out archaic and over pompous words to refute such insipid vitriol. -- kerinsky


actually they should be thrown in prison (1.92 / 13) (#79)
by turmeric on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:40:56 AM EST



[ Parent ]
For What? (4.10 / 10) (#85)
by Bios_Hakr on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 09:03:07 AM EST

I hear time and time agian that the only thing that can make a person do something is if that person has it in them to to it anyway. Why should I be thrown in jail for telling someone to "shit, or get off the pot"? After all, if my violent video game depicting the masacre of kids in a highschool can't be blamed for a shooting in Germany, how can one comment I make from a passing automobile be blamed for some crazy woman jumping off a bridge.

On a side note, can you really die form an 80ft drop into moving water? I know that on canyoning trips in Italy, I have jumped from 25 to 30 meter waterfalls. It wasn't a whole lot of fun, but I lived. I was kinda under the impression that 40 meters was the limit for a feet-first entry with no injuries. I seriously doubt she did a belly-flop into the water.

[ Parent ]
Falling (4.00 / 1) (#110)
by gibichung on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 05:47:04 PM EST

How deep do you think that water was? The typical muddy-water Southern U.S. river is usually less than 8-10 feet deep, in the middle. It didn't look like she jumped anywhere near the middle, either. Add to that the fact that the woman was overweight, and you can see how it could have killed her.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]
Weight has nothing to do with it (5.00 / 2) (#123)
by Macrobat on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 10:28:20 PM EST

You don't fall any faster if you're heavy than you do if you're light. Your weight will affect terminal velocity, but terminal velocity even for light people is usually fatal.

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

Weight is important where forces are concerned (5.00 / 2) (#128)
by Kalani on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 12:37:07 AM EST

It's F = ma again:

All objects on Earth fall at the same rate (that's not strictly true, but close enough at the scales we're talking about here). So if you were to find the downward force for a bowling ball, and for a feather, the a term would be the same (ignoring wind resistance of course). What would be different, though, would be the actual measure of the forces acting on the objects, because one is more massive than the other.

Bones, and other components of mechanical systems, often have their strengths defined in terms of crushing forces (the force at which the bone breaks, given a direction in which the force is applied). So take two people with bones of equal strength in every way, and distribute an extra 100 pounds through the body of one person. If you drop both people from a certain height, the more massive one will experience a stronger force upon impact (considering that the impact force by the person on the ground will be of an equal magnitude to the responding force by the ground on the person hitting it).

Sorry to be pedantic. :)

-----
"Nothing says 'final boss' like a giant brain in a tube."
-- Udderdude on flipcode.com
[ Parent ]
Thanks, but (3.50 / 2) (#135)
by gibichung on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 03:29:15 AM EST

You forgot to mention dropping cannon balls and wooden balls off the Lean'in Tower.

You don't fall any faster if you're heavy than you do if you're light. Your weight will affect terminal velocity, but terminal velocity even for light people is usually fatal.
I know that. Everyone knows that. What some people fail to understand is that surface area increases exponentially with volume. Thus, a wide person meets a whole hell of a lot more resistance when she hits. Think aerodynamics.

Not to mention momentum, as Kalani mentioned.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

Actually ... (none / 0) (#169)
by Kalani on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 12:21:31 PM EST

I think that the increased surface area would only help her. Recall that a pressure is just a force (for the case of our analysis here we can just use regular old Newtonian forces) distributed throughout an area. As the area increases, the pressure in any particular area (call it dA) decreases, and thus the force applied to each dA decreases. So the extra surface area helps to soften the landing. You've also got the fact that extra lateral surface area helps to add wind resistance forces to counter your downward gravitational force (although for the height we're talking about here that force is small enough to discount). There's also the fact that fat tissue is compressible -- it acts as a lattice of springs pushing back against any forces that act on it. You can also see it as increasing the interval of time through which the body comes to rest (much like you'd find that throwing an egg at a hanging cloth would slow the egg down slowly enough so as not to break it, but that throwing it right at a wall would make the stopping time so fast that there's an almost instantaneous halt, striking the wall with "full force").

But really, there is a point at which the mass of the falling body makes all those other factors unimportant. If you just consider it qualitatively -- given a finite area through which to distribute the force of impact there will always be a force that can be applied to the whole structure to crush it, and if the spring forces of the falling body's flesh are very small in comparison to the falling force, the deadly force still won't be overcome.

-----
"Nothing says 'final boss' like a giant brain in a tube."
-- Udderdude on flipcode.com
[ Parent ]
you're mostly right, however (none / 0) (#199)
by gibichung on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 06:52:20 PM EST

Extra surface area helps her, right until she hits the surface of the water. Ball your hand into a fist and strike a pool of water. Now repeat with your hand open. What you're missing is that when her surface area increases, the total stopping distance in the water decreases, which increases the suddenness that the force, thus increasing the average impact force. Ever done a belly-flop into a pool? You don't sink nearly as much as you would going in at a slender angle, and it hurts.

But I agree that this is pointless, because if the water was only 5 feet deep, a skinny person would have met their quick stop in the mud below, which would have likely killed them anyway.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

Yes good point ... (5.00 / 1) (#202)
by Kalani on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:33:52 PM EST

... but, as you said, the shallow water makes the effect pretty much unimportant.

This has all gotten very silly, but obviously since the woman died the end effect of adding all the forces was that they killed her. Not much more to say there. :(

-----
"Nothing says 'final boss' like a giant brain in a tube."
-- Udderdude on flipcode.com
[ Parent ]
Also another point (now that I've had sleep) ... (none / 0) (#170)
by Kalani on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 12:33:05 PM EST

Strictly speaking, your terminal velocity isn't given as a function of your weight but rather a function of your lateral surface area. I went over this in another response on this thread so I won't belabor the point.

-----
"Nothing says 'final boss' like a giant brain in a tube."
-- Udderdude on flipcode.com
[ Parent ]
"Clear and Present Danger" (5.00 / 5) (#124)
by Macrobat on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 10:35:09 PM EST

After all, if my violent video game depicting the masacre of kids in a highschool can't be blamed for a shooting in Germany, how can one comment I make from a passing automobile be blamed for some crazy woman jumping off a bridge.

"Clear and present danger" is usually the criterion for judging if speech is actually incitement. A woman you can see (present) who is on the wrong side of the safety wall (clear) and looking to jump 80 ft. (danger) qualifies; there is no clear or present danger when somebody you've never met may or may not get an idea to shoot somebody based on a techno-fantasy game, and then later plan out the course of events to make his idea come true.

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

Real vs. Percived Danger (none / 0) (#205)
by Bios_Hakr on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:13:34 PM EST

My Psych teacher would argue that a jumper does not want to commit suicide.  People who want to die do not sit on a bridge for 3 hours waiting for their departed husband to show up and say, "Everything will be ok, just come home."  They just jump.  Same goes for people who OD or do other half-assed things to try to off themselves.

I do not percive a "clear and present danger" from a woman sitting on a overpass.

[ Parent ]

Denial (none / 0) (#207)
by Macrobat on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:32:49 PM EST

I do not percive a "clear and present danger" from a woman sitting on a overpass.

Then you should ask your Psych teacher to explain to you what "denial" means.

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

Consider this scenario (5.00 / 1) (#183)
by aphrael on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 02:56:37 PM EST

if a man were standing outside a high school with a gun, and there was a crowd yelling at him to go ahead and start shooting the kids in the school, the members of the crowd would be arrested for incitement to riot. How is this different?

[ Parent ]
is suicide illegal? (none / 0) (#191)
by sully on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 04:56:41 PM EST

I'm actually not sure if suicide is legal, although it seems kind of pointless to ban it. But I think that would make the difference.


-------------
The opinions expressed above are not necessarily those of my prefrontal cortex.
[ Parent ]
The question is... (5.00 / 1) (#193)
by dasunt on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:15:23 PM EST

Is egging her on the equivalent of preaching hate speech at an Aryan church (a right which is protected under US law), or is it closer to seeing a bunch of clansmen in robes with shotguns and telling them that there's a black family right over the hill (which, IIRC, would open yourself up to prosecution on the grounds that you aided their crime).

Personally, I believe its the later. Egging on a suicide is similar to knowingly giving a loaded gun to a suicidal person, or aiding that person in any other way.



[ Parent ]
Yoda Says... (2.75 / 20) (#25)
by Bad Harmony on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 07:17:40 PM EST

Jump or jump not. There is no try.

5440' or Fight!

sig (none / 0) (#66)
by ODiV on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 03:04:30 AM EST

How the hell did Jay pronounce "fsck"?

And don't say, "fsck".

--
[ odiv.net ]
[ Parent ]
Pronunciation (none / 0) (#67)
by Bad Harmony on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 03:50:15 AM EST

He pronounced it as "fuck".

See Silencing Sommers.

5440' or Fight!
[ Parent ]

Sigh. (3.70 / 10) (#26)
by valeko on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 07:21:56 PM EST

Well, what can I say ... a sickening example of the state of affairs in the decadent American consumer society. Now contemporary nonthought has "evolved" enough that no obstructions to people's precious little traffic can be permitted -- not even people on the brink of self-annihilation. Under no circumstances must they be late for their shopping (not much else to do in Fredericksburg).


"Hey, what's sanity got going for it anyways?" -- infinitera, on matters of the heart

I disagree. (3.75 / 4) (#27)
by rebelcool on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 07:26:22 PM EST

I believe it be a form of road rage. Where otherwise sensible caring people turn into aggressive monsters once they're behind the wheel of an automobile.

Road rage is not just an american problem - it affects all automobile driving societies from Europe to the burgeoning asian road system.

COG. Build your own community. Free, easy, powerful. Demo site
[ Parent ]

I'm no psychologist (4.16 / 6) (#34)
by spacejack on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 08:43:58 PM EST

but I wonder if it has anything to do with what occurs when people turn on to the off-ramp of a highway and don't realize how fast they're going. It's the same thing with people honking at pedestrians, frustrated because they'll arrive at the next stop light a few seconds later than they otherwise might have. Just like anonymity on a weblog, the protection of a metal shell allows some people to show their true colours.

Hooray for insularity!

[ Parent ]
Turned around a little (4.16 / 6) (#50)
by acceleriter on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:23:41 PM EST

Where otherwise sensible caring people turn into aggressive monsters

I respectfully submit that maybe they and all too many of us are actually agressive monsters that successfully masquerade as sensible caring people most of the time. I don't know profanity strong enough to describe my feelings towards those who would shout "jump" at another distraught human being.

[ Parent ]

last semester... (4.70 / 10) (#54)
by rebelcool on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:33:33 PM EST

I wrote a research paper for a sociology class on road rage.

After gathering all the data and statistics on those most likely to experience an episode of road rage and to what degree, I came to discover that its experienced usually by 2 types of people:

Lower class working males.

Upper class aspiring females in high corporate positions.

Both have to work hard at their positions and typically face a great degree of alienation. The automobile provides a controlled environment that they don't have otherwise. When this control is violated by situations out of their control - slowed traffic for instance - they react with brutal, almost primal instincts.

I suppose its the animal in man getting out.

COG. Build your own community. Free, easy, powerful. Demo site
[ Parent ]

I partially disagree (4.40 / 5) (#32)
by revscat on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 08:36:36 PM EST

I don't think that this is anything truly new. ("There is nothing new under the sun.") I am quite certain that were we able to arrange situations similar to these, and only change the century in which they happened, the results would be similar. Most people would be kind and wish her well, but a few human examples of fecal matter would scream "Do it!"

This is, truly, a sorry state of affairs. I'm just not sure it's any different from any other given point in history.

Actually, now that I think about it I somehow doubt the same thing would have happened in Japan... But that is entirely conjecture.




- Rev.
Libertarianism is like communism: both look great on paper.
[ Parent ]
Cultural Makeup (4.80 / 5) (#68)
by snowlion on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:22:27 AM EST

This is not new.

However, I think that different cultures respond to situations differently.

Your intuition with Japan is correct- this would absolutely not happen in Japan.

Here's a selection from Niel Stephenson's "The Diamond Age" for you:

One summer, as he was living in Ames and working as a research assistant in a solid-state physics lab, the city was actually turned into an island for a couple of days by an immense flood. Along with many other Midwesterners, Finkle-McGraw put in a few weeks building levees out of sandbags and plastic sheeting. Once again he was struck by the national media coverage-reporters from the coasts kept showing up and announcing, with some bewilderment, that there had been no looting. The lesson learned during the Sioux City plane crash was reinforced. The Los Angeles riots of the previous year provided a vivid counterexample. Finkle-McGraw began to develop an opinion that was to shape his political views in later years, namely, that while people were not genetically different, they were culturally as different as they could possibly be, and that some cultures were simply better than others. This was not a subjective value judgment, merely an observation that some cultures thrived and expanded while others failed. It was a view implicitly shared by nearly everyone but, in those days, never voiced.

I disagree with many of Niel Stephenson's perspectives. However, I agree with him here; Culture largely determines how we respond to situations.


--
Map Your Thoughts
[ Parent ]
Not in Japan (3.50 / 6) (#71)
by gnovos on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:50:10 AM EST

In Japan, this woman, were she Japanese, might have been polite enough not to try and burden the rest of the world with her problems. From my expierence, the Japanese think beyond themselves for the most part. This woman did not even contemplate the strain and pressure she would be putting on all those people who were trying to help her. She did not think about the bills that she would be leaving behind for her family, or the grief that she would be shoving into the head of the cop she dissed before jumping.

A Haiku: "fuck you fuck you fuck/you fuck you fuck you fuck you/fuck you fuck you snow" - JChen
[ Parent ]
yes, japan, where nobody commits suicide (1.43 / 23) (#80)
by turmeric on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:48:32 AM EST

oh wait, THATS THE FUCKING REASON SHE KILLED
HERSELF, BECAUSE SHE THOUGHT SHE WAS A FUCKING '
BURDEN TO SOCIETy, BECAUSE SHIT HEADS LIKE
YOU AND THOSE DRIVERS KEEP TELLING HER THAT
ALL TEH FUCKING TIME. yOU IGNORANT MORON.

AND MAYBE THOSE STUPID FUCKING MOTORISTS SHOULD
NOT HAVE BURDENED HER WITH THEIR FUCKING BEING
LATE FOR WORK SINCE THEY COULD FUCKING STILL
BE ALIVE, WHEREAS SHE WAS ABOUT TO DIE.


AND THE JAPANESE HAVE A PRETTY FUCKING
HIGH SUICID RATE, AND THEY DIDNT SEEM TO GIVE
a SHIT MUCH ABOUT BURDENING CHINA AND KOREA
WITH A FEW MILLION TONS OF EXPLOSIVES AND
MASS MURDER AND RAPE>



[ Parent ]
I See From Your Errors... (4.50 / 10) (#92)
by Canar on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:06:05 PM EST

That you typed that message while holding down Shift. I suggest for further Irate Rants in the future that you use the caps lock key instead. That will help with errors like the right angled bracket replacing the period, and the lack of capitalization at the beginning and end of sentences. Just thought that might help, -=Canar=-

[ Parent ]
WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH (1.35 / 20) (#82)
by turmeric on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:50:03 AM EST

poor little grovos, i am so sorry yuou are so 'burdened' by a lady committing suicide and thoughtlessly taking hours out of your commute day. poor poor grovos. will no one ever understand YOUR PAIN?! !??!!? you POOR THING!

[ Parent ]
Hardly surprising (4.25 / 16) (#29)
by ucblockhead on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 07:57:56 PM EST

Hell, you don't have to look far to find people that uncaring here on k5, and they don't even have inconvenience to blame it on.

Unfortunately, there is a significant percentage of the human race that are just plain shits.
-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup

Musings (read: rant) (4.56 / 16) (#31)
by whatwasthatagain on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 08:34:17 PM EST

I am no psychologist, but doesn't the fact that the woman was prepared to talk to the police officer mean that she hadn't entirely made up her mind?

This definitely isn't the first case where somebody has been witness to a suicide attempt. In almost all these cases (ok, ok, no hard evidence. This might just be the result of a my-idle-mind-turned-into-a-devil's-workshop thingy), the person is unsure of himself (or herself, of course), and doesn't want anyone coming near. The first reaction of such a person is usually to threaten to kill himself if the other person came any nearer.

Not so in this case, though. The woman seemed quite willing to talk. She did ask the officer to contact her pastor (in preference to her husband, whom the officer offered to contact). This leads me to believe that she would have gotten out had it not been for a few desensitized jerks egging her on.

It's all mere hypothesis, of course. I might be wrong (so what's new?). Maybe I've just been watching too many movies.


--

With profound apologies to whomsoever this sig originally belonged.

Too many... (4.00 / 1) (#102)
by SoupIsGoodFood on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 03:27:55 PM EST

Yes. I think you may have watched too many movies. While I can see some truth in your post. I don't think you can say something as clear cut about the situation as that. She could very easly have been quite confused and didn't know what she wanted to do.

[ Parent ]
I agree (none / 0) (#225)
by artsygeek on Wed May 01, 2002 at 04:28:05 PM EST

I think she was lead to feeling hated by the whole world. Judging by the fact that she talked, and that she even hesitated. Most people who have made up their minds COMPLETELY will jump as soon as they get on the bridge. She waited, because she probably wasn't sure. But when people started shouting "JUMP!", it would be no wonder. And anyone who thinks that people shouting "Don't Do it" would help, is just plain wrongheaded. The shouting in general would make a depressed person anxious, and feel like they are subhuman (such as the fact that they need people to shout "Don't DO IT!" at them). That's what causes a person to finally do it.

[ Parent ]
People + Cars + Traffic = Uber-assholes (4.25 / 12) (#33)
by quasipalm on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 08:37:28 PM EST

I think the most interesting part of this article is the author's question, "what if this had been a footbridge instead of an interstate?" I think we've all seen this: People that are nice, normal people get behind a wheel and turn into ber-assholes. I suppose people feel removed from their environment when driving... It seems they respond to things happening around them like they would a movie.

Also, here in Seattle the same thing happened. Here the police stopped traffic because divers-by were yelling "jump." She did jump, but survived. Read about it here.
(hi)
Well... (4.22 / 9) (#61)
by Katt on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 12:47:29 AM EST

If you're stuck on an Interstate highway because the road is closed, you are pretty much screwed until the police open up the road.

If a pedestrian bridge were blocked, a person that is walking around most likely has more options for detouring around the closed-off area, so you really can't compare the two.

However, if I were walking to my job, or to an important appointment or something, and the police blocked my only way of getting from point A to point B, I'd probably get just as fustrated were I stuck in my car in a traffic jam.

[ Parent ]
so you would say jump? (4.85 / 7) (#62)
by nullvalley on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:43:12 AM EST

so being frustrated that the police stopped you from moving you would tell the suicidal person who is the cause of it to jump?

i can understand the frustration but unlike the suicide person, the frustrated person probably has a higher chance of living. yelling something that equates to "die now, so i can get on with my life" is pretty insensitve and much more so than the officer stopping someone from moving.

[ Parent ]
No (1.00 / 1) (#113)
by Katt on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 06:29:58 PM EST

Nah, I wouldn't say it.

[ Parent ]
impatient drivers (4.00 / 14) (#63)
by denzo on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:48:40 AM EST

I find the trend of impatient drivers disturbing. There is a greater dependence on a national highway system for commuters and commercial trucks, and anything that gets in their way makes them turn agressive. They count on making it to their destination at a precalculated time, and only leave their source location in enough time to just barely make it on time.

I'm sorry, but if you can't plan for occurances on your way of travel, then you are the one responsible for your loss, not the rest of the people on the road, or that lady who committed suicide. Even if delays occur very rarely, there is no excuse that one should expect that their travel plans must not deviate from the norm. If it's such a rarity, then being late for an important meeting only rarely shouldn't cost you your job (assuming that you can get in touch). If you absolutely cannot afford to miss a certain meeting for rare delays, then sleep in a hotel close to the meeting location.

I have absolutely no sympathy for impatient a**holes. I absolutely detest them. They regularly endager lives on the roadways by driving recklessly, and it is proven that erratic driving behavior can worsen traffic congestion. Gee, thanks... because they're afraid of being late for work, they're making the rest of us laterer.

Being more patient, and giving one's self more time to make it to their destination, makes commuting a hell of a lot more easier. I know, because I spend more than 3 hours every workday getting to and from work. That doesn't give me an excuse to shove other people off the road...

[ Parent ]

Tailgaters cause traffic (4.66 / 9) (#73)
by Skwirl on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 06:35:30 AM EST

Gee, thanks... because they're afraid of being late for work, they're making the rest of us laterer.
A very interesting scientific essay on how impatient assholes create traffic can be found here.

--
"Nothing in the world is more distasteful to a man than to take the path that leads to himself." -- Herman Hesse
[ Parent ]
fluid flow analogy (4.50 / 2) (#107)
by denzo on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:43:14 PM EST

Thank you. That link explains the phenomenon very well. I've always tended to look at roadways in a similar way as pipelines with fluid flow; okay, not always, but ever since I'd taken a fluid mechanics course in college. It's pretty simple, really... cars are like particles. Fluid mechanics theory started out by looking at fluid molecules as particles that interact with each other.

It's funny that the author mentions smoothing out stop-and-go waves. I tried this experiment myself. The only problem is that on my particular stretch of highway I commute on, drivers are all too eager to fill up the empty space in front of me. It really depends upon the attitude of the drivers as a whole (I am completely convinced that a stream of traffic acts like a single organism or creature), and drivers who "compete" for the roadway end up making things worse for those behind them, starting things like those pressure waves.

Great site. This is going into my bookmarks.

[ Parent ]

It's called efficiency (3.75 / 12) (#90)
by tzanger on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 11:29:24 AM EST

They count on making it to their destination at a precalculated time, and only leave their source location in enough time to just barely make it on time.

Of course; it's called efficiency. If I consistently get to work 15 minutes early that is wasteful. What is wrong with that?

I'm sorry, but if you can't plan for occurances on your way of travel, then you are the one responsible for your loss, not the rest of the people on the road, or that lady who committed suicide.

So I have to leave hours earlier every day in order to make sure that if a mentally unstable person wants to jump off the interstate that I happen to drive on I won't be late? Give your head a shake. There are things called unexpected delays, and you simply cannot plan for them. If you could, they'd be called expected delays. (You go on to say that the odd late arrival, etc. should be tolerable, and I agree 100%. However my point stands that giving yourself extra time every day is wasteful.)

I'm not advocating road rage, and I certainly don't consider myself an agressive driver. Sure, sometimes I get impatient when some dumb fuck in front of me does 20mph in a 50mph zone, only to signal that they're turning into a driveway 5 feet from the driveway, or when said person decides to turn right, the get as far left as they possibly can (they are not pulling a trailer) to make the turn. It's called poor driving; those people are in the wrong. Or when a pedestrian walks out in traffic because they know that the law will punish the driver, even if the pedestrian is in the wrong. Those people are assholes and yes, I'm damned impatient with them. I certainly wouldn't shout to someone to jump off a bridge if they were imparing my trip. Glare at 'em, maybe, but certainly not encourage them to end their life. Or run them down, or cut them off, for that matter.

People, no matter who they are, are impatient sometimes. They may be late to a graduation or a meeting. They may have had a really piss-poor day and just want to get home. They may be trying to get to a ball game or a first date. It does not excuse them from shouting at a sick person to jump, but you need to understand that people have emotions and impatience is one of them. No tolerance for impatient people? Well praise the lord! You must be one of the Perfect Ones, one of those who is always in control of their emotions at all times. You must be one of the most boring people in the world if you're so perfectly in control of yourself.



[ Parent ]
efficiency vs. demands (4.66 / 3) (#105)
by denzo on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:22:27 PM EST

Putting so much faith into a link to a destination is not efficiency, it's foolish. When I said "if you can't plan for occurances on your way of travel," I did not necessarily mean that you have to plan for extra time. There are many ways to plan for this, which may include but is not limited to giving yourself extra time. On a day-by-day, regularly-occuring commute, it is unrealistic to expect to have to give yourself an extra hour driving; I agree, this is wasteful. But do you have any contingencies for unexpected delays? Do you have the option of letting your boss know that you will be late? How serious is the delay going to impact you? All I'm saying is that every trip requires a good plan. If an unexpected incident on the way aggrevates someone to the point where they are aggressive to others in the same boat, so to speak, then that wasn't a very good plan.

Also note that I did not say that I "have no tolerance for impatient people." I said "I have no sympathy" for them. I am neither perfect nor completely in control of my emotions (although if you asked anybody riding with me when I drive, they would probably point out that I don't say much and rarely ever use my horn when I get cutoff by someone). Crazy drivers do affect me emotionally; I get home drained from a long hard drive. I have to vent off my frustration at the end of the day to stay sane.

[ Parent ]

concessions are important (none / 0) (#159)
by tzanger on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:25:23 AM EST

Putting so much faith into a link to a destination is not efficiency, it's foolish.

I disagree. I make my daily commute this way and am rarely, rarely late. That gives me an extra 30 minutes at home do to whatever (assuming 15 minutes extra each way) I please.

But do you have any contingencies for unexpected delays? Do you have the option of letting your boss know that you will be late? How serious is the delay going to impact you?

This I do agree with. If you absolutely have to be there, give yourself extra time. You had mentioned this in your original post and I agree with you. But for the daily and/or less important stuff a phone call isn't rocket science.

Also note that I did not say that I "have no tolerance for impatient people." I said "I have no sympathy" for them.

I admit I did fly off the handle in my reply and I apologize. I've read your post over again and you actually did write a pretty well balanced post.



[ Parent ]
Pedestrians (4.71 / 7) (#109)
by CrayDrygu on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 05:26:04 PM EST

Or when a pedestrian walks out in traffic because they know that the law will punish the driver, even if the pedestrian is in the wrong. Those people are assholes and yes, I'm damned impatient with them.

That's spoken like someone who's never been on the other side of that equation. I used to all the time, since there's tons of crosswalks around here with no traffic lights at them, forcing you to fend for yourself. The only thing there to help you is an orange barrel in the middle of the road that says, roughly, "State Law: $100 fine for not stopping for pedestrians in crosswalk." Someday I'll take the state up on that offer.

In the meantime, you can only stand in the crosswalk for so long, three feet out into the road, watching the cars go *around* you instead of even thinking about stopping, before you find a gap just big enough to make you think "that guy can hit his brakes in time" and slowly saunter out into the street.

You're right, the law does, and should punish the driver. And the pedestrian is not "in the wrong" for expecting traffic to stop when legally required to. Some day, I'll get out there with a camera, and see if I can't collect a few thousand dollars from the jackasses who ignore me.

(By the way... yes, I have a car, and yes, I've driven past people in the crosswalk before. Sometimes you just don't see them in time, and I understand that. Sometimes the guy behind you is so far up your ass that you can't stop in time without causing an accident, and I understand that one all too well. Sometimes the guy is sufficently far away and you're sufficently far into the street that you know he can see you, and he still speeds by. That's what I have an issue with. People who can obviously stop in time, and refuse to. Or the long chains of cars, just one after another, zooming past, even though you know they can see you from down the road, because you can see them looking at you. Meanwhile, if I can stop safely, I do so every time. Even if I'm already 15 minutes late for work.)

[ Parent ]

Quite the opposite (4.00 / 1) (#156)
by tzanger on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:20:05 AM EST

That's spoken like someone who's never been on the other side of that equation.

Nope; I was a big fan of walking everywhere. When I jaywalk I make damn sure there are no cars which will have to stop for me. When I'm at a crosswalk it's the same thing. However to expect me, as a driver, to slow down because you want to cross in front of me (ESPECIALLY when I'm the only car on the road!) is arrogance and stupidity at its best.

In the meantime, you can only stand in the crosswalk for so long, three feet out into the road, watching the cars go *around* you instead of even thinking about stopping, before you find a gap just big enough to make you think "that guy can hit his brakes in time" and slowly saunter out into the street.

I can honestly say I have never driven past a person I've taken notice of if the roads are busy. If I'm the only car on the road then yeah, they can damned well wait until I'm past, especially if they're jaywalking. But if the roads are busy I stop my vehicle (pissing off the other drivers, no doubt) and let the pedestrian cross. Nine times out of ten the oncoming cars stop too when when the guy is halfway across the road.

You're right, the law does, and should punish the driver.

I disagree. Strongly. The law should punish the guilty. If I am in the wrong then punish me. But if the pedestrian is in the wrong why should the driver suffer? Because they're in a car? If it's at a crosswalk and the pedestrian has signalled his desire to cross properly (press the button, stand out at the edge of the road, whatever) and the driver doesn't yield, then yes: nail his ass. But automatically? Please.



[ Parent ]
Rights of Way (5.00 / 2) (#179)
by virg on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 01:59:05 PM EST

> When I jaywalk I make damn sure there are no cars which will have to stop for me. When I'm at a crosswalk it's the same thing. However to expect me, as a driver, to slow down because you want to cross in front of me (ESPECIALLY when I'm the only car on the road!) is arrogance and stupidity at its best.

Well, bully for you, but there are situations where that never happens (think New York City if you need an extreme example). But to expect you to stop when I enter the crosswalk is no more arrogant or stupid than expecting you to stop at a red light, even if you're the only car on the road. That's the way the law works.

> I disagree. Strongly. The law should punish the guilty.

By definition, it does. 8)

> But if the pedestrian is in the wrong why should the driver suffer? Because they're in a car? If it's at a crosswalk and the pedestrian has signalled his desire to cross properly (press the button, stand out at the edge of the road, whatever) and the driver doesn't yield, then yes: nail his ass. But automatically? Please.

Actually, just being in the crosswalk means you have to stop, even if it's wildly inconvenient, and even if you're the only car on the road. The reasoning is that car/pedestrian collisions are very lethal as opposed to inter-vehicle crashes, so the law puts the onus on avoiding such collisions on the person driving the big, heavy, metal thing. By making the driver legally responsible in all but extreme cases, the law forces drivers to use more caution than they otherwise would, which makes sense since you're driving the big, heavy, metal thing. The reason it's "automatic" is because if the pedestrian always has right-of-way, there are fewer situations where "who has right-of-way?" leads to accidents. That's because in a car, most times you've got a time consuming fender-bender, but with a pedestrian, you've usually got a fatality.

Virg
"Imagine (it won't be hard) that most people would prefer seeing Carrot Top beaten to death with a bag of walnuts." - Jmzero
[ Parent ]
what? (none / 0) (#134)
by streetlawyer on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 03:11:31 AM EST

Sure, sometimes I get impatient when some dumb fuck in front of me does 20mph in a 50mph zone, only to signal that they're turning into a driveway 5 feet from the driveway

Despite having covered about 25,000 road miles a year for five years in my youth, I can think of absolutely nowhere where there are driveways abutting onto 50mph roads. The Westway in London comes closest, but even that has slip-approaches.

--
Just because things have been nonergodic so far, doesn't mean that they'll be nonergodic forever
[ Parent ]

Driveways. (none / 0) (#139)
by katie on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:34:24 AM EST

I was looking at a house here in the midlands at one point. One of the things that put me off slightly was the fact the driveway was about twenty feet long and then turned onto a dual carraigeway with 60 limit on it. It did not look particularly safe..




[ Parent ]
I learned something about England today (none / 0) (#146)
by pyramid termite on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:00:37 AM EST

I had no idea driveways on major (not superhighways) roads weren't common there. They are very common in the US.
On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
Try driving rural Ontario [N/T] (none / 0) (#158)
by tzanger on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:21:06 AM EST



[ Parent ]
Unfortunately (none / 0) (#182)
by aphrael on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 02:54:30 PM EST

there are driveways abutting onto Highway 17, between Santa Cruz and San Jose, which is a major thoroughfare for commuters who drive it at 50-60MPH. I see it almost every day. :(

[ Parent ]
Obviously not an American. ;) (none / 0) (#194)
by DavidTC on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:18:32 PM EST

While the road I live off of is only 45 miles an hour, there are plenty of roads nearby that are 55 and have houses on them.

And ten minutes south of me is the north end of state road 400, which is a divided highway with a 65 mph speed limit. While most of the turnoffs are gas stations and whatnot, there are a few houses. (In case you know SR 400 and are a bit baffled, it turns un-restricted access slightly north of Cumming.)

-David T. C.
Yes, my email address is real.
[ Parent ]

Being late is not a crime (4.71 / 7) (#95)
by xriso on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:42:07 PM EST

I'm sure that if you got to work and told your boss "Traffic was blocked off because a woman was sitting on the bridge, getting ready to suicide.", then the boss would not hold it against you.
--
*** Quits: xriso:#kuro5hin (Forever)
[ Parent ]
Seattle story (4.00 / 1) (#131)
by reeses on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 02:12:52 AM EST

Read the story here.

[ Parent ]
anti-depressants (4.10 / 10) (#36)
by three-pipe on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 09:24:48 PM EST

Authorities said she may have taken an overdose of prescription of anti-depressants before venturing out on the interstate.

we just got hooked up with cable tv. i live in canada, where drug adverts are illegal, and seeing the rash of ADS for drugs and then hearing about the effects of chemical solutions to societal/interpersonal problems really gets me scared.

of course, the jeering onlookers are a whole other story


-chad \\ warfordium.org \\
Legal drug ads are new. (4.00 / 10) (#42)
by Of Medham I Am A Fan on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 10:38:03 PM EST

Up until a few years ago, prescription drug ads weren't allowed on US television (over-the-counter drug ads were okay), but the big pharmaceutical lobby managed to get the restrictions relaxed, albeit with some heavy limitations on advertisements still in place.

A prescription drug TV ad has to do one of the following two things, but not both, and it's fun to watch the ads and see how many fall into each category:

  • 1. Not mention what the drug does, what it's for, what it treats, etc. (Ads in this category generally show happy people rolling around in fields of wildflowers, followed by a "ask your doctor if Generidrug is right for you", without mentioning what Generidrug is)
  • 2. Mention every side effect ever reported by anyone in any of the drug's clinical trials, any other possible side effects, etc. etc. These commercials are allowed to tell you what the drug does, but required to mention every possible way that it can murder you. These commercials can get downright horrific: irritability, irregular heartbeat, constipation, "gas with oily discharge" (absolutely real), spontaneous death, etc.

    Basically, they can either not tell what the drug is for, or they can tell what the drug does with the additional requirement that they list every possible side effect. Both options yield commercials that are pretty bizarre.

    Doctors tend to be disgusted with these newly-legalized advertisements for reasons I'm sure I don't have to go into, but I'm sure they appreciate the extra income from floods of patients who come in just to get a prescription for something they saw on television. In some states, it's legal or not-technically-illegal for doctors to prescribe drugs to patients they've never even actually seen, and thus you can even order prescription drugs over the Internet now in some places.

    [ Parent ]

  • So THAT'S why! (5.00 / 1) (#186)
    by scorbett on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 03:09:34 PM EST

    I remember seeing a commercial last year that scared the hell out of me. A bunch of smiling people running in slow motion through a grassy field while sappy music plays in the background. No text, no voice. This goes on for a few seconds and then a silky voice says "Isn't it time you ask your doctor about the little purple pill?" and the name of some drug is displayed on the screen. Fade to black. I remember wondering why in the hell they would choose to advertise a prescription drug without actually mentioning what it is the drug is supposed to do for you. It was almost like "you don't need to know what it does, just go get some from your doctor! now!"

    The funny (and real) part of this story is that this commercial was followed almost immediately by one of those public service announcements featuring haggard-looking recovering addicts in black and white telling us how drugs ruined their lives.

    [ Parent ]

    Scary (none / 0) (#189)
    by Cro Magnon on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 04:08:33 PM EST

    "you don't need to know what it does, just go get some from your doctor! now!" That's how it seemed to me too! What really scares me is the thought that some people probably do exactly that!
    Information wants to be beer.
    [ Parent ]
    Anti-Depressants/Suicide - not causal (5.00 / 3) (#106)
    by Karmakaze on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:41:44 PM EST

    As I understand the mechanics of it, anti-depressents do not generally cause suicidal behavior. That is, a person with no suicidal tendancies who takes anti-depressents will not tend to develop suicidal tendancies. There is a correlation, but not really a causal correlation.

    The chain of events is more often that a depressed person with suicidal tendancies takes an anti-depressant. The anti-depressant begins to work, in that the person is more able to focus and plan activies. However, since the drug does not actually adress the environmental issues surrounding the depression, nor the cognative history of the depression, what you get is a person with suicial tendancies who now has the energy to do something about it. Even without drugs, the greatest risk of sucide is not at the bottom of a mood swing, but shortly after the mood begins to improve.

    It is more likely that the woman took an excessive dose of anti-depressants because she felt terrible and was hoping for a boost, not that the excessive dose caused her behavior.


    --
    Karmakaze
    [ Parent ]

    Anti-depressants (none / 0) (#138)
    by katie on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:30:02 AM EST

    The main problem with anti-depressants is that they take a long time to kick in - it takes weeks of regular dosage to have an effect. Taking massive doses when you feel down doesn't do very much except make you think even more irrationally.



    [ Parent ]
    Futile assumptions (none / 0) (#140)
    by fr2ty on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 06:17:29 AM EST

    Katie is right with at least SSRI, but we don't know what particular kind of anti-depressant we are talking about.
    --
    Please note that are neither capitals nor numbers in my mail adress.
    [ Parent ]
    Yes and No (none / 0) (#160)
    by Karmakaze on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:29:06 AM EST

    Yes, we do not know exactly what antidepressant was involved.

    On the other hand, I am not aware of any clinically reputable anti-depressant that claims to have immediate results. In fact, none of the three referenced in your link do.

    Generally, anti-depressants (and many, but not all, other psychotropics) need time to penetrate the system. It was my experience (with SSRI's) that taking an excessive dose resulted in an increase in side effects but no notable mood change. (Well, aside from the fact that feeling nauseous and achey can affect your mood.)
    --
    Karmakaze
    [ Parent ]

    Ack & my experience (none / 0) (#206)
    by fr2ty on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:45:11 PM EST

    Ack, I shouldn't  have posted my comment as a reply and refer to Katie that way.

    I had restless legs and laryngopharyngeal reflux with fluoxetine. Mood change kicked in after three days - very early. The drug did a good job after all, it helped break some vicious circles.

    What was your overdose like? Sounds like the known side-effects, only harder.

    --
    Please note that are neither capitals nor numbers in my mail adress.
    [ Parent ]

    We all have problems... (3.26 / 26) (#37)
    by blankmind on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 10:10:08 PM EST

    Disclaimer: I am actually a very caring person.

    Quite frankly, I would have been pissed too. We _all_ have problems. Guess what? My car is a piece of shit, my job sucks, school is very stressful, I don't get any sleep, gas prices are too fucking high, and my girlfriend and I just had a fight. These are problems that I'm sure we can all relate with. Problems that a certain lady who decided to jump off a bridge had. Your husband left you? Ha! My mother was left twice! Did she decide to throw a pity party? No.

    I have always looked at suicide in two different ways. One, you have the person who blows his brains out in his living room. Two, you have the person who sits on a bridge, waiting for someone to intervene. In the first example, you have someone who is really sick of life. They are really bent on killing themselves. In the second example, you have the person who feels sorry for themselves. They want somebody to tell them that they are special. Throwing a pity party--that's what this whole fiasco really was. This lady didn't have intentions of committing suicide. She wanted just attention.

    So why the hell should I care?
    --------
    I have been trolled.
    yup (4.00 / 10) (#44)
    by highenergystar on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:00:19 PM EST

    why should you care..is a tiny step away from get the hell over with your life lady so that i can get on with mine. your disclaimer is totally at odds with your attitude in the rest of the post, so it really isn't a disclaimer (unless you're trolling)

    you could go the eugenics route and claim that she eliminated her unfit genes from the pool, and that mentally unstable/ill/wanting people do not deserve care. (yes it is a leap of logic but not an entirely unreasonable extrapolation of your viewpoint).

    or you could try to understand that people are all different, and some do not have the strength or conviction to tough it out. if she was looking for attention, which could have possibly saved her life, encouraging a jump is not the way to do it. i wish she had landed on the car of the guy who asked her to jump (yeah i know t was over a river, and the traffic was on the bridge- but hey its a wish) and staved his head in, that would have been a true twist of fate

    [ Parent ]
    Nope... (4.40 / 10) (#53)
    by blankmind on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:28:49 PM EST

    your disclaimer is totally at odds with your attitude in the rest of the post, so it really isn't a disclaimer

    Actually, my disclaimer is valid. I am a caring person. Need me to give your car a jump? Sure, I've broken down before. Need a ride to the bus station? I don't mind. Your husband just beat the crap out of you? Hey, stay at my place. Need me to talk you out of committing suicide? Of course, but if your reasoning is foolish, I won't hesistate to say so.

    you could go the eugenics route and claim that she eliminated her unfit genes from the pool, and that mentally unstable/ill/wanting people do not deserve care. (yes it is a leap of logic but not an entirely unreasonable extrapolation of your viewpoint).

    Indeed, it is quite a leap in logic. Your conjecture that I am favor of this sort of artificial selection is false.

    if she was looking for attention, which could have possibly saved her life, encouraging a jump is not the way to do it.

    I agree. I never said that I would have told her to jump--that is just cruel. Though, I did say that I would be pissed, and I stand by that.
    --------
    I have been trolled.
    [ Parent ]
    That is not how it works (4.20 / 5) (#97)
    by jcolter on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 02:12:49 PM EST

    When you are talking to someone that is suicidal, the goal is not to have an intellectual discussion about the pros and cons.

    From my understanding, the idea is that you get them talking enough to trust you so that you can GRAB THEM AND PULL THEM OF THE FUCKING BRIDGE.


    [ Parent ]
    Well... (4.33 / 6) (#101)
    by blankmind on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 02:42:22 PM EST

    Seeing as I never mentioned that I talked someone off of a bridge, your advice means nothing to me. Though, I have talked a friend out of suicide while sitting in a bathroom. And yes, I did talk to her about it logically. I assured her that her life was really better than it seems and that a lot of the things she was worrying about were trivial.

    I'm pretty sure she would have freaked out if I tackled her. :)
    --------
    I have been trolled.
    [ Parent ]
    Suicide (3.60 / 15) (#57)
    by CaptainSuperBoy on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:54:17 PM EST

    Suicide is an effect of mental illness, usually depression. People don't kill themselves because they have problems.. people kill themselves because they have a disease. Your callous response shows your lack of understanding about mental illness. What do you think the difference was between this woman and your mother? She was clearly depressed. It's terrible that there was no way of helping her.

    --
    jimmysquid.com - I take pictures.
    [ Parent ]
    Mommy... (4.33 / 9) (#58)
    by blankmind on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 12:10:01 AM EST

    Your callous response shows your lack of understanding about mental illness.

    What mental illness is that? Depression!? I was seriously depressed for about four years. I've been there, and I've experienced the medication. I'm dealt with it, and I'm still here.

    What do you think the difference was between this woman and your mother?

    Well since the article wasn't a biography, I'm not too sure. I do know that my mother had it pretty bad. She was physically and mentally abused by both of her former husbands.

    She was clearly depressed. It's terrible that there was no way of helping her.

    I'm assuming that you are talking about my mother. Well, she did get a lot of help from a counselor and me, of course. I'd say that she helped herself more than anyone else did, though.
    --------
    I have been trolled.
    [ Parent ]
    Personalizing (4.00 / 6) (#100)
    by CaptainSuperBoy on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 02:34:55 PM EST

    I was seriously depressed for about four years. I've been there, and I've experienced the medication. I'm dealt with it, and I'm still here. ...

    I'm assuming that you are talking about my mother

    I wasn't referring to you or your mother. Maybe I should have been more specific. I meant that this suicidal woman was clearly depressed - a biological condition IMO, that caused her to take her own life. You have taken all my arguments and personalized them. It's good that your depression has improved, but everyone's experience is different. The fact that you were able to deal with it, doesn't mean everyone can do the same.

    --
    jimmysquid.com - I take pictures.
    [ Parent ]

    So all these people with things like: (3.50 / 2) (#116)
    by Robert S Gormley on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 07:35:37 PM EST

    Bipolar (manic depression), where 20% plus of all people commit suicide... schizophrenia, etc... should all just get over it, hmm? Because of course, you were 'seriously depressed' and were able to, and that gives you carte blanche knowledge of any number of given medical conditions, most of which are more serious than popping down to the local doctor and asking for Zoloft or Prozac.

    [ Parent ]
    Interesting... (4.00 / 2) (#117)
    by blankmind on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:39:10 PM EST

    How the hell do you people come to these conclusions?

    Bipolar (manic depression), where 20% plus of all people commit suicide... schizophrenia, etc... should all just get over it, hmm?

    Where did I hint that I was in favor of this sort of artificial selection? Please tell me, because you're the second person who said this. And why did you bring schizophrenia into this? That is totally irrelevant. Oh, and please link to your statistics.

    Because of course, you were 'seriously depressed' and were able to, and that gives you carte blanche knowledge of any number of given medical conditions, most of which are more serious than popping down to the local doctor and asking for Zoloft or Prozac.

    Did you black out while you were reading the posts? I was accused of not understanding mental illnesses, so I mentioned that I have experienced the one in question. And yes, I do have extensive knowledge on other mental illnesses, thank you.

    Why do I feel that IHBT?
    --------
    I have been trolled.
    [ Parent ]
    original point... (4.00 / 1) (#118)
    by f00b4r on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:48:40 PM EST

    Did you black out while you were reading the posts? I was accused of not understanding mental illnesses, so I mentioned that I have experienced the one in question. And yes, I do have extensive knowledge on other mental illnesses, thank you.

    The point the original poster was trying to make was that you experienced a form of depression, but that does not mean you experienced the same thing as everyone else on this world that is depressed. There are many different levels of depression... you were lucky and were able to deal with it (presumably), that does not mean anything about other peoples ability to get help. Maybe you had someone there with you to help you through that hard time in your life and get you professional help... Maybe not...

    [ Parent ]
    To me... (4.33 / 3) (#119)
    by Robert S Gormley on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:53:34 PM EST

    Okay.... logical implicitness to me suggests... when you say you have no compassion for people who resort to (attempted) suicide due to their depressive illnesses, and your ability to live with it and the assorted medications kinda impies to me that "I can do it, why shouldn't other people be able to".

    Schizophrenia: not necessarily a response directed at you, per se - but more a general comment that well, obviously, depression isn't the only mental 'imbalance' that can cause suicidal tendencies... schizophrenia is probably one of the most pervasive.

    Cite for my statistic... a speech given by Dr Kay Jamison, one of the foremost authorities in the world on Bipolar Affective Disorder - I saw her speaking, this is the transcript, the particular detail is a question from the audience:

    "It is an illness that is biological in its origins yet psychological in the experience of it; an illness that is unique in conferring advantage and pleasure, yet one that brings in its wake almost unendurable suffering and, not infrequently, suicide..."

    QUESTION: How does this disease become fatal? You said it's a fatal disease. What happens in the metabolism to make it fatal?
    DR KAY JAMISON: Suicide. Up to 20 per cent of people who have manic depression commit suicide.


    [ Parent ]

    Ok... (3.50 / 2) (#120)
    by blankmind on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 09:06:17 PM EST

    when you say you have no compassion for people who resort to (attempted) suicide due to their depressive illnesses, and your ability to live with it and the assorted medications kinda impies to me that "I can do it, why shouldn't other people be able to".

    I understand where you are coming from, but that is not what I meant. I do have compassion for people. I would never have been one of the motorists that shouted at the lady, but I admittedly have no profound sense of compassion for random people.

    I'm sorry if I came off as the "If I can do it, anyone can" kind of person. I was accused of not understanding mental illness, and I thought relating a personal experience would show that I do. Of course, I could never really know what the lady was feeling, but I feel that I have a good idea.
    --------
    I have been trolled.
    [ Parent ]
    Been there? Done that? (none / 0) (#211)
    by Macrobat on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:28:27 PM EST

    I was seriously depressed for about four years. I've been there, and I've experienced the medication. I'm dealt with it, and I'm still here.

    I'm sorry, that still doesn't mean you know what went on in this woman's life. You're not a doctor, you don't know this woman, and you're not psychic, or you'd have anticipated my response. The fact that you had a medical condition does not make you an expert on it. Nor does it mean you know what other people who have it are going through.

    Look, my dad had cancer--specifically, a small, cancerous tumor on his forehead--and had it removed. That doesn't mean he's suffered the same kind of agony that my stepfather, who died from cancer of the brain and esophagus (after two years of surgery, chemo, and radiation therapy), even though they both received "medical treatment for cancer."

    So please, don't pretend you know anything about this woman's depression. Maybe it wasn't worse than yours. Maybe it was. You just don't know.

    "Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
    [ Parent ]

    Hey... (none / 0) (#220)
    by blankmind on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 08:37:33 PM EST

    I never claimed that I knew what she was feeling. I was simply accused of not knowing what mental illness is. Read the prior posts.
    --------
    I have been trolled.
    [ Parent ]
    "So why the hell should I care?" (3.75 / 8) (#72)
    by Skwirl on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 06:09:24 AM EST

    No man is an island, entire of itself;
    every man is a piece of the continent,
    part of the main; if a clod be washed away
    by the sea, Europe is the less,
    as well as if a promontory were,
    as well as if a manor of thy friends
    or thine own were; any man's death diminishes me,
    because I am involved in mankind;
    and therefore never send to know
    for whom the bell tolls:
    it tolls for thee...
    — John Donne (as qtd. in Hemingway's FWTBT)

    --
    "Nothing in the world is more distasteful to a man than to take the path that leads to himself." -- Herman Hesse
    [ Parent ]
    BECAUSE SOMEONE MIGHT CARE BACK YOU STUPID SHIT (1.09 / 22) (#77)
    by turmeric on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:38:00 AM EST

    WHY DONT YOU GO FUCKING KILL YOURSELF?!?!?!

    [ Parent ]
    Does this mean you don't love me anymore? [n/t] (3.28 / 7) (#81)
    by blankmind on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:49:13 AM EST


    --------
    I have been trolled.
    [ Parent ]
    Attention Seeker? (3.60 / 5) (#144)
    by Cloaked User on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:27:42 AM EST

    This lady didn't have intentions of committing suicide. She wanted just attention.

    That argument flies in the face of the fact that she actually jumped.

    That doesn't sound like a cry for help to me; more like the action of someone intent on ending their own life.

    As for why you should care, you should care because it's the decent, humane thing to do. You should care because you are a thinking, feeling human being, not an automoton unknowingly following its programming.


    Cheers,

    Tim


    --
    "What the fuck do you mean 'Are you inspired to come to work'? Of course I'm not 'inspired'. It's a job for God's sake! The money's enough and the work's not so crap that I leave."
    [ Parent ]
    And that managed to get her on K5. (4.00 / 2) (#192)
    by DavidTC on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:06:39 PM EST

    No one said she was crying for help, they said she wanted attention. And look, an entire article about her.

    Pretty good effort, I must say.

    -David T. C.
    Yes, my email address is real.
    [ Parent ]

    you amoral wankstain (2.50 / 6) (#154)
    by adequate nathan on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:53:27 AM EST

    If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend's or of thine own were: any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind...

    John Donne, link.

    Is it fun to judge peoples' fitness for life and death? Why don't we just make everything better by actually giving you a gun and a license to kill, so that next time you can shoot her yourself? Good Lord, she was obstructing traffic? Nice fucking capital crime.

    Nathan
    "For me -- ugghhh, arrgghh."
    -Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, in Frank magazine, Jan. 20th 2003

    Join the petition: Rusty! Make dumped stories & discussion public!
    [ Parent ]

    I hope you're never in the same boat . . . (3.25 / 8) (#47)
    by acceleriter on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:18:28 PM EST

    . . . or at least that someone shows you more mercy than you would have shown this woman. And I hope your compatriots that yelled "jump" feel really good about themselves.

    Your thesis that she wasn't serious about committing suicide seems to have been disproven by her actually having done so.

    Darwin always wins (1.68 / 32) (#48)
    by bojo on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:19:18 PM EST

    Yes, that sounds cruel and callous. I have no pity for people that consider ending their lives, and the pity is wasted on people that did.

    Sure, the drivers may have been out of hand for calling her out, and maybe the officer did have a chance at saving her life.

    In the end, Darwin won. Not much of a story, regardless of the outcome.

    Pardon me? (4.54 / 11) (#55)
    by qpt on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:46:14 PM EST

    In what sense did "Darwin win." Are you talking about the city in Australia, the 19th century naturalist or something else entirely?

    Furthermore, what was the game and what is Darwin's prize? Why was Darwin playing, anyway? It seems a heartless sort of game that can only be won with the suicide of some poor woman.

    I will assume that you are talking about Darwinism, or biological natural selection. However, she was 48 years old, as you would know if you had read the article. Most women do not have children past that age. To spell it out in painful clarity for you, if she was going to have children at all, she likely already had.

    Consequently, biological natural selection had nothing whatsoever to do with this situation. I hope you feel stupid.

    Domine Deus, creator coeli et terrae respice humilitatem nostram.
    [ Parent ]

    Selection after reproduction (2.80 / 5) (#74)
    by daedal on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 07:27:56 AM EST

    "Consequently, biological natural selection had nothing whatsoever to do with this situation."

    Not entirely true. Natural selection is still relevant to people past an age where they cannot, or are not likely to, reproduce because of their affect on their society. An extreme example; if all old people turn into axe-murderers this will have a negative affect on the fitness of their genotype.

    [ Parent ]

    Brave statement. (3.75 / 8) (#56)
    by daystar on Sat Apr 27, 2002 at 11:47:09 PM EST

    If she reproduced, then you are wrong.

    You probably should have found out before you said it....

    --
    There is no God, and I am his prophet.
    [ Parent ]

    no he didn't (3.50 / 8) (#60)
    by nodsmasher on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 12:31:50 AM EST

    i wouldn't be supreiced if she had had kids as she had been marry'd so she might have already passed on her gene's but even if she didn't there is more then genetics invoved in depretion so even that really does nothing
    its people like you who don't get evolution who give it a bad name
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Most people don't realise just how funny cannibalism can actually be.
    -Tatarigami
    [ Parent ]
    Darwin is dead. (1.60 / 10) (#64)
    by mlapanadras on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:50:49 AM EST

    So his theory.

    [ Parent ]
    Only... (none / 0) (#197)
    by Happy Monkey on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:59:19 PM EST

    Only in your educational neck of the woods. In the world out there, it's equivalent to Newtonian physics - accurate to a degree, but recent advances have corrected some of the errors.
    ___
    Length 17, Width 3
    [ Parent ]
    uhm, no he doesnt you ignorant clod (1.57 / 21) (#76)
    by turmeric on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:36:58 AM EST

    darwinian theory applied to human society was
    called 'eugenics', and it DIED OUT WHEN
    HITLER BLEW HIS BRAINS INTO A MILLION PIECES.
    HE WAS THE ULTIMATE SOCIAL DARWINIST ANd
    HE FUCKING LOST ALONG WITH HIS ENTIRE STUPID
    ASS NAZI CIRCLE JERK.

    FUCK YOU STPUID DARWINIAN SHIT HEADS, YOU SHALL
    ANSWER FOR YOUR CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY SOME DAY.

    you dont do a GOD DAMN THING to HELP people in TROUBLE
    and you have the GALL to sit there pretending
    to be ALL SUPERIOR. Well in CASE YOU HAVENT NOTICEd
    the POINT OF HUMANITY is to SURVIVE THROUGH
    COOPERATION, you STUPDI FUCKING SHITHEAD.


    [ Parent ]
    Minor nit (3.00 / 2) (#93)
    by skunk on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:29:31 PM EST

    HITLER BLEW HIS BRAINS INTO A MILLION PIECES

    I thought he and his GF offed themselves by swallowing poison....



    --SS
    [ Parent ]
    Nope. (3.33 / 3) (#108)
    by DarkZero on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 05:21:04 PM EST

    I'm not sure whether Eva Braun shot herself or took the poison, but Hitler definitely opted to shoot himself instead of use the poison.

    [ Parent ]
    bio (3.00 / 1) (#142)
    by fr2ty on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:15:13 AM EST

    According to Alan Bullock Hitler shot himself with a 7.65 Walther, whereas Eva Braun took cyanide. Ian Kershaw agrees.

    BTW, the recent Kershaw biography is excellent and readable, if you dare to try two volumes, >1300pp each. It should be available at any universitarian library. Bullock is a good start for the interested though, but I would prefer Kershaw if available.

    I am missing the link to our story though.
    --
    Please note that are neither capitals nor numbers in my mail adress.
    [ Parent ]
    Darwin (3.50 / 6) (#133)
    by streetlawyer on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 03:06:35 AM EST

    Darwin wins, every time you can't get a date because you're such a spiteful prick.

    --
    Just because things have been nonergodic so far, doesn't mean that they'll be nonergodic forever
    [ Parent ]
    Maybe, but we lost (2.25 / 4) (#171)
    by grzebo on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 12:40:53 PM EST

    I think that we, as humanity, lose whenever someone dies. Remember - there's no need for evolution to work now - we don't have anything to adapt to. We should keep the gene pool as big as possible though, because we might need it someday. Right now, thanks to science many people not adapted perfectly to our surroundings may live. It's very important, since when the rapid change comes, we must already have someone adapted to it. IE if there was a flood tomorrow, only people with gills would survive. Others would not be given time to evolve them. Therefor, we shouldn't be happy when someone dies, thus limiting humanities abilities to evolve.


    "My God, shouts man to Himself,
    have mercy on me, enlighten me"...
    [ Parent ]
    Actually, Darwin always lose (2.33 / 3) (#184)
    by mlapanadras on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 03:02:48 PM EST

    I have no idea what you have learned at school, but I've got a news for you my little Darwinists. Darwin's evolution theory failed to prove the main its point - the origin of species. The biologists failed to create a new species during more than century of experiments (uh-oh just imagine all those tortured animals!). You can do as much gene engineering as you like but all you get is just a new variety, usually sterile.

    Consult your preacher! Despite being absolutely ignorant, these guys always have something in a sleeve about Darwin. Check out google!

    Don't you think that biology is still in the middle of XIX century?

    Sad that Apple chose such nonsense as Darwin theory as their motto.

    [ Parent ]

    waaaay OT (none / 0) (#188)
    by lb008d on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 04:08:14 PM EST

    more than century of experiments

    Funny - I thought evolution has been working for millions of years. I can't imagine any biology experiment that can mimic that.

    [ Parent ]

    In a way, you could be right (none / 0) (#196)
    by dasunt on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:58:29 PM EST

    Assume that the goal of the game is to have as many surviving decendents as possible. Now, in a group, especially a tightly-related group as the tribes mankind evolved in, life isn't a zero sum game. If you take care of your neighbor when he is horribly sick, and as a result, he lives to 70 instead of to 25, and he does the same to you when you are sick, the time you take (say, a week of playing nursemaid) is paid back by an extra 45 years.

    Now assume that someone in the tribe is suicidally depressed. If you help them through that bad spot, they survive to return that favor later. Even if depression has a genetic component, it does not mean that breeding out the gene is a good thing, for the gene might be beneficial in other ways. The lethargy and the resultant decrease need of food in bad times might have been a survival trait. Those who got depressed during famine times might have survived and those who were cheery, bright, and burning calories, didn't.

    So, in a way, you're right. Darwin won. If this goes on, the culture that feeds this behavior will die out.

    Just my $.02



    [ Parent ]
    The Cheery kills and eats the Depressed one (none / 0) (#214)
    by mlapanadras on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 02:16:22 AM EST

    in the times of famine to get his calories. He also will kill the young descendants of the Depressed eliminating the breed.

    That what we have got in the case of bridge, the woman and angry drivers.

    Darwin lose again.

    [ Parent ]

    Waaaaaaaaaaaaaah. (1.95 / 21) (#69)
    by gnovos on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 04:43:21 AM EST

    Yeah, I am callous and cruel, but I can't see how anyone can be upset over this stupid woman. She was SELFISH. She couldn't deal with a few problems in her life so she decides the best thing to do is to cause even MORE problems in everyone elses lives.

    A Haiku: "fuck you fuck you fuck/you fuck you fuck you fuck you/fuck you fuck you snow" - JChen
    you idiot (2.46 / 13) (#75)
    by turmeric on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:34:45 AM EST

    thank god you werent there she would have jumped even faster. congratulations, moron, you sure do alot to 'help' with your 'brilliant insight' and 'righteous anger' at someone in the depths of despair. did you learn that in compassion 101?

    [ Parent ]
    She would have jumped faster. (3.87 / 8) (#96)
    by gnovos on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:57:49 PM EST

    First of all, the irony of your talking about my 'righteous anger' while at the same time angrily posting to every single one fo my comments, *even those in a complete different story*, has not gone unapprecated. I like irony, and you obvious have gont to a lot of trouble to make me happy. Thank you.


    Now, on to your comment... Tell me, what would have been the harm of her jumping sooner or later? Since she DID jump, wouldn't it have wasted everyone's time less if she has just done it and gotten over with it?

    I'm sorry her death upsets you, but your anger is misplaced. She would not appreciate your compassion, as she showed very clearly. She only cared about solving her own problems, despite teh harm it caused to others. Your compassion would have been wasted on her... She would have looked you in the eye, thanked you for being so caring, and jumped anyway becuase YOUR EFFORT MEANT NOTHING to her. She was selfish, rude and uncaring. That she died does NOT somehow excuse her.

    A Haiku: "fuck you fuck you fuck/you fuck you fuck you fuck you/fuck you fuck you snow" - JChen
    [ Parent ]
    Huh? (5.00 / 5) (#125)
    by Kalani on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 11:51:49 PM EST

    She apologized to the police officer who was trying to help her. All the other issues aside, she was obviously aware of how rude it was to ignore the man's offer of help, but she probably felt it was outweighed by more pressing issues. That she would even bother to apologize at all before she killed herself shows that she has much more class than you give her credit for.

    -----
    "Nothing says 'final boss' like a giant brain in a tube."
    -- Udderdude on flipcode.com
    [ Parent ]
    You are a spiteful asshole(nt) (1.72 / 11) (#86)
    by BinaryTree on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 09:16:53 AM EST



    [ Parent ]
    Not upset, concerned (4.16 / 6) (#89)
    by revscat on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 11:22:10 AM EST

    If I were to see the woman on the bridge, I would not be upset about her situation, at least not primarily. I would, however, be concerned for her, and would try and do anything in my power to coax her back. Why? Because to my mind that is simply the right thing to do.

    You affirmed that you are callous and cruel. Are you proud of your callousness, your cruelty? Does that make you feel better about yourself? How do you feel when told that many, if not most, people consider those attributes to be evil? Would you have encouraged her to jump?




    - Rev.
    Libertarianism is like communism: both look great on paper.
    [ Parent ]
    Suicide... (3.71 / 7) (#94)
    by gnovos on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 01:40:51 PM EST

    ...does not deserve any compassion. You see this woman as something to be pitied, but I think that pity is misplaced. Would you feel the same way about a common murderer or child molestor? What thus woman did was seriously ruin the lives of everyone around her. I'm not talking about the people who had to drive slowly. I'm talking about her friends who will cry over her, her family who will have to pay to bury her, the police who tried to help her, many, many innocent people who did not deserve to have this horrible event thrust into thier lives.

    Her suicide solved nothing... It was very wrong. We should not deify her, we should villify her. If anyone thinks that they can just jump off a bridge and solve all thier probelms, they need to see this woman's example and realise that they end up causing more problems than they think they can solve.

    A Haiku: "fuck you fuck you fuck/you fuck you fuck you fuck you/fuck you fuck you snow" - JChen
    [ Parent ]
    Misplaced Lack of Compassion (4.00 / 1) (#178)
    by virg on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 01:22:20 PM EST

    > Suicide does not deserve any compassion.

    Suicidal tendencies, on the other hand, do. I've found that many find it easy to say that she's being selfish, and she is (well, was). But that doesn't to my mind make it right to vilify her, or to want her to get it over with quickly and privately, it makes me want to convince her not to get it over with at all. See the difference? I've personally pulled three people back from the edge (in two instances literally). What I discovered in those instances was that these people were not there to make a spectacle (in fact, not one of them cared about the attention in the least), they were there because circumstances pushed them to the edge and they didn't know a better way to cope. You're right that it's selfish. You're wrong that these people don't deserve compassion. They're people, after all, and in each case it took only caring enough to help them realign their perspectives to save them. If you can't be bothered with that much, then I can comfortably say that you suck.

    Virg
    "Imagine (it won't be hard) that most people would prefer seeing Carrot Top beaten to death with a bag of walnuts." - Jmzero
    [ Parent ]
    [OT] .sig (2.00 / 2) (#112)
    by General Wesc on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 06:19:59 PM EST

    Technically, an aristocracy can mean either ruled by the best suited or by a select few (such as the rich). A less ambiguous term would be plutocracy or chrysocracy.

    --
    General Wesc
    [ Parent ]
    or, (1.00 / 2) (#127)
    by flyasspimpassbuttass on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 12:22:38 AM EST

    perhaps the slighty more obscure pornocracy.

    The scent of it runs
    Down my chin like orgasm
    I'm fencing with morals
    And riding the spasm

    --
    remove @ to mail me
    [ Parent ]
    re: [OT] .sig (2.50 / 2) (#166)
    by revscat on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 11:07:03 AM EST

    Well, my experience with jargoneering leads me to believe that when coming up with a successful slogan you should go with the generally accepted definitions of words instead of their technical definitions. So while you are absolutely correct as to the words you listed being more specific, they don't carry as much oomph.

    Further, cadence is important as well. Aristocracy and meritocracy both have five syllables; both of the words you listed have four. "Meritocracy not plutocracy" therefore doesn't have the same rhythm.

    And not many people know what 'chrysocracy' means...




    - Rev.
    Libertarianism is like communism: both look great on paper.
    [ Parent ]
    fuckers (2.05 / 20) (#83)
    by crazycanuck on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:53:36 AM EST

    those people who yelled at her to jump should be shot.

    Errrr... (4.00 / 2) (#132)
    by vrai on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 02:56:46 AM EST

    Whilst shouting at someone to jump is rather cruel you can't have freedom of speech and then shoot people who say something you don't like.

    I think the basic problem is that human empathy doesn't scale well. Had it been a member of this chap's social circle he would have acted rather differently. However it is difficult to feel compassion for the tens of thousands of strangers that we see everyday. This isn't helped by the constant stream of 'reality TV' (e.g. "Worlds Deadliest Fatal Accidents") which turns personal suffering into entertainment for the masses.

    [ Parent ]

    they're animals (1.00 / 2) (#152)
    by crazycanuck on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:41:01 AM EST

    they have no rights, they aren't human

    [ Parent ]
    They're not animals (4.33 / 3) (#153)
    by vrai on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:50:57 AM EST

    They're simply a product of society. You can't have cruelty driven mass entertainment, combined with a society that places personal gain above all else and not end up with these types of people.

    In this case it was that people decided someones life is worth less than getting to work late, in other cases whole countries have been starved as their citizens lives are worth less than cheap oil. People only care when the media tells them to, for example: hundreds die in Indonesia = minor foreign news story; eighteen die in Germany = Europe-wide disaster. You can't (entirely) blame indivduals for exhibiting behavoir that's pushed upon them from birth.

    [ Parent ]

    absolutely right! (4.00 / 4) (#155)
    by adequate nathan on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:55:47 AM EST

    It's society's fault. Clearly, the only answer is to punish society. I suggest that America be shot.

    Nathan
    "For me -- ugghhh, arrgghh."
    -Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, in Frank magazine, Jan. 20th 2003

    Join the petition: Rusty! Make dumped stories & discussion public!
    [ Parent ]

    more fuckers (2.82 / 17) (#84)
    by crazycanuck on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 08:56:35 AM EST

    it's not just those people in the cars.

    it seems there are quite a few people here on K5 that would have done the same. I'm totally disgusted with you.

    Why can't people like this be sprayed with ... (4.00 / 8) (#87)
    by pyramid termite on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 09:55:16 AM EST

    ... some kind of instant sticking glue that would stop them from being able to jump? They've been working on things like this for riots and crowd control, why not suicides?
    On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
    I could see problems with that (5.00 / 2) (#99)
    by Macrobat on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 02:34:39 PM EST

    I think they've been working more on lubricants than adhesives for crowd control. It's a lot easier to come up with something viscous and slippery that can be sprayed on the ground than it is to come up with something adhesive that can be sprayed onto random surfaces. You'd also have the problem of getting people out of the mess after you've contained the situation.

    Also, part of what makes these riot-control measures effective is that they can be applied to surfaces before people reach them. Using it in the way you suggest would mean they'd have to somehow spray it not on the area, but at the person. Think of what would happen if the spray only caught part of her skin and she jumped anyhow. A large mass of flesh might be ripped off, and if she survived, she'd be scarred and in pain for a long time to come, if not permanently.

    Moreover, spraying it at a person is risky; if it's a very powerful adhesive, what happens if it gets sprayed on the face? She could asphyxiate, which is a much more horrible way to die, I think, than jumping off a bridge. And if the adhesive isn't strong enough to do that, it probably wouldn't be strong enough to stop her from jumping.

    "Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
    [ Parent ]

    If you go to Z'ha'dum, you will die (2.71 / 7) (#103)
    by Kosh on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 03:52:48 PM EST

    Jump. Jump NOW!

    --

    I have always been here.

    "Inconvenience" (3.64 / 14) (#111)
    by DarkZero on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 06:12:59 PM EST

    A lot of people, the above article included, have assumed that these people were screaming for this woman to jump because they were inconvenienced by the traffic slowdown that she caused. But as some others have already noted, similar events have occurred with people threatening to jump off of balconies, buildings, and apartment windows, which would be cases where no one was being inconvenienced (at least not in this way). Yet people scream for the person that is threatening to commit suicide to jump anyway. Why is this? Maybe because they just hate the person and want to see them jump.

    I don't know if I'd take the same actions that the passing motorists in this story did, but I think I'd have the same feelings that they had. These people that walk out onto a bridge to "commit suicide" (many do not go through with it) do so to toy with the emotions of whoever is unfortunate enough to lay eyes on their little spectacle. They do it to incite pity, care, and horror on the part of the innocent people that they're manipulating. They aren't "poor souls" or "the innocent victims of desensitized American culture". They're assholes. They're malicious people that are trying to mess with the heads of everyone around them. Worse yet, the ones that actually do jump are getting a rise out of the fact that everyone that sees it firsthand will carry the horrible memory of someone dying with them for the rest of their lives and that everyone reading it in the paper the next day will feel sad. It's no different than the feeling that mass murderers and school shooters feel. They're going to be FAMOUS... and everyone that doesn't feel like having to look at it and deal with it can go fuck themselves, I guess.

    These people do not deserve your pity, your melodramatic dramatizations of her death, or your emotionally charged defenses of what they did. This is exactly what they want. The people that choose to walk into a public place and sit around making dramatic speeches about why they're going to commit suicide before they actually go through with it are not the same as the pathetic, pitiable people that are so depressed that they are driven to commit suicide quickly and in private. These people don't simply want to kill themselves, but want to dramatize it in order to fuck with your head. They're driven more by malice and cruelty than by genuine depression. Don't give them or anyone else that follows their lead the satisfaction, even post mortem, of feeling sorry for them and screaming down anyone that doesn't feel the same way. When you do so, you are being manipulated by a malicious person that doesn't care how their actions affect you beyond their personal satisfaction in your pity. Please do not fall for their bullshit.


    And because I know someone will ask: No, I would not have told them to jump. Why? Because every once and awhile, one of those people that tries to jump off a bridge is really just a depressed person that happened to be on a bridge when they lost control of their emotions and decided to kill themselves. At least one in a million has to be a nice person. However, I don't fault the people in their cars that took the safe bet that the woman that was stalling on the bridge while supposedly trying to kill herself was actually just an asshole that decided to walk across town and soak up the melodrama for a few hours on a railing before they killed themselves.

    I don't even know where to start with this... (4.45 / 11) (#115)
    by Robert S Gormley on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 07:24:16 PM EST

    ... you're the all-knowing overseer now, able to tell what people are thinking, what they are trying to do?

    Heard of mental illnesses, etc? Who is being manipulated.... most people who do things like that just walk up to the edge... hesitate... and jump (etc) or don't. Hesitation because it's a lot 'harder' than people think to do it - and I mean that purely in a 'survival mode' sense. I'm pretty sure I can't recall a genuine suicide/attempt where the person has planned to go up somewhere and wait for the crowds to surface, perhaps even a little media.

    The people who walk into public places could be those very same severely depressed people who in a moment of coherent confidence tell someone, in the hope that that person might be able to hang on to them when they lose the will.

    I can't be definitive, as you like to believe you are, but I don't believe many people commit suicide alone for the "I'm going to be famous" angle, it seems a little pointless.

    Yes, I agree that committing suicide is a self centred act in its lack of regard for other people. I amn't defending that aspect of things. I do, however, vehemently disagree with your claim it's just all showboating and grandstanding and manipulation, with only "one in a million" cases maybe actually being a depressed person.

    [ Parent ]

    I feel sorry for you (3.42 / 7) (#129)
    by scruffyMark on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 01:49:50 AM EST

    It is often said that we project our own personalities on others, and ascribe to their actions the motivations that would have moved us to those actions. In our attempts to understand the people around us, we can only really create versions of ourselves, and understand them.

    If the motivations you are ascribing to that poor woman really reflect what you see in others, then you must live in a dreadful, cold, ugly world. And if that, in turn, is a reflection of your own soul, the limit of your capacity to experience life, then I pity you.

    [ Parent ]

    Hmmm... (2.00 / 2) (#165)
    by DarkZero on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:49:57 AM EST

    It is often said that we project our own personalities on others, and ascribe to their actions the motivations that would have moved us to those actions. In our attempts to understand the people around us, we can only really create versions of ourselves, and understand them.

    So, in other words, NO ONE can EVER accurately judge ANYONE else's actions? That's basically what you're saying. Do you say the same to people that judge liars, murderers, thieves, or virtually anyone else on the planet? Do you tell them that their judgement of someone that commits a crime is just a reflection on themselves, and that you feel sorry for the fact that they live in such a terrible world that they judge the people that do bad things?

    Your arguement is nothing but a very stupid way to defend anyone on the planet that's being judged by someone else. And the funniest part about is that you judge me in the same arguement where you seem to claim that anyone that ever judges anyone else is wrong. Welcome to my dreadful, cold, ugly world. It's called "Earth". People here are occasionally judged by others when they do cruel things to their fellow man.

    [ Parent ]
    Is compassion really that costly for you? (4.00 / 3) (#148)
    by pyramid termite on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:08:30 AM EST

    Think about it.
    On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
    [ Parent ]
    You obviously aren't human. (2.57 / 7) (#157)
    by zsau on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:20:42 AM EST

    These people that walk out onto a bridge to "commit suicide" (many do not go through with it) do so to toy with the emotions of whoever is unfortunate enough to lay eyes on their little spectacle. They do it to incite pity, care, and horror on the part of the innocent people that they're manipulating.

    Have you ever been depressed? Have you ever contemplated killing yourself? Do you have even a fraction of an idea how important pity, care and love are to a person? If someone wants to threaten to commit suicide, delay traffic slowing them down from 60 mph to 30 mph so that they can get pity, care and love, then they should have every right to!

    I'm saying that from experience. I didn't threaten kill myself, but if things had kept going the way they had, I could have. (I incited fear in my 'victims'.) Life isn't perfect and I'm not the joyous bubble of happy human emotion that you are, but having the love and caring and fear were enough. Having someone care about you is much more important than turning up to work ten minutes late.

    In case you're wondering, yes, I do want to wring your neck.



    [ Parent ]
    Uh-huh (4.00 / 4) (#177)
    by The Turd Report on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 01:19:18 PM EST

    If someone wants to threaten to commit suicide, delay traffic slowing them down from 60 mph to 30 mph so that they can get pity, care and love, then they should have every right to!

    Do you really want every nut who who feels as if they did not get the amount of 'pity, care, and love' holding up traffic?

    My day is shitty enough without having to deal with every suicidal jilted lover that decides to off themselves in public. Now this lady had a bad day and killed herself; that is horrible. But, what the fuck was she thinking by doing that in traffic on I-95? Did she expect everyone to get out of their cars, have a big group hug and sing campfire songs all night?

    Considering the drivers on I-95, the only thing that shocks me about the story is that some one did not get out of their car and push her off.

    [ Parent ]

    Why isn't this a crime? (3.40 / 10) (#114)
    by gauntlet on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 06:44:59 PM EST

    If it is a crime to assist a suicide, why is it not a crime to encourage one? You can't yell fire in a crowded theatre. Why can you yell "jump" at someone in an obviously altered state on a bridge, or a ledge.

    Into Canadian Politics?

    Perhaps (4.00 / 1) (#121)
    by DerKey on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 09:17:03 PM EST

    Perhaps, although you'd have to go through court and all that. An idea: If I was the police officer(s? there could've been more there), I would've put up a yellow tape road block and not let the mean fellows pass.
    [sig] Hurro. [/sig]
    [ Parent ]
    You would do this when? (4.00 / 1) (#150)
    by Steeltoe on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:14:21 AM EST

    After she had jumped, or before?

    Pardon for being so blunt, but a technical solution is not always possible, or really what's needed.


    Explore the Art of Living

    [ Parent ]
    It is a crime, in... (4.66 / 3) (#136)
    by fraise on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 04:41:04 AM EST

    ... France. Every single one of those people who told her to jump could be brought up on charges of "non-assistance to a person in danger", at the very least. When you see someone about to jump off a bridge, struggling in water, trying to walk into traffic, bleeding, whatever, you are legally required to help them. If you don't, and it's later discovered that you let the person die, you can be called up on those charges and even sent to prison.

    Comparison: I once fainted in taekwondo class at university, in the US. The only person who ran to help me was the teacher, everyone else was snickering. (If I don't eat enough, my blood sugar levels drop like lead weights, and if I'm doing anything physical when it happens, so do I.) I fainted in a bus in France, I was caught by three men, two women offered to call an ambulance, the bus driver pulled over to let me get off (in the middle of downtown rush hour traffic!!) and breath fresh air, then waited for me to feel better, get back on the bus, and drop me off at my stop. Noone complained. Is it a cultural thing? I often wonder.

    [ Parent ]
    Cultural (4.00 / 2) (#137)
    by vrai on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:24:04 AM EST

    I vaguely remember an experiment done by a British television show (sorry, forgotten who and when) which was similar. Basically they got an actor to fake a heart attack and collapse on the street then timed how long it took for people to come and help him. In a US city (I think it was NY) he was on the ground for over 45 minutes. In a UK town (looked fairly southern) help was offered in under a minute.

    It does seem that Europeans (even right-wing ones like the British) have far more empathy towards strangers than our transatlanic cousins. Why? I don't know, though I have a feeling the higher violent crime rate in the US (and so the risk that the 'heart attack' is a setup) has something to do with it.

    [ Parent ]

    Blaming an exterior thing (4.66 / 3) (#149)
    by Steeltoe on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:12:57 AM EST

    I'm not so sure you can blame it all on higher crimerates or such things. Truth is that living in a huge city numbs you emotionally many orders of magnitude than living on the countryside for instance. Just picture Crocodile Dundee on his first visit to the big city. The acting is not so far from how it feels in real life (been there). After a week or two, maybe a month, your perception has adjusted and it feels normal.

    What I'm willing to bet is that if they had done this in equally-sized cities, you wouldn't see such huge differences between countries. It would be more scientific. NY isn't excactly known to be very warm hearted (quite the opposite).


    Explore the Art of Living

    [ Parent ]
    Two different things (4.00 / 1) (#143)
    by rodoke3 on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:17:48 AM EST

    If it is a crime to assist a suicide, why is it not a crime to encourage one? You can't yell fire in a crowded theatre. Why can you yell "jump" at someone in an obviously altered state on a bridge, or a ledge.

    For one thing, yelling "fire" in a crowded theater relates to the issue of free speech, or lack thereof. The issue of whether we should create "Good Samaratan" laws(making it illegal to not prevent a crime) is another.


    I take umbrage with such statments and am induced to pull out archaic and over pompous words to refute such insipid vitriol. -- kerinsky


    [ Parent ]
    We already have those (3.00 / 1) (#147)
    by Steeltoe on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:02:20 AM EST

    In most countries if you happen to walk by a car-accident, helping out is mandatory. Even when you have no fricking clue what to do, in what order, and freak out. People have gone to jail for this.

    So let's add another law so we can fix this too!! ;-)


    Explore the Art of Living

    [ Parent ]
    My Point Exactly... (4.00 / 1) (#167)
    by gauntlet on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 11:09:09 AM EST

    No matter what law (good samaritan or otherwise) you passed in this regard, there would be complaints about freedom of speech, and I'm saying that those complaints would not stand up. So why doesn't the law already exist?

    There is already a law for not preventing a crime. I beleive it's called criminal negligence. Perhaps, under a wide interpretation, a person encouraging another to jump could be found guilty of that. But there is no crime to be prevented here. You can't be convicted of committing suicide, because you're dead. You could be convicted of attempting it, but I don't know how productive that would be. In fact, I do know how productive that would be. It wouldn't be productive.

    Even if you could be convicted of attempting it, and you could be found guilty of not preventing the attempt, people who shouted "jump" would not have failed to do something to stop the crime. They would have done something to encourage the crime, which doesn't fall under criminal negligence, as I understand. Nor does it qualify as assisting suicide, nor does it qualify as any sort of conspiracy, and yet, I feel it should be illegal.

    What I would want is a law that says if a reasonable person would think that an individual is about to attempt suicide, it is illegal to encourage the individual to do so, and violation of that carries the same consequences as if you had assisted the person in successfully committing suicide.

    I may be blinded by something, but that would seem a wholesome law.

    Into Canadian Politics?
    [ Parent ]

    This is why I hate the world. (3.77 / 9) (#122)
    by Deus Horribilus on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 09:25:40 PM EST

    Humanity sucks. For each caring person, there are ten who wish evil, and a thousand who wish nothing. Apathy is our greatest sin.

    Not one of those hecklers seemed to grasp the levity of the situation, and it is this fact that forces me to understand why she jumped. Why live in a world where people would encourage you to kill yourself? Think about that. There is a paradox.

    But worse than this, it is those of us that turn a blind eye to such behaviour that are the worst of all. The people who dismiss this with the sports news, the people who do not care at all about this tragedy of humankind. These people are the scum of the earth.

    I believe it was once said:

    "We must always fear the wicked. But there is another kind of evil that we must fear the most, and that is the indifference of good men."

    Is that not the truth? I say, go out today and do something good. Make the world a better place. As long as tragedies like this happen, and as long as futile wars rage, there is the undying call for people to awaken to their own better halves. And when that happens, then I might gain respect for my own kind.

    _________________________________________
    "Beliefs are never concrete, they change direction like autumn leaves in a windstorm..."

    Guilt (3.00 / 3) (#130)
    by blackwizard on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 02:10:04 AM EST

    Just thinking about how shallow those people had to be for wishing death upon somebody for blocking the road sickens me. IMHO, they deserve to be riddled with guilt for the rest of their lives. Frankly, I can't see how they couldn't feel at least some guilt -- if they had any ounce of humanity left in them, that is.

    [ Parent ]
    "Blocking the road" (none / 0) (#204)
    by DarkZero on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:02:48 PM EST

    When you wrote that, did you stop to consider what "blocking the road" means? Everyone here assumes that these people were angry because they weren't going to get to the mall before it closed, or because they would be a little late for dinner, or that they just didn't want to be held up. The truth is that a lot of people can lose their jobs for being two or more hours late to work. As a result, they could lose their houses, fall further into debt, be taken to court for not paying child support, or at the absolute worst, their kids might not have anything to eat for a week while mommy or daddy looks through the classified ads for a job.

    I don't know if you do, but I certainly understand and sympathize with someone being angry about possibly losing their job because some woman wanted to make speeches about her horrible life for ninety minutes on a bridge before killing herself. I'd probably want them to go ahead and jump, too.

    [ Parent ]

    So... (none / 0) (#221)
    by Deus Horribilus on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 10:26:15 PM EST

    You value somebody's job over somebody's life. Granted, I can see the knock on effect that you tried to create with your post, but I am forced to conclude that this is only more fuel for my argument that humanity (especially in the US) is all but dead. To care more about business profit and getting to work on time than the sanctity of human life (be it lost through suicide or genocide... for any futile reason), is the final mark that you and your culture has lost its spirit, its soul. You may as well be dead if you can't value a human life as being greater than the minutiae of the idiot economy.

    _________________________________________
    "Beliefs are never concrete, they change direction like autumn leaves in a windstorm..."
    [ Parent ]
    Dependants (none / 0) (#222)
    by DarkZero on Wed May 01, 2002 at 02:44:26 AM EST

    Again, you classify it in the vaguest and least accurate way possible. "Business profit", "getting to work on time", "minutiae of the idiot economy", etc. If the primary breadwinner for a household loses his job, then he has no money with which to feed their spouse or children, nor any money with which to pay their bills, keep their house from being foreclosed on, and a host of other miscellaneous problems that result from having no income, such as any items in paid storage being taken by the storage company and sold.

    If someone cares more about the well-being of their family than someone that decides to walk out of their house and selfishly stop traffic for ninety minutes so that they can make speeches about their problems (while potentially causing equal problems for the thousands of people that are being held up on one of the busiest highways in the country), I won't hold that against them.

    [ Parent ]
    A response... (none / 0) (#223)
    by Deus Horribilus on Wed May 01, 2002 at 03:47:02 AM EST

    "If the primary breadwinner for a household loses his job, then he has no money with which to feed their spouse or children, nor any money with which to pay their bills, keep their house from being foreclosed on, and a host of other miscellaneous problems that result from having no income, such as any items in paid storage being taken by the storage company and sold."

    If a society can permit this to happen, just because a person is late for their job because somebody held up traffic, then that society is truly dead...

    _________________________________________
    "Beliefs are never concrete, they change direction like autumn leaves in a windstorm..."
    [ Parent ]

    Close to the answer (none / 0) (#226)
    by Evo on Thu May 02, 2002 at 04:25:06 PM EST

    If a society can permit this to happen, just because a person is late for their job because somebody held up traffic, then that society is truly dead...
    I think our society (Mother Culture) has been dead for the last 80 years or so.

    Here are a few definitions of DEAD that might fit nicely here:
    • Marked for certain death; doomed
    • Lacking feeling or sensitivity; numb or unresponsive
    • Lacking all animation, excitement, or activity; dull
    Yes, I think our society is truely dead. Time for something new, don't you think?


    "You cannot reason a person out of a position he did not reason himself into in the first place. - Jonathan Swift"
    [ Parent ]
    Losing their job (none / 0) (#224)
    by Cro Magnon on Wed May 01, 2002 at 10:46:57 AM EST

    If an employer would fire someone for being late because the road was blocked by a suicidal woman, there is something very wrong with that employer!
    Information wants to be beer.
    [ Parent ]
    No (4.40 / 5) (#151)
    by pyramid termite on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 08:23:52 AM EST

    For every heckler there were a hundred people, at least, who went on their way and said nothing. And let's face it - with a police officer there on a busy bridge there really wasn't anything they could do, unless they were specially trained to talk to people in crisis.

    As far as glancing at the story and then turning to the sports page goes, I don't know what you want from people. At this moment, someone's dying in circustances that are tragic and uncalled for - are we the scum of the earth for going on with the small pleasures of our lives while so much is going on? You obviously believe that human life is important - how important would it be if we were to spend it in mourning and grief for all of our waking lives?

    Your reasoning is faulty, but your conclusion was good - doing something good today, making the world a better place is a great idea. One of the good things we can do is to not concentrate on the awful side of life to the expense of the good side. See the bad things, see the good things, observe your thoughts and beliefs and then say, "That's thinking" and let them go ... like autumn leaves in a windstorm, if you like.
    On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
    [ Parent ]
    There is more to the story... (3.50 / 2) (#173)
    by SPYvSPY on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 12:57:53 PM EST

    Don't you see anything wrong with causing a huge commotion to get attention before you off yourself? I mean, suicide is the ultimate act of narcissism. Why is it assumed that a suicidal person deserves sympathy? As far as I am concerned, an otherwise normal person threatening suicide is not asking for help -- they're demanding your attention. Why am I obliged to participate in their sick game?

    I'm not the kind of person that would shout "jump!" Nevertheless, I think there is a justification for being annoyed at a suicidal person, since that person is just desperately trying to manipulate everyone into feeling sorry for them and basically asking everyone else to subordinate themselves to a stupid fatalistic whim. YMMV -- I'm often more misanthropic than most.
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    [ Parent ]

    Why sympathy? (none / 0) (#210)
    by Macrobat on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:12:05 PM EST

    Why is it assumed that a suicidal person deserves sympathy?

    Maybe because that person is in pain?

    ...that person is just desperately trying to manipulate everyone into feeling sorry for them...

    There must be a thousand other ways to manipulate people that don't involve the sudden and violent extermination of your own being. I'm much more annoyed at the people who pull off the martyr/victim act day in and day out than I am at people who attempt/succeed at suicide. (And yes, I've had two friends who did it.)

    Please, just contemplate the possibility that a willingness to do yourself in is somehow indicative of greater trouble than everyday whining.

    "Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
    [ Parent ]

    I don't disagree. (none / 0) (#219)
    by SPYvSPY on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 10:22:31 AM EST

    I don't disagree...but as my post's title says, "there's more to the story" than unqualified pity and empathy.
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    [ Parent ]

    Agreed completely (none / 0) (#227)
    by Medieval Gnome on Wed May 08, 2002 at 11:08:25 PM EST

    As someone that has felt suicidal and planned taking my own life, I agree with you completely. With depression, seeing an accurate view of the real world is very hard, sometimes impossible.

    Suicide really is the ultimate act of admitting you can't handle the pain that life is putting you through (or you feel the world is putting you though.)

    It is a person willing to get rid of their life because of pain they're feeling. That is why they need people to help them, and not yell "JUMP!" at them.

    [ Parent ]

    I've got a comment on the comments.... (2.66 / 9) (#126)
    by toganet on Sun Apr 28, 2002 at 11:52:50 PM EST

    Ah, geeks. Some think it's the anime, or the monitor tans, but I know what it is that really sets you all apart: Your complete lack of humanity. You relate better to a computer than to other human beings.

    Flame me if you will; I'd love to see you prove me right. But first, take a look at your comments, and imagine that woman as your mother, sister, lover. Now how do you feel?

    If you feel no different, turn back to your PC. That is your kin.


    Johnson's law: Systems resemble the organizations that create them.


    Inbreeding (1.00 / 1) (#145)
    by Rande on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:53:37 AM EST

    imagine that woman as your mother, sister, lover.

    Your mother is also your sister and your lover??!
    Man, you take 'keep it in the family' just a little too far don't you think!

    [ Parent ]

    Well, (4.00 / 2) (#161)
    by toganet on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:51:54 AM EST

    I do live in Virginia....

    Johnson's law: Systems resemble the organizations that create them.


    [ Parent ]
    Why? (4.00 / 3) (#176)
    by SPYvSPY on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 01:10:06 PM EST

    Why would you presume to insult my mother, sister and lover? They are not the sort of pathetic, self-serving narcissists that tie up traffic to gather an audience for their silly ending. If I turn out to be wrong, I'll let you know.
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    [ Parent ]

    Mini-survey (none / 0) (#209)
    by Macrobat on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:01:18 PM EST

    Hey, do us a favor and conduct this little survey. Call up your mother and your sister, direct them to this story, and your comments. Let us know what they think about the story, and about what your comment says about you.

    I'd say call up your lover, too, but since those calls cost $4.99 a minute, I thought I'd spare you the expense.

    "Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
    [ Parent ]

    Not necessary.... (none / 0) (#218)
    by SPYvSPY on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 10:18:34 AM EST

    I know my family and my girlfriend very, very well. I know how they feel about suicide. I know how they feel about death, and what they feel about honor and dignity. I know that they're not stupid enough to indulge in "personality" drugs, or other substances that might induce uncharacteristic suicidal behavior. I know that my mother has suffered tremendously depressing (and oppressive) circumstances. She hasn't resorted to suicide. She won't any time soon, either, because life is getting better for her all the time. She stuck it out, because she's not the type to pity herself. As for my sister and my girlfriend -- they're just two healthy, happy girls that have figured out how to live comfortable, interesting lives. There isn't an iota of serious depression in either of them. In other words, they have their shit together.

    I'm not quite sure what your comment was trying to say (other than your retarded jab about my girlfriend). So, what have you accomplished? Well, you've insulted a very sweet, very pretty 21-year old blonde model (Next agency -- look it up). Congratulations, loser.
    ------------------------------------------------

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    [ Parent ]

    My analysis (4.00 / 4) (#141)
    by cyberdruid on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:05:14 AM EST

    There has been lots of talk whether the drivers who yelled "jump" were
    1. Plain evil
    2. Displaying road rage, caused by having to slow down
    3. Emotionally detached, because physically from separated from the scene by their car
    4. Proof that humanity "sucks"
    5. Right, because it was wrong of the woman to hurt others with her death instead of quietly dying alone.
    6. etc...
    IMHO attributing the behaviour to any of these is a rather shallow analysis (except for the physical detachment, which is probably a contributing factor). I think that yelling "jump" is a reflexive defense mechanism. A woman publicly displaying her pain, threatening to kill herself, is not easy to deal with emotionally. The frustration of being so helpless and not being able to control the outcome, makes some drivers subconsciously want to resolve the emotional suspense in any way possible. Thus yelling "jump" is a way of desperately trying to end the unpleasant situation. It is not caused by any reasoning part of the brain. It is caused by the part that mechanically withdraws from pain. The part that just wants to hide, by removing the disturbing scene out of sight.

    This, by the way, is not intended as a defense of those drivers. I don't think they need a defense. Behaving like that hints to a mental disorder (no matter what the reason is), lacking the ability to handle emotional situations and perhaps bottling up aggression. No point in trying to find a scapegoat. Either we are all responsible for our actions and the woman who jumped was an asshole for unloading all that guilt and sorrow on to those who survived her or circumstances are an excuse and then nobody's to blame, because those drivers had been treated badly by the world earlier. Anything in between is just arbitrary and dependent on point of view.

    You'd think you had a valid argument (5.00 / 1) (#181)
    by broken77 on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 02:31:37 PM EST

    ...until you read comments like this one. It seems pretty clear to me the motivating factors behind yelling "jump".

    I'm starting to doubt all this happy propaganda about Islam being a religion of peace. Heck, it's just as bad as Christianity. -- Dphitz
    [ Parent ]

    Obviously... (3.50 / 6) (#163)
    by Count Zero on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:16:44 AM EST

    The less compassionate posters here have never had a loved one commit suicide, and don't know a damn thing about depression.

    I really hope for your sakes that you never have to find out.




    I've stayed out of it, but... (4.00 / 1) (#164)
    by nosilA on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:42:53 AM EST

    For someone who is suicidal to look out and see compassion and concern for someone who committed suicide affirms their reasons for wanting to end it all. If that person looked out and saw that people condemned suicide, it might make her less likely to go through with it. Many people who are suicidal are looking for a way to "get back" at the people who have hurt them, and feel that suicide is the only way. Knowing that others would heckle you and make fun of you after you kill yourself will force you to consider other ways.

    I've been in that position before, standing on a 12th story balcony, looking down, thinking that I could really show everyone if I jumped. That was 9 years ago, going through the same depression that many teenagers do.

    It might be heartless to talk about the jumper as a stupid person who deserved to die, and I certainly wouldn't have been there shouting "jump", but delicately talking about her, talking about how depressed she must have been, how horrible her life was, does not help anyone. Suicide is a selfish act, and any depressed person who sits here reading comments would do well to hear so.

    -Alison
    Vote to Abstain!
    [ Parent ]
    Not so obvious (none / 0) (#203)
    by DarkZero on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 07:49:52 PM EST

    I posted this, but one of my friends killed himself only about a year and a half ago by hanging himself in his home. What should actually be obvious is that not everyone's views are completely skewed by emotional involvement. Unfortunately, to those who have had their views similarly skewed, it unfortunately isn't.

    It seems like not even a day goes by that someone on K5 says, "Well, if this had happened in your life, you wouldn't feel the same way", as if no one can properly judge a situation unless they've had a heavy emotional involvement in it. Not everyone has the same emotional reactions that you do, but besides that, an emotional involvement in a situation is not required to judge it objectively. In fact, for the latter, the opposite is usually true. Contrary to popular belief, few people think more clearly than usual when they have a tear in their eye because of how closely the subject matter relates to their own life.

    [ Parent ]
    Kill yourself ELSEWHERE, please. (3.25 / 16) (#168)
    by irreplicant on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 11:46:31 AM EST

    For those of you from europe and elsewhere, I-95 is the major US interstate running along the east coast. To say that it's busy is a vast understatement. The northbound lanes were closed for 90 minutes. These are people with bosses that may not care about their excuses, despite what you may think. These people have rent to make and bills to pay. When someone threatens their livelihood like this, they get mad. They don't care what the fuck the problem is. For all they knew, it was a car accident until they heard about her on the radio. And then they just got mad. Some sad little bitch was blocking traffic on what could easily be considered the busiest road on the CONTINENT because she was SAD. She wanted to kill herself. No one cares. People kill themselves all the time, but most are considerate enough to do it in the privacy of their own home, not where it will fuck thousands of other people. THOUSANDS. 10 miles of solid parking lot. Fuck you, you self-righteous little prick. I only wish the bitch could've died of cancer before she hit the ground.

    Wrong versus WRONG (3.11 / 9) (#172)
    by virg on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 12:56:11 PM EST

    > Some sad little bitch was blocking traffic on what could easily be considered the busiest road on the CONTINENT because she was SAD. She wanted to kill herself. No one cares.

    I care.

    I was going to say I hope you find yourself trying to understand how someone you know and care about can come to this point, but even though you're an insensitive bastard, I wouldn't wish this on anybody.

    Virg
    "Imagine (it won't be hard) that most people would prefer seeing Carrot Top beaten to death with a bag of walnuts." - Jmzero
    [ Parent ]
    Thank you! (3.00 / 7) (#174)
    by The Turd Report on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 01:04:07 PM EST

    As one of those people stuck in traffic while this moron held everyone up, I thank you for your comments. I-95 is bad enough with out some nut-ball holding up traffic while contemplating how big of a fucking loser he/she is. They should have pushed her ass off hours before. If you feel like ending your worthless life, that is fine with me, just don't trouble others with your problems/dead body, m-kay?

    [ Parent ]
    Absolutely! (2.16 / 6) (#180)
    by broken77 on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 02:29:14 PM EST

    And when I drive by that stretch of highway next week and see your mother perched over the edge, wondering whether or not to make the leap, I'll be sure to give her a big shove, in your honor. You know, I usually don't say things like this... Please. Show us you have at least some heart. By the way you commented, it seems you have none.

    I'm starting to doubt all this happy propaganda about Islam being a religion of peace. Heck, it's just as bad as Christianity. -- Dphitz
    [ Parent ]

    Disturbing (4.20 / 5) (#185)
    by aphrael on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 03:06:11 PM EST

    This has got to be one of the most disturbing discussions i've ever seen on Kuro5hin.

    I can see the argument that a woman who ties up traffic is being selfish and imposing her problems on everyone else --- I feel the same way, more or less, about the people who chose to use CalTrain or BART as the weapon which ends their life (and then forces the train, and all of the ones behind it, to idle for hours while the police investigate).

    But the fact that one woman is being rude and inconsiderate to the people stuck in traffic does not create an excuse for those same people angrily *encouraging* someone to kill themselves. I mean, I could understand it if the people doing it were middle-schoolers on a playground; or if traffic on that particular bridge were held up, day in and day out, by a constant stream of people using the bridge to kill themselves; but to encourage a complete stranger to kill themselves because, just this once, they are being rude and holding up traffic and impinging on your life --- well, that's somehow worse than rude in my book; it's downright pathetic.

    And for a bunch of reasonably intelligent people sitting at home or at work discussing the issue on the computer to be outraged *at the woman*, as many of the posts in this thread are, is scary. I don't understand how anyone can honestly believe that her behavior was somehow worse than the behavior of the people yelling at her to jump.

    Sad and scary. (3.40 / 5) (#187)
    by rebelcool on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 03:28:38 PM EST

    If I were a driver on that road, I would be annoyed with the snarl. If I saw her, I'd have wished that she hadnt gone there.

    However, there is a fine and definite line between being annoyed with someone, and calling for them to die.

    I don't quite know what to make of it. Earlier in a post I thought it was the animal in man coming out, but the more I think of it, not even animals kill each other out of sheer spite.

    Spookier still is how people who were NOT affected in any way by this - that is, everyone on here - not only doesn't condemn the actions of their fellow man, but actually agrees with them.

    What a bunch of sad, angry, alienated little people exist on here - and in the world at large.

    COG. Build your own community. Free, easy, powerful. Demo site
    [ Parent ]

    What about the other side? (5.00 / 2) (#190)
    by Elkor on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 04:21:25 PM EST

    How many passing motorists yelled at her to not jump?

    This being a tragedy piece, of course, the newsies are going to hype the negative side of the story. But how many people passed by and yelled "Don't do it!"

    What about the number of neutral "Get off the bridge!" which could be interpreted either as an incitement to jump or an encouragement to stop blocking traffic by coming back from the ledge.

    I'm sure there was at least one of each. I bet that if she hadn't jumped, the article would have attributed it to the officer's dedication as well as the positive encouragement of the drivers who didn't want her to jump.

    But, since she did, they're just going to villify the ones who encouraged her to do it.

    Either way, I question the balance of the reporting, though they get credit for the disclaimer at the bottom of the article.

    Regards,
    Elkor


    "I won't tell you how to love God if you don't tell me how to love myself."
    -Margo Eve
    Good point (none / 0) (#195)
    by rebelcool on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 05:37:34 PM EST

    Though you'd think the article would try and emphasize that someone did say that, if only to make it seem like man has not lost all hope.

    Perhaps you should e-mail the author or editor.

    COG. Build your own community. Free, easy, powerful. Demo site
    [ Parent ]

    Well, duh. (none / 0) (#216)
    by zsau on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 06:38:47 AM EST

    One plus one is two. But did you know... this is really going to get you, two minus one, this is the surprising thing coming up, two minus one equal, get this, one! Why didn't anyone think of that before?? God! This is miraculous!

    If she hadn't jumped, it probably was the fault of the policeman and the people who might've said, 'Don't jump! Life might improve!'. She did jump: it was just as likely the fault of the people who said, 'Jump! Just hurry up and freaking get it over with!' or whatever they said.

    The people who told her to jump were bastards no matter what other people might have said. The people who told her to jump were bastards no matter whether or not she jumped. That there were nice people there who told her not to jump is completely irrelevant in deciding whether or not those who told her to jump were arseholes or not.

    Your argument, as far as I can see it, holds about as much water as, 'He wasn't really a cruel murder. Sure, he killed Joe. But there were people around who were telling him not to. Let's not make too big a deal about this whole issue, the two factors cancel each other out'.

    (Note: I'm not, in my posts (assuming you're paying attention to them) saying that she didn't get what she wanted. She wanted emotion, she got it.)

    [ Parent ]

    Not my point.... (none / 0) (#217)
    by Elkor on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 09:57:07 AM EST

    I agree with all of your statements.

    However, my point was more the stereotypial portrayal of drivers as being self-centered and only concerned with getting from point A to point B to the extent that they would encourage the death of another individual.

    In my mind, news is supposed to be balanced, portraying all the facts, not picking and choosing which ones are "tasty" or make the story more "zesty" and leaving the boring ones out.

    So, I'm not trying to mitigate the behavior of the irresponsibile drivers, but I do want the conscientious, caring individuals to get some recognition.

    Regards,
    Elkor


    "I won't tell you how to love God if you don't tell me how to love myself."
    -Margo Eve
    [ Parent ]
    Everyone here was an asshole, except the policeman (5.00 / 1) (#198)
    by sulli on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 06:14:22 PM EST

    This is a really disturbing story. It certainly doesn't say much for humanity. Let's look at the players:

    The drivers who told her to jump were clearly assholes. No excuse for that whatsoever.
    The drivers who just sped by before traffic was stopped were arguably assholes as well, since they didn't stop to help. Now maybe they couldn't have done anything, but surely a driver or two could have come out and helped the cop talk to her and tell her it would be okay to survive.
    The woman who committed suicide was also an asshole. Why? Total lack of consideration for anyone - her loved ones, these strangers on the bridge, and (of course) herself. Having lost a friend to suicide long ago, I still remember that anger many of us felt - and in her case it was worse since surely she knew she'd be blocking traffic and pissing people off.

    The only one who wasn't was the cop. I really feel for him - he tried to save her, and couldn't.

    Total lack of consideration? (none / 0) (#208)
    by Macrobat on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 09:53:25 PM EST

    The woman who committed suicide was also an asshole. Why? Total lack of consideration for anyone - her loved ones, these strangers on the bridge, and (of course) herself.

    I'm sorry, but unless you were actually inside her head, you have no way of knowing whether or not she had any consideration for anyone else. Something that overrides the instinct for self-preservation will probably override whatever she feels for other people, and you presume to know what those feelings were. Her visible signs of distress (look at the photos if you don't believe me), the fact that she didn't just go straight ahead and jump, and her last words ("I'm sorry," in case you didn't read the story)--go ahead, feel free to ignore them, pretend they're not signs of internal conflict, call her an asshole if it makes you somehow feel better about the situation.

    Next time, when and if you've finished deluding yourself, think twice before posting.

    "Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
    [ Parent ]

    Inside her head (none / 0) (#212)
    by rho on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:31:50 PM EST

    Not neccessary to be inside her head.

    She was desparate for attention. Public attention, attention from the officer, whatever. The fact she went out and sat on a bridge adequately demonstrates her disinterest in ending her life.

    People who want to kill themselves shoot themselves in the head or slice their wrists. They don't stand out on a ledge in public view or ponder the inequalities of life on a bridge, or take a bottle of sleeping pills and call their roommate and tell them what they did (which happened to my sister).

    She was a selfish asshole -- I'll agree with the OP on this. If you really want to die, you kill yourself decisively--if you do it in public, you're an attention whore.
    "The thought of two thousand people munching celery at the same time [horrifies] me." --G.B. Shaw
    [ Parent ]

    Demonstrated lack of interest? (none / 0) (#213)
    by Macrobat on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 10:38:05 PM EST

    The fact she went out and sat on a bridge adequately demonstrates her disinterest in ending her life.

    The fact that she actually jumped demonstrates that you are wrong.

    "Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
    [ Parent ]

    She killed herself. (none / 0) (#215)
    by zsau on Tue Apr 30, 2002 at 06:28:24 AM EST

    Why exactly is wanting to extract emotion from someone equivalent to being an arsehole? It is true that she quite possibly wanted to live, but felt as though she couldn't. Had she not gone onto the bridge, she might have shot herself. But perhaps she wanted to live and needed to know if anyone else wanted her to and that was the best way she could think of.

    Give her a break. She fucking killed herself. Anyway, if you were going through the end of the world, do you think you would be thinking of stopping traffic?

    [ Parent ]

    depression (3.00 / 1) (#200)
    by Fon2d2 on Mon Apr 29, 2002 at 06:57:01 PM EST

    I see a lot of posts about how she was a self-agrandizing asshole to draw attention to herself and hold up so much traffic for so long. On the other hand I see a lot of the authors of those comments being called heartless.

    Personally, I think she was being self-agrandizing. Willingly or not, through some weekness of character, she was using the situation to extract emotion from thousands of other motorists. The solution lies in recognizing and coming to terms with that fact. It's OK to be an emotional sink on other people, after all what are friends for? But at the same time one must recognize that every person has a tolerance for that kind of thing. It's been my philosophy that forcing such a burden on another person is wrong but seeking willing help is a very good thing. In forcing an emotional burden onto others one violates principles of respect. The burden essentially becomes a test of the faith of others and thus betrays its own lack of trust. That person then only ends up isolating him/herself further thereby confirming his/her unfounded fears.

    What this lady needed was to understand the dual nature of her feelings. A shift in attitude coupled with a more thourough set of beliefs could have gone a long way in improving her happiness. I think the same of all depressed people, excluding the chemically imbalanced. That's not to say that she didn't need compassion or that helping her would have been easy. But it does help to explain the plethora of negative responses. Knowingly or not, she did force this emotional burden onto thousands of other people. Of course there were people not ready or willing to deal with it. It's all perfectly natural to me.

    Suicidal Woman Blocks Traffic, Angry Drivers Tell Her to Jump. She does. | 227 comments (207 topical, 20 editorial, 1 hidden)
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