A woman who was escorted off an Amtrak train by police this weekend after she allegedly refused to stop talking loudly on her cell-phone has the Internet cheering her fate.So we're clear: "the Internet" is "cheering" the fact that a woman was arrested for talking on a cell phone. Let's ignore the subliteracy of that sentence for a minute and instead look at the implications. Supposedly the sentence means that the majority of people using the internet are happy about the fact that a woman was arrested for distracting a few delicate people on a train.
There is absolutely nothing about this story to "cheer." A woman was charged with a crime because she was allegedly rude. Should rudeness be a crime?
KOMO News reports that Lakeysha Beard says she felt "disrespected" by the incident, though passengers said it was Beard who was being rude by refusing to stop yapping while sitting in one of the train's designated quiet cars. She had not stopped talking since the train pulled out of Oakland, California, 16 hours before it reached Salem, Oregon, when a passenger confronted her about the talking [sic]. That's when Beard got "aggressive," KATU reports, and conductors stopped the train so that police could remove her and charge her with disorderly conduct.Again, the yahoo story is subliterately written. Is that second sentence supposed to convey that Ms. Beard was talking for 16 hours straight, or that the trip was 16 hours? It makes no sense. And, all we know is that she was "confronted" by another passenger, and then Ms. Beard "got 'aggressive.'" We don't know how she was confronted. We don't know if this person shouted vituperations at her, we don't know if this person spat on her, we don't know anything.
The internet, however, is cheering.
And for crying out loud, why does it take 16 hours to get from Oakland California to Salem, Oregon? Amtrak SUCKS, that is the real crime here. Arrest Amtrak.
MSNBC also has the story, under the totally impartial headline "Cops kick cellphone blabbermouth off train
After 16 hours blathering, woman doesn't understand why she got the boot":
In an epic incident of the pot calling the kettle rude, a Tigard, Oregon woman said she felt "disrespected" after police escorted her from an Amtrak train mostly because she refused to get off her cellphone — for 16 hours.(Emphasis added because see below.)
It's an "epic incident." Of "blathering."
The article links to a story at KATU, in which we learn:
Lakeysha Beard of Tigard was charged with disorderly conduct after police said she got into a “verbal altercation” with passengers on the train. The other passengers complained she refused to put down her cell phone, even after train staff made repeated announcements for passengers to not use cell phones, according to police.Hold on a second! Yahoo's story said that it was "a passenger" who confronted Ms. Beard. KATU tells us that it was "passengers" -- plural -- who were confronting her. If you had a group of people confronting you, might you get defensive? Might that lead to a verbal altercation?
According to MSNBC, Ms. Beard was "blathering." What the hell does that even mean? Was she on her cell phone shouting? Was she saying things that the other passengers didn't like hearing? Was she speaking in a way that offended the delicate sensibilities of the Amtrak passengers?
(By the way, I've been on Amtrak trains -- you know who rides them? Poor people who can't afford plane tickets, wealthy retirees who are in no hurry to get where they're going, train fetishists who just love the oh so romantic idea of "riding the rails," and oddball environmentalists who think they're superior to everyone else because they're willing to put up with the inconvenience of riding in a train that takes 16 mothereffing hours to get from Oakland California to Salem Oregon -- Who do you think were the people who were confronting Ms. Beard?)
Back to KATU:
[Amtrak spokeswoman Verae] Graham said Amtrak has no formal policy that bans people from talking on cell phones while the train is moving.Wait another second -- yahoo said that Ms. Beard was in a designated "quiet car." The yahoo story also contains this passage:
Meanwhile writer Christopher Buckley, a self-described quiet car Nazi, wonders why there would be any confusion as to the correct behavior in that part of the train: "The Quiet Car does not hide its light under a bushel. Prominent and explicit signs hang from the ceiling at five-foot intervals. They declare, unequivocally, that NO CELL PHONES ARE PERMITTED and that conversation must be kept to a minimum and in hushed tones."(Emphasis added because one person's "minimum" is another's "too damn much.")
But according to KATU, no less an authority than an Amtrak spokeswoman says that Amtrak has no formal policy banning people talking on their cell phones.
So why, exactly, was Ms. Beard removed from the train? For violating a non-existent policy? Or for saying something, or speaking in a way, that harmed the delicate sensibilities of the other Amtrak passengers?
Here is a video from the KATU website, showing the brave police officers arresting the "blathering" Ms. Beard:
And now, let's head back to yahoo. As of 8:28 PM PST on Wednesday May 17, there were three comments on the story. I took a screenshot of them:
Interesting. Ms. Beard is overweight, and African American (remember how MSNBC put it: "the pot calling the kettle rude"). I wonder if we could get a look at the passengers -- plural -- who were confronting Ms. Beard?
But it really doesn't matter who those people are, nor does it matter how they confronted her, since "the Internet" is "cheering" them. Back to MSNBC:
Just in case the severity of Beard's increasingly pervasive crime isn't obvious to all readers, KATU.com also took the time to consult social etiquette expert and instructor Jodi Blackwood, who confirmed that "too many people don't exercise basic courtesy when it comes to using their phones."This is breathtakingly nasty. MSNBC is accusing Ms. Beard of being a psychopath, because she allegedly blathered on her cell phone for 16 hours straight. (According to MSNBC, her "crime" is "obvious.") They make this assessment based on a story from a group of Amtrak train riders (again, a special group of people) who confronted -- ganged up on -- one other person. From that, a "social etiquette expert" alleges that Ms. Beard has no empathy for those around her -- because she has the temerity to talk on her cell phone in public.
According to KATU.com, Blackwood went on to that when people speak too loudly and have personal conversations in public places they don't always realize the message they're sending.
"What does that say to them? It says that you're only thinking of yourself and that you are only aware of what you need and what you are doing and you are a less considerate person," Blackwood said.
Not for nothing, Beard doesn't seem like the sort to actually care what her cellphone screeching says to anyone but the person on the other end.
With all due respect to Blackwood's social etiquette expertise, Columbia University forensic psychiatrist Michael Stone might've made a more apt consultant for this particular crime. He's the dude who created the 22-point "Scale of Evil," which is further grouped into three distinctive tiers: Impulsive evil-doers, people who lack extreme psychopathic features, but may be psychotic, and finally, the profoundly psychopathic i.e. "They have no remorse for what they've done to other people."
Some people just don't know their place.
We don't know what happened on that train. We don't know how many people "confronted" Ms. Beard. We don't know how they confronted her. We don't know how Ms. Beard was talking on her cell phone. We don't know for how long she was talking on her cell phone. We don't know what's real about this story, what's exaggerated, and what's been made up entirely by a group of fantasists who are willing to spend 16 hours riding from Oakland, California to Salem, Oregon.
But "the Internet" is "cheering" the treatment of a woman who was arrested for talking on her cell phone.