Friday, September 3, 2010

On the Discovery Channel

As many of you probably don't know, the man to the left here is James J. Lee, the man who, yesterday, took three hostages at the Discovery Channel Headquarters in Silver Spring, MD.

He was demanding two Shark Weeks a year.

No, in fairness he wasn't. But I guarantee you that's the funniest joke anyone's getting out of this. Jimmy Fallon is going to stumble over a shittier version of that joke some time this week, late at night when everyone else is watching better shows.

Here's the thing: this James Lee guy wasn't your typical deranged sociopath. He had not been personally wronged by he Discovery Channel, nor was he a crazy recluse with advanced degrees and a written manifesto.

Oh, there was a manifesto, alright, but it wasn't exactly the dark but insightful treatise The Unabomber penned. In Lee's online … I can only call it a ranting list of demands, Lee characterizes himself the way others had, as a "Darwinist-Malthusian."

You remember our talk about Thomas Malthus and sterilizing the disabled, don't you? Well James Lee was probably the reason I had so many hits that day. This guy loved Malthusian theory, and he seemed to think it was the Discovery Channel's responsibility, everyone's responsibility to fix the world, chiefly by not having any more "dirty human babies."

He demands the Discovery Channel single handedly find ends to global warming and "human economies," and that it replace every show about birthing babies with shows touting the "truth" of sterilization and living without making more humans "until people get it!"

Essentially, James Lee was the worst type of domestic terrorist. He wasn't charming or a tragedy of ideals wherein the only way he could reconcile his strong beliefs in not-entirely untrue ideas was to give up teaching, live in a shack off-grid and mail letterbombs to people.

No, James Lee was just an insane man with a fixation and some explosives, and all anyone will ever remember him for is trying to get more Shark Week out of his network.

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