That’s just mean

This is old news, but new to me, and it really freaks me out. A teenager in Cloquet, MN, is on trial for dousing elderly nursing home residents with ice water.

To reiterate: this kid and 2-3 of his firends took pitchers of ice water and poured them on old people’s heads. Like four different times since last summer.

From the St. Paul Pioneer Press:

According to a criminal complaint, the Cloquet teenager told police he found it so funny when he dumped a pitcher of ice water on a 90-year-old nursing home resident in June that he returned and did it twice more, in December and again last month.

Cold water on old people! What will they think of next! This will be hi-larious! OK, I realize you live in Cloquet, Minnesota. There aren’t any good movies playing. You’re bored out of your skull. But can’t you just get stoned in your parents’ basement like all the other small-town teenagers? Set fire to the woods or something? Develop a harmless crush on your second cousin?

From the Star Tribune:

“They got the idea from a movie, and they thought it would be funny,” said detective Jeff Palmer, who questioned the boys. He said the teens, who were about 15 or 16 years old, said they couldn’t remember the name of the movie.

I knew it was Hollywood’s fault . . . Or maybe video games; isn’t drenching the aged with ice water one of the harder levels in Grand Theft Auto Miami?

OK, they can’t remember the name of the movie (because there brain cells are all filled up with being mean); how about you? Anybody remember that movie with the ice-soaking of old folks? Matt?

2 Responses to That’s just mean

  1. Pulao says:

    I remember watching this on the news sometime last week, and was stunned. I don’t know that I’m inclined to always believe that violence in media directly leads to violence in practice, but surely there’s something suspicious in the very, very slapstick nature of this act?

  2. Matt says:

    In Grand Theft Auto, you actually have to strap explosives to the old folk and then shoot them from your rocket launcher to eliminate the drug dealers encroaching your turf. Then you commit identity fraud and have their Social Security payments deposited in your ammunition fund.

    I find it suspicious is that they couldn’t recall the name of the movie. I’m not saying there’s no movie out there where old people get doused with ice water; there are probably dozens (nothing in particular comes to mind, though). But I’m guessing that, confronted with some wannabe-badass cop demanding to know where they got the idea, the kids dodged left and blamed the movies, hoping that the media, law enforcement, and local parents would follow suit. (If I’m right, they thus demonstrated an uncanny knowledge of how crappy media coverage is and how lazy and scapegoat-happy parents can be.)

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