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YouTube, Facebook bravely remove videos in the hope that doofus teenagers will not eat laundry deter

By —— Bio and Archives--January 18, 2018

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YouTube, Facebook bravely remove videos in the hope that doofus teenagers will not eat laundry detergent
The teen years were long ago, but I’m trying to remember if there was anything equivalently stupid. Immediately coming to mind are things far more stupid, like quaaludes, heroin, cocaine, marijuana, alcohol . . .

But if you did those things, you did them in the shadows. You didn’t post videos of yourself doing them on the Internet. Then again, the Internet didn’t really exist back then, at least not in anything like its present form. If it had, who knows?

It took some doing to convince me that the “Tide Pod Challenge” is a real thing. I suspected it was one of those moral panics like “rainbow parties.” But yes, apparently it’s true, teenagers are eating laundry detergent pods and posting videos of themselves doing it. But you kids are now on notice! Facebook and YouTube are going to try to make the Tide Pod videos go the way of snuff films:

For years, children have inadvertently eaten the toxic packets, leading to accidental poisonings and calls for parents to keep them away from their kids. Some say the products can be mistaken for candy.

But in recent weeks, the #TidePodChallenge hashtag has exploded, leading the American Association of Poison Control Centers to issue an alert.

In the first 15 days of this year, the organization received the same number of calls about “intentional exposures” to laundry packets among teenagers as it did in the whole of 2016.

“A recent trend among teenagers ingesting the packets — and uploading videos to various internet platforms including video-sharing websites, social media, and vlogging platforms — has caused significant concern among poison control centers,” the association said Tuesday.

This almost sounds like thinning the herd. If you’re stupid enough to eat one of those things, something’s going to get you before too much longer anyway. Might as well get you out of the way now.

But of course, our children are our future, and we don’t want any of them dying. Not even the really dumb ones.

Is it really true that there’s been a rash of children “inadvertently” eating the pods? They are sort of colorful, like one of Willy Wonka’s everlasting gobstoppers, but they’re also quite large and sealed in plastic, so they wouldn’t be easy for anyone to ingest whole. If you’re doing it intentionally for the shock value, then sure, I suppose you’ll make the effort. But if you’re 5 and you think it’s candy, wouldn’t you most likely give up pretty quick when you realize it’s hard to swallow and tastes like soap?

So yes, this is stupid, even if it’s not as stupid as using a need to pump heroin into your veins. Then again, we’ve got plenty of people doing that too.

But who decided this was entertaining enough to make it a viral online sensation? You want to eat a laundry pod and you expect me to watch with great fascination? I don’t think I’m going to do that. Maybe I’m just not smart enough to be that stupid.

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Dan Calabrese -- Bio and Archives | Comments

Dan Calabrese’s column is distributed by HermanCain.com, which can be found at HermanCain.com

A new edition of Dan’s book “Powers and Principalities” is now available in hard copy and e-book editions. Follow all of Dan’s work, including his series of Christian spiritual warfare novels, by liking his page on Facebook.

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