It was only a matter of time after Amy Winehouse died before the texts,jokes and emails started.
A ‘joke’ text buzzed on my phone about an hour after the news was announced and there have been several since.
And it’s not just the jokes either. I have read several emails and comments built on the premise that the singer was ‘just a junkie’, a ‘waste of space’ and that her fate ‘served her right’.
What is it in human beings which glories in the ultimate misfortune of others?
Just why would the death of a very talented 27 year old woman be considered as a subject for humour or gloating?
These comments in the main have been made by ordinary folk. Beep! text – forward – sent.
Perhaps I’m being a bit po-faced about it, but in a society where someone can be jailed for up to five years for posting sectarian comments or abuse online, why is it that joking about tragedy and death seems to be blithely accepted?
Working where I do, I encounter rather less famous addicts than Amy Winehouse regularly. Young people addicted to drink and drugs making a nuisance and fool of themselves in public on a daily basis.
Poor, uneducated souls bereft of any ambition or hope, stoating about the place looking for an alleyway, a bench or a bin shed to administer their next installment of escapism from their miserable lives.
There was one particular guy who was a real pain in the neck. He fueled his addiction with shoplifting. I have personally ejected him from our premises on several occasions and banned him.
On the last occasion, he remonstrated with me. “Why are you banning me?” “Because you are a habitual shoplifter” “Do you know what a comment like that does to my confidence? – I’m trying to change!” “Well change then!”
Then I didn’t see the guy for a while. From being a regular amongst the park bench drinkers, and the walking ASBOs he was nowhere to be seen. I wondered if he had gone the way of so many before him.
Then I heard he had got his life together. “Aye he’s given up the drink and drugs, got a flat and a girlfriend and is working out at the gym!” said a local policeman to me.
One day, in the queue at the Post Office I saw him.
He was looking clean and healthy. Rather than looking around with the haunted expression of someone who was used to being watched, he was relaxed and smiling. “Well done” I said “Keep it up”. “Thanks big man, that means a lot to me” he replied. “I see you’ve overcome your addictions too” he added “Have you lost a couple of stones?”.
Blimey, addictions – aye I suppose he’s right.
We then had a chat where the guy explained he was now actively helping other addicts. Local readers may already know who I’m talking about here but no names no pack drill except to say that in his younger day this guy was a promising footballer.
He found the will from somewhere to transform his life from a very low point.
Amy Winehouse was well off financially but just couldn’t find the emotional strength from within to change.
And thus became text joke subject of the week.
Filed under: Famous People | Tagged: amy winehouse, drugs | 3 Comments »