Saturday, October 31, 2009

Banned In Seattle!

So I got into a little on-line dust-up with Scott, the author of Bill In Exile. It all started with a video post Scott put up of a guy called "Pig Daddy". In the post, PD shoots up crystal meth on camera, has another syringe behind his ear, and settles in (presumably) to spend the next few hours jerking his limp dick and playing with his over-sized, tortured nipples. This is not a new subject with Old Scotty, as in between other celebrations of military men, postings of hot naked boys and rants against evil and stupid Republicans, Scott routinely glorifies crystal meth use and drug abuse. He claims that his own crystal meth habit, while prodigious, was something he just up and stopped one day, and that was that.

My original response was short and to the point:

"Watching that video fills me with an overwhelming sadness. There’s nothing fun about watching someone hurt himself."

I was not the only person to react this way.

That post and others like it were met with a vigorous, angry and utterly laughable defensive response from Scott, equating "recreational" crystal meth use with a "hobby" like (get this!) model ship building or skydiving.

That led to a back and forth exchange wherein Scott and I traded comments and insults. My point in all of it was two-fold. Scott is constantly referencing and fondly reminiscing about his past drug use, specifically crystal meth, to the point where I have long suspected that he may not be using, but his addiction is far from over. My second point was that it was irresponsible to glorify crystal meth use in the manner he always has and continues to do. He doesn't just discuss meth use, he revels in it, he pines for it and you could seriously make a case that he still craves it. And nowhere in this celebration of the good times to be had staying up for days and days having unsafe sex tweaked out of your mind do you find Dear Old Scotty discussing the ramifications of such behavior.

Namely HIV and death. Extreme weight loss. Facial disfigurement. Ruined relationships. Angry, dysfunctional children. Did I mention permanent brain damage?

Scott seems to believe because he was never homeless, never broke, and never had to steal from people to get his drugs that he was never an addict, and there were no real consequences to his behavior. My decision to dispute that and to call him out on it made me a judgmental prig. Indeed he repeatedly makes a point to talk about what a luxurious lifestyle he maintained while living in New York City, high above Christopher Street and high as a kite surrounded by hot naked men having hot naked unsafe sex. There is never a mention as to how many of these men are still living or in what condition. I suspect because that would be a painful slice of reality that Scotty would rather not think about. And if you try to bring it up he will, loudly, vociferously and against all logic, try to tear you down. It should be noted that the title of Scott's blog, Bill In Exile, refers to Scott's acquaintance Bill, currently serving time in prison for selling and possessing crystal meth.

I won't re-hash what was posted in the BIE comments, for now you can read them as posted. But I did send off another missive in response to Scott's repeated attempts to portray crystal meth, as well as the shitstorm of problems attached to using it, as something akin to a simple lifestyle choice. This resulted in an equally angry and verbose response that consisted of speculation that I am newly sober and out of my mind. The first allegation is just not true and the second ... well ... could be. I also have over a decade of study about addiction, the social consequences of same and the successful treatment of addiction and depression under my belt. And somewhere in the back and forth of it all with other commenters slavishly devoted to or curiously afraid of Scott, it became a matter of spin worthy of Fox News that I was claiming that all people who use drugs are addicts. I never, ever once wrote that line or even suggested it. But it was the thing that Scott O'Reilly and a host of lazy readers hung their hats on in an attempt to shut down dissent.

It was after the first exchange I was threatened with banishment (ooooooooo!) from the BIE comments if I didn't "come correct". For those of you who aren't familiar, this was a blatant attempt by someone with addiction issues to control the situation. This is what addicts do. They believe that not only do they control every aspect of their own lives, but that they can somehow force you to cede control of yours. Healthy people know this is nonsense. When addicts are confronted by someone or something that challenges that perception, they will suddenly cut you off by any means necessary. It's based in fear. Although someone untreated will deny that to the heavens.

I had a feeling I should have made a copy of my second response, as I felt a banishment(temper tantrum) was imminent. Suffice it to say I re-iterated my belief that it seemed that the video of PD clearly seemed to be that of a heavily addicted crystal meth addict, that it was irresponsible for Scott to post it and glorify the behavior, that it represented a long pattern of Scott encouraging and celebrating drug use and unsafe sex, and that perhaps, given his extreme and seemingly over-the-top reaction to all of it, Scott ought to examine his feelings regarding his injection drug abuse.

Oh and I also called him a narcissist, a smart-ass, a liar, a couple of other things and an asshole. I ridiculed his threat to "ban me", as if he possessed some sort of magical ability to kick me off the Intertubes. This of course made the untreated crystal meth addict lurking inside Scott absolutely crazy. I acknowledged my own recovery and hopefully shot down his reasoning that this somehow made a single thing I was upset with him about any less true. It didn't. While I was at it, I made a pretty good point that he was full of shit, that he was justifying his past behavior against all reason, and that he ought to knock it off.

Then he banned me. Ostensibly for calling him an asshole and violating some sort of blogger code that he himself made up. Becuase that's what addicts do. They make rules. And when you reject their rules and exploit the cracks in their carefully constructed facade they lash out and then run. Lest the whole house of cards come tumbling down. He did use the opportunity to insult me personally as well, and while I suppose I could waste the time it would take to "crack the ban" and respond on his space, in the end, it hardly seems worth it.

As a last-ditch effort, Scott even took the time to take a swipe at you, my loyal tens of readers and highlight some sentiments from someone who claims to be a "harm reduction counselor". My total feelings regarding harm reduction aren't entirely negative, but in the end, "harm reduction" in drug and alcohol addiction is like trying to only let a teenage girl get "sort of" pregnant, or a reckless driver have a "not so bad" accident. You can be a paid employee of a failed experiment and still be full of shit and misinformation. A degree in stupid doesn't make you any less stupid. They aren't mutually exclusive. But that's another post.

The denial over there runs pretty deep. Pushing my points any further stoops to a level that gives this all more importance than the possible payoff is worth.

Suffice it to say that I maintain that what Scott is doing and saying over at Bill In Exile regarding crystal meth, unsafe sex, and drug and alcohol abuse and addiction is bad for the people that read it, it's bad for the people that believe what amounts to dangerous utter nonesense, and it's sad that he refuses to see and acknowledge that. But I understand that would involve seeing and acknowledging a truth about himself that he may never be ready to see.

He did make one salient point. And that is if I feel this strongly about him and his opinions, why the hell do I read, write and carry a link to him? My answer is that (A) This is something that has been building and bothering me for almost a year, and it finally came to a head with the video post and Scott's ridiculous, childish and impossibly head-up-his ass response to it all and (B) as I said, he posts really hot pictures of naked guys.

But I stand corrected, so I will leave the link up for a few days in case anyone wants to see for themselves what the fuss is or isn't about. After which I will de-link the Nasty Old Guy and take my 46 readers and go.

I no longer wish to see and be a part of it. And that, in the end, is how the Internets work.

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