Attempt to satirize ‘Only Ones’ mentality falls short

I don’t usually do “Only Ones” posts, but I spotted something the other day that I found interesting.

I like satire as much as the next guy, and tend to read The Onion regularly. Certainly I’ve been put off more than once by Onion articles that I found to be in rather poor taste, but for the most part, I find them quite funny. The article in question here, “Cop Vows To Hunt Down Punk Who Successfully Pressed Brutality Charges Against His Partner,” isn’t offensive, but it still doesn’t work very well as satire.

Christopher O’Dell, a 16-year veteran of the Detroit Police Department, told reporters Monday that he will not rest until he exacts revenge on the man who got his long-time partner, Officer Rick Noonan, 38, suspended for using excessive force during an arrest at a peaceful demonstration last March. “That punk is going to get what’s coming to him again,” O’Dell said. “If it’s the last thing I do, I’ll make sure that scumbag is taken off the streets, not properly informed of his Miranda rights, chained to a radiator beneath the station, and kept awake for days of interrogation without being formally charged.”

This kind of satire works by exaggerating reality to a ridiculous extent, but the problem is that this is no exaggeration, as demonstrated here, here, here, here, and especially here–and these are all from the past week, and I only picked the “best” among those available. I’m not sure that Onion article would even have made the cut in that collection.

I’m not accusing The Onion of being deliberately misleading, to serve some kind of agenda–I think that like most Americans, the writers there are simply unaware of how pervasive is the problem of “a few bad apples” among the government’s hired muscle.

And that’s why the “Only Ones” posts are needed.

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2 Responses to “Attempt to satirize ‘Only Ones’ mentality falls short”

  1. HTownTejas Says:

    Very good points, thanks for the links. Did you see the Patti Regan column in last week’s Newsweek? (Kevin at Smallest Minority linked to it) Was titled “America’s Troubled House” about the now commonplace home invasions by police for the slightest presumption of guilt. A great article written in light of the raid on Mayor Calvo’s house, but it still grossly underestimated the problem…..

    (sorry for the lack of links, commenting from my mobile)

  2. 45superman Says:

    Thanks, HTown. No, I haven’t seen that Regan column–I’ll have to check it out.

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