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| July 31-August 6, email@example.comThe FCC of the DMV
Ah, acronyms. How we love thee. Attention-deficit disorder, speed culture and, let’s face it, text messaging has led us all to communicate shortened versions of nearly every common phrase imaginable. Yes, we’ll admit that it’s pretty annoying when individuals walk around blathering things like, “BTW, my ETA is off BC my BFF is having PMS.” But as writers here at BW, we’ve got no problem with the natural evolution of language.
In Colorado, however, acronym awareness has been heightened to an uncomfortable, even censored, level at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Recently the Colorado DMV added an astounding number of three-letter acronyms that are banned from being printed on license plates, whether chosen or randomly generated. While several existed already, the recent surge in text message culture has increased the list to a staggering 261 specific acronym bans.
While some make some sense to us — we’d rather not see white-hooded racists touting KKK plates nor a neo-con bumper sticker laden car putting around with FAG-666 — others just seem to be a stretch. WED is banned, though we’re not sure why being married or having a preternatural love for the fourth day of the week would offend anyone. Almost all animals are prohibited — DOG, CAT, HEN, PIG, COW, BUG — which seems silly considering that not only do 63 percent of households own (or guard or whatever) a pet, but we run them over with vehicles all the time. JEB is apparently short for Jezebel and thus banned, though it’s not illegal to name a child after the ancient Israeli queen known for insolent idolatry. Some people still name their kids Adolf for that matter.
So, why all the fuss over these letters? The only explanation we can come up with is PC BS.
Free speech for all! Or just some! Or just for those we put in a cage…
Protesting is a hot issue for those planning on attending this year’s upcoming Democratic National Convention in Denver. As is their right protected by the First Amendment, thousands of protesters representing a spectrum of issues (anti-war rallies to pro-life speeches) have decided to voice their opinions in front of senators, political pundits, media, Democratic delegates and the possible future President of the United States. But the city of Denver (combined of course with forces from the Secret Service and Homeland Security) keeps moving everyone away all in the name of “safety.”
First, protesters were relegated to specific places of protest. Then, they decided that the humane thing to do would be to make sure protesters were inside of cages. Yup, cages. Then, protesters were encouraged to organize in City Park, removed from the nexus of the actual DNC. Now, the city wants things to get wet.
Tent State University is one of many groups planning on protesting at City Park. They also plan on violating Denver’s 11 p.m. curfew by camping overnight in the park. What will the city do then? Mayor Hickenlooper, for one, has suggested turning on the sprinklers — a cheery way of saying, “force them the hell out of the park.”
But while the city might not find it ideal or legal for these groups to protest in the park, they haven’t been able to explain where these 50,000 people are going to wind up. An 11 p.m. flooding of the surrounding neighborhoods, which already boast their own concerns of homelessness and vagrancy, seems to reek of trouble.
Safety is our concern? Then let the protesters protest and the campers camp. Otherwise, the rights to free speech and peaceful demonstration might get a little wet. And that moisture is more likely to come from tear gas than the gardening hose.
We’ve all been there. It’s 2 a.m. and you’re still sitting in the airport terminal, head propped on your carryon, half-asleep, half-listening for your flight that was supposed to depart hours prior. Sometimes it’s poor planning on the part of the airline. Other times, weather is to blame. But whatever the reason for flight delays, they often put people in a pretty pissed-off state.
Most people, however, don’t act on their emotions. But according to a recent report by Reuters, dozens of tired and angry Chinese passengers who were stranded due to bad weather made their dissatisfaction known in quite overt ways. The disgruntled passengers smashed computers and desks at the airport. The physical damage done to the computer systems obviously caused them to crash.
And although we understand how a physical outburst against inanimate objects can make everything feel sooo much better, and while we must admit that the whole scenario is a bit of a fantasy for anyone who’s been stuck in crappy airport seats for even the normal length of time, we also have to wonder if anyone thought through the consequences of killing the computers in an airport. Because we’re pretty sure they don’t let the planes take off unless the computers are working inside the airport. Probably not the best way to get where you want to go.
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