The Internet was a buzz on Friday with news of the most recent viral video in which a North Carolina man by the name of Tommy Jordan unloads his .45 into his daughter’s laptop. Many have risen up to defend the father as an example of great parenting. Many more have condemned the man as being harsh and childish.
In case you were living in a cave during the weekend and did not see the video, it goes a little something like this: Mr. Jordan sits down and reads a note he found on his daughter’s Facebook in which she disrespects Jordan and, in his words, “every adult” in her life. Jordan then proceeds to refute her note and finishes off his rant by repeatedly shooting his daughter’s laptop.
I will not go into what she said in the note because it is exactly what you would expect from an insolent 15-year-old. Suffice it to say she complains about having too many chores and refuses to get a job all while profanely disrespecting her elders.
There are several points in the video that set the scene for this punishment and in my opinion make it justifiable.
First, the girl had been grounded for this type of behavior previously, and warned that there would be steep consequences if she did it again. Not only did she repeat her offense, she did it in such a way that no one in their right mind would defend her points. Second, she humiliated her father and other adults in a public place.
Yes, the punishment was extreme and not well thought out. Jordan himself has admitted on his own Facebook page that he was understandably not in a good frame of mind. Many have commented that the use of a gun was inappropriate. I have to wonder though what the response would have been if he used an axe or dropped it off a cliff. The result was the same.
Most of the public outcry against Jordan has called him immature and fame seeking. Yet Jordan has raised more than $3,000 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association through his 15 minutes of fame. As for his maturity, I think we can all understand where he was coming from.
Some of the most disturbing comments surrounding the video said this event will have a lasting negative impact on Jordan’s daughter.
For example, Carrie Murphy wrote a comment in the LA Times article about Jordan that read, “If this girl learns anything, it will be that it’s okay for the men in her life to throw a temper tantrum, publicly humiliate her and break things when they don’t like what she has to say. I’d hate to see what her adult relationships are like in a few years.”
I say what she learned is that her actions have consequences, and that she needs to change her attitude if she wants to get anywhere in life. In the long run, I think this whole ordeal will end up helping her rather than hurting. Without such a punishment, she would likely have continued to be spoiled and ended up, well, like an alarming percentage of the people you see on campus.