A woman was caught on camera on Friday, Aug. 23 where she is heard yelling racial slurs in a parking lot dispute in Richmond, B.C. (Screenshot/Black Press Media)

ZYTARUK: In the greater scheme of things, just how important a nail salon spat?

When people don’t get along, does the presence of a cell phone make it news?

homelessphoto

Funny thing about people, we don’t always get along.

History is filled with war and gore, administered with blades, bullets and bombs. This is macro insanity.

And then there’s micro insanity.

Micro insanity occurs day and night, every day, around the world, like clockwork, on city streets, sidewalks, in parking lots, wherever people encounter other people.

Like competitive bears growling and swatting one another at the salmon hole, grumpy people – some of us are dyed in the wool jerks – hurl imprecation and invective at other members of our species like so much poisonous confetti.

Why? Because we’ve had a bad day and somebody has to pay. Or it’s too hot out. Or we’re ignorant. Or stressed. Or unsatisfied with our lot in life. Or, we’re a jerk. Or all of the above.

The weapons of choice in micro conflicts are not blades, bullets and bombs; not even sticks and stones. They are mouths and cellphone cameras.

In the not too-distant past, such squabbles and spats – unfortunate as they are – were, dare I say, mundane. They were not reported in the media like real news such as war, murder, violent cases of road rage, or the kind of stuff you find on that television show Vengeance: Killer Neighbours.

With the help of media eager to pump up citizen footage of “rants” and “tirades,” ostensibly because it’s good for business, short bursts of bad behavior are now launched into the stratosphere of hysteria and cause célèbres thanks to looping coverage in the 24-hour news cycle.

After several days of relentless repetition, the image of that woman in Richmond who uttered wretched comments to another during a conflict over her parking skills has been indelibly stamped on B.C.’s collective psyche.

The Richmond RCMP, of course, were then drawn into the fray, because where else can the story go? If police don’t respond with veritable gravitas to these situations, they risk being cast into that 2019 lake of fire reserved for the “insensitive.”

To Serve, Protect, and Babysit.

Police dutifully issued a press release Tuesday revealing that after “diligently” investigating the matter, authorities determined it “does not meet the threshold for criminal charge.”

The Surrey RCMP, on Friday night, received two 911 calls from a nail salon in Surrey. Corporal Elenore Sturko said that according to information police have received, “It stemmed from comments made from one person to another which did involve the child of one of the parties who has a disability, or special needs.”

It is alleged some very nasty remarks were directed at this girl.

Upsetting? Most certainly.

Sturko said both sides called 911 as the argument unfolded, prior to footage being broadcast on social, or any, media. At this time of writing, she noted, police spoke with witnesses and all parties concerned but there has been no arrests or charges. “In terms of whether or not any actual assault occurred during the incident, that’s under investigation.”

“One of the initial things reported was that they were disappointed that it took 45 minutes for us to come,” Sturko noted.

“At the same time that we received this call about this unfolding incident at the nail salon, they received other priority calls as well including a suicidal person, they had a weapons call, and so once the call-takers were able to determine that the parties involved were separated, they had to re-prioritize that call and they responded as quickly as they could but they actually attended some other calls before they came that were a higher priority because of the risk to the people involved.”

To Serve and Protect.

Hmm…

Wondering now if I’m bound for that lake of fire.



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

Tom Zytaruk is a staff writer with the Surrey Now-Leader.

Just Posted

No survivors in Gabriola Island plane crash

Coroner confirms multiple fatalities after small plane goes down Tuesday night

Striking Western Forest Products workers willing to ‘modify position’ if talks progress

Brian Butler, USW 1-1937 president, says union and WFP to meet Thursday, Dec. 12

Dogs and cat rescued in house fire in south Nanaimo

Section of Old Victoria Road was closed to traffic Tuesday afternoon

Judge’s decision set for January in dangerous driving trial for crash that left Saanich girl unresponsive

Tenessa Nikirk is charged with one count of dangerous driving after Leila Bui was struck in 2017

Dogs and cat rescued in house fire in south Nanaimo

Section of Old Victoria Road was closed to traffic Tuesday afternoon

UPDATED: No survivors in Gabriola Island plane crash: RCMP

Coroner confirms multiple fatalities after small plane goes down Tuesday night near Nanaimo

Tavares scores twice as Maple Leafs earn 4-1 win over Canucks

Vancouver sees two-game win streak snapped

The Grinch who Stole a Hedge: Security camera captures Chilliwack tree theft

RCMP arrives as person calmly walks away with tree in downtown area

Salmonella outbreak in Canada linked to rodents and snakes

92 cases of salmonella across six provinces, including B.C.

Meng Wanzhou wins right to more documents involving arrest at Vancouver airport

Defence lawyers allege the Huawei executive was unlawfully detained, searched and interrogated

Victoria looks to suspend taxi obligations as ride hailing services arrive

Ten ride hailing companies are set to come to Greater Victoria in the new year

Preliminary inquiry ahead for man who fled Canada prior to double attempted murder trial

Sebastien Normandin, 49, accused of trying to run ex-girlfriend and her partner down with his car

Courtenay church receives offers to replace stolen Christmas tree

Faith Lutheran had planned to use a fir tree on its property this season

Most Read