Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Mean People Suck: 50 Great Reasons to Guard Your Tongue

50 of my favorite comments about *ME* taken from the great wide web. All quotes are exact, typos and all. I couldn’t help but comment on some of them; my comments are [red in brackets].

1. Another idiot academic heard from. Go walk on broken glass, MORON. Does this jerk have a Piled higher and Deeper degree?

2. Maybe he should just return to the planet of the apes, where shoes are not a necessity.

3. The professor should get himself checked for hook worms. They may be affecting his mind.

4. He'd like to put tens of thousands, who make shoes, out of work. Mainly very poor people in India. Never mind the sock makers. What a loser!

5. if he gets his way, it will put all the women who are making a better living for their families in Africa out of luck. Let's just tell 'em: "Go back to being barefoot and pregnant!"

6. This is why the Educational system in America is so much a failure. Calling wearing shoes an "addiction" is just silly and unworthy of academic inquiry. It is not even worthy of a 3rd grade mentality. I suggest that the "professor" stop smoking pot, get a real job and try to contribute something useful to society--if he actually has the ability. The so-called 'university" is a sham to even allow this embarrassing nonsense to go public. CERTAINLY A LEFT WING NUTCASE TOO.

7. This IS a health issue - a mental health issue for this wingnut. Parents beware of where you send your children. "University" is the new pseudonym for "indoctrination camp" that exposes young, dare I say it, inadequately prepared, minds to this sort of idiotic "new-age" blather. Don't know much about Liberty (People's Revolutionary Right-Mind Camp), but if they have instructors like this with tenure, well ...

8. I invite this nut job to retrieve my mail in July and August from my mailbox next to the asphalt road fronting my house. Next, I invite him to discuss his penchant for barefootedness with his automobile insurance company. Next, he's welcome to talk to a podiatrist or two about the obviously complete fallacy of arch support for some individuals. How about a Metro ride at rush hour? I could go on, but...why are these people invariably found in universities? (Other than easy life, little or no pressure, taxpayer funded/supported jobs, etc.).

9. Have you ever stepped into a fire ant hill in bare feet, professor? Have you ever walked on pine needles? I could go on and on. Shoes protect our feet from all kinds of hazards as well as keeping any cuts or scratches from being exposed to dirt and germs. Just another loony liberal.

10. Maybe the post should have a regular feature where they profile a "professor" from Liberty "university". It would be more entertaining then the funny papers. (except when you consider all the morons who pay money to go there)

11. Sounds like one of the loonies from woodstock.the good old days no bathe,no shave,mary jane,drugs and rock n roll.now a professor,this is an american success story

12. I know there's gotta be a connection to the earth only being 6,000 years old and the "professor's" bare feet....

13. Shoes are required in places of business not for health reasons, but for liability. Should he step on something and injure his unprotected foot, the business is liable. This guy is an idiot. [I got a paper cut on my hand in a library once; guess I should have sued them because I wasn't wearing gloves?]

14. Professor Howell's undergraduate education in biology should have included a course in parasitology. Hookworns, roundworms, whipworms, etc. - all can be acquired by walking barefoot in contgaminated soil.

15. And this nutty professor has tenure. [I wish]

16. HELLO! Read the last sentence. He's selling a book! This is not "news," it is self promotion. [I didn't write the article, the Washington Post did]

17. As a Liberty University graduate, I can assure you that there is no requirement to sign or state that one believes in Creationism. Also, I can tell you that most people at Liberty likely think this guy is as much of a nut about the barefoot thing as those who do not go there. [Yep, I am hated on both sides of the aisle.]

18. I had a real professor at a real college whom didn't wear shoes. But comparing RIT to Liberty is like comparing an educated Harvard law scholar to a dingbat from Alaska.

19. I hope the professor gets plantar fasciitis and then see how he does with out shoes.

20. Nuts! What's this clown going to do during winter time? What is he accomplishing other than to show what an eccentric he is? He's a narcassist! What a waste!

21. Acadmia has truly become a safe house for the crazy, couched in the guise of intellectualism. As bad as it was fifteen years ago, acadamia seems completely awash in, make that saturated, with those not fit for the mainstream workforce. Besides math and science, it is now important to prepare our children for college by instilling in them skeptisism for every word uttered by the "learned." This is particularly so for humanities and fine arts professors.

22. As a physician, I think undergraduate university professors in general are unsightly pieces of waste material whether we are talking Liberty U or Harvard.

23. C'mon hippie, put on your shoes already for Christ sake. You look like a frikin idiot!

24. This "Barefoot Porfessor" is the perfect example of the professorial personality: No Commonsense!

25. If this is not proof that these professors are just useless. Hey have this idiot walk on some glass or on a Phoenix sidewalk when the temps are 115. To think it costs thousands and thousands of dollars to send a child to college to be taught by fools like this. Not sure it is worth the money.

26. What a worthwhile endeavor. This will surely enrich our society. I will now crusade against the evils of sunglasses and all will be well.

27. As A Biology professor, does he realize he takes a very large risk of contracting hepatitis C from going barefoot???

28. Just what America needs, another leftwing loon.

29. And these crazy nut job "professors" are teaching our next batch of Democrats. No wonder we are in such bad shape.

30. Hey Danny Boy, Amen and Amen, but first we need to ban the use of neck ties. First things first. What do you do in winter?

31. If you want to walk around with your feet sticking out, go to the jungle or the desert where this makes some sense. Otherwise, in modern paved society, civilized humans who have fully evolved wear shoes and socks. Forcing other people to see and smell your feet is not civilized behavior.

32. The reaon for shoes is to keep the feet warm and protect them from injury. For a professor, he appears to be ideological and not realistic or "smart".

33. The term 'whack job' comes to mind.

34. The professors opinion on going barefoot will abruptly change one he gets planters warts on the bottom of his feet.

35. Quite silly. One hopes that he is not paid on the tax payer's dime. He should come up here to Canada and walk through the snow barefoot. That should clear his head. [I did live in Canada, for 2 years.]

36. I am not surprised! I have a suspicion that being infected with hook worms affects the brain. I thought it only effected southern evangelist preachers. Now it seems it has spread to collage professors to.

37. Even the Dharma Initiative wore shoes. And they were on an island with a nice beach. They were a lot more sensible than that Daniel Howell fruitcake. BTW, could he be related to Thurston Howell III? If I recall correctly, even Thurston wore shoes while on Gilligan's Island.

38. Walk barefoot if you want and leave us alone! Yet another self-appointed people-annoyer... [Oh, the irony]

39. Who do you think that this wacked-out person voted for in the last presidential election? Now you know why this country is screwed.

40. I wonder if he's ever flown on a commercial flight and had to use the restroom? Moonbat.

41. Seems all the nutjobs aren't in politics after all.

42. Why even give this clown faux legitimacy with an article about him? It boggles the mind. My cat is more newsworthy for the fact that it cleans its netherregions each day. Professor Stoogotz, as my grandmother would have called him, comes from the same class of folks who hailed Obama as the new Messiah. We see how well that one turned out.

43. Yeah, I want to see his filthy feet in a restaurant or classroom... yet another hippy moron teaching our kids.... Dogs also don't wear shoes. Maybe this guy was raised in a small village in Kenya...

44. It's the public health, stupid. One small step for bare footers, and a giant leap for diseases. Shoes are like foot condoms in the public health field. If you walk among strangers and defecating animals, then friends don't let friends do it bearback. Not that there is anything wrong with diseases and worms.

45. What a poser. Until he gets out in the wilderness, including desert and snow and ice, like that barefoot hippie minimalist survival guy Cody Lundin, this guy's done nothing.

46. It is telling of the smug personality type of those taking up seemingly Innocuous Lifestyle Choices to eventually become hectoring proselytizers. Same with about 90% of vegetarians. It's not about them "doing their own thing," but trying to convince the rest of their moral one-upmanship. Give it a rest. [Again, oh the irony.]

47. I guess the idiot never heard of hookworm. [hook what?]

48. Howell tells us how to solve the problems of the world, problems he avoided by becoming a professor. I seriously doubt that he would go barefoot in a New York taxi cab. [I have been barefoot in a New York taxi cab, on my way to the TODAY show].

49. A kooky suggestion today, a serious one tomorrow, a demand the next, and after that, Obama takes over the shoe industry and shuts it down. That's how the liberal mind works.I've said it before and now is a good time to repeat it: The bastards want us all to walk to work everyday on dirt paths in our bare feet. [I don’t know why everyone thinks I’m a liberal, but from the way these apparent conservatives behave, maybe I’ll become one.]

50. [And finally…] The article doesn't allude to the prof's politics, but I suspect that he's just another kooky hippie leftist. He's not content with just doing something different and going about his business. He has to preach at people that EVERYBODY should be doing it! They're not content to simply mind their own business, drive their Priuses, forego deodorant, avoid eating meat, live in their eco-huts, etc. etc. etc. Seriously, why do the hippies think they have to compel everyone else to do things their way? [OH THE IRONY. All I’ve ever wanted was to go barefoot and be left alone].


  1. This just means you stood up for something. There's no way to please everyone.

  2. I love these occasional Hate Mail posts by the various blogs I read. I am forever amazed by the cluelessness of people.

  3. 48 Is my favorite. That is a MAJOR in your face moment for that poster. If it were possible replying to him with that would really make him speechless. I would love to see that.

    On the streets of Providence I get hateful things said to me on a nearly daily basis. Depending on their demeanor I am either calm and try to inform or I brush them off.

  4. Thank you for posting these comments, it means your are hitting a nerve. After reading the first 1/3 of your book, I must have missed the chapter on giving up everything normal and wondering in the wilderness. I don't feel I am any less right winged then I was before, and I have only stopped wearing deoderant once and that was when the stick broke.
    I hope in the remaining 2/3's you don't try to make me swollow the Koolaid, or jump off a bridge (unless you are talking about barefoot bungie jumping)... Thanks for showing us a glimpse of the pressure you get.

  5. Daniel, thanks for posting that. Getting all these types of comments in one place clearly shows the extent of the ignorance out there. The thing is, reasonable people can disagree on any topic. And any reasonable person who truly feels there are good and rational reasons for not going barefoot should be able to express that in a respectful way. And in that way, they would have the best chance of prevailing in an argument or convincing others who may be reading.

    But these people have nothing. They know they have some kind of irrational fear or hatred for this very important and highly functional part of the body, but cannot come up with any intelligent or logical reason to back up their viewpoint. So they simply personally attack those who feel differently.

    Some of those comments remind me of a few that have been posted about me in the past. For example, in response to a newspaper article that was published about me and my barefooting lifestyle a few years ago, here are a couple:

    "Sounds like one of the lost in space, stoned out hippies who escaped from the Asheville zoo."

    "Go shoeless in your own backyard... but I don't want to look at your crusty feet with yellowed toenails while I am sitting in a restaurant. I cannot stand to see barfoot or bare-shirted patrons in a store.... gross!!"

  6. Hi Daniel, Thanks for this snapshot of public opinion which simultaneously amuses and depresses in much the same way as imagining your Mother-In-Law driving your new Mercedes off a cliff (with apologies to mine whom I love dearly, but the analogy illustrates the point). I always believed that university-aged students, once freed from the didactic indoctrination of the school system, rapidly become self-aware and
    rage against the machine of conformity with an explosion of self expression, but I guess some take longer than others to find their feet (sic). Sadly, some probably never do and spend the rest of their lives deluded or unable to buck the system. Sadly too, despite much effort, I fall into the latter camp ie. spending little time barefoot in public when I'd rather drop my shoes in the bin and wave them goodbye forever. I'm even reluctant to wear my VFFs in public due to the unwanted attention they attract. Indoctrination / misinformation / mob rule are powerful individuality suppressants and I take my (metaphoric) hat off to you, Chris McDougall, Al Gaultier & Tina Dubois, ProvBarefooter (my hero!) and all of you with the kahunas to give conformity the finger and publicly demonstrate your clear understanding of foot mechanics and your right to live as you please, in the face of adverse public opinion. You all have my unending support and gratitude and I wish I had enough self confidence to do the same. Please never stop and "Ne illegitimi carborundum te."

  7. It is just amazing how strange the shoe culture has become in the past forty years.

    Thanks for your work.

  8. Smudger: You can give them the finger (er, the foot), too! Seriously, unless your wife has threatened to leave you, just take the shoes off. The ignorance of strangers should not force you to do something you don't want to do. BTW, only 20% Americans have a college degree; I wonder how many of those who authored my list of 50 possess one?

    Kriss: You are correct, which is why I don't see the hate comments as a bad thing really. I'd be much more distressed if they had presented logical, well-reasoned arguments for needing shoes.

  9. Thanks for the encouraging comment Daniel but in my case that's easier said than done. Pushing 50, a professional Chemist (not the most barefoot-friendly profession) and "blessed" with an excess of traditional British reserve, I'm not one to go out of my way to attract baying mobs brandishing pitchforks or their modern equivalent - laptops! Wife has always been super-supportive, thinks my VFFs are great and insists that if I wont wear them then she "damn well will." So what's stopping me? Perhaps you and our friends in the community can help with that one. Advice will be graciously received and dialogue happily entered into at smudger100@live.co.uk.

  10. These hate-mail posts can simply be viewed as cheap entertainment - nothing valid about them. Before we should criticize any protocol, we should do our research.

    Since going barefoot outside the house, I have been getting some "looks" from people. A few are happy to proudly pronounce my social ineptitude or hillbilly roots. I just laugh and wink. :)

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Welcome to The Barefoot Professor blog, intelligent talk about running, walking and living barefoot. I encourage your comments, even if you disagree with me. In this spirit I don't even moderate the comments. However, PLEASE use critical thinking skills when leaving comments, and avoid inflammatory words. Please keep your comments short and to-the-point. THANKS.