The Paradox of Plagiarism

I noticed this thing has been getting a lot of play on Fartface lately, and although I usually just do the old scroll-by, the language in this one grabbed my attention. Which makes sense as I had read the essay, written by the late George Carlin, hundreds of times over the three years it spent taped above my work desk. No doubt you can imagine the magnitude of my miffing after discovering that the Dalai Lama was now getting credit for the essay Carlin had written following the death of his first wife of 36 years, Brenda, in 1997. Goddamn thieving monk.

However, before embarking on a berserker finger-pointing rampage, I figured it best to look further into the matter because “parallel thinking” as it’s called, has been known to happen. Just the part time high school sportswriting journalist instinct in me I guess. Anyway, you can imagine my surprise when I came to learn that Carlin had denied ever writing the piece, which he described as a “sappy load of shit” on his website. Well, that’s a bummer. Perhaps it was the Mr. Lama after all? Wrong again, turns out it was was actually penned by an anonymous Columbine student a few days after the infamous high school shooting went down. Now that makes sense, as a lot of times some of the most inspiring words are written in the wake of a horrible massacre. Thank you, oh faceless pupil.

*UPDATE (cue Unsolved Mysteries theme music here) – As it turns out, in real life, “The Paradox of our Time” was in fact published in a book entitled Words Aptly Spoken, a collection of prayers and such authored by a man named Dr. Bob Moorehead. Moorehead, a former pastor for Seattle’s Overlake Christian Church, was forced into retirement in 1998 after twenty-nine years of service, following an investigation that proved he was responsible for the sexual assault of over seventeen male members of his congregation.


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