Have We Lost our Compassion?

J Philip Faranda November 17, 2009

By and large I am pretty convinced that most Active Rainers are a sensitive, compassionate crowd. I have read posts from REO brokers lamenting that they have to evict people around the holidays. I have read posts wringing their hands over ethical dilemmas because they wanted to do the right thing without a word spoken about “commission.” Even some of the posters and commenters who sort of annoy me usually place a premium on ethics. 

So imagine my surprise when I see that there is a relatively new member who has created his own niche: making fun of foreclosures. A 70’s kitchen or bath? Hilarious. Jury rigged plumbing because they probably had no money? A riot. He even started a group devoted to posts on the subject of goofing on REOs where they see “funny” things. Yeah. Funny. 

Maybe I’m a stick in the mud but I don’t see the humor in other people’s misfortune. And anyone who knows me knows I am a supreme wise guy. I bust on lame decor plenty, but laughing about the appearance of an REO, especially if the offence is they didn’t update, strikes me as about as tasteful as laughing at a cleft palate. 

I have posted before on the tragedy of REO homes improved to the hilt where the owner sadly ran out of money. There is nothing funny about improving the home and not being able to enjoy your efforts. There is even less humor in a home where someone obviously lived a long time and wasn’t able to improve it to this agent’s lofty standards, only to eventually lose it anyway, perhaps due to illness, the economy or worse. Their children crawled on those floors just like yours or mine. They had Thanksgiving dinner in that home the same as you or I.

Oh, and here’s the kicker- most of the posts aren’t even Members Only, so the public can stumble upon some licensees laughing it up at foreclosure victims’ expense. HA HA. Way to elevate the industry, pal. What a PR nightmare.  

So I have to ask, what is so funny about rummaging through the most personal part of a person’s life, their home, after they’ve been thrown out? I guess we can’t all be cool. 

Oh, I’ve just been told by the poster to “lighten up.” Lighten up. That is often the calling card of a deficit of empathy. 

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