Overheard on CNN.com: Sympathy and scorn for Dunn
"Jackass" star Ryan Dunn died in a car accident early Monday.
June 21st, 2011
05:11 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Sympathy and scorn for Dunn

Comment of the day:

“Congratulations to all the trash talkers! You are now officially...Jacka$$es! How does it feel?” –Vivalabetsy

More than a 'Jackass'

Ebert makes anti-drunk driving tweet

The death of Ryan Dunn, one of the stars of MTV's "Jackass" films and TV series, in a car crash on a Pennsylvania highway early Monday has ignited a public debate— thanks in part to film critic Roger Ebert, who tweeted, “Friends don’t let jackasses drink and drive.” So was Dunn a reckless stunt man who died in a fiery crash that could have been avoided or a man who simply and tragically died too young?

CNN.com readers were divided.

thekissinger said, “My, aren't we quick to condemn with so few facts. A person has died, his family and friends care right now, and anything else we type should be with those thoughts in mind.” parise said, “Fact: he posted pictures of himself drinking before he drove home. Fact: alcohol inhibits ability to drive.” M0reHuman said, “Fact: He posted a picture of himself with ONE drink. According to current state laws that is legal.” amcdonal86 said, “FACT! His car was completely mangled in a way that only a 100+ mph crash could cause!” Kayakker98 said, “Opinion: He looks hammered in the pic.” mmmikey responsed, “Parise.....pictures of him drinking WHAT? What was in the cup? Do you know? Of course you don't. Ignorant is as ignorant does.”

radgast said, “Most here have driven over the drinking limit, few could say otherwise, whether speed, drinking, or bad luck. His death and the other death are unfortunate and if he could speak I am certain his life would be the last of the concerns when thinking about his passenger and family he left behind.”

norcalmojo asked, “What are you expecting? Adulation? The guy was famous for being an idiot and will now be a little more famous for dying an idiot. If the fact that he's a Darwin award upsets you, wipe your nose. If it makes you feel any better, he died an entertainer. I laughed when I read the story. I laughed again at the fools trying to memorialize him. If you don't want to be remembered for being an idiot, don't make it your profession.”

rsknnp said, “Just because Ryan MAY have made a poor choice does not make his death any less sad. It's still a loss to his friends, to his family, and to the people who enjoyed his humor and appreciated the laughter he brought into the world. I wish they would have added why he was on Minute to Win it with Steve-o. They were both on the show to split the winnings and donate it to their respective charities for children.

If doing one bad thing or making one poor choice completely cancels out every other good thing a person has done, then every human on this earth is a waste of space because everyone out there has done something wrong. RIP Ryan Dunn.”

Aetna7011 said, “To make the jump from "he was having a drink with buddies" to "HE WAS DRIVING DRUNK AND KILLED AN INNOCENT PERSON AND IS A HORRIBLE HUMAN BEING" is a massive exercise in conjecture and ultimately idiocy.”

russpro82 said, “Even after two beers your reaction time is slowed down. That coupled with excessively high speeds is a recipe for disaster. It's pretty sad and I feel for his family and friends (I had a close friend drive drunk and die in a car accident, so believe me....I know). But let's not forget he killed his passenger too.”

tmac1987 said, “Regardless if he partook in idiotic pranks or not, the point remains that Ryan Dunn is dead. He died at a very young age, and he had much more life to live. Maybe he was intoxicated or maybe not, we can speculate until the end of time. Remember people, we are all human, and one day our number will be called. Ryan lived his life to the fullest. He made people laugh! How many people can say they made an impact on someone’s life?”

Bring them home, Mr. President

President Barack Obama will address the nation Wednesday night to discuss a plan that would pull 30,000 “surge” forces out of Afghanistan by the end of 2012, beginning in July. But many CNN.com readers were skeptical about the plan being executed, said the number of troops coming home wasn’t enough or believe that Obama has merely begun campaigning.

CWMessenger said, “I will end the wars and bring our troops home in 2009...2010...2011...2012. Lots of empty promises is what I see.” TheFinalWerd said, “I heard endpoints too....during campaigning, during his election speech, during his midterm report and now during his campaign for re-election.”

Slag asked, “”Didn't Obama say he would be out of Libya in days, not weeks and we were only there to establish a "no fly zone"? Now I'm supposed to believe this..........really?” But TTHa responded, “We are technically "out" of Libya. We are strictly operating as a support role for the European forces. Our Armed Forces are not on Libyan lands nor flying over Libyan lands. (Drones not counting.)"

Puzzled77 said, “Please Mr. Obama. Bring all the troops home now. It’s been so long.” MatarLaRaza said, “What about the "other" 70,000?” franx asked, “Why not pull out completely? Pointless war, especially now that Osama's dead. One guaranteed way a Republican could steal my vote would be an 'end the war' stance. That'll never happen.”

CmmnSnsRulz responded, “Ron Paul has an ‘end all wars’ stance and 24 years on Congressional record of backing it up.”

Liberal212 said, “Obama's troop pullout = 2012 election gimmick.” gravitas73 said, “Too little too late, pal. You've already lost my vote. This is a political play and I'm not buying into it.” SFactory said, “Obama on the campaign trail as usual – unless he is on vacation." But crazyutahn said, “Anyone who says Obama is doing this for the polls think about this. If he wanted to be re-elected, he would have waited to kill Osama bin Laden until right before election time. Too bad none of you Republicans remember George Bush pulling that with Saddam Hussein.”

Some readers said they support Obama’s plan.

IanA1 said, “At last, a President that has actual entry and endpoint goals. You can't run a strategy without such.” MollyBee said, “President Obama is doing well over there in the huge mess created when Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld went berserk over WMDs that didn't exist.” opus512 said, “No matter what Obama does or when he does it, critics will use it against him. Even when he does something they support, they'll still criticize him for it. Going too far, not going far enough, the only thing that matters is Obama is the one doing it.”

New cigarette labels

Nine graphic cigarette warning labels were unveiled Tuesday by the Food and Drug Administration, part of the agency's sweeping new powers to regulate tobacco and tobacco products, and CNN.com readers had plenty to say about it.

Jamalrehtorb said, “As an ex-smoker, I think this is great. Trying to quit is very, very hard and you need all the motivation possible.” jimmymax said, “Canada has been doing this for at least 10-15 years, and it hasn't really had any measurable effect. People are quitting anyway, regardless of all these gimmicks. The only gimmick that has had any real effect is when the price keeps increasing.”

wallster said, “Where do we draw the line? Will I be looking at a photo of a diabetic kidney while I'm eating my morning bowl of cereal soon? It shouldn't take a grotesque photo to scare someone into not smoking you just need a tiny grain of common sense.”

blue175 said, “Now only if they put pictures of clogged arteries and colon cancer on Big Mac boxes, maybe we would have lower obesity as well.”

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (162 Responses)
  1. kenna mae reese

    May he rest in peace and may all you misanthropics wake up!

    June 22, 2011 at 3:36 am | Report abuse |
  2. mstmc

    WOW...I am amazed that our standards are set so low that we actually sympathize with people like this..I do feel sorry for the loss of the lives that he has taken because of his stupidity...but also blame MTV for glorifying such behavior...

    June 22, 2011 at 3:45 am | Report abuse |
  3. Tolstoy

    I don't have to respect the guy for what he did or who he was as a person. But I have to respect the fact life is valuable and friends and family are in grief. I mean if that was your family member or best friend, I bet those negative comments made would be the exact opposite in that situation. He took his and another mans life in a tragic car accident, but that doesn't give me the right to judge him not knowing who he was as a person. People make mistakes and each consequence is different from the next. May he and his friend rest in peace

    June 22, 2011 at 3:55 am | Report abuse |
  4. Wut

    He was going 330 mph, that is ridiculous. It's a good thing he didn't kill someone else! Besides his passenger.

    June 22, 2011 at 4:34 am | Report abuse |
    • brillow

      cars dont go that fast

      June 22, 2011 at 4:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Ryan

      I somehow doubt he was going 330 mph...even 330 KPH is 205 mph, and I doubt he was going THAT fast either.

      June 22, 2011 at 4:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Greggq

      130mph you mean. still really fast. was prob very dark on that street also.

      June 22, 2011 at 5:35 am | Report abuse |
  5. ky8306le

    Its sad that hes dead, but its hard to get too angry at people for making crass jokes about someone who made their living on crass humor.

    June 22, 2011 at 5:13 am | Report abuse |
  6. mariehernandez

    Ryan was drinking alcohol in the hours prior to the accident. Fact: Ryan was driving the car. Fact: Accident investigat­ors reconstruc­ted what happened and concluded that Ryan was driving at speeds exceeding 130 MPH. http://bit.ly/k2Dx7c

    June 22, 2011 at 5:39 am | Report abuse |
    • grimreaper

      send his lawyer a bill for damages to the guardrail and road surface.

      June 22, 2011 at 6:17 am | Report abuse |
  7. Greggq

    im surprised this is a national story. i've never heard of this guy and bet 99% of americans have not either. must be a slow news day.

    June 22, 2011 at 5:40 am | Report abuse |
  8. Bull

    Here's the thing....when it's your time, it's your time. Period. No matter what you're doing, where you are, who you're with. All the hand-wringing in the world won't change that. Neither will hurtful comments or accusations. Someone will probably take my commentary as hurtful. So be it. While it is very sad that these two gentlemen died, and by no means am I condoning drunk driving or even buzzed driving, at the end of the day, their time was up. Callous? Maybe so. Maybe that's what 18 years in fire and ems does. I have lost family members and questioned why. I realized that it's not for me to know why. Does that mean I miss them any less? Hell no! It also doesn't change anything. It won't bring them back. My condolences to the families of all involved, including the fire, ems, and police that responded. To the people that find pleasure in throwing insults or what have you...keep in mind that one day, your time will come as well.

    June 22, 2011 at 5:52 am | Report abuse |
  9. grimreaper

    Maybe he was trying to be a jacka$$, try and jump from a porsche while travelling at 160km/h. He has done some pretty stupid things on air to become rich. Live by the sword and die by the sword...or maybe he wanted to pull a chuck norris stunt.

    June 22, 2011 at 5:54 am | Report abuse |
  10. Kenneth

    I don't understand, a adult made a decision to get drunk and do dangerous actions. If that was the complete story then no harm no foul but there was someone in the passenger seat. That changes the situation completely, so all I can say is he deserves what happened since he choose the action and and it happened to him. But since he took someone with him he does not deserve any sympathy or understanding. He is a killer, plain and simple.

    June 22, 2011 at 5:59 am | Report abuse |
  11. truthfulster

    I am truly sorry for this young mans death, his humor made me double up in laughter many times but going airbourne off a highway and traveling 45 yards into the woods off the road! It doesn't matter if he was drunck or not what he did was wrong but for the grace of god there walk I.

    June 22, 2011 at 6:12 am | Report abuse |
  12. nytw

    At least this drunk driver had the decency to kill only himself.

    June 22, 2011 at 6:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Ellis from Panama


      Did you read any of the story?

      June 24, 2011 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
  13. David

    Previous comments on this blog seem to conflict with others, but all of them have a "grain of truth" to them. It is regrettable that some comments highlighting the behavior that may have contributed to the death of two human beings without care or concern for the family, friends, and colleagues that feel the loss personally. To those friends and family members that may feel remorse, anger, or guilt over the personal alcohol-related history of Ryan. This is not a single incident, he had a history of DUI, he was pictured at a bar just prior to the accident – drunk or not, alcohol at low levels impairs reaction time and judgment – there is no doubt from the scene that these two elements were involved in the accident. Levels as low as 80 mg/dL of blood alcohol can severely impair reaction times. Pennsylvania courts had their chance to prevent this accident by revoking Ryan's license at his last DUI hearing – they didn't act. His friends and family could have intervened in the interim to get Ryan into treatment for such bad choices......they didn't or couldn't. It is still a life lost that shouldn;'t have been......we all should accept some of the blame.

    June 22, 2011 at 6:17 am | Report abuse |
  14. candace

    whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty......it is a tragic loss of 2 lives....let up people...when the facts come out ...THEN you comment

    June 22, 2011 at 6:20 am | Report abuse |
  15. Mike G

    He lived his life like an idiot, and he died like an idiot.

    June 22, 2011 at 6:39 am | Report abuse |
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