A bullshit message from our bullshit Editor-in-Chief
Hi. I’m Johnny Roosevelt, great-great grandson of Teddy Roosevelt. Which, of course I’m fucking not, because you can Google that name and realize this is an amalgamation of a character for a bullshit website that has a grizzly bear with a shotgun as its logo, and no ads (which, btw, you’re welcome, we get no money, and you don’t have to see ‘8 CELEBRITIES WHO TOTALLY BLEW IT WHILE GETTING INKED’ for the fifth fucking time today, so pretty sure y’all come out ahead there).
Anyway. Let’s you and me have a little discussion about satire.
When I think of satire, I think of Johnathon Swift and A Modest Proposal. Or, we can go with it’s official title “A Modest Proposal For preventing the Children of Poor People From being a Burthen to Their Parents or Country, and For making them Beneficial to the Publick.” I’m not gonna do that bullshit “DURR IF YOU AINT READ IT READ A BOOK” but I’ll say, it’s… well, fuck, it’s important.
It’s the dude who wrote Gulliver’s Travels (which again, was satirical) writing the most pure form of satire imaginable. This was Swift writing anonymously under a pseudonym (NOT TO TUG MY DICK TOO HARD BUT MAYBE LIKE JOHNNY ROOSEVELT) that basically said, well, there are too many poor people in Ireland, so obviously, the best option here…is to eat poor Irish children.
Satire, here, depends on a basic human decency. No one wants to eat babies. Like, Jesus Christ, why do I have to say this out loud, NO ONE WANTS TO EAT BABIES.
That is supposed to jab a needle in that part of your brain that says, I am a person, I have a soul (whatever definition of a soul, finite or infinite, that you might have), and I see something that makes my soul shout “WRONG” and I have to delve deeper and think about this for what real-life issues it is addressing.
That is satire. It is putting a mirror to our faults as a society, amplifying them, and hoping that in seeing our potential ugliness we embrace our potential beauty. Satire is not “hey man, I just ate your leftovers…HAHA PSYCHE GOT YOU” because a lie is not satire, a lie is just a lie, and I mean, I’m a BIT rusty on my 10 commandments, but I’m pretty sure LYING is one of the ones on there that you shouldn’t be doing if you really claim to be a God fearing individual.
Like, there’s no ambiguity there, you pick up some stone tablets (maybe the ones you got mad were taken down from outside your local courthouse) and number 9, thou shalt not lie. Satire involves more than just lying, and again, just like with my “no one wants to eat babies” comment, JESUS CHRIST WHY DO I HAVE TO SAY THIS OUT LOUD?
This brings my attention to FAKE NEWS, God help us.
Currently, people in Houston are recovering from Hurricane Harvey. It’s one of those terrible, awful, bile-in-the-back-of-your-throat events that makes your eyes sting with held-back tears when you even think about describing the sheer bravery and humanity that citizens of our fucking incredible country can do in times of biblical shit.
The fourth largest city in the nation got flooded with enough water that, if you spread it out across the entire country, AMERICA would be 1/4 of an inch deep in rain water right now, but people got their flat-bottomed boats and they went out to rescue people and, in some cases, they DIED rescuing people, and that is the world we live in right now. We live in a world where Houston is underwater and filled with fucking heroes, and oh fuck there goes that weird twinge of my eyes wanting to express my emotions with moisture.
I’ll say it again. Houston is underwater and filled with fucking heroes.
Which is why I’ve never been more ashamed of my fellow man than the asshole who fucking DARES to call him “freedom” who posted an article for thelastlineofdefense.org
the other day.
You’ve probably seen shit about this. This is not just FAKE NEWS, it is heinous and disgusting.
For those of you who have avoided it until now, oh man, you’re so lucky. But essentially, this fucking piece of shit wrote an article claiming that a mosque in Houston has refused to help refugees because “Allah Forbids Helping Infidels.” Now, most of you will read that sentence and go, “Well that sounds fucking racist and wrong.” But there are 5% of our nation’s worst impulses, the same people who would respond to your response with “ISLAM ISN’T A RACE, SNOWFLAKES,” who see that article and allows it to shape and confirm their worldview. Think about that.
And this is what brings me back to my point about satire. Because satire, historically, is written by three types of people. The truly brilliant who go down in history for their sharp intellects and keen minds (we’re talking Swift, we’re talking Twain), the well-meaning under-achievers who use it as a cheap crutch to say what they really think and then wave their hands every time they go too far by being like “Well like, it’s satire, so of course it’s hackneyed” (that’s me by the way).
And finally there are people who are like “I’m going to spread damaging lies in to confirm false beliefs of bigoted people so I can get page views, also I am a cancer to society” and GUESS WHO THAT LAST GROUP INCLUDES? The Last Line of Defense, dot fucking org.
Here’s how America’s Last Line of Defense describes itself if you navigate through the bullshit articles such as “BREAKING: Canadian Muslims Vow Revenge Against Evil American Trumpsters” (which….uh…has a picture of Kim Jong-Un for it?) and “BREAKING: 2 Democrat Congressmen on ISIS Payroll Arrested For Treason” (which ALSO has a picture of Kim Jong-Un…no, not actually, but you wouldn’t be surprised if it did, right?). They say…
“America’s Last Line of Defense is a satirical publication that may sometimes appear to be telling the truth. We assure you that’s not the case. We present fiction as fact and our sources don’t actually exist. Names that represent actual people and places are purely coincidental and all images should be considered altered and do not in any way depict reality.”
I fucking love this country. I literally am pretending to be the great-grandson of one of America’s BEST leaders even though I KNOW that, timing-wise, I need to add at LEAST two more “greats” to that description for it to track, chronologically.
Again, the opposite of satire is “we are pretending to tell the truth, but if you dig through our bullshit template and somehow find our ‘about me’ page, you’ll be assured that we’re just fucking lying to you and pretending it’s fact.” God, not to beat a dead horse again (shut up, PETA, come at us) but that is actual definition of fake news. So just call it that. Don’t pretend like it’s satire. That is not how satire WORKS.
And while it’s especially despicable to try to sow discord by posting fake articles presented as fact only to be like, “DON’T WORRY BRO, IT’S SATIRE,” it’s even worse to do so with some hate-filled article about Houston at a time where everyone in Houston is looking out for their fellow man.
Houston shows us how, when it really comes down to what is important, Americans are all the same. They’re fucking fantastic. They are altruistic. They’re kind, they’re smart, and they will do anything to help someone, even if it costs them their lives or even their livelihood.
And these assholes at thelastlineofdefense.org
, these cowards, these sad, sad, little tiny men, they are the monsters trying to divide us in our moments of unity.
Don’t let them.
There is satire. And there is evil. Satire strives to force us to change for the better. And thelastlineofdefense wants to help justify the bigotry of the saddest, most pathetic people in our society, those who would never put themselves at risk to help their fellow man. There is satire. And there is evil.
And it’s important that we start pointing out sites, like thelastlineofdefense.org
, that are evil, masquerading as satire, and put them in their place. It doesn’t matter if you voted Trump, or you voted for that one lady who we forgot the name of, you should agree that lazy satire that pretends to be fact is the opposite of what satire is supposed to be. It’s lazy. It’s wrong. And, God, it’s bad writing.