Y'know, the blogosphere can sometimes seem like a microcosm of the real world. The pissing contests, popularity contests, the bad writers who remind us of bad drivers, and the sheer insanity tearing its throat out to shout obscenities at faceless and nameless people like a hobo on the corner of Market & 9th street.
But it isn't. I've seen the real world, filled with a vast noise that drowns out even my own thoughts at times, and not even the most flaming troll has ever come close to that.
Yet looking at such people like, [Unamused], [Obsidian], [Hippo Chuck], [Randy Garver], [Ferdinand], and [Half Sigma], I am struck by their commitment to proselytizing a message of fear-based racism, prejudice, ignorance, and discrimination rationalized through false science, through oppression-based ideologies, but most of all through a severe willingness to ignore, deny, and reject the overwhelming evidence of their own misplaced hate.
They're a motley collection of racists, classists, ageists, ableists, conservative reactionaries, neoliberals, anti-immigrants, Islamophobes, homophobes, misogynists, misandrists, Fundamentalist Christians, race-realists, Human-Biodiversity advocates, Game afficionados, Angry White Males, Marginal White Males, and internet tough guys.
And who do they hate? Blacks, Hispanics, many Asians, Jews, Immigrants, Homosexuals, Muslims, poor people, most Women. Basically anyone that does not conform to their White upper-class male heteronormative and Christian existence. Basically anyone who does not look like them.
They are the hegemonic Middle America that has taken control of the political process in this country because they are so easily led by demagogues who assuage their discontent with angry rhetoric. They are the disaffected who want to go back to "The Good Ol' Days" of the 1950's (when my family couldn't go to public pools in upstate New York). They are the nostalgic gun-lovers who hold up signs of Obama as a monkey or a witch-doctor and proclaim they're not racist because they're hiding behind some random Black person they know. They are the Faux News audience, digesting a constant message of fear and paranoia of anything remotely democratic which would help them against the extreme financial hardships of life that have intensified because of their own
When free public healthcare is made to be the equivalent to Communist death-panels, and teachers are transformed into overly paid, money-sucking public workers, and unions are suddenly considered anti-American because they help give ordinary people the right to bargain with their bosses, and when the military-industrial complex mixes with the healthcare-industrial complex which mixes with the prison-industrial complex which goes alongside the sexual-grievance industry to create a perfect capitalistic & hegemonic system of disenfranchisement among the poorest, most oppressed people in our country... Well, when all that happens I can't help but laugh to keep from crying.
James Baldwin said, What white people have to do, is try and find out in their own hearts why it was necessary to have a nigger in the first place, because I’m not a nigger, I’m a man, but if you think I’m a nigger, it means you need it.
I would ask the same thing of these people. Why do you NEED Black people to be dumber? Why do you NEED for Hispanics to be illegal-aliens? Why do you NEED for Jews to be greedy, for homosexuality to be sinful, for Muslims to be terrorists or terrorist-sympathizers, and for working-class people coming together to get paid a decent salary be something so horrible? Why do the haters gotta hate? What's in it for them?
Does it inflate their self-worth? Does it make them feel better about being universally despised when exposed? Does it help them to deal with their own shit by shitting on everybody else?
How does a person get so broken? How do they get so completely, and obviously twisted? Do they even realize what they are, or what what they say means?
Yet, in the blindingly hypocritical way of all bullies, they cast themselves as pariahs, as realists and true-seekers, as Good People. And in the same motion, cast those of us who spend our lives dedicated to freedom, equality, and the pursuit of happiness (y'know, those things in the Declaration of Independence) as racists, bigots, evil Leftists and Liberals, socialists, communists, and other confusing or ironic appellations.
It's like being in the world of 1984 with a heavy dose of V For Vendetta covered in Ayn Randian propaganda. And I just want to know: how did they get here?
I ask out of genuine confusion. Because I cannot fathom Evil that calls itself Good.
Back in the real world, I remember the first neo-Nazi skinhead who planted jackboot to face. I remember his eyes, his fucked-up teeth, the chain on his wallet, the Hot-Topic designer clothes. I remember going to Shul and seeing the Swastika graffiti like an angry scar that would just never heal. I remember the Holocaust museum in D.C. and looking at my thrice great-grandfather's shoes, wondering if my namesake was just another Jew. I remember being called a kike.
And when I remember these things, I also remember that I survived them. I remember that I scrapped, and brawled, sometimes lost, sometimes won, sometimes held back, sometimes spoke my mind. I remember that all the vitriolic in the world cannot ruin the shine of one perfect day with my girlfriend on the beach talking about nothing during my 24th birthday.
It puts the smile back on my face when the haters come up to bat with limp-dick attempts at prejudice. I've seen worse, and I've seen better. And they are just another dinosaur, upon their last gasp, slowly going extinct.
Glory glory, hallelujah.