The difference between the news and the tabloids is a thinner line in the good ol’ USA than I’d like. Sensationalism has become nearly synonymous with journalism, which is just a depressing reality in the new age of #alternativefacts. I’d go so far to say more yellow journalism gets churned out daily than legitimate news articles, so when I hear people shout about fake news, it’s actually not that hard to see why.
And liberals, despite what we’d like to believe, can be awful. We can play hard at the sensationalist side of things, and more often than not we’re not even aware how utterly hypocritical we’re being about. Because of that lack of self-awareness, it’s pretty easy to become a dickish liberal. As a liberal myself of the moderate bitchy variety, I think it’s time we take a look at this process.
Step 1: Be a Feminist (But Only When it’s In Style)
Let’s take a look that this piece of trash masquerading as news, shall we?
Heather Schwedel (and her source Jezebel, which we won’t even step into because that’s a whole other article) is a smile analysis expert, apparently. I find it astonishing that a Slate editor looked at this barely-an-article thing, said, “Yeah, you go girl!” and up it went. Schwedel seems to have a lot of other articles that are pro-ladies, but Melania is of course exempt because it’s now fashionable to hate her. By the way, let’s not even get into the fact that it was a reverse gif so…talk about FAKE NEWS.
I’m a feminist, do you know what I hate being told all the time? “Smile honey!” It makes me want to punch people in the throat. Stop policing my damn smiles, I’ll smile when there’s something to smile about, so screw you.
Actually, remember when everybody was on board the no catcalling bandwagon? Here let me refresh your memory.
This video went viral in like 2014, that was all of two years ago, and apparently nobody learned a goddamn thing from it. I thought that it was about how telling women how to act and how to behave is more or less harassment, but no. Instead, we’re back to square one, and it’s totally fine to nitpick at the ladies to be perfect little smiley angels all damn day long.
Look, Melania is the First Lady of the United States, who was probably tired as hell from getting dragged around from this photo op to this speech thing to this church thing, leave her the hell alone. I don’t smile all the damn time, and she shouldn’t have to either. If us liberals are going to be all about fairness and equality, we need to be FAIR and EQUAL about it. I don’t see articles pointing out how Trump didn’t smile throughout the entire inauguration, so why is Melania getting dumped on? Because she’s a women, and they always get the bum end of the deal in the media.
And yet if you think women are the only ones who get the low blows, sorry to say, there are definitely lower ones.
Step 2: Attack the Kids (For Extra Points, Be an SNL Celebrity)
Kids don’t get to choose their parents, so they just have to deal with the fallout of dad or mom embarrassing them at the mall. At least, normal kids do, but Barron Trump has the unfortunate plight of being the child of Donald J. Trump. And so, that means some people think it’s fine to say things like this:
What did she even mean? If he’s a shooter and he’s home-schooled, what he’s going to shoot his parents? So a ten year old is going to assassinate the president? She obviously didn’t think this “joke” through. It should be noted that Katie quickly apologized like so:
But all the same, who the hell thinks it’s cool to call a ten year old kid a future terrorist? (Besides Texas and that whole clock business, I mean). Barron will probably grow up and become a rich white dude of some variety, and that’s about it. He might be a politician, he might be a TV personality of some kind, he might be a model like his mom, who the hell knows or even cares. He’s a kid, leave him alone, let him figure that out.
Anyways, I feel a little bad for Katie, since she’s getting flack for something that most of Twitter gets away with a lot.
That’s right, an entire article, devoted to pointing out that a kid was tired looking at an event. That’s it. The kid was up for over 24 hours, but somehow that’s unforgivable? For children to be tired?!
Now, did the alt-right racists attack the Obama daughters? They sure as hell did, but that doesn’t make this nonsense equal out. Leave the damn kids alone, they’re not in charge of your country. Send your ire towards the easy target: Trump and his tiny hands (…approving the abortion gag from the Reagan era)
Step 3: Commit/Cheer On Violent Acts (Don’t Bother to Stop Them)
No one is without sin, and yet everyone feels like casting that first stone. Sometimes, right into shop windows.
People are saying that these “activists” (*coughanarchistscough*) have no affiliation with the “peace and flower loving liberals who marched without causing problems.” Alright, but do you think that news affiliates care about that? NO, no they don’t. They’re already talking about “radical leftists” and “terrorist activity” instead of, ya know, researching like journalists should (Google search is HARD you guys).
Marchers need to take action when they see looting and rioting, or even better, they need to take preventative actions. How do you prevent rioting and looting? Easy, before a group heads out for protests, tell them that there’s now a 10 year jail sentence for people who get caught destroying property. When no one believes you, because wow a decade for that seems a bit much, inform them that fellow marchers will call the police on you if you begin to loot or riot. Finally, inform them that if/when they’re caught looting and rioting, you’re not protecting them from the police. “Oh, you want to throw a brick into a Starbucks? Have fun getting baton beaten and pepper sprayed.”
There’s solidarity in the face of adversity, but then there’s being a by-stander to criminal activity. When you march, you be ready to stop that shit.
And then there’s also just going around punching people you disagree with, something that people out of high school should know better than to do.
Now, I’m not going to say this guy didn’t deserve a punch to the face (Captain America would probably be proud), but it’s not something to cheer about either. I’m not going to condone violent actions. I might be internally gleeful that an asshole got what was coming to him, but in the end it only hurts the cause against racism.
This punch will be used as proof at every alt-right/Neo Nazi meeting in the country that they’re right about the “savage” black race and blah blah blah [insert more asinine bullshit here to support stupid eugenics and white superiority that’s based on super false “science”]. So while people want to cheer on this vigilante, remember that violence is what the other side wants. They want people to get angry, to punch, to loot, to make a smear campaign. They want to see us fail, essentially, to be the freedom fighters and instead paint us as terrorists.
The alt-right/Neo Nazis might even look at this post and start frothing at the mouth, “See! Even the libtards and special snowflakes know they’re wrong!” But no, that’s not the point. I want to make it clear that I’m still a liberal, I’m still a “social justice warrior” (I prefer the term armchair activist, if we’re going for derogatory titles), and I agree with most liberal ideals. However, in order for liberalism to keep its footing, it needs to take a good hard look at its flaws and hypocrisy. We liberals need to always endeavor to do better, we should always be trying to improve, and to do that we need to see what’s wrong with us.
If you don’t want to be a liberal dick, it’s actually pretty easy. DON’T share tabloid headline nonsense about the First Lady, DON’T make fun of children to further your own political aims, and finally DON’T riot at peaceful gatherings or punch people. DO praise the organizers of the Womens March, DO talk about education funding of public schools (call your legislators, people!), and whether you’re liberal or conservative try to DO all things with the goal of achieving peace.