Snapchat, Curt Schilling in the PC Crosshairs

Snapchat, Curt Schilling in the PC Crosshairs

—April 22, 2016

OK, Kid’s, it’s Friday and you know what that means….

That’s right, time for the MJM weekly rantathon about the latest politically correct idiocy and/or other bullshit afflicting our world like….

I don’t know, like…it’s getting ridiculous. The easily outraged and offended PC crowd seems to be getting more volatile by the week—more touchy about anything that might cause offense, especially if the offense is at all directed in any manner toward any of their sacred cows.

I mean, it sucks to be a comedian these days, cause just about everybody but straight, white, conservative males is off limits. Bust a joke about Blacks, Gays, Chinese, Muslims, Mexicans, females, the mentally unstable, anything “trans,” etc., and the PC righteous will set out to destroy you for your insensitivity.

Begs the question: if the PC crowd refuses to find any humor amidst the foibles of humanity (other than that of straight, White, conservative males), and seem to spend all of their time and energies looking for excuses to wield their self-righteous outrage, do they ever find time to have fun? Do they have a sense of humor? Can they crack a smile? I kind of doubt it….

But I digress. I am supposed to be ranting about the latest politically correct idiocy afflicting our world like…for this week we’ll say “like the fetid puss of a festering boil.”

Heading our list for this week are the usual easily outraged suspects who just had to jump on the PC bandwagon to express their outrage and offense over Snapchat’s use of a Bob Marley filter on 420 Day.  The filter allows users to superimpose the reggae star’s classic dreadlocked Jamaican look over their own or others’ faces on the social media photo-sharing service.

Not only were the PC holy warriors outraged by this alleged cyber “Blackface,” but they felt the use of the iconic musician’s likeness as a Snapchat filter was a case of cultural appropriation and that its use diminished Marley to a stereotype. The release of the filter on 420 Day, an unofficial day to celebrate Marijuana, also incensed the PC righteous because they felt it diminished Marley’s other talents by focusing on his well-known adoration and support of Marijuana.

OK, PC freaks, get over yourselves. Bob Marley was Black. Any image of Marley should be Black, and if a White person superimposes that image over their own it shouldn’t automatically be construed as “racist.” In fact, chances are that 99 percent of people using this filter love Bob Marley, his music and even his love of pot, and in no way are trying to insult his Blackness or anything else for that matter.

In fact, get over the whole “Blackface” thing—the days of the minstrel are long over, and the vast majority of people who utilize Blackface these days as part of a costume are not doing it in any way to purposely insult Black folks.

As for the release of the filter on 420 Day, get over that one, too, because Bob Marley is one of the historical proponents of Marijuana usage and legalization and should be honored on such a day. In no way does this diminish his musical talents or cultural achievements.

Finally, the filter was created in partnership with the Bob Marley estate, so this kind of makes all of the PC crowd’s complaints utterly moot and worthless.

While the above marks yet another case of PC inanity, the politically correct unfortunately managed to score two victories this week.

ESPN caved in to PC pressure and fired baseball analyst Curt Schilling due to a meme andCurt-Schilling-Meme comments he posted on his Facebook page. You can see the meme to the right, and among his comments were: “A man is a man no matter what they call themselves. I don’t care what they are, who they sleep with, men’s room was designed for the penis, women’s not so much. Now you need laws telling us differently? Pathetic.”

Unreal. If bullshit like this keeps up, no one will feel comfortable expressing his or her opinions about anything anymore….

A PC victory was also scored this week with the U.S. Department of Treasury, which made all the right PC moves in its planned revamping of the $20 bill. That is replacing a racist ex-president with a Black, feminist, abolitionist hero.

Unlike the first PC victory, I don’t really have a problem with this one. While Andrew Jackson was a pretty decent president and war hero, he was also kind of prick and a racist, what with being pro-slavery and the architect behind the Trail of Tears, which resulted in the death of thousands of Indians. And Ms. Tubman was a hero deserving of respect, helping to save thousands from slavery, and working to help secure the right of women to vote.

harriet-tubman2But man, I hope they can find a halfway decent image of her. I mean, talk about a scowl—her visage is the grumpy, outraged face I picture, whether White or Black, whenever I read or hear the pontifications of pompous PC potentates.

—Originally published on behalf of Hash It Out on its Facebook page 

Free Speech Imperilled by Campus Political Correctness

Free Speech Imperilled by Campus Political Correctness

—April 19, 2015

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

The First Amendment is my favorite part of the U.S. Constitution. Not the amendment’s opening part. I mean, I believe in the free exercise of religion, but kind of hope no more religions are “established” as the ones already established cause enough trouble in the world. And that part about petitioning the government is kind of worthless, cause you can petition about your grievances until the cows come home, but good luck receiving any redress.

It’s the “freedom of speech, or of the press,” part of this amendment that stirs my soul, and the one I have actively supported since my rabble-rousing youth. It is the reason I rail against political correctness, which is so often used to furtively stifle free speech and oppress critical thinking.

To this day I believe the U.S. Supreme Court did the right thing by defending flag burning as freedom of expression. While I personally disagree with burning Old Glory, the fact that it is allowed as a form of expression is part of what makes America great.

I also find various garbage proclaimed as “art,” such as works by Robert Maplethorpe and others of his ilk, to be offensive; however, its public display, no matter how loathsome, is worthy of first amendment protection, too.

In my rabble-rousing youth, university and college campuses were bastions of free speech. On just about any given day you were likely to find all points of view expressed on any number of issues, not to mention plenty of public “bad taste” antics and other questionable displays by fraternal organizations and other social groups. All without any real fuss or overt animosity between competing factions or diametrically opposed interest groups. Students tended to discuss divisive issues, but for the most part did not try to suppress ideas and speech they did not agree with.

So I’ve got to ask: What the fuck happened?

How is it that in the span of roughly one generation, the ideal of free speech has been cast aside by most institutions of higher learning, with the apparent full support of a majority of professors and students?

Students aren’t taught about “freedom of speech,” because they are now being taught “freedom from speech.” Universities, colleges and many of their students seem to be focused on limiting just about any speech that might possibly cause offence, and stifling ideas that may run contrary to specific students’ beliefs. And with the emphasis on trigger warnings, safe spaces, microaggressions, speech codes, privilege of various sorts, and other popular politically correct taglines, “debate” is obviously now a foreign concept on campuses. Instead, students are being taught how to engage in “goodthink.”

Consider in just the past 10 days:

DePaul University enacted a ban on students chalking political messages on campus sidewalksTrump-chalk because of the “offensive, hurtful, and divisive” nature of pro-Donald Trump chalking.

The State University of New York at New Paltz abruptly canceled a planned campus debate between a notable left-wing media critic and a notable right-wing media critic on “How the Media Can Sway Votes and Win Elections.” Certainly sounds like a well-balanced debate on an important issue. Unfortunately, one of the debaters had “extreme” right wing views, according to complaints lodged by at least one professor and several unidentified students. Can’t have that, now can we. . . even if balanced out by another speaker on the opposite end of the political spectrum. 

Campus police forced University of Delaware students to censor a giant inflatable “free speech beach ball,” because someone had drawn a picture of a penis on the ball, along with the word “penis.” The students, who were promoting free speech values, were advised that campus speech codes and sexual harassment policies overrode any rights to free expression. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education and Young Americans for Liberty both issued protests to university administrators advising them that the campus police were infringing upon the students’ First Amendment rights.

And how about this for complete irony:

About 700 professors and students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison signed letters complaining about racism from campus police and administrators, and demanding that a student arrested for spray-painting graffiti on scores of campus buildings be given clemency for his actions UW Madison Police Graffitiand be allowed to graduate on time this May. The letters allege that police engaged in racism by interrupting an Afro-American studies class when they arrested the student vandal, and that administrators are guilty of promoting racism because they were more interested in protecting campus buildings than students—such as the vandal—who are fighting for social change.

The student vandal’s fight for social change included graffiti on 11 different buildings with such messages as: “THE DEVIL IZ A WHITE MAN,” “DEATH TO PIGZ,” “WHITE SUPREMACY IZ A DISEASE,” AND “FUCK THE POLICE,” among others.

Unbelievably, both the chief of campus police and university chancellor have issued statements of apology over the incident, with both vowing to review police practices. I wouldn’t be surprised if the vandal ends up serving as the university’s valedictorian during the upcoming graduation ceremonies.

So, Hash It Out: Is the politically correct induced dissolution of the First Amendment on campuses turning American universities batshit crazy?

—Published April 19 in Hash It Out!

Just Call Me “Janella!”

Just Call Me “Janella!”

—April 16, 2016

Hallelujah! I have seen the light and now realize the long-term error of my ways….

I will no longer engage in behaviour that diminishes or demeans marginalized people and cultures, and will cleanse my speech of microaggressions that might prove insulting to anyone. I will use trigger warnings on anything I write in the future that could possibly cause undue stress or apprehension to those with fragile constitutions. I will promote and protect “safe spaces” to ensure that marginalized people and groups are not threatened by any streams of thought that might prove contrary to their own beliefs. I will vigorously support the ideals of multiculturalism, and publicly humiliate those who engage in cultural appropriation. And I will strive to only engage in “goodthink,” so as to help foster the social justice ideal of “Ingsoc.”

That’s right folks, I am bound and determined to become a militant, politically correct, social justice warrior. And, yes, from perusing the righteous and socially conscious websites of politically correct organizations and social justice activists, I do realize that it’s an especially tall order to fill.

I mean, how can I ever achieve political correctness with so much “privilege?”

Think about it: I’ve got “Male” privilege, “White” privilege, “Straight” privilege, “Thin” privilege, “Ability” privilege, “Class” privilege, “Western” privilege, “Christian” privilege, “Neurotypical” privilege, “Gender-Clarity” privilege, “Blue-Eyes” privilege, and probably other privileges of which I may not yet even be aware.

In short, I must be the most privileged mo-fo around.

And, as militant social justice folks who strictly follow the dictates of political correctness know, the day-to-day benefits I receive from these unearned privileges result in the day-to-day oppression and disenfranchisement of those who do not have these privileges—my privilege is their living hell!

Thus, in order to become truly politically correct, I must exorcise these privileges from my life. So here’s what I’m going to do:

  1. I am transitioning into a woman (“Janella” is my new name, by the way). There, in one fell swoop I have knocked out a whole bunch of privileges. I no longer have “Male” privilege because I am now a woman (“hear me roar!”). I no longer have “Straight” privilege because I’m just not into boys and will have to be a “lesbian” woman. “Gender-Clarity” privilege is obviously gone. And I’m just going to assume that if I am confused about my gender then I am probably not thinking clearly with regard to other aspects of life, so this serves to nullify the “Neurotypical” privilege, too.
  2. Thanks to the adoption of “self-identification” as a tenet of political correctness, I now identify as “African-American,” eliminating the “White” privilege. And yes, the white skin is a bit of a problem, but guess what? I’m an “albino” African-American,” which I believe obviates the “Ability” privilege because albinism is a disability of sorts. And not only am I African-American, but I am now a Muslim African-American, which takes care of that pesky “Christian” privilege.
  3. Given all of the above, I don’t believe that there’s any way I can still be considered to possess “Class” and “Western” privilege, but I’ll leave that for the PC potentates to decide.
  4. “Blue-Eyes” privilege? Well, I’m thinking I’ll have to go with colored—oops, I mean “tinted”—contact lenses.
  5. And that leaves “Thin” privilege… Not sure how I’m going to handle this one. I thought aboutOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA maybe eating burgers like Wimpy, so as to gain some quick girth and poundage, but eating meat like that just seems so anti-PC. This one is a conundrum, as I certainly don’t want my svelte figure to be the cause of distress to those who may be generously proportioned. Beaucoup tofu, perhaps?

Anyhow, what with now being a Black-Lesbo-Hajihead-Gimped-Tranny, I have clearly eliminated the bulk of my privileges and am definitely on the path to political correct enlightenment.

Just call me “Janella—Social Justice Queen!”

PC Potentates Declare Yoga “Culturally Insensitive”

PC Potentates Declare Yoga “Culturally Insensitive”

—November 27, 2015

For the latest in politically correct absurdity I bring you to my adopted land up here in the North, the land of ice, moose, beavers and Eskimos known as Canada. And there I go, already committing a politically incorrect faux pas by daring to refer to Inuits as “Eskimos.” Perhaps the provincial human rights commission needs to mount an investigation to determine whether this constitutes “hate speech,” but at the very least I should obviously be vilified by all.

Anyhow, the politically correct absurdity of the week award goes to the University of Ottawa’s Student Federation, which has shut down yoga classes at the university, deeming yoga’s cultural issues too controversial for the student body.

“While yoga is a really great idea and accessible and great for students, there are cultural issues of implication involved in the practice,” stated an email ordering a yoga class long-held at the university’s Center for Students with Disabilities to be shut down. “Yoga has been under a lot of controversy lately due to how it is being practiced,” added the email, noting that the cultures from which yoga emerged have “experienced oppression, cultural genocide and diasporas due to colonialism and western supremacy [and] we need to be mindful of this and how we express ourselves while practicing yoga.”

The absurdity of this is almost beyond words, but stems from “cultural appropriation,” which is basically a politically correct activist concern that the Western (primarily “white”) world is (and has long been) appropriating the rest of the world’s culture without granting appropriate reverence and recompense in return.

PC Activists began ramping up their campaign against cultural appropriation many years ago, with protests against inappropriate sports team names—Redskins, Indians, Warriors, etc—marking their first shots in this regard. Inappropriate Halloween costumes came next on their list–In case you haven’t noticed (and how could you not, as Halloween seems to really piss the PC crowd off), in the past few years dressing up as an Indian, Chinaman, or any number of other “cultures” has been strictly forbidden by the potentates of PC.

More recently they’ve been tch-tching western celebrities who dare sport clothing that incorporates features that may come from a marginalized culture. Katy Perry was harangued for dressing like a geisha during an American Music Awards performance, and several celebrities have been harassed of late for sporting bindi designs. All indications suggest that the PC activists are getting ready to seriously ramp up their war against the cultural appropriation of fashion.

And now they’ve fired the first shot against yoga.

What’s next?

Well, from trolling the websites of noted PC activists I can tell you that martial arts, ethnic foods and rock and roll, among others, are being closely examined for their cultural appropriation, so stay tuned.

Oh, but don’t let me forget to mention the inherent hypocrisy of this latest PC movement (easy to forget as PC culture is rife with hypocrisy): “Multiculturalism” is a key mantra of the politically correct, and yet, if I utilize or display anything that may have evolved from another (perhaps “marginalized”) culture I am guilty of “cultural appropriation.”

But no need to worry about this possible inconvenience should you leanScreen Shot 2015-11-27 at 10.06.16 PM PC, because remember, if you’re PC you can self identify. Cultural appropriation only applies to “privileged” white folks such as myself–If you’re politically correct you will be applauded for your multiculturalism.

“Cultural Appropriation!” Add this to the list of politically correct activist catch phrases, such as “white privilege,” “social justice,” “hate speech,” “marginalized cultures,” “inclusiveness,” “trigger warnings,” “micro-aggression,” “safe spaces,” “gender neutrality,” “self identification,” etc…

. . . and be very afraid.

Politically Correct Absurdities of the Week

Politically Correct Absurdities of the Week

–November 20, 2015

As the tides of political correctness engulf the land like a slow building storm surge, it almost seems that people are so dazed by the storm that they can’t see the absurdities coming in with these tides like so much mud riven up from the seabed. People see the actions and hear the words of the politically correct and take them at face value, as though they should be construed as normal. Thus my efforts here to stir that mud and show the absurd detritus within.

422648779_5c7a015e97_zThis week’s absurdity award goes to Dartmouth College administrators and the Dartmouth “Black Lives Matter” student protesters. The Ivy league college made the news after the protesters stormed the college’s library and disrupted students studying for their exams.

The hyperbole of some right-wing media elevated the “disturbance” almost to the level of a “riot;” however, the protest never got that out of control, nor was anyone physically assaulted as suggested in such news articles. Nevertheless, the protesters were intimidating and very “in-your-face” disruptive (a video of the incident can be seen here).

I fully support the free speech rights of the protesters and believe they have the right to scream “black lives matter,” “fuck your white privilege,” “fuck your comfort,” and “fuck your white asses” (the latter three statements are not heard in the video, but protesters freely admitted to using them). But I don’t believe they had the right to do so in the library, which is not a “public space” per se as proscribed in the First Amendment’s dictates. Nor do I believe that they had the right to break into the personal space of any of those people studying in the library. Where I come from breaking the six-inch personal space and screaming expletives and attendant spit into one’s face is grounds for throwing a punch.

However, the protesters are justifying their actions. “While I don’t think the protest should happen again to the extent where people are being yelled at and making people cry, I think the invasion of space needed to be done,” said one protester. Another one said the students in the library “represented the greater degree of ignorance, apathy and privilege that you see at Dartmouth.”

Privilege? Ah, yes, “white privilege.” The catchword being used by the politically correct to indicate all the many benefits and advantages white folks get for, well, being born white. Apparently it’s our fault that we were born that way and the politically correct believe we need to atone for it, as well as all the privileges enjoyed by our ancestors.

Yes, those students studying in the library are privileged. Anyone going to an ivy league school like Dartmouth is exceptionally privileged, which—hello!—includes those very student protesters.

And what of the numerous white students who protested at the library in fellowship with the black students? What of their white privilege?

Well, they are politically correct, and activist proponents of political correctness believe in “self identification,” so obviously those white “Black Lives Matter” demonstrators identify as “underprivileged black Dartmouth students,” and we just have to accept them as such.

And to compound all the above absurdity, let’s “blame the victim.”

As one protester said, “I have a problem with the protest being made to look like a spectacle by the students who were recording videos of it in the library.”

These right-wing media “allegations of physical assault are lies to make the white students look like victims and students of color to look like the perpetrators,” said another protestor, who added that the white students in the library deserved to feel uncomfortable.

OK, so the students peacefully studying in the library were responsible for this whole incident….

And then we’ve got Dartmouth administrators who are putting their support solidly behind the protestors, while thus far ignoring complaints by students harassed in the library. During a meeting with minority students, vice provost for student affairs, Inge-Lise Ameer, called the protest a “wonderful, beautiful thing,” and issued a public apology to the studentsAmeer-590 who engaged in the protest for the negative responses and media coverage that they received. “There’s a whole conservative world out there that’s not being very nice,” she said.

Un-fucking-real! This woman is undoubtedly of the same politically correct ilk that would apologize to ISIS for being part of the western world’s social and economic construct that is ultimately responsible for fomenting its rise and encouraging its subsequent application of harsh tactics such as torture, beheadings, rape and the like.

What do you think? Do Dartmouth and the protestors deserve the politically correct absurdity of the week award?

Runner Up: Princeton University Administrators who have agreed to consider the removal of President Woodrow Wilson’s name and likeness from the school grounds based on his racist legacy of supporting segregation. Well, if this emerging trend keeps accelerating you can pretty much say goodbye to most U.S. Presidents’ names and likenesses on campuses, because the majority of them carry racist baggage of different sorts. But that’s activist political correctness for you—selective revision of history and language that may be offensive to marginalized groups.

Is Caitlyn Jenner Costume Justified?

Is Caitlyn Jenner Costume Justified?

—August 29, 2015

Another Hash-It-Out! blog about Caitlyn Jenner? Really?

Yeah, sorry, but he/she is in the news again, and he/she definitely stirs up some significant issues for debate. Like this blog referring to Caitlyn as he/she. How dare we not refer to Caitlyn by his/her self-identification.

The LGBT community insists that self-identification should be all that is required to establish one’s gender; however, biologically, Caitlyn remains very much a man. Meanwhile, on the legal spectrum every state has different laws regarding gender change and the legal definition of male or female. California has among the most liberal laws regarding gender change in the nation, but we don’t know whether Caitlyn has actually taken the steps needed to be legally female.

With the biological transition definitely absent and the legal aspect unclear we will continue to refer to Caitlyn as he/she. As for those staunch defenders of self-identification, we ask: if a man takes rabbit hormones, surgically attaches rabbit ears to his head, and insists he be treated like a rabbit, are you really going to treat him like a rabbit?

But, we digress. The latest Caitlyn Jenner news is the “massive outrage” spurred by the introduction of a Caitlyn Jenner costume. According to dozens of different news organizations, Internet social media sites like Twitter and Facebook erupted in outrage and anger as news of the costume spread. While costume retailer Spirit Halloween was the named perpetrator at the heart of the Internet backlash, it should be noted that several Halloween costume makers are offering Caitlyn/Bruce Jenner costumes of different varieties, not to mention of questionable taste.

There are two issues here: First, is the outrage justified? And second, is the outrage truly “massive?”

Let’s address the second question first. We found it quite interesting how dozens of the news articles regarding the controversial costume were so similar to each other. In fact, most of the articles published the same quotes from both leaders of the LGBT community and supposedly random social media tweeters and commentators. A Tweeter identified as “beki,” who Tweeted, “the caitlyn jenner halloween costumes are disgusting. being trans isn’t a ‘costume’ and treating it as such is ignorant & transphobic,” must be among the most quoted people by the media this week, her tweet being so prevalent among the Caitlyn Halloween costume stories.

Given the reported size of the public outrage, we decided to look for it on the Web. Interestingly, Tweets about Caitlyn Jenner Halloween costumes began back in early June. These early tweeters primarily focused on how Caitlyn Jenner would definitely be one of the most popular costume ideas for 2015, with many Tweeters proclaiming their own intention to don such a costume come Halloween, and only a few Tweeters suggesting that it might be offensive. The first photo of the Spirit Halloween Caitlyn costume was posted on July 24, and yet still, not much sign of outrage….

Then on August 21, a Huffington Post blog came out calling the Caitlyn costume the “worst idea we’ve heard all year.” That article spurred a few negative Tweets, which accelerated coming into this week, but by no means does it appear that this was a mass outcry of fury regarding the costume. In fact, the killing of Cecil the Lion (see Hash-It-Out July 28 blog: Iconic Cecil the Lion Slain by Dentist, Moronic Human Killed by Gator) marked more fury on Twitter by hundreds of thousands of Tweets. Yet by August 25, dozens of news organizations had posted similar stories about the alleged mass social media outrage (LGBT PR machine in high gear, perhaps?). We also looked at other social media sites for commentary on the issue, and sure, found plenty of commentary expressing outrage, dismay and other emotions about the costume, but found equal, and in many cases more, commentary decrying the political correctness of those criticizing the costume and of the news media reporting on it.

Also to be noted is that many of the news stories pointed out that a change.org petition had been started on Monday to demand that Spirit Halloween stop producing and selling the costume. As of Saturday morning about 13,500 apparently outraged people had signed the petition. We wouldn’t call 13,500 mass outrage, and also note that this number is smaller than the more than 15,000 people who have signed the change.org petition demanding the Olympic Committee revoke Caitlyn Jenner’s 1976 gold medal.

As for the first question–is the outrage justified? Well, if you are a member of the “easily offended and outraged” club (i.e., the politically correct) the answer is obviously, “yes.” Caitlyn is the club’s newest sacred cow, joining dozens of other groups and individuals who should be treated with unquestioned reverence (as an aside, we’d like to note that we know of another easily “outraged and offended” club that thinks its ok to execute those who dare insult their sacred cows–scary….).

But why should Caitlyn get the sacred cow treatment? He/she is a self-made, attention-seeking, public figure, and thus should be subject to the general public’s scrutiny and resultant commentary, the latter inclusive of caricature and parody, which would include Halloween costumes.

And frankly, we’re finding this year’s “Dentist and Cecil the Lion” costume far more distasteful, but we’ll certainly withhold our outrage because we don’t believe in sacred cows.

–Originally published August 29, 2015 by Hash It Out!