||[Aug. 30th, 2004|09:46 pm]
The Porn protection League - Politcal Satire
I'll be posting a few things from my Freshman year. This first one was meant to be tongue-in-cheek, but unfortunately my editors didn't quite get it, and, thinking I was being serious, actually got someone to write a "counter-point" explaining why all my "points" were really stupid.|
When I complained to the editors that I felt they had misrepresented me and that the piece was supposed to be satirical, one of them told me, "I'm sorry, but NOTHING in your piece resembled satire in the slightest. Read Swift's A Modest Proposal. THAT'S satire."
I personally thought I was being pretty clear.
A lot of talk has been going on recently regarding Gay Marriage- and many people, particularly on the West Coast, have certain questions about the issue. These are legitimate questions, which deserve to be answered. The most important one generally tends to be, "What the hell's the big deal?" However, I believe I may have found a possible answer to why some people have a problem with gay marriage. I take my cue from the "N-word" controversy.
You see, just like "the N-word" is generally seen as exclusively the property of black people, so "the M-word" is currently seen as the property of straight people. It's nothing personal to gays and lesbians; it's just "our" word. At least for now. And, just like the "N-word" is offensive to some blacks when spoken by white people, so some straight people get offended when gays start throwing around the words "marriage", "wedding", and especially "Best Man" (which, in my home-town of San Francisco, has a whole different meaning).
Some straight people just feel that gays aren't sensitive enough to the long and painful history of straight marriage and oppression. You think black people have had it tough? Trust me. No one has had a harder time than married couples. It all goes back to the Stone Age. The male Neanderthal smashed the female on the head, dragged her back to his cave and "made her his bride". And then, he spent the rest of his life listening to her bitch at him for not taking out the trash. See? We're all victims. To some straight people, gays asking to be married is like white people asking to be slaves. It just doesn't compute.
When most people talk about "preserving" straight marriage, they don't mean that gay marriage will actually hurt the institution of straight marriage- they just want to keep the word in the hands of straight people. It actually makes a lot of sense if you buy into the theory that the biggest homophobes are actually repressed homosexuals: Just like jocks who beat up their gay peers to avoid thinking about the erection they get when they shower with their teammates, the biggest opponents of gay marriage- old 'straight' white guys- are desperate to avoid considering that they- or someone in their family- might be gay. And that's why marriage has to stay a straight word. Because if now straights AND gays can get married... well then, when former Senator Jesse Helms tells someone his grandson got married, it could mean a split-second of awkwardness while someone thinks, "To a woman... or a man?"
Similarly, if gay marriage is made legal, when some old fart Congressman brags about his 60th wedding anniversary, it could require him to add the caveat- "to my wife... a woman... seriously, I've checked."
The issue is not that marriage is "sacred"- if it was, then all that drive-through-Chapel crap that happens in Vegas would have been outlawed decades ago, and adultery would be punishable by stoning. The issue is that Strom Thurmond's frat brothers in Congress ("go class of 1908!") don't want to do anything that gay people do. If a lot of gay people started expressing an interest in fishing, I'm sure you would start hearing some folks whining about the "sanctity" of that, too. Soon there would start to be petitions towards the Fish and Game Wardens to refuse gays fishing permits. That's also why most of the older members of government used to not refer to gay sex as "sex"- it was always "sodomy". It's ok to call it "sex" now, though, because most of the older guys haven't been able to "perform" in years.
I predict that eventually we will have gay marriage in this country (if only in a couple of states), and that it will quickly be followed by a movement among conservatives to coin a new term for straight marriage. In fact, I've already come up with one proposal: "Straight-jacket."
While I am not gay, my god-parents are, and while I did not have any close gay friends growing up, I did have plenty of classmates who later came out in their teen years (interestingly enough, they were the ones who always enjoyed singing the score from "the Lion King" in third grade at recess). So no hate mail, please.
Similarly, while I am not nor have I ever been black or a slave, I did take one year of U.S. History, which covered the Civil War. That, and I watched "Roots" on DVD. And only fell asleep once.
...Any Neanderthals that feel they may have been unfairly maligned or misrepresented are free to complain to the Editors.
This second one was written after the initial editorial debacle, when the afore-mentioned editor told me "Satire's supposed to be so outrageous no one could POSSIBLY take it seriously."
This was what I came up with.
Affirmative Action Doing Whales no Favors
I am not a “hard-core” environmentalist or animal-rights activist. I think conservation is basically the way to go, but I’d like to compromise with Mother Nature on certain points—indoor plumbing for instance. Similarly, while in principle I think saving animals is a fine idea, I also have some issues with the indiscriminate “if it’s an animal, save it” philosophy.
Now, that’s not to say I think we should all be out actively killing animals. I just don’t think all animals necessarily deserve to be saved. Mosquitoes, for instance. But the animals I think have really had it too good for too long are the whales. I personally am getting pretty damn tired of being told to “save the whales.” I say the whales have had enough “down time”; it’s time for them to rejoin the game of natural selection.
Perhaps an example would be helpful: when I was about four, my parents gave me a book entitled “Humphrey the Humpback Whale”. This book, as many seasoned readers undoubtedly know, tells the riveting story of a Humpback Whale named Humphrey who got stuck in the Sacramento River in 1985. After weeks of being kept alive through the kindness of strangers, he was finally freed and tagged for future observation. Five years later, Humphrey got stuck again- near the same spot.
I think whales like Humphrey ruin it for all the other whales. Just think of all the whale-saving resources Humphrey wasted because of his return trip to the Bay. There could be tiny whale orphans out at sea right now, whose mother was beached and died because the “Whale Patrol” was busy feeding Humphrey a bucket full of Jumbo Prawns. What an asshole.
I’m not surprised Humphrey is abusing the system- every time he shows up; he gets food, water, and all the petting a whale could want. He might as well be going to a Club Med. What we need to do in order to discourage lazy animals like Humphrey is to make these “visits” a little less pleasant- the first time, no harm, no foul. The second time, you get slightly lower-quality krill, and maybe a few kicks to the blowhole. The third time- you’re cat food.
If whales were not on the “off-limits” list, then jerks (or idiots) like Humphrey wouldn’t be wasting people’s time or resources- or distracting from animals that really need help, and who aren’t just huge 30-ton media whores.
In addition, I think coddling the whales does them more harm than good. “Political Independent” Fox-News host Bill O’Reilly has often said that affirmative action “denigrates” minorities by making them feel they can’t really accomplish things on their own. Now, while I may think O’Reilly is totally wrong in regards to affirmative action’s effects on human beneficiaries, he might have something as far as animals go. Let’s face it; getting 20 extra points on a college application is really not something that will keep you from going on to become a productive member of society. Humphrey, however, is a different story. Either he has no sense of direction, in which case he should probably be dead by now (either from predators or whaling ships), or he has a great sense of direction, and he’s just feeding off of the kind residents of the Bay Area like some kind of huge leech.
In any case, if we stopped giving whales special treatment, he’d be gone. And the whales would be the better for it. You know he can’t be helping whale evolution. Whatever traits he’s passing on will certainly be coming back later to bite us in the ass. Just think of a huge “welfare state” of whales, crowding up all the bays and inlets, never hunting, instead preferring to deliberately beach themselves in order to get “krill handouts” twice a day. What kind of world would that be?
So, in conclusion, if you really love the whales (or any wild animal), then let them go live on their own. If they don’t come back, then maybe they truly were meant to survive based on their own skills and adaptations, not handouts from us. And if some do come back… please shoot Humphrey in the head. For me.