It pisses me the fuck off. Whenever there is the slightest chance for an actual populist movement to arise in this country and have a hope in hell of connecting with the masses the bastions of “liberal” ideological purity rear up and do their fucking best to drive people away from it. Case in point, this idiotic piece of drivel from Greg Laden.
For those who don’t know him, Laden is “…an anthropologist and science communicator who can never decide which is more important: nuance or context.” Greg is also a fucking ignoramus who is fundamentally incapable of admitting when he is wrong. In the afore-linked post on Laden’s blog, hosted on freethoughtblogs.com Laden takes exception at a photo of a woman attending one of the OccupyINSERTCITYHERE events. I can’t find any attribution information on the picture on Laden’s blog so I’m not going to re-post it here — but the picture (which, in the interests of nuance, Laden has titled “fuckedupwhitelady.jpg”) depicts a woman of indeterminate age and means, holding an infant and a sign. The sign reads:
- Not a hippy
- Not a freak
- Not an anarchist
- Not a mob
- Not a punk
- Not vague
- Not a left-wing nutjob
Just a mom here for a better world for my kids
Now, most rational people would read that and see it for what it almost certainly is — a rebuke of the assholes in the mainstream media who have done everything in their power to dismiss the Occupy / 99% movement as nothing more than the vague wining of a mob of left-wing hippy anarchist punk freaks. But Laden, oh mighty communicator of science, sees though this devil-woman’s ruse. The asshat writeth:
The sign indicates that you are complaining about the world you made, presumptive middle class straight white lady with the presumably genderonormative hat on her baby. And you seen to openly disdain all those who have been telling you this all along (and thus by the exclusionary list you’ve given me I’m guessing as to whom you are). I’m glad if you’ve suddenly decided to become aware and enlightened. But judging just from this sign, you still need to get a clue.
Mon Dieu what amazing powers of intuition Laden has. To discern all that from a simple photo. Of course, Laden claims that he can make such bold claims based on the few insignificant things that the woman claims not to be. I’ve just tried about a dozen ways of writing exactly how stupid and exclusionary that claim is but my fingers cramp every time I attempt it.
What really infuriates me about this piece of shit though is not Laden’s woeful attempt at mentalism, nor is it the way that he and his army of sycophants refuse to even consider the possibility that they’re mistaken. No, what sends me into a boiling rage is Laden and company’s presumption to dictate the proper membership of the Occupy / 99% movement.
Let’s be generous and assume for a moment that Laden is absolutely correct in his assumptions. Let’s go with this woman being the very picture of so-called middle-America. She’s an SUV driving, Wal-Mart shopping, faggot hating, Midwesterner. Fuck, let’s even say she’s a Mormon.
So the fuck what?
Last time I checked, the ethos of the 99% movement was contained in its fucking name. It’s the 99% of us being crushed under the boot-heel of the 1% that control our financial system. It’s not the 99%-as-long-as-you-conform-to-our-oh-so-liberal-criteria. As much as I personally dislike the hypothetical woman I made up in the previous paragraph, I would welcome her with open arms into the 99% movement if it could help her see that the real enemy isn’t the fags, darkies and godless but the assholes hoarding the money.
So I’m sorry Greg, you don’t get to set the criteria here. You can take your offense at someone choosing to participate who doesn’t self-identify in the way that you want her to and shove it up your fucking ass. You’re a pox on liberalism and a wretched moron to boot.