Shit that Pissed Me Off – 4/19/19
Trump Corner – Twitter
Donald Trump loves Twitter. His followers love him on Twitter. He can say whatever he wants, regardless of actual facts and he can see the love immediately. The likes. The retweets. He lives for that. Every like feeds his ego like krill feed blue whales. And like blue whales, Trump’s ego is one of the largest living things on the planet.
This week, like every week, he’s tweeted some outrageous things but I’d light to highlight a two things on opposite ends of the “fuck this guy” spectrum.
On Friday, he tweeted something that was directly aimed at Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar. Omar, you may recall, has made some comments recently that were inadvertently anti-Semitic (and which she has apologized for more than once). One has to contextualize all of this by recognizing that Omar, a Muslim, is supportive of Palestine (like a lot of Muslims). Her opinions on the Israeli/Palestinian conflict will more than likely be influenced by that and anyway, she has made some comments there were less than perfectly worded. I assume that is because she is human.
Trump makes such statements all the time. But his supporters love him for it.
He also has noticed that Omar is someone his supporters inherently dislike because she is a Muslim and they really don’t like Muslims. So on Friday, Trump tweeted “we will never forget” and a video of Omar talking about persecution Muslims have faced since 9/11 and then some shots of the burning buildings.
It was a shocking racist embarrassment by a President whose theme song is “Racist Embarrassment” by Kid Rock.
As a result of that tweet, Omar has stated that the number of death threats she has received have increased. The conservative response, by the way? Quit whining – Donald Trump receives all sorts of death threats.
I mean, of course he does. He’s the President of the United States. Even if he weren’t an insufferable prick he would receive more death threats than almost everyone in the world. Not as many, I’ll bet, as Barack Obama received. But a lot.
Thing is, he regularly makes statements that put other people at risk and he doesn’t give a fuck.
So two takeaways here: Trump is using the fact Omar is a Muslim to fire up his base against Muslims and Ilhan Omar is getting more death threats than she used to. Which means she was already getting them all the time. But Trump made it worse. On purpose.
The second tweet I’m highlighting was after Tiger Woods won the Masters golf tournament on Sunday. Woods, once the greatest golfer in the universe (I feel confident saying that since the principles of evolution suggest there is no way any other intelligent species has developed golf), has been through a lot of challenges over the last ten years. Some (a sex scandal) were his own fault. Others (several back injuries requiring surgery) were not. His return to glory was certainly inspirational to some.
Especially Trump, who loves golf almost more than he loves himself. He tweeted out his congratulations to Woods, whom he has golfed with and would probably claim he is better than, and said as a result of Woods’ accomplishments, he was awarding him the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
The Medal of Freedom is the highest civilian honor in our country. It is awarded by Presidents to individuals who, history tells us, share their values.
I have no idea if Woods is a Republican. He’s a golfer and most golfers are conservative. He also comes from a very different background than most golfers. I also think he’s more of a pragmatist in the Michael Jordan vein who keeps his politics to himself because people of all political persuasions buy Nike products.
Regardless of his politics, he’s a winner. Again. And Trump likes winners. So even though there is typically a long vetting process for Medal of Freedom winners, Trump just fucking announced he’s giving one to Tiger.
Woods will be one of the youngest people to receive the award (most of the Apollo astronauts were younger).
I can see why Woods, who may be the greatest golfer in history and who has been a pioneer as a person of color in a sport that doesn’t have very many of them, is deserving of recognition.
But I’m not going to deny I’d prefer to see it happen twenty years from now when Woods has retired and, hopefully, used some of those billions he’s earned on philanthropic endeavors. But he’s probably a deserving recipient.
Here’s the thing, though, Trump isn’t giving this award to Woods because of Woods. He is giving it to Woods because in doing so, he gets to share in Woods’ accomplishments. He gets to make Woods’ Masters win, a great individual achievement, about him.
Never forget that this is all about him.
If Woods never won another major golf tournament, Trump wouldn’t have considered giving him the Medal of Freedom. Woods did it while he was President, though, and that means Trump, the President of Golf, gets to recognize him for it.
Meme that Pissed me Off
I’ve spent a lot of time complaining about our Tweeter in Chief but there is a Meme I’d like to consider:
So what’s going on here? We have a pro military meme basically telling the rest of us that we drink pansy coffee and we should pause for a moment to appreciate the military for being out there and shooting people.
The Starbucks reference (coupled with the term “snowflakes”) would suggest the primary target of this meme is liberal pansy coffee drinkers. Conservatives drink their coffee black. And they don’t even use beans. They just put black food coloring in hot water. Like god intended.
Milk in coffee is for liberals. The only thing Conservatives think cows are good for is steak.
For the record, I hate coffee no matter how much unicorn fairy juice you put in it. I love steak.
Did I mention the meme is also super homophobic? I mean, sure, they could be talking about women when they mention dick juice but I don’t think they are. Do you?
This kind of military fetishism is a huge problem. We have military serving in Iraq and Afghanistan but it’s important for us to realize that most of us don’t want them there. We are taught that military service is, basically, the best thing you can do for your country. That while we are drinking our Starbucks Coffee, we need to be constantly thankful for the soldiers protecting American interests in countries that will possibly be worse off when we leave them than when we arrived.
And look, I realize that the world we live in means we are stuck needing a military. But I don’t have to like it. And I can respect people who choose to serve without thinking that there is no nobler pursuit. Because there are many noble pursuits.
So stop guilting people about their coffee. Because I’ll bet members of the military like Unicorn Fairy Dick Juice coffee too. And there’s a Starbucks in Baghdad so they might even be able to get some!
Regardless of my own personal religious beliefs (or lack thereof), Notre Dame is a building of massive historical and cultural significance and the fire the engulfed the building this weekend was a tragedy even if no lives were lost.
I want to see it rebuilt. So I’m happy that the funds to do so were quickly raised by some of the world’s most prominent money hoarders. That money will mean both a restored building and hundreds of well paying jobs.
There’s been a lot of backlash as people have observed billionaires could send almost everyone in the world to college if they wanted to but what got them to empty their pocketbooks was the chance to have their name on a plaque in a rebuilt Notre Dame. The backlash to the backlash comes as others get upset because those billionaires should be able to do whatever they want with their money. If they want to swim in it like Scrooge McDuck, they should be able to do so!
At the same time, it is worth noting three churches with predominantly black congregations were burned down in Louisiana recently and before the Notre Dame fire, they had raised less than $100,000 to rebuild. After the fire and the millions pledged to rebuild Notre Dame, those churches have received nearly 2 million in donations as people pointed out the disparity in what we choose to care about.
It took billionaires caring about a well-known church to get most of the rest of us to care about some unknown ones.
So that’s a good thing, I guess.
But here’s what pisses me off. It is not that Notre Dame is going to be rebuilt or even that billionaires are doing arguably good things with their money (though I imagine none of them will be pledging 100 million to rebuild one of those Louisiana churches).
It is that income inequality is a thing. The people in the world with the most money have more power to solve problems then the rest of us do. It took thousands of people to raise 2 million for three churches in Louisiana. It took less than a dozen to raise almost 400 million for Notre Dame.
The system is broken. And there are those who defend it by saying Scrooge should be able to swim in his money if he wants.