« May 2015 »

Memo to Thug Debaters, Budweiser, and My Ability To Search: YOU ARE DUMB.

Words can be tricky. We can say them and pretend we didn't mean them. We can put them on a beer bottle and pretend we didn't mean them. Or we can write them and forget where we put them. SPASTIC TOPIC MONKEY FRIDAY!

Racial violence means another go-round with the word "thug". And so, once again, I'm forced to remind you that vocabulary is not the same as meaning.

If I say "That person is a thug because he looks scary in a hooded sweatshirt", that's some racist bullshit, because wearing a hooded sweatshirt is not thuggish behavior. Saying "That person is a thug because he broke a window and set a building on fire" is less racist bullshit. That's not really "thuggish" behavior either, but it's closer to thuggish than having brown skin and a hooded sweatshirt. And yes, I know Obama said it. As the leader of an oppressive society, he has to be oppressive sometimes. It's in the job description.

The point is, like so many other words, it's what you mean when you use it that matters, not the word itself. You won't hear that in the "thug" debate, not even on MSNBC, because that would make certain people clearly wrong, and we can't have that because then there'd be no debate and we'd have to talk about something else.

And while we're talking about words and contexts, hey, Budweiser? There's no way your marketing assholes couldn't have known exactly what they were saying when they rolled out a campaign that called Bud Light "The perfect beer for removing 'no' from your vocabulary for the night."

For one thing, this is the SECOND time the world has rebuked Bud's "Up For Anything" campaign for being too goddamned rape-y. And second, let's see. How shall I put this? If you measured the ratio between the circumference and the diameter of the Venn diagram of "Bud Light marketing team" and "rape culture", you could calculate out to billions of digits. And the marketing team would still think if they gave the ratio enough Bud Light, they could get the first seven of those digits.

And finally, I know, at some point, during either the Ferguson fuckery or the Eric Garner fuckery, I wrote a piece exploring how the powers that be put things out there, true or otherwise, with the express purpose of letting white people convince themselves that whatever bad thing happened to the brown person, the brown person must have deserved it, so the system isn't fundamentally flawed and they can sleep at night.

And since the same goddamn thing is happening to Freddie Gray, I was going to find it and link to it. But I can't find it. And it's late. And I have pre-reserved seats for the first showing of Age of Motherfucking Ultron tomorrow, so you'll have to take my word for it that I am nearly always incredibly insightful and correct in my social commentary.