Black Lives Matter.
Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd on May 25, Memorial Day. Floyd was handcuffed, unarmed, and defenseless, but Chauvin pressed his knee into his throat for nine and a half minutes, ignoring his cries for mercy, until he was dead. Chauvin's accomplices in blue stood and watched.
In March, Louisville, Kentucky, cops burst into Breonna Taylor's home, while she slept, and shot her to death. The police considered this a terrible inconvenience for Taylor and a personal tragedy for themselves because people wouldn't shut up about it.
Cops kill unarmed Black people with disturbing regularity, but the sociopathic brutality of Floyd's death sparked something within the country. It scared the police as much as imaginary poison milk shakes or tampons in their Frappuccinos that obviously aren't tampons. Americans took to the streets in support of Black lives. Even Mitt Romney showed up. Black Lives Matter as a movement grew in popularity.
However, as normal, non-riot-making Americans protested police violence across the country, the police responded with more violence. It was as if law enforcement thought we were the old ladies from the Woody Allen joke: “Boy, the food at this place is really terrible," one complains and the other responds, “Yeah, I know, and such small portions."
We didn't want more generous portions of police violence, but we received it anyway from pouting cops everywhere. You risked a serious beatdown if you exercised your constitutional rights to criticize the police. Suburban mothers were tear-gassed and roughed up in Portland, Oregon. Cops in Boston and New York City ran over protesters in their car (maybe they were jay-walking). San Jose police shot their own bias trainer in the nuts with a riot gun. Minneapolis police arrested CNN's Omar Jimenez for reporting while Black. A police officer aimed a foam bullet gun directly at photojournalist Linda Tirado, better known to you as Wonkette writer Killer Martinis, striking her in the eye and partially blinding her. This was supposedly America.
MSNBC's Ali Velshi was hit in the leg with a rubber bullet, which the shithole president thought was just hilarious. Donald Trump also defended Buffalo police who hospitalized an old man at a protest. Trump thought Roger Stone was treated “unfairly" because he was arrested early in the morning, while still in his pajamas, but the cops didn't even get blood on them or anything. Black folks consider that the white glove treatment. Trump just thinks his friends should remain exempt from the gangland-style law enforcement he finds so entertaining.
There were almost 1,000 instances of police brutality reported during the anti-police brutality protests this summer. The cops didn't seem to get the point. They'd probably show up at a vegan demonstration and hit people with blunt cheeseburgers.
Cops whined a lot about the protests and the bare minimum efforts to even think about holding police responsible for extrajudicial killings and general thuggery. When an Atlanta cop was indicted for shooting a fleeing suspect in the back, there was a sudden outbreak of the “blue flu." Some Minneapolis cops claim they have “PTSD" from the George Floyd protests this summer and demanded taxpayer-funded disability retirement.
Although our next, real president, Joe Biden, spoke movingly about the weight of police violence on the Black community, Attorney General Bill Barr insisted that systemic racism doesn't exist in law enforcement. This is especially laughable during a year where we saw armed white men storming capitol buildings because they didn't want to wear a mask during a pandemic. None of them suffered permanent injuries. Compare this to the Black woman protester an Atlanta cop body-slammed so hard he broke her collarbone.
Trump has denigrated the Black Lives Matter movement, even calling the phrase itself “racist" and a "symbol of hate." Meanwhile, he's compared the cop who shot Jacob Blake in the back, paralyzing him, to golfers who “choke" during a putt (no, really). Even professional terrible person Laura Ingraham thought that was a bit much.
President Klan Robe released the hounds on protesters in Lafayette Park this summer so he could hold up a Bible he's never opened for some Ivanka-directed strongman photo-op. Honorable military personnel denounced Trump's actions, but the New York City police union later endorsed him. He's their kind of guy.
Last week, Trump also pardoned a Maryland police officer who sicced her trained Cujo on an unarmed homeless man. Her conviction in 2001 was considered a “watershed moment" for police reform. This is consistent with Trump's open support for war criminals abroad.
The police will continue to resist constructive change that will save Black lives or even recognize we exist as people. But their enabler in chief is (finally) on his way out. Let's keep up the pressure, on the streets and most importantly at the ballot box.
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THIS is their culture war???
During a global pandemic, what's the absolute least we can do to keep our fellow citizens safe? You might think it's wearing a simple facial covering to avoid spraying coronavirus on everyone, but what we've learned this year is that masks are TYRANNY. Also, Krypton is doomed.
In a mall today in Belleville, Ontario. 100% mask compliance. Literally, I did not see a single person out of the… https://t.co/w5cByxvCVM— David Frum (@David Frum)1595885927.0
Conservative writer David Frum observed that in Canada, people, regardless of political party, "wear coats when it gets cold. Left, right, and center, they wear masks during a pandemic spread by airborne droplets. It's just not something to argue over." The results from this alignment on public health are undeniable: Canada has managed the pandemic with far more “exceptionalism" than the United States. Vox grimly noted in September that If the US had the same death rate as Canada, almost 109,000 Americans wouldn't have died from COVID-19. But at least they died with their masks off ... or more accurately, they died because someone else's mask was off. That's the whole problem.
Masks became a culture war battle in the US. Like most terrible things over the past four years, we can blame Donald Trump, who refused to wear a mask publicly because he's a science-denying moron.
Robert Hahn, a former senior researcher for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, estimated in the Harvard Gazette that as many as 12,000 COVID-related deaths are attributable to Trump's stupid lies about masks. Hahn looked at coronavirus deaths from April 3, when Trump first said something stupid about masks ("It's voluntary. You don't have to do it"), and July 21, when Trump almost came this close to modeling responsible behavior ("I will use it gladly. And I say: If you can, use the mask"). He didn't wear a mask in public like a nerd until July 11 when he'd already resumed his superspreader rallies against public health guidelines.
SMITH: If we're only allowed to be at 25 percent capacity, I want them to be the 25 percent of people that aren't p-----, that aren't sheep ... Being scared all the time isn't good for your health. It suppresses your immune system.
Professional terrible person Laura Ingraham suggested that if Democrats had their way, they'd imprison Americans in cozy cloth masks FOREVER.
INGRAHAM: It's all for safety, then everyone should know this is not a temporary thing. They will ... if they get real power ... pass a rule ... mandating that masks from here on out, on public transportation, whether it's a plane or a bus, FOREVER. Not just now. You gotta wear it during flu season. FOREVER MASKED. It's not just during COVID. It's FOREVER.
However, as a matter of policy, Trump was the annoying orange obstacle when it came to fighting COVID-19. He opposed nationwide mask mandates, as he explained in his native gibberish.
TRUMP: I don't agree with the statement that if everybody wear a mask everything disappears. Dr. Fauci said don't wear a mask, our Surgeon General, terrific guy, said don't wear a mask. Everybody was saying don't wear a mask. All of a sudden everybody's got to wear a mask, and as you know, masks cause problems too, with that being said, I'm a believer in masks. I think masks are good.
Republican governors and mayors took Trump's lead and resisted issuing mask mandates, as COVID-19 spread unchecked in their states. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp even voided local mask mandates sensible mayors had implemented. This death cult behavior was in line with Trump's overall pandemic strategy of pretending the virus didn't exist.
This angry Florida woman argued today against the mask mandate, while bringing up the devil, 5G, Bill Gates, Hillar… https://t.co/GVcyB9e8RC— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@Rex Chapman🏇🏼)1593036103.0
Deranged people, a key Trump demo, held anti-mask rallies and accused public officials of doing the devil's work, which apparently involves slowing the spread of COVID-19. Who knew Satan cared so much about public health?
Trump has used his bully pulpit as president to bully Americans who protest against police violence, but he never denounced the rightwing disinformation campaign against masks. This is likely because he was the spreader in chief of such bullshit.
Even after contracting COVID-19 himself in October, Trump still sneered at mask wearing. He said multiple times in a single day that the CDC had claimed 85 percent of the people wearing masks catch the coronavirus. This was a dangerous lie without any basis in fact or observable reality.
Savannah Guthrie called out Trump's reckless statements during his bonkers town hall: “You're the president — you're not like someone's crazy uncle." For far too long, unfortunately, he was both, but in just a few weeks, he'll no longer be president and his niece, the awesome Mary Trump, won't have anything to do with him, either.
Can't wait to see what new and stupid culture war they come up with next.
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Never forget the mole children.
If there is anything 2020 may be remembered for, other than the pandemic, it is all of the totally bizarre shit people believed. People could make up literally anything, and within days other people would be believing it. Heck, they'd be marching against it. Maybe it was because they were simultaneously bored and freaked out by everything? I don't know!
Personally, I think it was a combination of the pandemic and four years of Donald Trump. Everything has seemed so surreal for the past four years that, really, the best a melting clock is going to get is a bit of a shrug. When extreme things are constantly happening in reality, it's simply easier to believe things that could not possibly be true.
And boy, there was a lot of that in 2020. Let's reminisce!
It is still a little hard to wrap our heads around this, but fucktons of people this year truly believed that some cabinets that were super overpriced (due to a glitch) were actually children that were for sale, via the Wayfair website. There was no evidence, other than overpriced cabinets. And people — so, so, so many people — felt that this was convincing evidence that they were selling children. It wasn't even just the usual QAnon weirdos, it wasn't even just Republicans. It was mostly regular-ass people going "Well this just seems like some very flawless logic here."
Let's all hope it was some pandemic-related madness, and be grateful that it was over for most of them in about a month and we haven't heard anything about it since.
Who among us can forget the MOLE CHILDREN. This was another one of those conspiracy theories, like the Wayfair conspiracy, that was pretty much based entirely on one person going "What if THIS thing were true?" and a whole bunch of other people going "Sounds about right to me!"
To refresh your memory:
They believe that the COVID-19 epidemic is a big ruse meant to keep people in their houses while the US military rescues thousands of children from underground tunnels, some of which they claim are right underneath Central Park. These children were, I guess, transported to the Navy hospital ships — the USNS Comfort in New York and the USNS Mercy in Los Angeles. Now, they claim, these children are being treated in all of the tents that were set up in Central Park to treat people with COVID-19.
The mole children, they claim, have lived underground all of their lives, and are thus "deformed" and sensitive to light (cause it's dark down there in the tunnels). They have, of course, been bred for the specific purpose of being sex slaves, but also for being eaten and having their adrenal glands harvested so "elites" can get high on their adrenochrome. Which, for the 47,000th time, is not a thing anyone can get high off of.
People were very into this, and many were in fact desperately searching for information on how they might adopt one of these mole children that they had suddenly decided definitely exist. Then they got all "Hey! Don't call them Mole Children! That's derogatory and cruel, to these children that exist only in our fevered imaginations!" Sadly, after a couple months went by with no glorious announcement that the mole children had been freed, and with COVID-19 still happening, they all either kinda gave up on that theory or decided it was some kind of ruse to make them all look stupid. Which is not hard.
Back in April, Donald Trump started rambling on about how maybe injecting bleach or other disinfectants might cure COVID-19. It should come as no big surprise that his dumb ass followers quickly followed his lead and hospitalizations for bleach/lysol drinking went way, way up afterwards. Then, this dude in the picture here, Mark Grenon, the pope of the "Genesis II Church of Health and Healing," started pushing his Miracle Mineral Solution (which is actually bleach) as a cure for COVID. He was swiftly arrested for violating a federal order to stop doing that. It is not clear what he's been up to since!
Because the actual origins of COVID-19 were so unexciting, a whole lot of people really wanted there to be some other explanation. One of the things they settled on was that it was created so that Bill Gates could fund a vaccine for it that would contain a microchip that would also be the Mark of the Beast. It seems like an odd choice given that there are so many other ways they could get such a microchip into people, if one were so desperately inclined to make people accept the Mark of the Beast, but there's no accounting for stupid.
Disgraced scientist Dr. Judy Mikovits briefly enjoyed a lot of fame for appearing in a short "documentary" in which she explained that COVID-19 was actually a plot by evil doctors to, uh, do something. She never explained what that something was. The "documentary" — in which she also claimed that shutting everything down and wearing masks would actually make everything worse — spread on social media like wildfire, because people really, really, really wanted that to be true. It wasn't, and as far as I know, we haven't heard from her since.
Was Google pressured by Black Lives Matter to erase Winston Churchill's VERY EXISTENCE? Devin Nunes sure thought so!
From randos on Reddit to the Daily Mail to Devin Nunes, top minds everywhere were speculating in mid-June about why a Google search for British Prime Ministers had Winston Churchill's name ... but not his picture. The explanation, they were sure, was that Black Lives Matter canceled Churchill and Google was going to erase him from history! The actual explanation was that it disappeared during an update.
I don't think I will ever love anything like I love Florida congressional candidate KW Miller's theory that Beyoncé is secretly an Italian woman named Anne Marie Lestrassi. He also claimed that Patti Labelle was a Satanic Deep State Agent involved in a plot to reinstate Barack Obama as President of the United States.
KW Miller lost his congressional bid and has since been suspended from Twitter.
Before all of the looney tunes on the Right were declaring COVID-19 a hoax, they were trying to profit off of it. After all, people like Jim Bakker and Alex Jones have literally been preparing for this for years, selling food buckets and getting ready for the end of the world and what have you. So they were immediately prepared with said food buckets — but also with a lot of colloidal silver.
And they tried selling their colloidal silver as a cure for COVID. This, however, did not work out as they had dreamed and they both subsequently ended up in a bit of legal trouble because of regulations barring people from claiming that things that are not cures for COVID-19 are cures for COVID-19. ALAS.
The QAnon crowd got their stolen valor on this year by declaring themselves deputized "digital soldiers" (deputized by Michael Flynn, naturally) and taking the oath of office in order to swear themselves in. And they posted a bunch of videos of themselves doing so, very seriously, as Q instructed them to do. Hilarity, obviously, ensued.
Donald Trump won the 2020 electionGiphy
Trump himself still believes this. Or at least he's pretending to in hopes that he can The Secret his way into another four years at the last minute.
What a long strange year it's been! Don't forget to give us money, if you are able!
Out of ... a whole lot of crappy dudes.
Over the past few years, the primary concern with violent young men has been that they may go on shooting sprees over not getting laid, or because they were otherwise mad at women. This year, it seems, most of them have moved on from extreme misogyny to racism and general John Bircher ... ism, or going around screaming about socialism like so many assholes before them. I don't know what the next phase of this is, but let's just hope it doesn't get worse.
If you don't think deplatforming works — consider this! I totally forgot about Stefan "Lipstick Is Like Wearing A Boner On Your Face" Molyneux's entire existence. He got banned pretty much everywhere earlier this year, and I could tell you absolutely nothing about what he is doing or what he is currently on about. He was particularly sad this past year over getting kicked off of YouTube and being forced to get a normal job, because all he's good at doing is being super racist and sexist all day and regular jobs don't usually appreciate that much. Plus, how is he even going to get by without regular donations from people like *checks notes* Christchurch shooter Brenton Tarrant?
Frankly, we don't care.
The Comedy Stylings of Wohl and Burkman
Here are some other garbage dudes we may not be hearing from for a while. Jacob Wohl and Jack Burkman are currently facing 12 years in prison for putting out a bunch of super racist robocalls in several states, including Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Illinois. Though a part of us will miss their completely ridiculous "press conferences," we will not miss the way they screamed at people mourning Ruth Bader Ginsburg, or literally anything else about them.
The Proud Boys
Where to even begin here? The Proud Boys spent the year being violent, sadistic, racist psychopaths in matching outfits. They showed up at Black Lives Matter protests for the purpose of beating people up for protesting against police brutality. Probably because it is the only way they can feel alive.
Joseph Epstein, who is not a doctor and does not have a doctorate, set off a firestorm this month after writing a bizarre, misogynistic screed in the Wall Street Journal in which he whined that Jill Biden, who is a doctor and has a doctorate, should not call herself Dr. Jill Biden because of how she is not a medical doctor and then proceeded to compare her to several men who hold honorary doctorates, which is not what Dr. Jill Biden has. He sucked.
It also turned out that he wrote a super homophobic article back in the day, and was once very worried that, even though he doesn't necessarily retract any of the things he said, "Noted Homophobe" would be carved on his tombstone. Now it will be "Noted Homophobe and Misogynist," though he may not like that one better.
Tucker Carlson, Duh
Yeah, this is just a given.
Oh my gosh, totally forgot about this dude. He's the guy who, back in February, tried to sue a bunch of women he went out on dates with for talking about how much he sucks in a private Facebook group, claiming that this made it hard for him to get a date. This was after he went to the home of one of the women who was "disparaging" him and started screaming her name and calling her a "fat bitch."
Now, pretty much the only thing that is on the internet about him is him suing these women for talking shit about him, which we hope will make it even harder for him to get a date.
Who could believe that Robin Hanson, a guy who once argued for a "redistribution of sex" to keep incels from killing people (and compared them to Jean Valjean), would have a terrible take on coronavirus? Probably everyone! And he did! Back in February, he argued that we should just ... start infecting people with it in "waves" so as to not overwhelm the country's medical infrastructure. That sure would have been a bad idea, given that even now we don't really know if having coronavirus makes one immune to coronavirus. Good thing we don't take medical advice from economists. Most of us, anyway.
What is it these days with men going around dressing up in matching outfits and acting like assholes? Unlike the Proud Boys, the "Boogaloo Bois" aren't trying to pretend they're anything they're not. They are preparing for a race war, they want to do some terrorism, and they're not shy about saying so.
The militia dudes who attempted to kidnap Gretchen Whitmer
These fine young men from Michigan were so darned upset over all of the COVID restrictions imposed by Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer that they staked out her house and planned to kidnap her and "put her on trial." Unfortunately for them, this was illegal and now they're all going to jail. Whoops.
Kyle. Just Kyle.
Karens had a bad year, obviously. But you know who also had a bad year? Dudes named Kyle. Though not Kyle Maclachlan, who is the best and the handsomest, thank goodness. But Kyles, as a whole, kinda sucked. There was Kyle Rittenhouse, teen killer, and also Kyle Smith, a pedantic creep from the National Review who doubled down on Joseph Epstein's "Dr. Jill Biden can't call herself a doctor even though she earned a doctorate, because she didn't deliver any babies" shtick, and who has previously been terrible in myriad ways. Kyles are gonna maybe need to chill in 2021.
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