Noted Crackpot Naomi Wolf To Headline ‘Juneteenth’ Anti-Vax Freedom Fest
Conspiracy theorist and all-around weirdo Naomi Wolf is a featured guest at an upcoming fundraiser called “Liberate Our Five Freedoms." The five freedoms, which when combined can form a blazing sword, are listed on promotional material as “No Mask Mandates, No Vaccine Passports, Freedom Of Assembly, Open Schools Now, and No Emergency Law."
The event is scheduled for June 19, which is also Juneteenth, the day that marks the end of US slavery (more or less — those prisons won't fill themselves, after all). Obviously, other things have happened on June 19. It's Paula Abdul's birthday. It's when 1992's Batman Returns starring Michelle Pfeiffer and some other people was released in theaters. There's a lot to celebrate, and Black people aren't territorial. However, the event specifically states that it's taking place on Juneteenth, because these people are assholes.
Organizer Kathryn Levin told journalist Eoin Higgins that scheduling the event on Juneteenth was deliberate and appropriate. That's her opinion, which she is free to have because she's not literally a slave.
"The 19th is a day of emancipation, and it's a day when we claim our freedom," said Levin. "It's when we see that we are not slaves to mandate. It's when we take our power back."
On June 19, 1865, General Gordon Granger informed enslaved people in Texas that they were free. Technically, President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation had already outlawed slavery in secessionist states effective January 1, 1863, so Black Texans had been “free" for more than two years already. It was like the “hilarious" ending to The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. There was no Twitter in those days, and news took a while to reach remote parts of the country. Also, as with today, the federal government must enforce Black people's rights in Southern states or it's all just academic.
If Levin and her fellow flakes had to wait another two and a half years before learning the pandemic was (almost) over, she might have cause to lean into the Juneteenth comparison. Instead, she just considers herself oppressed because Trader Joe's wants her to wear a mask while she's shopping.
Enslaved Black people endured centuries of white Americans' brutal whims, which included psychological torture and rape. Higgins asked Levin how she could possibly compare this to "the temporary restrictions over the last 15 months due to the pandemic," which were admittedly a minor inconvenience.
"We have been enslaved by our government," she replied.
No, ma'am, you have not “been enslaved by the government." You just have to wear a mask on an airplane. My ancestors would've eagerly worn any number of masks if that meant no longer being a slave. They'd have gone full Zorro with the cape and all that shit. It seems like Kathryn Levin has no clue what slavery was actually like, but I am happy to educate her. I could spend the rest of my life running a Slavery Fantasy Camp For White People Who Can't Metaphor Good.
Naomi Wolf was banned from Twitter last week after months of spreading misinformation about COVID-19. She'd recently tweeted that vaccinated people's urine and feces needed to be separated from the general sewage system ... for reasons. She'd also claimed that the vaccines are a “software platform that can receive uploads," which is both bizarre and false. She'd also compared Dr. Anthony Fauci to Satan, but that just makes her a common Republican.
Wolf was once an adviser to both Al Gore and former President Bill Clinton, but I doubt either would take her phone calls now. She's likened vaccine passports to population separation efforts in Nazi Germany. She's nuts is what she is, so she's a fitting headliner for Kathryn Levin's insulting hyperbole festival.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."