“Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.” That’s my favorite bit from Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals. If you only follow one of Alinsky’s 13 rules, it should be that one. Partly because it’s obviously true, but mostly because radicals themselves absolutely hate it. Our friends the Democrats can tolerate anything except laughter. They’re very serious about being taken seriously, and anything else sends them into a rage. You can see two examples of this playing out today, and it just makes me so happy.
If you watched the 2020 Golden Globes live and/or cared about any of the winners, congratulations. The rest of us just waited for the angry tweets and “news” stories about Ricky Gervais making mean jokes about the celebrities in attendance, while they either winced and squirmed, pretended to laugh, or just glared at him:
— NBC Entertainment (@nbc) January 6, 2020
This was my favorite part:
“If you do win an award tonight, don’t use it as a platform to make a political speech, right? You’re in no position to lecture the public about anything. You know nothing about the real world. Most of you spent less time in school than Greta Thunberg. So if you win, come up, accept your little award, thank your agent and your god, and f*** off.”
And he closed out the evening with this zinger:
He did it. The absolute mad man did it.
“…Bird Box, a movie where people survive by acting like they don’t see a thing, so like working for Harvey Weinstein.”pic.twitter.com/toOtUFRD2R
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) January 6, 2020
If you laughed at any of that, if you agreed with any of it, if you think it’s about time all these overprivileged celebs get what’s coming to them from a slightly less overprivileged celeb, then Lorraine Ali of the LA Times has a bone to pick with you:
Forget the escapist magic of Hollywood. Nihilism was the name of the game when host Ricky Gervais opened the Golden Globes on Sunday night with a gloom-and-doom monologue so cynical it made the effervescent Tom Hanks scowl…
The host’s acerbic wit was nothing new… But at the Beverly Hilton, where the three-hour-plus ceremony took place, the mood was already sober thanks to an impeachment, the threat of war with Iran and devastating bush fires in Australia.
The last thing anyone needed was for the smirking master of ceremonies to reprimand them for having hope, or taunt the room for trying to use their influence to change things for the better.
The last thing anyone needed, the first thing, whatever. This is a Hollywood awards ceremony, not a place for frivolity. How dare Gervais tell jokes when there are bad things happening in the world? Americans don’t need to laugh. They need to be angry about the problems they’ve convinced themselves they have. They need to worship the people they see in movies and on TV, and when Gervais mocks them, he’s ruining it.
Slate’s not happy about it either:
Just how big a jerk was Ricky Gervais at the Golden Globes? https://t.co/Eecz2Znl1F
— Slate (@Slate) January 6, 2020
If Gervais wants to mock people, why not pick on hillbillies and Trump voters and blue-collar workers and other approved targets of ridicule? They’re the ones who got us into this mess. Why isn’t he brave enough to go after them?
Despite Gervais’ clearly worded instructions to keep politics out of it, some of the award winners didn’t listen. Which is fine. The whole point of America is that we don’t let any Brits tell us what to do:
Patricia Arquette: I know tonight…we’re not going to look back on this night in the history books. We will see a country on the brink of war, the United States of America, a president tweeting out a threat of 52 bombs, including cultural sites…We have to vote in 2020. pic.twitter.com/bHilCaAcoY
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) January 6, 2020
Michelle Williams delivering a passionate defense of a woman’s right to choose: “Women, 18 to 118, when it is time to vote please do so in your own self-interest. It’s what men have been doing for years.” pic.twitter.com/ipcterXa1H
— David Mack (@davidmackau) January 6, 2020
As for the rest of the show… I dunno? Some rich, famous people congratulated themselves for being so great, and everybody pretended it mattered.
Making jokes at the expense of liberals hasn’t been banned yet, but they keep trying. In addition to the wailing and gnashing of teeth over Gervais, they’re also upset about this joke:
Democrats Call For Flags To Be Flown At Half-Mast To Grieve Death Of Soleimani https://t.co/MR0FIaFKsv
— The Babylon Bee (@TheBabylonBee) January 3, 2020
The problem isn’t so much that this is a good joke with an element of truth, and therefore it hurts Democrats’ feelings. The problem is that so many people have seen it:
A post from a satirical website has been shared more than 500k times saying the DNC called for the flag to be at half-mast because of Soleimani. Some family members just called bc their Republican friends on FB are circulating it like it’s legit. We have a lot of work to do, all.
— Cindy Otis (Pre-order TRUE OR FALSE now!) (@CindyOtis_) January 5, 2020
To put this in perspective, this is the same number of engagements the top NY Times and CNN stories on Facebook had over the past week.
A lot of people sharing this “satirical” story on Facebook don’t know it is satire. https://t.co/HnDjuqw2si
— Donie O’Sullivan (@donie) January 5, 2020
Having a disclaimer buried somewhere on your site that says it’s “satire” seems like a good way to get around a lot of the changes Facebook has made to reduce the spread of clickbait and misinformation.
— Donie O’Sullivan (@donie) January 5, 2020
Donie is a CNN reporter, by the way. I’d be pretty annoyed too if I worked there. More people care about a humor site than CNN? Ouch!
If you’re not used to being the butt of jokes, you’re not going to react well to being mocked. Your skin is tissue-thin. You bristle at the slightest provocation. You just can’t handle people laughing at you.