Saturday, September 3, 2011

Andrew Johnson: The Impotent rage of a voiceless generation

  We’re getting our asses handed to us, boys and girls. There is no other way to say it. And by our grandparents no less. When Nixon escalated the Vietnam war and started sending thousands of young men to die simply to further political goals, our peepops took to the streets with draft cards ablaze and middle fingers extended defiantly towards Washington. When a black woman wasn’t considered good enough literally to defecate where a white woman could, our nanas marched through fire hoses and vicious dogs to stand at the steps of power and say, “I’m an American and a human being and I refuse to be treated as anything less.”

  And when corporate puppets hold the nation’s economy ransom to keep 2% of Americans from making the same sacrifices as everyone else, by god we type an angry Facebook status and sit on our pudgy asses to await the ten minutes Jon Stewart will spend talking about it before moving on to some interview where John Oliver acts like a douchebag.

  Now I love Jon Stewart, I truly do. He and Stephen Colbert are some of the few popular figures who will call out the powerful and the affluent on their nonsense. But that’s the problem. The only people who look at things with objectivity and have the means to tell people to cut the crap are those who by their own admission can’t be taken seriously. Something is wrong when the people we look at to express our rage and frustration are the people using dildo wheels to make dick jokes about congressmen.

  Stephen Colbert’s speech at the 2006 White House Correspondents' dinner was a seminal moment in the American comedic culture. He stood five feet from the most powerful man in the world and called him a complete moron to his face. He spent seven minutes skewering him and his cohorts with an eloquence and wit that Mark Twain himself couldn’t have mustered. It should have been one of the greatest moments of that year and been dissected and discussed for days afterwards by every pundit with a suit and a camera. But it was ignored by the media and not a single care was given. Why? Because at the end of the day they could just brush it away because he’s “just a comedian,” so who cares? Meanwhile some dude chunks a shoe at him and the whole nation loses their mind.

  The inherent impotence in satire is a discussion for another day. My point is that until our generation, my generation finds a voice that can’t be viewed with easy indifference, a voice that will stand on the steps of government, stare unblinkingly into the syphilitic face of American power, and declare that “this shit is unacceptable,” nothing will change. Until our St. Crispin’s day comes and our Harry rallies us to battle, we will remain impotent, and apathetic. We will remain, in a word: Fucked.

  About the author: Andrew Johnson is a Student at AUM, writes for the AUmnibus. He also resembles a pudgy, young Harrison Ford.

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