Wednesday, July 11, 2018
I was prepared last week to hie to my bunker once all hell broke loose.
But July 4 came and went with nary a hint of actual war. Dang it, Alex Jones swore Democrats would be declaring the Second Civil War. Does that mean we can't trust him?
If it took you till now to figure out Jones isn't exactly a font of reality-based news, I can't help you. But the answer is no, we can't trust him.
Jones, if you forgot, is probably most famous for his spreading of conspiracy theories (or, as his attorney in his child-custody case last year said, ahem, performance art), such as Pizzagate (child sex trafficking in the basement of a pizzeria that has no basement) and the numerous "false flag" school shootings (those people were actors, by God; it didn't really happen!!!). Little wonder so many lawsuits and complaints have been filed against him.
While actual conspiracies do exist (the Ridolfi, Throckmorton and Babington plots to kill Queen Elizabeth I come to mind), they're rarely as convoluted or require as many participants as the ones Jones and his ilk advance.
But I can't say I'm too disappointed in the whole Second Civil War nonsense ... at least it resulted in comedy gold. Mockery of ludicrous conspiracy theories can do that.
The Internet, and the Twitter community in particular, almost seemed to rub its hands in glee at the prospect of group storytime.
Amanda Blount tweeted: "My Dear John, The war isn't going as planned. Our supply trucks are limited. I'm out of wine and sunscreen. The enemy burned all the books and there is no place to recharge my Kindle. The only music is an old CD of Justin Bieber. All is lost."
The Biebs? Really? Life is just not fair. Regardless, Blount's tweet inspired others to compose their own mock letters. Soon, #SecondCivilWar and #SecondCivilWarLetters started trending. The messages were largely light and humorous, sometimes dipping into the political, but not usually.
"To My Nieces and Nephews," @DearAuntCrabby posted, "The #SecondCivilWar rages on and I have finally taken the Jack Daniel's Distillery. I will not rest until each keg has been personally inspected for weapons. My sacrifice is for you. Be strong.
"P.S. Please send soda water."
Natalie Lanoville wrote: "News ... from the front is mixed. I and my men were starving, out of ammo, and trapped in enemy territory. Miraculously, we were taken in by the Hipster Division. So much avocado toast ..."
Those letters and others were amusing enough, but some people took it upon themselves to organize a potluck (everybody loves a good potluck), and besides, it was the Fourth of July! You can't have the Fourth without barbecue and its accoutrements.
As is inevitable with potlucks, someone brought something no one wanted. "The days have been long and the lines for the bathrooms even longer," wrote @oufenix. "They've begun checking IDs to make sure our genitals match the symbols on the doors. Someone brought potato salad--with raisins."
That should be a capital offense ... what a waste of good potatoes. I'm hoping it wasn't Kathryn J. Mullee, who tweeted: "I'm so disappointed in this #secondcivilwar. I made enough potato salad for 35 million people."
As if all that weren't enough, within a couple of days rumors started of a Democratic coup planned as part of immigration protests. Either that's wrong, or these people have full-time event planners on their staff and a lot of excess time and energy. Many Second Civil War vets echoed @ProudVirginian, who tweeted: "OK fine, but I'm not putting on that civil war uniform again. It was too hot and the belt didn't match. I'm wearing my shorts for coup. Also, I'm going to sleep in a bit, so let's start the coup at around noon."
If you plan to participate, keep your sense of humor in working order. You'll need it. And I think they have potato salad covered.
Not all conspiracy theories are so easily mocked as the Second Civil War, especially when very real people die. In the case of the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Md., late last month, it only took a few hours for the trolls to show up with their "false flag" theories. Lord knows we can't have a mass shooting without conspiracy theories. Focus on the victims and making sure justice is done? Nah!
One Redditor, reported Andy Campbell at the Huffington Post, proclaimed: "Right on cue. The left must have realized the damage Rosenstein was doing on live TV." Because apparently the left needs to divert attention from Republican Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein being grilled about the Russia investigation ... and being talked over nearly the entire time. (But hey, maybe the representative didn't understand the concept of questions and answers.)
Other theories included that the alleged gunman was being mind-controlled by the CIA or the Freemasons, or was part of a plot to frame Trump supporters.
Activist/conspiracy theorist Laura Loomer tweeted the day of the shooting that it was awfully convenient for Democrats in light of Maxine Waters and Rosenstein, later tweeting, "Civil war is here."
Nope, Ms. Loomer, it's not. Which is why there is so much leftover potato salad right now.
Assistant Editor Brenda Looper is editor of the Voices page. Read her blog at blooper0223.wordpress.com. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editorial on 07/11/2018
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