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Hijacking the Proud Boys and MAGA Narrative Amidst Ruinous Reality.
Want a break from the hate and lies and dystopian circus of evasions represented by the staged and/or photo-shopped pictures of Cadet Covid “working” at the hospital by signing his name on blank pages while being either very sick or not so much, which is hard to tell because he’s inexplicably wearing the suit from the day he arrived and no mask, gown, IV, or other standard hospital gear for COVID patients and his minions have been so busy for so long dodging hard facts that the very concept of truth long ago slipped out from their tawdry, devious, camera-ready binders so now, really, who the hell knows. Anyway, if you just….can’t….take any more, check out Twitter’s new, improved, very gay #Proud Boys, which some wiseacres have gleefully reclaimed, in an act of world-class trolling amidst the maelstrom, in order to post images of gay love, hope, true pride and plenty of glitter. The radical re-working – of a group that it turns out took its name from a song by a gay Jew – was sparked by the casual query of actor and activist George Takei: “What if gay guys took pictures of themselves making out with each other or doing very gay things, then tagged themselves with #ProudBoys?” Proud gay boys, already “on standby” as instructed, embraced the triumphal notion. They also added – thanks Katie Porter – the moniker #ReclaimingMyShine. Declaring “love must be louder” and “heels not heils,” scores of couples posted joyful images to celebrate “the only acceptable proud boys out there – the very gay ones.” Even Canada’s armed forces joined them: “If you wear our uniform, know what it means….Love is love.”
Because such wily, online resistance has long been abetted by the utter ineptness of this administration’s evil machinations, the newly sparkly, trending #ProudBoys was joined by another mutinous hashtag, this one born of the Trump campaign’s latest brainchild: the frantically, newly launched Operation MAGA. Its job is to “fire up the entire MAGA universe to keep (the) campaign at full speed until our Commander-in Chief returns to the campaign trail.” Alas, noted Meidas Touch, they bungled it. “Oopsies!” they wrote. “They forgot to lock up the Twitter handle. Silly them.” Cue the new, improved @OperationMAGA: “Patriots! Welcome to Operation MAGA! Together we will make America great again. We have the greatest number of COVID deaths, the greatest economic recession and the greatest leader infected with COVID-19! Herd mentality for all!” Posts include “Send hamberders!” and “Great Supreme Leader is about to Say Hello to the Proud Boys who are Standing by! Please don’t ask for Medical Records!” as Trump appears on video babbling he’s had “more enthusiasm than probably anybody before.” One final juxtaposition as proof life in America can’t get any more surreal: Sunday marked National COVID-19 Day of Remembrance, with a seemingly endless 20,000 empty chairs set up in D.C. to mourn the country’s now 209,000 deaths, most the result of Trump’s “homicidal negligence.” Sunday also marked the release of the newest commemorative coin from the privately-owned White House Gift Shop. For $100, you can pre-order a coin, with “design suggestive of superhero graphic art,” that declares, “President Donald J. Trump Defeats COVID.” We’re gonna need more glitter to get through this.
Sailor Bryan Woddington kisses husband Kevin after seven months at sea. Photo from U.S. Navy.
Halloween in Provincetown
First published in Common Dreams