A couple of nights ago, at an open mike night event that preceded a benefit for the Viola Project, the Shakespeare for Girls workshop founded by my roommate and another friend, I got to read the opening monologue of Activision before a bunch of folks, a play that I wish existed in full theatrical form but getting to read it to said folks is a nice little taste of how nice it would be if it did in fact exist. People seemed to like it, one guy even bought me a beer.
The monologue is basically the alienated feelings of a brokenhearted liberal idealist about America. It might not be stretching things too much if one were to speculate that in this scene at least, the character might be a touch autobiographical. Anyway, I thought of that when I started reading about ol' Ann Coulter's latest work. Provocation is what she loves I guess, so maybe she's winning by making me write about her. I don't really care. I suspect all her victories are hollow. This is the woman who laughingly mocks Max Cleland for losing three limbs in Vietnam from a friendly grenade instead of an enemy weapon. The woman who tells us her "one regret" about Timothy McVeigh was that he didn't blow up the New York Times building. The woman who tells us that all liberal women are "ugly". Those are just the more well known ones, my favorites are obscure gems like "The Muslims hate us? Fine, we hate them. The Japanese used to hate us but a couple of well placed nuclear bombs later, they're gentle little lambs."
She always calls herself a "humorist" and a "satirist", the defense that reminds you of the subtle junior high bully who rips you apart in front of your friends and then protests that she's only kidding. Her "comedy" brings to mind a brilliant bit from a recent New Yorker issue that talked about Adolf Hitler's (Godwin's Law be damned) sense of humor. It imagined the jokes he might tell like: A guy goes to a doctor, the doctor says "You have minutes to live", the guy says "I want a second opinion", the doctor says "Okay, you're also of an inferior race." then shoots him.
I knew who she was probably as far back as 1997 or so when she and her fellow blonde fascists were regular guests on Bill Maher's show and other infotainment outlets, but I think I first really noticed her breaking out of the pack in the aftermath of the 2000 election, when I read a column of hers that suggested the famously disenfranchised elderly voters in Florida were not true Floridians at all but rather "nostalgic Stalinists from Brooklyn, New York, transplanted to Florida in their dotage." My eyes immediately widened as I wondered how many words are really necessary in order to express the concept "Jews." To this day, I've never seen anyone else comment on that one. But it really demonstrated the sea change in terms of what's acceptable and not acceptable to say in the mainstream media. It used to be that vicious racial bigotry needed a little veil to cover it up. It still does. But the veil has gotten a lot shorter. In a way, I think that's a good thing. I think the full gamut of ideas can and should be expressed in public forums. But the veil should be taken off entirely. If you want to say Jews, say Jews...
The thing is, our mass media, which each side says is biased for the other side but I don't think is biased for either so much as dumb, tends to condemn Coulter but it has the same sort of half condemnation, half giggling appreciation for her that it has for Michael Moore. They put them in the same box, just a couple of crazy, colorful extremists. Now there's a lot I don't like about Michael Moore. In fact there's a lot I really dislike about the man, who has said some very unwise and immoderate things. But the truth is, you can get a lot farther into the stupid Left than Moore, but you won't see them on TV. And more apropos, he doesn't deserve to be in the same box with Coulter. Frankly no one does.
So the big, current controversy is about how she attacks a quartet of the 9/11 widows who had the audacity to support John Kerry's candidacy for the presidency on the heretical basis that he might do a better job of handling national security than the current president. And they called for a full investigation into pre-9/11 intelligence. (If Al Gore had been president on September 11, 2001, he would have been impeached by Christmas) Ann refers to them as "witches" and suggests that they have taken "glee" in their husbands' deaths. As usual, the newspapers only tell a fraction of the story, and I had to investigate myself. I picked up her book and I read about fifteen seconds before she made a joke about Bill Clinton (whom the widows interviewed and called "forthcoming) having sex with them. That's when I slammed the book shut.
Why is this woman, apologies to every woman in the world, why is this inhuman *thing* still given a place atop some of the most powerful forums of our republic?
More than the usual gang of idiots are talking about her this time. New York's Republican governor has issued words of condemnation for her book, as has a White House spokesman. This feels like the turning of the tide, her "Have you at long last no decency?" moment in which she is finally driven from the public discourse.
But it won't matter. The truth is she does represent the views of countless people who call themselves Americans. People who say the things she says in living rooms and backroad bars all over this country that don't bother cloaking it in fancy phraseology. But like I said, I wish the veil would come completely off.
I wish she could just say "Jews" when she means "Jews". Or "faggots" when she means "faggots". Or "niggers and spics" when she means "niggers and spics".
What I'm afraid of is that it wouldn't make much of a difference.
God I want her so badly...I've had one of my characteristic changes of heart and have now turned away from the white heat of my moral outrage and remember that I find evil women incredibly hot, the more evil, the better. A woman who makes gleeful comments about the deaths of innocent people is a woman I desperately want to do, there's no getting around that.
It all goes back to the Baroness on GI Joe...
She's listened to because she has long blonde hair and long tan legs, and wears cocktail dresses to 6 a.m. breakfast tv interviews.