Meme Them, Mock Them

Right now, some bespectacled Hollywood hack is feverishly working on a script—undoubtedly one for which he will be grossly overcompensated—about “The Martha’s Vineyard Miracle.”

It’s “based on a true story” of how millionaire country club housewives escaped the late summer monotony of cocktails by the pool to help 50 cruelly displaced migrants find their piece of the American Dream.

Somewhere else.

Keep in mind, the women are supposed to be the heroes of the movie.

One should not stereotype people, I know. But watching Martha’s Vineyard homeless shelter coordinator Lisa Belcastro speak to an inquisitive press was too perfect, especially as she told reporters, “At some point in time, they have to move from here to somewhere else.” 

“They” would be the 50 mostly Venezuelans sent to the island by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in an effort to share the load and also, perhaps, to prove the point that our current border policies are untenable.

“We cannot—we do not have the services to take care of 50 immigrants,” Belcastro said. “And we certainly don’t have housing. We are in a housing crisis, as we are on the island. We can’t house everyone here that lives here and works here, so we don’t have housing for 50 more people.”

Belcastro’s brutal honesty—her lack of awareness, given her job title, of the nature of what Americans in southern border states experience daily—made her an easy target for mockery. 

The memes highlighting the residents’ hypocrisy are a treasure trove of comedy. Faced with the consequences of the very policies most of them voted for, the good-hearted liberals of Martha’s Vineyard . . . called the National Guard. 

There was the scene from Forrest Gump “reimagined” with Forrest (the migrants) trying to find a seat on the bus (Martha’s Vineyard).

“Seat’s taken,” the students (MV residents) exclaim.

Or the Homer Simpson meme where he disappears into the bushes, only this time he’s holding an “In this house we believe . . . no human is illegal” sign, only to reemerge holding a sign reading “No trespassing/You’re on camera.” 

My personal favorite was the cartoon meme of the man fake “drowning.”

It’s a recurring image of a man with his face barely poking out of the water—only, when you zoom out, he’s not drowning at all. He’s sitting on the bottom of a very shallow pool. If only he would stand up, he’d be fine.  For the Martha’s Vineyard version, the pool is massive and in the backyard of a mansion, and captioned: “We don’t have the space!”

What fantastic comic relief radical liberal policies like open borders and “no human is illegal” provides, when coupled with real-world application of having these illegal aliens arrive unexpected and obviously unvetted in their own towns.

It might seem odd to make too much of memes, but they are a devastating weapon in modern political warfare and, apparently, the Left’s kryptonite.

What’s a Meme?

That is the logical conclusion of anyone who reads a recent piece in the far-left Atlantic Monthly on the topic of memes and how they almost toppled the United States government.

They are serious.   

The Atlantic published a 1,700-word excerpt from a new book by Joan Donovan, Emily Dreyfuss, and Brian Friedberg, which explores “How Memes Led to an Insurrection.”

The piece begins innocently enough before delving into the overwhelming premise, memes led to January 6, and memes almost took down a nation.

“It was a meme war that spilled into the streets of Washington, D.C., that day in January 2021,” the writers claim.

One clear takeaway from the article? It’s no wonder the Left can’t meme.

Based on the article, it is not clear if they actually know what a meme is.

“Memes are now thought of mostly as images online with a bit of text over them,” the article states. “These are a specific type, known as an image-macro meme, but memes can also be phrases (‘Trump Nation’), slogans (‘Stop the Steal’), gestures (‘the dab’), numbers, hashtags—the list goes on.” 

According to the article, flags are memes. Hashtags #stopthesteal?—also a meme. Phrases or even political slogans? All memes. And memes brought people to D.C. 

“Memes like ‘Make America great again’ helped bring Elizabeth to D.C. in the first place, as did memes like ‘1776!,’” they suggest of a woman featured prominently in their story. “American flags, MAGA flags, Trump flags, and the familiar Gadsden flag, a yellow banner with a coiled rattlesnake hissing the warning ‘Don’t Tread on Me’ . . . ” All of these, Donovan, et al., tell us, are memes.

If I were making a meme of the Atlantic article, I would use that picture of Oprah famously giving new cars to members of her audience, and title it “Memes according to the Atlantic.”

“Everything is a meme!” Oprah would say.

Recently, I sad-joked on my shadowbanned Facebook page that in the future, Americans will be arrested for the memes they share on social media. The experts from the Atlantic seem to agree about the real-world personal cost of memeing or mocking the Cathedral (which is also a meme): “The most powerful warriors now face indictment, prison, bankruptcy, and loss of family and identity, but their ideas, carried into the bloodstream of our society through memes, persist.”

The article suggests that January 6 was foreseeable and should have been expected by anyone reading the tea leaves—and the memes.

“We’d spent all of 2020 tracking memes like the anti-Asian dog whistle #ChinaVirus,” it says. It’s very important when writing a piece attacking the Right always to mention the dog whistle. “For us, the events of that day were entirely foreseeable. They were tragic. But they were not unexpected.”

These authors saw it coming, according to the article—these experts on meme war theory”! If only we could do something about it! And there it is:

Might we suggest some more meme censorship?

For safety’s sake, of course.

Why the Left Fears Memes

The most incriminating line of the article is the one that shows why the powers-that-be—the experts—fear social media and demand intense censorship, especially of memes: “Suddenly you didn’t need a radio show to get your idea to millions of people. You just needed a viral tweet,” the authors reveal. “With the scale and ease of social media, culture warriors from across the country and globe were able to find one another and gather in communal spaces where their ideas could grow.”

Joe Biden may think the average citizen needs F-15s to take on the United States government, but Donovan and Co. conclude that citizens can just topple the government with a devastating meme:

Trump proved that memes can run real-life American politics, and mobilize large groups of people to action. And when those people are fed a steady stream of violence, aggression, and fear, the results can nearly take down a nation.

As most liberals about January 6 tend to be, the writers are full of hyperbole when they contend memes almost brought down America. What is not an exaggeration, however, is to suggest that while leftist ideology may rule classrooms, college campuses, cable news, social media censors, and Hollywood, the Left has not quite cornered the market on humor or memes.

The answer, then, is naturally to meme them. Meme them mock them. Highlight their utter hypocrisy.
Not only do they deserve it, but it also proves effective. Satire and irreverence are legal. For now.

About Matt Keener

Matt Keener is a writer and small business owner from Ohio. His work has also been featured at The Federalist, American Spectator, American Thinker, RealClearPolitics, and WND. You can find him on Twitter @keenermb and on Truth Social @mattkeener.

Photo: iStock/Getty Images

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