Recently, some semi-anonymous, international hero flew what at first glance seemed to be the ISIS flag over the London Pride parade. Closer examination of the mysterious flag revealed it to be something that LOOKED like the ISIS flag, but was actually a bunch of dildos and buttplugs. I want this ISIS dildo flag put on a shirt. I want to own the shirt and I want you to own the shirt and I want us all to wear them all the time. I don’t care if you’re a grandmother, a teacher, a priest, a devout Muslim, a Hasid—it doesn’t matter. This ISIS dildo flag is the most effective weapon against extremism that we’ve got, and if we, the good people of earth, are truly going to overcome this particular manifestation of evil, then it is our duty to get out there covered in dildos for the sake of freedom. And no, I’m not joking. I’m dead fucking serious.

After the Charlie Hebdo massacre, hot takes abounded: The magazine is racist, the magazine is brave, the magazine is dumb, satire is the most powerful weapon we have, etc. In fact, if you scroll down to the previous entry on this page, you’ll notice that a hot take of my own is the last time I was on this blog (apologies, by the way). The magazine responded bravely, by going back to work the next day and generally, inasmuch as the lazy west can be galvanized to give a fuck about anything, we got a few artsy martyrs out of the deal (who’s names I sure as shit can’t remember anymore…you?). And then it was back to business as usual in the old war on terror.

Well, now that my take has cooled a bit, the part of the whole Charlie Hebdo debate that’s stuck with me is this: ISIS takes itself and Islam super, super seriously. They’re maniacs who use religion as an excuse to act like maniacs, and taking them seriously empowers them. It was argued (quite loudly) that the only thing that can lessen “the terrorists’” power is to mock Islam, thereby showing their potential new generation how humorless and shitty ISIS is, but that’s absolutely wrong. Mocking Islam is fine, just like mocking any belief system is fine, but it’s not going to make you any friends in the Muslim world. People love that shit. You can’t expect to show a stuffy old dad how out of touch he is, or how cool you are, by mocking his wife and children. Instead of laughing at them and cracking a beer with you, he’s probably gonna punch you in the nose. The idea that mocking Islam weakens ISIS is akin to the argument put forth by white “libertarian” talk radio guys, who say that they should be able to say ‘nigger’ because saying ‘the N-word’ allows ‘nigger’ to become this super powerful word. If everyone just said ‘nigger’ all the time, soon the word would be diffused.

This is obviously flawed and extremely stupid logic—a related strain of thought that is close to, but completely separate from the actual truth. I believe David Foster-Wallace, when writing about this very topic said something to the effect of “it seems to me that if you’d really offend the people listening to you if you referred to them by this particular word, it’s only polite not to,” which makes a lot of sense to me. Of course the counter argument here is “fuck being polite. We’re tearing down walls and tearing down walls is messy.” This seems to sidestep the very real issue of innocent people who’ve dealt with various levels and degrees of oppression being reminded of some of the most humiliating moments of their lives, but whatever. Let’s agree that the word ‘nigger’ is a very bad, hurtful word. I’d argue that white dudes saying it on the radio (or on TV or anywhere) doesn’t really do anything to change that. In fact, I made a conscious decision to type it out here just to prove the point that, while shocking, it’s not exactly encouraging discourse or tearing down walls just by existing in all it’s 6-letter glory. It’s just titillating enough to seem edgy, while turning off people who are easily offended, bonerizing idiots and breezing by the vast majority of people who are reasonable and understand the problem that’s created when loaded, pointed language, identity and history all collide. I’d argue this is EXACTLY what making fun of Islam does.

It’s nuts that people get killed for drawing Mohammed. However, I don’t find drawing Mohammed to be particularly powerful satire. It’s like throwing a pie at a perfectly nice woman just to piss off her shithead son. Islam is not the enemy and ISIS WANTS YOU TO MAKE FUN OF ISLAM BECAUSE IT PISSES PEOPLE OFF, which, in turn, gives ISIS things to point to when they need to show new batches of psychopaths how much “we” hate “them.” I’m not saying don’t mock Islam. I’m just saying that mocking Islam is up there with mocking Christianity or Judiasm or patriotism, in that it will encourage an already skeptical mind, but that’s it. Your islam joke isn’t out there fighting terror. It’s just fighting religion. And although there is a LOT of historical precedent that suggests that terror and religion are best buds, they ain’t the same thing.

(At this point, I’m tempted to invoke the analogy of dipshits who say that TV rots your brain and is poisonous and a complete waste of time [interestingly, the Venn diagram of this segment of the {usually white, usually male, usually hyper-liberal, usually well-off} population overlaps almost entirely with the group who thinks that all religion has ever done is encourage murder, war and suffering], when, in fact, there is lots of GREAT television out there. It’s an artistic medium, and like all artistic media, most of the output is garbage, but lots of it is totally kickass too. To say that all TV is a waste of time is to ignore the truth in order to further a close-minded agenda. Fuck you, anti-TV dork. You’re the worst smug dipshit on the whole smug dipshit continuum).

ANYWAY, by now you see where I’m going, right? That dildo flag got it exactly right. It’s not mocking Islam. Fuck, ISIS is mocking Islam. ISIS is taking a religion that more or less espouses the same general philosophies of any religion (great, all-powerful something…you better be respectful of it, and also how about being cool to one another [gays and women not included}), and using it as an excuse to torture, behead, drown, burn, crucify, skin, maim and terrorize innocent people. That’s a mockery of Islam. Not some picture of a dude with a beard and a headscarf fucking a goat with a pencil up his ass. Whooopity doo! Let’s look at who’s REALLY dragging Islam through the mud here.

And that is why the ISIS dildo/buttplug flag must exist and should be worn by EVERYONE. These are people who hate free thought. They hate sex. They hate pretty much everything (you can’t be part of people in a tiger cage being slowly drowned, or people in a car being burned alive if you don’t hate pretty much everything) and their dumb flag is the symbol of that hate. To replace their icon with a bunch of tools of wanton, awesome hedonism is so great, such a fun way to undermine the organization without maligning a billion innocent bystanders at the same time. If a great party breaks out right there on the ISIS flag, they suddenly become the stuffy dean at the end of the college sex comedy who’s just standing there fuming while all the bras come off and the music gets turned up. You can’t beat hate with hate. You can’t mock a value system that lots of people hold dear and expect to change any tides. You have to be pointed, penetrate the hate where it is the darkest and slowly spread love and understanding from there, not unlike the way a buttplug works.

Okay, who’s making these shirts? Let’s party.


Don’t shoot Cartoonists, yall.

I don’t even really know how to write this. I stand firmly on the side of these cartoonists, freedom, satire, etc. I am anti jihad. I don’t back terror at all. Ever. I am team Rushdie. 100%. I don’t want to take anything at all away from a terrible tragedy. Cartoonists being killed because they insult someone’s goofy ancient belief system, that’s a horrible, dark, inexcusable thing. It really shook me yesterday morning. The rhetoric around this that I’ve seen, regarding the shooters has been pretty “look at these savages, they’re so humorless, they’re beasts. They deserve what they get,” which I tend to agree with.


However, this isn’t really very different from the response to a furious black america burning down gas stations in Ferguson recently. “I got no sympathy for people who trash their own neighborhood” say disappointed white people who have probably never been pushed to the breaking point by a world that actively hates and seeks to destroy them. To quote a great, and severely underrated band, the Honor System, “Starve the dogs for a week, fence em in, they’ll fight until they feed.” When you systematically attempt to destroy people, and senselessly harm them, how can you act surprised when they flip around and use seemingly random, or at the very least, misplaced, frustrated violence in return. At the risk of drawing a super condescending parallel, kids who are beaten often grow up to beat their kids. It ain’t right, but you beat something into someone’s blood long enough, it starts flowing there. Violence begets violence. This is always true and anyone who denies it is either terribly naive or so pampered or detached from reality that they have no real business commenting on violent acts of desperation in the first place.


So the people in Ferguson destroyed some locally owned businesses. How shocking! My friend recently smashed his acoustic guitar into bits after getting into a fight with his wife. Was it stupid? For sure. Is it an unprecedented act of savage sub-humanity? Not even close. there’s a reason that soap operas feature a lot of lamp throwing during heated domestic disputes. That shit happens all the time, even to fancy, white people lamps. BUT, we ain’t talking Ferguson or American race relations or any of that shit today. We’re talking about a couple of shitty thin-skinned, humorless cowards killing some cartoonists simply because they dared insult mohammed. It’s ugly, and it’s a dark day for art, for freedom, for any kind of world that seeks to be free from brutal, thuggish strong arming.


But lemme ask you something. Do you think there’s ANY chance that these dudes had been pushed so far that they just wanted to kill, and this just seemed like a good lightening rod? Do you think it’s possible that the ‘these mofuckers drew mohammed’ was…not an excuse, but a righteous rallying point, a magnifying glass through which to magnify a disenfranchised rage so profound and complete that even the people of Ferguson couldn’t quite understand it?


When we say things like “well, US foreign policy creates more terrorists through these botched military operations” what are we really saying? We’re saying that our bombs and soldiers go into these deserts and kill everyone, brutally. The people left, young men who have seen their children killed for no reason in front of them, children who have seen their parents destroyed IN FRONT OF THEM, rally together in destroyed, bombed out shells of homes and try to make sense of a world where the sky rains fire, money flows like rivers away from them and the organization that just killed your family, your neighbors family and your entire neighborhood, is still occupying your rubble, not speaking your language, not assimilating into your value system, but instead mocking it, killing more people and making more plans to destroy and undermine your way of life. I know, this sounds dramatic and apologist. It’s not. I’m just suggesting that under these circumstances, I bet some pretty fucked up value systems get run up what’s left of the flagpole.


I mean, have you EVER considered traveling intercontinentally to kill a cartoonist? Fuck no. That’s desperate shit. Psychopath shit. In the states, our psychopath shit just seems senseless. Over there, decades of brutality give it an agenda. It’s still psychopath shit, but it’s psychopath shit with the paper-thin veneer of an excuse attached to it, and it seems like we’re all focusing on the excuse like it has any real relevance at all, when it’s obvious bullshit. It’s like focusing on accidentally bumping into a guy at a bar who’d already decided he was gonna kick your ass because he hates your face.

To be clear: I hate the idea of thuggish censorship. I hate violence. I strongly distrust guns. I hate radical fundamentalism, whether it’s islam or christianity. Fuck it all. However, I think that our narrative is deeply flawed when we see these kinds of acts and don’t even ask why they’re happening beyond “wow, these assholes hate our freedom and get super butthurt when you mock their dumb prophet.” That’s ignoring A) that this is an act perpetrated by crazy people and B) that there’s rage out there that’s very real and it’s the result of personal loss and horrible grief. “They hate our freedom?” Sheeeit, maybe because our ‘freedom’ is what’s dropping bombs on their children. At this point, that party line is so played, but all yesterday, I heard otherwise-smart people reducing this senseless horror to that.

No one should be killing anyone, and when something truly evil happens, sometimes it’s just a mailman in a clown suit burying young boys in satanic patterns in his crawlspace but sometimes it’s psychopaths spawned from a place where the rest of a world has destroyed everything they love right in front of their faces and lit their cigars on the burning remains. That horror is real too. Just something to think about.

love you guys.