The 4 Types of Ignorant Comments about the Duck Dynasty Controversy

…And My Ignorant Responses

I didn’t want to get caught up in this. American media spends 99% of its time debating crap just to keep people entertained or angry enough to keep tuning in, but here I am doing it anyway because this time I saw something important. When I caught wind of the hoopla around the guy from Duck Dynasty spouting off ignorant crap in GQ and the subsequent backlash, I tried to stay away- I did.

But then I broke the rules. I read the articles, and THEN I read the comments too. …Gulp.

So many angry white people are complaining about one of their own being held accountable for his ignorant words.

I’m lucky. The folks I hang around with don’t watch Fox News or listen to Rush Limbaugh, so they’re not aren’t quite as surprised about how the fucking world works as the average newspaper commenter. After reading about 20 of the most ignorant things I could handle I had to crap this out.

So, here’s my response to the top 4 stupid reactions to the Duck Dynasty story, because I had to. If I didn’t, this would well up inside and some real-life slob would get slammed with this and I’d probably end up being stomped on by a circle of rednecks in the parking lot of a bar.

1. “WHERE HAS THE FREE SPEECH GONE?”

As many have pointed out, freedom of speech is not freedom from people calling you out for being a racist homophobe or freedom to continue getting paid for being on the TEE VEE. If the cops bust his door down and actually violate his 1st amendment rights let me know and I’ll help you raise a fuss.

2. “YER JUST BEIN’ TOO POLITICALLY CORRECT!!!”

If I told you that your use of the term “Politically Correct” is the result of conservative think-tanks in the 90’s who planted it into our cultural dialogue in the attempt to make you, the majority, afraid of women, the LGBT community and minorities so that you wouldn’t protect their rights, my guess is you’d ask me what a think-tank is. Next time you want to use that phrase take “PC” and replace it with “respectful” and see what you’re really saying.

3. “ALL THE MAN DID WAS EXPRESS HIS BELIEFS!”

Correct. And this may come as an overwhelming shock, so please sit down. Not everyone cares for or agrees with or even wants to hear the opinions of rich, straight, white males anymore. In a few glorious spots in the country, white males are walking into rooms, starting to spout their opinions and immediately being told to shut the fuck up. It’s amazing. It’s almost as if people are realizing that we have no ability to relate to the experiences of ANYONE BUT white males. Personally, I’ve been enjoying shutting up once in a while and getting educated- you should try it.

4. “WHY ARE WE EVEN TALKING ABOUT THIS? KEEP IT IN YOUR BEDROOM!”

I’m sure that you would be much more comfortable if he hadn’t said this and all the dirty homo talk could just go away so you could continue your conversation about Benghazi, but this is an important discussion. Looking the other way would allow everyone to continue thinking heterosexuality is normal & good while everything else is deviant & bad, everyone’s straight unless they speak up, and no one would get any wiser on the subject. We have thankfully gotten to a point where the discussion IS happening and MAYBE a few folks will discover how harmful and ignorant the kind of speech the DD guy used was.

What do I think of the guy who started this whole thing? I remain blissfully unaware of him and his kinfolk, just as I still don’t exactly know what a Kardashian is and always thought the names of the Jersey Shore cast were Disney characters because I download everything I watch and most of it’s sci-fi anyway.

Glad I got that all out. Whether you agree with me or want to stomp me in front of a bar please do so in the comments instead.

No Pants Star Wars Day: When Holidays Collide

Strip Down & Throw On Your Boba Fett Helmet

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Earlier this week it occurred to me: Friday, May 4th is the date of two separate, yet equally important days of holy observance: No Pants Day AND Star Wars Day! How did this slip under the radar!

No Pants Day

(Wikipedia Article) For the uninitiated, No Pants Day is held the first Friday in May, when observers attempt to go without pants for as much as the day as they can, in public. The idea isn’t to just wear shorts or skirts in lieu of your chinos- you’re supposed to dress as if you planned on wearing pants, and then just didn’t.

About 3 years ago we hosted a no pants party on NPD and it was effing hilarious. People had so much fun we ended up swarming a local bar, still not wearing any pants. What a hoot. There’s something freeing about it- perhaps it’s the breeze.

Star Wars Day

(Wikipedia Article) May 4th happens to be Star Wars day, so that nerds everywhere can spend the day telling everyone “May the Fourth be with you!” Go ahead. Give it a try. I’ll wait.

Anywhoooo, it’s a great excuse to pull all your star wars crap out of your Halloween bin & have some fun

How We Plan To Celebrate

So this evening, we will be hosting a screening some of Georgie Lucas’ finest, sitting around in our skivvy’s. If you think it sounds like a good idea, you should too.

HONEY, YOU’RE ABSOLUTELY WRONG, BUT PLEASE DON’T KILL US BOTH

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This is my story for a contest the RGJ is running for a ticket to Burning Man. Enjoy.

How two sweethearts attended a hippie festival that celebrates life, love and whimsy, and nearly murdered each other right afterward.

“Seriously honey. If you don’t shut up right now I’m running the car into the ditch.”

That was four years ago on a dusty road, while two exhausted people, processing a week of insanity in the desert, were attempting to sort out how to grow together, how to accept change, how to negotiate the teeter-totter of gender balance -and also wondered if anything they owned would ever be clean again. How did we get there and why do we want to go back?

My wife and I just yesterday celebrated our ninth wedding anniversary. We met how most people do in college; I was training to become a minister in a cult, and was attempting to proselytize a fraternity across the street from her sorority. Our infatuation grew into friendship, and friendship into a deep, abiding love. In our traditional roles, my overgrown leader persona matched well with her sweet disposition and tendency towards submissiveness.

After college we were married and moved to Reno, where both of us, adopting the region’s fierce sense of individuality and practicality, questioned our religious calling and decided that a new path fit us better- we just didn’t know what it was so we moved to Guam. Island life was good, but a year later we moved back to Reno and almost immediately a friend of ours gave us a ticket to Burning Man so we could attend their wedding there.

Our time in Guam had changed us. Without the constraints of our past and without the influence of those who knew us we had developed a very strong desire to choose our own path regardless of convention or judgement of others. This seemed to make us a good fit for the counter-culture festival, so we spent the summer researching online, collecting gear and preparing for our foray into an environment we could only guess about.

We entered Black Rock City at night, car packed to the brim and barely able to even take in the spectacle around us. During that week we witnessed people driving around cupcakes and giant slippers. We rode a massive pirate ship of a party across the giant expanse of the esplanade. We experienced chaos and dust storms and lots of things I won’t include here, and we did it as a team. I learned I actually like to dance. Heidi became more comfortable in her own skin, as it’s OK to wear a little less out there. We strengthened our own bond by taking care of each other and formed new ones with our camp mates by taking care of them too. We can’t remember arguing even once, and we each wanted the other to get the most out of the festival.

Then it came time to leave.

During the festival, we barely had any down time. There was so much for us to see and do we had spent our week in Black Rock City just taking it all in and participating in the adventure there. Now that we were pulling out and heading home, all that excitement and adrenaline was giving way to contemplation, processing our experience and a slight sunburn. As we talked about what the festival meant to each of us, we soon focused our new outlook on the year ahead, and what other adventures we wanted to take together.

Very quickly I realized we weren’t going in the same direction.

“I want do be able to do my own thing.”

It sounded like my wife’s voice, and her lips seemed to have mouthed something along those lines, but it had to be a trick. I checked the radio and it was off. There weren’t any stow-away ventriloquists in the back seat, so I decided to ask her to clarify what I obviously must have mis-heard.

“Seriously, Ed. You’re not the only person with good ideas. Half the things you just said I don’t agree with.”

Immediately I told myself not to panic. Obviously I must have grabbed the wrong wife on the way out of the festival. It was getting dark, there were dust storms, anyone could make the same mistake. I just needed to convince this other look-alike to turn around so I could go get the one I came with. Before I could do that it was confirmed that she was indeed my wife, but there was something horribly wrong with her: she didn’t want me making all our decisions anymore.

None of what she was saying made sense to me. There was talk about how I had oppressed her. Stories about times I had shut her down or not let her express herself. She was getting louder and louder and none of what I had to say was helping. Somehow, while leaving to return to the “real world,” reality had given way to some alternate universe where I wasn’t in control and that was starting to freak me out, man. I always knew best. How could she possibly have forgotten that?

Somehow, during our week of experiencing an environment where judgement is tossed out the window and people are encouraged to be themselves, think for themselves and create their own reality, my wife had actually decided she should do it too. We spent two hours screaming at each other about who in our relationship should have the steering wheel. So much, in fact, that my cute, lovely quiet little wife finally threatened to jerk the wheel and send us careening into the sweet hereafter.

Even that didn’t end our conflict. We went back and forth, each of us stating our side. I was the patriarch, my station secure. I was best suited to make decisions because I was born with a natural ability to decide what’s best. It just made sense. If I was to keep our family together headed in the right course I needed to get her to see things clearly again. My shock from hearing such a change in my wife’s disposition led to confusion, and confusion to fear, and fear to screaming like a banshee. Yes, I am afraid I banshee-ed a bit. I’m not proud.

We were both red-faced, forehead veins pronounced, stating and restating our diametrically opposed arguments with vigor and some amount of spittle when something smacked me across the face. It wasn’t my wife.

“You’re right.”

We were both surprised. She didn’t know what to say. Luckily, I don’t have that problem very often so I continued.

“I want you. I love who you are. And as you change I want that new you too. I just need to learn how to let go of things staying the same.”

Seriously I still have no idea where the clarity came from but I’m really glad it did. In ten seconds we went from two people who felt they had no common ground to two people excited to reconnect and support each other. We didn’t realize it while we were out there but the whole time we were having fun we were also taking in all that freedom that comes when you’re allowed to figure out who you want to be. It’s what we loved about our time on an island, and it has allowed us to constantly grow and evolve as we’ve been together.

That ridiculous episode of screaming and near-death experience marked the beginning of a completely new couple we were learning how to be. We were becoming balanced. We were learning how to really support each other, and allow each other to become whatever each of us wanted. We’ve gone every year since. We’re grateful for the atmosphere and the adventure we encounter at Burning Man. Each year we’ve arrived much different than the couple that came before, but each time a stronger team than the year before, and we rarely try to kill each other on the way out.

WutWut? Two paintings in the mail from @mcgreenish?

We’re extremely grateful to have the friends we do. After a surprise visit this weekend from my friend @mcgreenish (the wonderfully talented and supercrazyfun Natalie McBride), what shows up in the mail but two incrediblly awesome paintings for Heidi & me- that she sent before coming out!

We’re far, far, far too lucky.

@heidalicious & @rockstarpaige by the river

Perfect spring night chilling by the Truckee river while @rockstarpaige practices spitting in it.

Kasey Anderson Playing at 7th St. Sation

..aka "my friend Tim’s house." Life is bueno.

Feeding ducks downtown Reno with @rockstarpaige

So perfect.

If it does get better than this, don’t let me know.

Beer, rock, good people & fun times. Glossary at Beerland in Austin, TX. Holy shit.