You know me: Not a Real Man™. In general, I think men who act macho and belligerent are hiding something. They have very small penises or are awful in bed or are gay but too cowardly to admit it. Something. Regardless, it’s all about being terrified. So I’m not at all surprised that the political party of the macho man, the Republicans, should show its true colors and quake at the idea that terrorists kill people. I’m sure they are looking for women to walk in front of them so they lessen the impact of any bomb blast. If they are kidnapped, they won’t need to be tortured to yell, “Do it to Julia!”
It seems to me that the Paris bombings are a bigger media event here than they are there. We really are a nation of cowards. It takes almost nothing to set us off. This is why, with less than 5% of the world’s population, we spend just short of half of all the money on weapons. It’s why Bush’s line was so effective, “Fight them there, so we don’t have to fight them here.” We just want to hide from the threats of the world. And that’s because we have to face such minor threats here. It’s also because we have one political party with an ideology so repugnant to the vast majority of people, the only way it can get power is by fear mongering.
I’ve always consider myself a coward. Yet I have often times gone into very dangerous situations and locations — alone. It’s not because I’m foolhardy. I just trust that (1) threats are usually overblown; and (2) I can usually handle situations. Given what I see among so many American men, I can’t consider myself a coward in an absolute sense — just relative to what I think true bravery would be. So I don’t know what that makes people who are afraid to live near a methadone clinic or a prison or a Syrian refugee family. We need a new word, but I’m afraid it is one that I would ban from this site on stylistic grounds.
The ultimate example of this is Big Chicken — or as I like to think of him, “Governor Shouts a Lot,” Chris Christie. He made the bold statement last week that we shouldn’t let Syrian orphans under five years old in. It’s not clear that he is actually afraid of them. He said, “But you know, they have no family here. How are we going to care for these folks?” Yeah, how would we ever be able to care for children? We just have no experience with that!
After the attacks in Paris, people opened their homes to strangers. The French government is not halting Syrian refugees from entering the country. But here, well, we can’t do that. It’s nice to be humane and all. But when you are vewy vewy afwaid, you just can’t allow it. I’ve been saying this about police for years: if they can’t stop killing unarmed people because they were afraid they might get a paper cut, can we at least cut the crap about them being brave?
The same thing goes for the Republicans (and frankly, a sad number of Democrats too): these men are something far below cowards. If Dante’s Inferno is real, they will spend eternity fleeing in terror from dandelion spores. But unfortunately, in this world, these men have power. And Walter’s assurance to Donny is not appropriate. These guys are going to hurt the whole world unless we fight back. Then they’ll run for their guns and a line of women to hide behind.