The Vanguard

In response to Thanks A Lot, You Guys :

Glad to oblige, Debra. Think of the video (and its equally compelling part 2) as a tin of intellectual caviar – once you get past the initial gag reflex, it actually has a rich delicious complexity. 

I generally admire outsider cultures – punk rock, outlaw bikers, drag queens, tattooers, street artists, comics nerds, hobos etc. – but watching the video’s dramatis personae perform their verbal rock-paper-scissors marginalization rochambeau, the only emotion I can muster is pity. The reason is that they aren’t “outsiders” in any real sense. Hell, these are the intellectual vanguard of America’s most elite and lavishly funded institutions. I’ve got five bucks that says every one of them is/was on the Dean’s List in Gender Studies at the local state U; the older one, in the Lesbian Avenger t-shirt, may even be a tenured faculty member. Thus all the barking and braying about “validation.” They’re all been validated with 4.0 GPAs in Otherness from the semi-official state Institute of Goodthink, and are confused and angry and frightened when challenged by a fellow member of the inner circle of The Other. 

I suppose authentic outsider cultures have their own internecine subgroup battles – Crips v Bloods, Hells Angels v Mongols – but the rules of engagement are at least internally consistent. Marginalization is the point. Hells Angels want to be “marginalized” by Mongols, and neither group demands square society fund a new Department of Biker Studies at Siwash State.

The only victim truly being marginalized in the video is language. Pre-op Trans Porkpie Hat Gay Guy, engages in a form of independent street dictionary improv where “queer” is redefined from homophobic insult to a defiantly sassy title of self-identity and back again, within the same sentence. No word has any fixed meaning outside the emotion being expressed at the precise moment it is spoken. This strategy allows him/her to reframe every word out of Lesbian Avenger’s mouth as marginalizing insult, for maximum indignation value. She identifies as a he and he a she whenever convenient, and heshe a shehe when convenienter. His/her strategy is also manifest in her/his attire, a sort of idealized version of a femme gay man morphing into a butch lesbian, allowing for the quickest identity change.

Lesbian Avenger parries with her own language-murdering barrage of “women literally dying every day” from and “the literally hundreds of daily emails” from imagined young lesbians pleading with her to help stop the cultural pressure for gender reassignment surgery, thus implicating Porkpie Pre-Op in an imagined epidemic of gender identity self-genocide. These appeals are punctuated with imperative f-bombs to give street cred the righteousness of her improvisational anecdote volley. Wonder Girl t-shirt (pre? post?) Trans arrives on the scene in video 2 to lend aid to Porkpie, who eventually pulls out the ol’ “I’m from Colorado Springs!” rejoinder with a dismissive slow head-shake. I’m not sure how his/her identification as a Colorado Springsian is dispositive in the debate, but I was reminded of the SNL bickering family skit where Will Farrell suddenly has an angry outburst of “I drive a Dodge Stratus!”

As hard as it might be for a typical conservative to make it through the video, it can be quite entertaining and informative if viewed through the proper lens. Not just a simple “haha, listen to the crazy PC hippies” lens. What you are really witnessing is the tragicomic death of Gramsci’s long march through the institutions, as the infantry turns to cannibalism.  

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