My recent post on those ubiquitous “COEXIST” bumperstickers seemed to touch a nerve among those of us sick of being subjected to pinko lectures via the tailgates of fast lane-plugging Prius hybrids and decaying VW vans. But “COEXIST” is only the tip of the iceberg of smug commute condescension – there are a lot of other bumperstickers that need to be addressed as well.
The combination of these poorly thought-through ideas and the sanctimony with which they are delivered – plus the terrifying realization that there are idiots in positions of power in the government who actually buy into this crap – means that we can no longer just gnash our teeth in silence. So, in the spirit of giving voice to those of us out there stuck in traffic behind some quarter-wit displaying such foolishness, and because there’s more to shamelessly milk out of this topic, let’s review some of the more irritating insights the self-appointed ruling class graciously offers us.
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What is more tiresome than a “War Is Not The Answer” bumper sticker? If you asked what I had for dinner last night – red meat, like a man – then no, “war” is not the answer. If you ask “How do you get what’s left of your hair looking so good?” then once again, “war” is not the answer. But if you ask “How should we deal with Nazis, commies, jihadis and similar douchebags, well, “war” is the answer.
My personal rule of thumb is to never have a bumpersticker on my car that would please Hitler, Stalin or Osama bin Laden. “War Is Not The Answer” would delight them. Frequent Big Hollywood contributor/writer Andrew Klavan has even more thoughts, while our pals at protestwarrior.com have also pointed out the truth:
Another old favorite manages to shoehorn into one sticker 29 whole words and still not make a lick of sense: “it will be a great day when our schools get all the money they need and the air force has to hold a bake sale to buy a bomber (sic).” Well, there must be a school funding crisis since apparently the writer’s school could not afford to teach him about capitalization.
Actually, I think that the sticker describes a terrible day, since maintaining a military is something the Constitution expressly makes a responsibility of our federal government, as opposed to education which it does not. The funding crisis must be so awful they couldn’t teach the writer civics either.
Another popular one drags Native Americans into it. Right by a crude drawing of what looks like that guy shedding a tear because of litter is a “quote” that sounds like something a New Age power crystal groupie in Taos might utter after too much chablis: “The Earth Does Not Belong To Us, We Belong To The Earth.” Now, this saying is often attributed to Chief Seattle, but what a shock – the veracity of that quote is, well, is dubious at best.
The truly offensive thing about this quote – besides the whole making it up part – is that a bunch of hippy-dippy neo-flower children dorks are trying to make Native Americans into a bunch of hippy-dippy neo-flower children dorks too. Native Americans are a valiant warrior people, not a gaggle of neutered, simpering, feeling-sharing embarrassments like the cultural elite that buys into this kind of Gaia-centric, pseudo-profound twit-speak.
I find this one particularly obnoxious. From Little Big Horn , where Indian warriors inflicted one of history’s very few defeats upon my beloved U.S. Army cavalry, to the World War II Codetalkers, to heroes of today like paratrooper Staff Sgt. Conrad Begaye (read about him and be proud!), their legendary warrior heritage speaks for itself. And they are fiercely proud of it: I was privileged to participate (in full dress uniform) in a Native American ceremony where almost all the men were vets and each proudly wore his U.S. military insignia on his traditional Indian clothing.
These are not innocent nature children frolicking with wildlife in the meadow – Native Americans are a tough, brave, ass-kicking people with a complex and profound spirituality that goes far beyond cheap sticker slogans. Yet the progressives would rather infantilize these warriors by crediting them with some made-up quote that has nothing to do with their religion and putting it next to a drawing of Big Chief Stereotype.
Don’t even get me started on “Arms Are For Hugging” – available for $2 from “Hippie Shop.com,” where a free tie-dye pen comes with every order! I see one of these and all I can think is “Dudes, I don’t know what your arms are for – and I don’t want to – but mine are to protect my family and my country, so when things go to hell again – I was deployed for the LA riots – you hugging losers can fall-in back behind me where the children and the old ladies can protect you.”
There are lots of other ones out there, and the Peace Resource Project sells most of them. It’s a kind of one-stop-shop for all your hackneyed sloganeering needs. If you can think of a bumpersticker that demonstrates a lack of thought, they’ve got it.
The very volume of their bumpersticker selection displays a willful intellectual incoherence and occasionally makes for some interesting juxtapositions. They place one sticker with a profile of over-praised hack John Lennon next to the words “Give Peace A Chance” right above another bumpersticker with the words “Hasta La Victoria Siempre” (“Always to victory”) printed beside that famous picture of college-commie icon and noted sociopathic murderer Che Guevara. I guess we’re supposed to give peace a chance so our enemies have a chance to kill us. Regardless, besides lots of silly slogans, the Peace Resource Project also produces lots of unintended irony.
Now, some of the ideas on their products come with an expiration date. They sell a “Dissent is Patriotic” sticker, but that’s probably no longer a hot seller since the memo came out in January 2009 decreeing that dissent is no longer patriotic.
There’s also a forlorn “Iraq is Arabic for Vietnam” bumpersticker, but I don’t see those flying off the shelves either. Unlike in the case of Vietnam, the dedicated efforts of liberals, leftists and their fellow travelers have failed to undercut the valiant sacrifice of America’s fighting men and women and condemn the Iraqi people to more decades of dictatorship. Every day that Iraq remains a developing free and democratic nation must stick in their collective craw. But don’t fear – there’s still time to sell our Iraqi allies out too!
Maybe we should all just “Think Peace,” or “Teach Peace,” or “Visualize World Peace” – you know, something with peace. The Peace Resource Project can help with that as well. Just keep in mind that the undercurrent running through these admonitions is that you are the one who is causing this lack of peace, who is sending out those negative waves that force the peace-loving natives of the rest of the world to reluctantly wipe the accumulated dust of centuries of disuse off their armaments and sadly step onto the war path against us. So you need to get your mind right before your failure to think, teach and/or visualize enough peace makes more of them fly planes into our skyscrapers.
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Remember, we’re supposed to be peaceful; as for our enemies, well, for them it’s go time. That victory Che and his buddies are always marching on to is over us.
But if you really think about it, these silly bumperstickers may say condescending, stupid things on the surface, but what they really do – even if it’s the last thing the owners want to do – is say, “I owe you.” The owners owe every one of us who serves in our military, or is a vet, or is one of the vast army of supporters of our troops, a great big “Thank you!” for the ability to make damn fools of themselves without worrying about ending up in some ditch – like they would in the crappy, two-bit dictatorships they idolize but would never live in.
And while bits of polyvinyl foolishness are all too common, even in Los Angeles – where being just liberal puts you on the far right side of the spectrum – the number of silly stickers is dwarfed by the number of yellow ribbons and United States flags, as well as stickers proudly informing the world that “My Son is a Soldier” (sometimes en Espanol) or displaying the eagle, globe and anchor of the United States Marine Corps. That’s not to mention the veteran license plates California lets you buy (I wonder what you have to do to get a cop to give you a ticket when you’re rocking a Purple Heart license plate – plow through a girls’ school crosswalk at 75 then throw it into reverse and do it again?).
In the end, the profusion of pinko placards is a vaguely annoying presence that really should not be so annoying – we should savor their owners’ exercise of the very freedoms they have done nothing to protect. In fact, we need to let them know. We should pull up to these pony-tailed, pierced and/or pouting propagandists, do that “roll down the window” motion, and shout “Hey hippy, you’re welcome!” They’ll be puzzled, but that’s nothing new since they don’t have a clue anyway. Then they can take in the view of Old Glory on our bumper as we pull away.
Now, about those “My kid is an honor student” stickers…