Brain drain hits home for me, from time to time. Mississippi can be a hard place to stomach, even if you're like me, a straight white dude with a nice right jab, thick skin, and the ability to throw out a few jokes at even the worst of times.
The kind of people I like leave Mississippi. Maybe I'm a bad friend.
People who could make this place better pack up and head for more opportune climes, noble folk chased off by our worst impulses while we doff our hats, bowing to the scabrous old evils that have failed to provide any opportunity, save a chance to hate.
Don't panic. I'm not going anywhere, despite our subject today.
It makes me drink, and I like to drink.
This was brought to my attention by Donna Ladd, who runs the only printed newspaper that I read AND like, though I do talk a little trash about it from time to time. It's a paper, after all. You might have heard of the Jackson Free Press. Maybe not. Maybe you're not a reader, in which case, congratulations on making it this far into the article.
Usually it's the comments on a YouTube video that infuriate me. Not this time, though. If you can stomach it, without my still-life Rifftrax, (Rifftrax is what is best in life) then go, go click play on this abomination. Lightening may split the sky, thunder may shake the bones of your frail skull as the gravity of reality becomes a syrup, thick around your index finger, poised constantly over the pause button, but take a deep breath - you can escape at any time.
Done? It's okay if you didn't click on the thing. But it'd help if you did. This is also the ONLY time I condone the leaving of YouTube comments.
If you're wondering why people mock us, this guy is going to painfully illustrate the point. Now, lest you think he's some kind of monster, rest assured, he still loves Jesus and his momma, because that's the lowest possible fucking bar for an elected official.
No sir, bring on Giant White Jesus.
Yes, fake Jesus and Real Momma are all on display, though neither is coming to bean their child in the head with one of the American flags that frame our heroic Tiny Tim. I count three flags in this scene. It's practically wrapped in them.
Spoiler alert: There are more flags coming.
It's not just Momma. Brothers and kids are getting in on this shit. (It's brothers running for office)
Just in case you're the sort of person who lives a normal happy life and doesn't notice things like this (though if you're a reader of my website, I can practically guarantee that you're not normal) - the whole video is nicely done in one shot, I can't say anything bad about the cameraman, let's be fair. It tracks well, it's smooth, and has a high production value.
But the mirror point of the whole thing is this dude's zipper, which remains right in the middle of the delightful sing-a-long lyrics which rhyme as well as a pile of grad school poetry.
I'm no cinematic master. But these people are walking towards the camera, and it's not in a friendly manner. It's aggressive. They're coming. Coming to make you vote. At least they're nice enough not to be heavily armed...
Oh shit shit shit.
It's ...mostly safe, the way they're brandishing these weapons. Right? I mean, sure, you probably don't ever want to do a one-handed grip on an assault rifle while there's a kid on a wagon behind you and a guy with a pistol right over there, and I somehow doubt dad's guitar is like the one in El Mariachi...
...but holy fuck, even before this campaign ad came out, my nightmares would often feature this scene right before the part where I woke up sweating.
Does this guy have any sense of self-awareness, or am I just teetering over the edge of absurdity?
Now, while suggesting that other states may become more like Mississippi in the future could be seen as a threat or an insult, these two slices from the middle of the white bread loaf have gone and spread it with mayo in an attempt to embody something so horrifically white that Paula Deen would shudder in oily delight at its glistening countenance.
They are suggesting that people will WANT their states to become like Mississippi. A simple glance at rudimentary statistics will disabuse any confused governors of this dangerous idea.
"But is there racism, Patrick?" You may well ask. Now, if you're an out-of-state reader who does not grok the latest in flag-related news and events, then perhaps you spot a rebel flag flying above our überwieße family unit. Those with a more keen eye or who know our racist state flags will recognize this as the official flag of the state of Mississippi. It won't be the only non-American flag to grace the scene before this shitshow is over, so keep an eye out!
...but yes, there's more racism coming. First, we have to realize the situation, because I have a sneaking suspicion you didn't watch the video. Our heroic family has shown us that they rejected both Common Core and Obamacare by subtly tearing in half pieces of paper with those words written on them.
And while this bright shining family unit seems quite healthy, history and spelling lessons are in order.
So short of just throwing a rebel flag in there and calling it a day, how could these guys add that hint of dog-whistle racism that Mississippi politics are famous for? Is there a way to suggest that, perhaps, black people are responsible for wasting our tax dollars in an ill-conceived scheme, "making it rain" those federal dollars in some manner of speaking?
But worry not, white people. The White Children of America are coming to pick up those wasted bills.
So yeah, it's subtle.
I like the gentle, unaware nature of this video. This is not a cadre of people who think deeply about their positions. Sure, Mississippi is a ill-governed corrupt place that takes in far more money from the federal government than we pay in taxes, sure we're chasing away our best and our brightest because they're "different" or want "real jobs." But that's okay, people will want to be like us because we've got Christian Flags and beautiful voices and we mangle songs.
Need some proof that they're clearly not gazing at navels? Here are a pair of brothers self-starring in an expensive, well shot campaign ad, begging for your vote by decrying "self-serving servants of Democracy."
My irony meter exploded, I'll need a new one. Thankfully, the only real reason I can tell that Dan's running for office is that God told him to.
...I'm assuming this god is Coyote or Loki.
Remember, when people think of rich, white Mississippians, this is going to be the kind of crap they continue to be reminded of, the parade of unaware selfish assholes coming forever toward the camera while marching into the past, dragging us with them, chasing away those gems that might make for a better future, covering them up with big Christian flags, Dear Sweet Momma, and Giant White Jesus.
UPDATE: More neo (and paleo) confederate wankery! Featured HERE.