'Microaggression' Is a Stupid Word That You Should Take Seriously
“So where are you from?” It’s innocent enough, that question—a way to break the ice when no more can be said about the weather. But if you aren’t White, there’s a good chance it will be followed by one of the most cringe-inducing sentences in the White lexicon: “No, I mean originally.”
That’s never asked of me, mind you. No one ever wants to know where I came from, since I’m pale enough and sufficiently boring-looking to appear to other White people as a born-and-raised American, which I often lament that I am. That question, when I’ve heard it, is always posed to a friend of mine, who always responds the same way: “Ca-li-for-ni-a.” This always comes out sounding a bit like “Fuck. You.” It inevitably causes offense, this matter-of-fact response. It isn’t what people—White people—want to hear. They feel cheated.
“Oh, you know what I meant,” they always groan, the word asshole on the tip of their tongue.
The problem is apparently my friend, who isn’t White and looks “exotic” to people whose idea of exotic is a beer with a lime. My friend isn’t pale like me, which means he’s a walking zoo exhibit from the coasts to the country, always expected to respond to strangers’ interrogations about his native land with a smile and a careful recounting of his family tree.
Members of a Christian Group Are Being Assholes Again
A Christian group in Texas has begun taking photos of people’s cars as they patronize “sinful businesses” and posting them online.
In a “news alert” posted to their Facebook page, Texas Christian group Repent Amarillo announced they would be photographing vehicles that patronize strip clubs, porn shops, and gay bars and then posting the images to their page. “Think of it as God’s public sex offender list,” the post reads, adding, “so, if you want to know if your friends, husbands, boyfriends, co-workers, or family members are visiting these places then STAY TUNED!”
They’re calling it the “Ephesians 5:11 Project” after a Bible passage which reads, “Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.”
It’s the brainchild of Pastor David Grisham, who you may remember as the guy who tried (and failed) to burn a Qur’an a couple of years ago, leading to the creation of the “Dude, You Have No Quran" song.
Please Don’t #FitchTheHomeless
I’m sure by now you’ve seen that video that Los Angeles-based writer Greg Karber made where he hands out a buch of Abercrombie gear to homeless people. It’s embedded above if you haven’t.
Karber made the video in response to that stuff that Abercrombie CEO Mike Jeffries said about their “no women’s clothing above a size 10” policy. Essentially, Jefferies only wants “thin and beautiful people” shopping at his stores, because he doesn’t want the “cool kids” to have to endure the horror of seeing a fat person wearing the same outfit as them. I think we can all agree that the most shocking part of Mike’s statements is that they reveal there’s a person out there who thinks that the cool kids are wearing Abercrombie.
Karber handed out A&F clothing to, as far as I can tell from the video, a fairly bewildered homeless population on Los Angeles’s Skid Row. His goal was to “rebrand” Abercrombie & Fitch by putting their clothing not on the cool kids that Mike Jeffries so loves, but on the homeless, who, I guess, are the opposite of cool.
Now, if you only think about it for a few seconds, it would appear that this is a great campaign. Karber wanted to make a point about Abercrombie & Fitch and to “clothe the homeless,” in his words, while doing it. Unfortunately, “Fitch the Homeless,” as Karber dubbed his campaign, is fucking stupid. For one thing, Karber doesn’t appear to ask these people if they want Abercrombie & Fitch clothing, or if he did ask them, he cut those parts from the video for some reason. He just sort of dumps polo shirts and A&F brand tees onto the residents of Skid Row, as if they were pack mules and he were a sherpa venturing into the mountains to deliver striped rugby shirts to a monastery.
I Was David Patraeus’ Bitch in the 90s and I Hated Every Second of It
Over the weekend, the media went into a feeding frenzy over the big, juicy, red-meat news that David Petraeus, the former head of the CIA and onetime adored four-star general, had been banging his fawning biographer, Paula Broadwell. If you’ve been following this somewhat-less-than-Shakespearean tragedy, you’ll know by now they were getting it on under his desk—that giant oaken hunk of power that no doubt displayed a miniature American flag and framed photos of his family. When I read about this, I imagined those photos jumping around on top of the desk while the great conqueror of Iraq invaded that obsequious writer babe down below.
Petraeus is the West Point general who wrote the book, literally, on counter-insurgency. For years, when all was doom and gloom in Iraq, he was America’s top warrior—a flag-saluting, straight-shooting strategic genius who always had time for the media; C-SPAN’s heroic general. Everybody loved this guy—especially the liver-spotted silver heads in Congress. Whenever Petraeus testified in the halls of power, they all showed up to pump his fist and spew superlatives. Someday, they said, Petraeus would be included in the prestigious pantheon of West Point military gods: Grant, MacArthur, Patton, and Eisenhower.
But now that’s all out the window. Now, he’s just another big man who fucked around and got caught. He’s in the process of being disgraced. His friends are turning their backs. At least one reporter who used to belong to King David’s “cult,” Spencer Ackerman, has publicly disowned him. The salacious details about his under-the-desk romps will probably continue to be splashed all over tabloid pages for months like the chief spook’s warm jizz.
The man’s career is unraveling by the minute, and I’m enjoying every second of it.
I’ve detested Petraeus for a long, long time. I’ve tried writing about him for a decade, but nobody seemed to listen. He was bulletproof back then—not so anymore. Now’s the time for me to tell you all about this self-serving shithead and what it was like being his bitch for years.
Back in 1996, I was a starry-eyed West Point lieutenant in the storied 82nd Airborne Division. I had just graduated from Ranger School and the 2nd Battalion of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment was my new home—my first assignment. I loved the Army back then.
When I showed up for duty, our brigade commander was a reasonable guy named John Abazaid. Morale was decent under him, because each battalion in the brigade was pretty much left alone. Colonel Abazaid let us solve our own problems. We were all competent adults and his laid-back, hands-off leadership style made us feel important and trusted.
But after a few months, Abazaid left and in came “Mr. Burns.”
Mr. Burns was our nickname for Petraeus, who was only a colonel back then. We called him that, in case it’s not obvious, because he looked and acted like the wiry, hand-rubbing villain in The Simpsons.
After Petraeus showed up, my life and the life of every soldier under his command went to complete shit. Back then, the ever-calculating Petraeus, who had married the West Point superintendent’s daughter after graduating, was on his way up. The general’s star was within reach—he was only one rank away—and being in command of the “Devil Brigade” (our brigade), was absolutely vital to getting him there. During his tenure with the 504th, he had to kiss and lick as many hairy, hemorrhoidal assholes as possible. He had to guffaw and slap all the right backs; he had to seriously impress. He had to do whatever was necessary to reach the pinnacle. No bridge too far for that son of a bitch. Can do. Will do. Yes sir, whatever you want, sir.
Seals Are Assholes
Australian fur seals may sound like stuffed animals with a pulse, but in reality they’re greedy blobs of fat who will eat all of Tasmania’s salmon if the current situation is left unchecked. For these fatties, salmon is “like a cross between a Big Mac and heroin,” according to a paper written earlier this year by Jon Bryan of the Tasmanian Conservation Trust. To get their fix, these flippered seafood junkies have been breaking into salmon farms for years, sometimes snatching up to 2,000 fish a week from a single farm.
Seeing as a seal-clubbing spree can put a strain on the ol’ shoulder muscles (and tends to upset animal rights types), Tasmania has taken to using nonlethal weapons as a solution. Superstrong pepper spray, beanbag guns, and darts have all been approved for use on these gluttonous furry bastards by the government. But there are many other ways to dissuade seals from being such greedy fat fucks. Salmon farmers the world over have toyed, Wile E. Coyote-style, with every nonlethal method available—short of tear gas and microwave-powered heat rays—to protect their precious fish meat from the appetites of fur seals. Here are a few of our favorites.
Salmon farmers in British Columbia, Canada, used amplified sounds underwater—the volume was equivalent to a jet engine taking off—to frighten seals away. At least they did until 2001, when scientists claimed that the sonic blasts caused killer whales to flee the area which actually attracted more seals. Whoopsie.
Seal crackers—small explosive shells that give off a frightening bang and flash—have been employed in Tasmania since 1986. Studies have found that, after time, seals become accustomed to the harmless bombs and start to avoid the crackers or ignore them entirely.
Making Seals Puke
Some salmon farmers in Australia and California have fed local seal populations dead fish that have been injected with lithium chloride in hopes of ruining the blubber balls’ appetites and making them vomit before taking a hike. In a way, it worked: The seals would eventually start puking, but not before grabbing a few more mouthfuls of salmon on their way out.
Throwing a Seal Party
The most brilliant repellant methods come from the US Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which in 2008 compiled a list of ways to chase off harbor seals and sea lions in California. Seal-scaring tactics included banging on pots, decorating at-risk locations with brightly colored balloons, and using strobe lights, sprinklers, fireworks, music, and paintball guns to frighten seals away. Regardless of the effectiveness, it sure sounds like a great way to spend a weekend.
Want more animals? Check these out:
The VICE Guide to Caviar
The Disgusting Rivalries of Webcam Extortionists
In my writing this week about the sexual extortion of Amanda Todd by an online blackmailer, I connected a man named by the New Jersey sect of Anonymous (which, by the way, suddenly appeared on the internet in the wake of Amanda’s suicide) to a horrifyingly wretched group of mentally ill pedophiles that convince young girls to strip on webcam, and then record it. Then they use this footage to blackmail the girls into providing them—and a large audience of pedophiles who follow the blackmailers’ conquests—with further strip shows, which they continue to record. While the mainstream media has failed to catch up to this story with the level of detail and attention it so desperately deserves, they have been very eager to follow Kody Maxson out of his court appearances for “unrelated… charges of sexual assault and sexual interference with a minor” and discuss the Anonymous leaks that blame Kody and a man who goes by the screen name “Viper” for Amanda’s suicide.
After further investigation into this emotionally exhausting and highly disturbing world of online blackmailers, I have found that this community not only follows and shares the screen captured images and videos of these girls, but monitors internal rivalries among the blackmailers. This competition has led me to question whether or not Kody is the sole perpetrator in Amanda’s blackmail, and has made me realize the size and depth of this horrible online culture.
The article I published on Wednesday reported that Kody Maxson (who is known online as Kody1206)blackmailed an underage girl named Peyton, as detailed in a video from a series called the Daily Capper. If you haven’t read that article, the Daily Capper is basically an online newscast for the pedophile world, hosted by a news anchor developed using footage from the kids’ show Crashbox, speaking with a dubbed-over computerized voice. Amanda Todd, who was known to this community for singing on webcam, appears in a Daily Capper video published on December 19, 2010.
In a video from October 31, 2010, the anchor reports: “Peyton claims that she is free of her blackmailer’s clutches. She went on BlogTV earlier this week and shared her story with the world about how Kody blackmailed her.” Peyton told her side of the story in a video the Daily Capper ran, which was recorded off of BlogTV: “A month ago, he recorded me for the first time and then I was stupid enough to keep doing it because he said he was never going to do it again… and he didn’t want to ruin our relationship.” It is this deception of an underage girl that won Kody the “Blackmailer of the Year” award from the Daily Capper. In that video, Peyton describes Kody’s actions over a chilling, electronic musical score that was added in for effect by the Daily Capper: “Now I know that everyone that told me that he was like, a sick pedo that records girls, were right. If he threatens me I can just threaten him right back.”
Kody Maxson has told the mainstream media that someone with the username Viper, who New Jersey Anonymous is also after, is to blame for Amanda Todd’s blackmailing. In a Daily Capper video from December 5, 2010, the newscaster discusses the relationship between Kody and Viper: “Many have been saying that Viper has always been a role model for Peyton’s blackmailer, Kody1206. It seems Kody was also working to win ‘Blackmailer of the Year’ by screening caps of Peyton on BlogTV.” Evidently, Kody and Viper were very much aware of each other, as they traveled online in the same pedophiliac circles, and if this video is correct, Kody saw himself as Viper’s apprentice.
In an email I received yesterday, an anonymous reader showed me a profile that Kody Maxson had registered for what appears to be a site that enables Halo players to join up in teams and compete against each other. If you look at his profile right now, you can see that his username on the site is Kody. The official administrative posts from the site are credited to a “Kody” as well, which suggests that he may have been running this gaming site.
Hey, have you heard about the Occupy Wall Street thingy? Probably you have, despite the “mainstream media blackout.” (As noted by people, including me, the media have been covering the shit out of the protest.) Basically, a bunch of people are sitting/sleeping/”consensus building” in a piece…
VICE’s Harry Cheadle wrote a great, really well-reasoned critic of #OccupyWallStreet.