Saturday, 16 January 2016

EVERYONE IS *NOT* SPECIAL

'Participation' trophy??? What you talkin' 'bout, sucka???


By now, we should all know that global corporations are the Enemy, perhaps an even more egregious collective enforcer of loathsome cultural edicts than the state itself. In recent years, corporations have used their hefty power and ill-won clout to perpetrate innumerable anti-white, anti-Christian, and generally anti-normal outrages, and to foster tyranny against independent-minded people of all races, creeds, and orientations.

Given this broad and undeniable general trend, it is interesting to note when a major corporation has the temerity to court controversy by playing to some widely-held but seldom-promoted, conservative or "populist" theme. Last weekend, amidst the first round NFL playoff games, this ad for Kia aired:


The spot (which has actually been around for a while but only gained my notice last weekend) is notable for several reasons. In it, are presented with a sort of lamentation of the enforced emasculation of boys, via the pernicious "self-esteem" movement, which mandates an end to the hearty (and very masculine) competitive spirit, in order to ensure that no child ever feels like a loser. But, as Dash commented memorably in The Incredibles, "if everyone is special, then no one is special." Put another way, if winners are prevented from being able to celebrate and savor their hard-fought accomplishments, this is surely a grave injustice.

In the commercial, which  manages to be funny, mordant, and poignant all at once, a father is outraged when his son is given a "Participation" trophy at the end of the football season. (The son, interestingly, seems generally indifferent to the notion, suggesting that he has already grown immured to his conditioning, while his dad is old enough to recall a time before the widespread "self-esteem" indoctrination kicked in, a time-- in short-- when boys could be boys, without fear of being shamed or attacked for their ostensible "toxic masculinity."

"A 'participation' trophy???" the man ponders incredulously, with rising anger, as the two walk to their waiting car in the parking lot. "But we won every game we played!!!" (His proclivity to "live vicariously" through his son's accomplishments is wryly but affectionately acknowledged through his use of the pronoun "we") Finally, he asks his son for the trophy, whereupon he promptly chisels away the offending "Participation" plaque, and reaching into his sleek Kia minivan, brings forth a magic marker and scribbles "Champs" in its place, before duly handing the trophy back to the (again generally oblivious) boy.

We are clearly meant to cheer the stubbornly principled, doggedly masculine spirit of the father in this ad, while at the same time acknowledging his very human (and specifically manly) foibles. Yet the ending captures the poignancy of this gesture of furtive defiance; even if this man's son has finally been acknowledged as a champion, it can only be in an unofficial capacity; the wrong is righted, as it were, only in secret, and in haste, per the scrawlings of a Sharpie marker.

To me, this moment somewhat resembles the scene at the end of  70s classic The Bad News Bears, when the loveable little runts angrily reject the condescending overtures of the team that beat them in the championship game. Then, too, the point of contention was, interestingly enough, a trophy.


Back in the 70s, of course, losers were expected to take their lumps, but by God those with pluck (like the "Bears") would resolutely not stand to be humiliated. Yet something has fundamentally changed in the West over the past four decades. In 2016, it is the winners who must stand up and take what is rightly theirs. Even a soulless global conglomerate like Kia must sense the festering outrage in much-maligned Middle America over what a joke of a culture we have become due to the machinations of "totalitarian pansies" in high places.


Andy Nowicki, assistant editor of Alternative Right, is the author of eight books, including Under the NihilThe Columbine PilgrimConsidering Suicide, and Beauty and the Least. He occasionally updates his blog when the spirit moves him to do so. Visit his Soundcloud page.

 

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