The novel “A Confederacy of Dunces” comes to mind.
WalMart has an online open market where third party sellers can offer merchandise to the public. Good! That’s a public service. It’s like a farmer’s market, online. Aspiring entrepreneurs can get started. Consumers can find products that they might not have known about.
One of its third party sellers offered a T-shirt with the message, “Impeach 45.” Oh, fine. It’s a moronic sentiment, and an ignorant sentiment, but so is “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle,” “Abolish ICE,” “What would Jesus do?,” “Bush lied and people died,” and “Go Yankees!” Personally, I think any messages on clothing is prima facie evidence that the wearer is intellectually deficient.Imagine someone who walked around saying “Give peace a chance” all day long. You’d have to commit him. Wearing a T-shirt with messages on it is basically like that. Nonetheless, if people want to parade around wearing some slogan, virtue-signaling to fellow “resistance” members and Maxine Waters fans, that’s their dumb choice. This is America. We get to make dumb choices. And I, for one, am grateful when idiots label themselves.
But increasingly, Americans want to restrict the right of other Americans to say and express sentiments that they don’t like. Ryan Fournier, chairman of the group Students for Trump, flagged the MAGA-offending merchandise on Twitter, asking WalMart, “What kind of message are you trying to send?”
Heck, I can answer that. WalMart was trying to send the message, “We sell stuff that people want to buy.” The shirt-maker, a company called “Old Glory,” was trying to send the message, “If you hate President Trump, here’s a shirt you might want to buy.” The shirt is trying to send the message, “Impeach Donald Trump,” and the people who buy it are sending the message, “I’ve never read the Constitution” or “I have a Trump-deranged uncle whom I want to troll.” Legitimate messages all.
Never mind: Trump supporters, who are mad as hell and aren’t going to take it any more, started organizing a WalMart boycott. UNETHICAL, like all such boycotts. This is a boycott of open political discourse and free speech.
A responsible, respectable, reasonable corporation that wanted o do its part to keep our nation open to diverse political opinions and the God-given right of human beings to make a buck out of other people’s quirks and biases, would have reminded these supposedly conservative speech censors and hypocrites that they could also market their “Lock her up!” T-shirt if they had one to sell. But no. Like the pathetic jelly-spined companies that abandoned their sponsorship of “Duck Dynasty” when liberals threatened a boycott over some random comment by the professional redneck stars, then came crawling back when conservatives threatened a boycott over the boycott, WalMart showed that it has no integrity or principles whatsoever, and pulled the shirt ads.
Troubadour Jacques Brel once said, but in French, “If we leave it to them, they will crochet the world the color of goose shit.” If we leave it to the boycotters and the lazy, cowardly corporate executives, we will have a country with goose shit for a democracy.
Perhaps we have that already.