Comment by MartindeMadrid on August 14, 2012 at 5:36am

I have been wrestling with the appropriateness of political satire vis á vis this site, and have to say I am of two opinions still.  While I firmly believe in the spirit of the quote of Thomas Paine that "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it," in this politically polarized (to put it mildly) climate in the US (and elsewhere, like Europe), and the sensation that many are just shy of damning people for their faith (my best friends from HS are Iranian, and I am still very close to them), I feel that thoughtless and incindary satire is probably not the most intelligent thing to be doing -- at least for me -- with the limited resources at my disposal, no matter how tempting.  As for others, well, go ahead, blast away if you wish all to see your raw prejudices and are proud to be taking the lower path. 

Comment by McTodd on August 14, 2012 at 6:45am

Well said, Martin. As for the appropriateness of satire on a site like this, well, I feel that as a site devoted to stopmotion animation in all its many variants, satire does have a place. However, as with so much else there is satire and there is satire...

Comment by Alan Alsup on August 14, 2012 at 2:51pm

Martin, "yes" to Thomas Paine... :) Though I can appreciate much of which you state, it is precisely the reason I'm doing these in this fashion.... to generate conversation as you have just provided. Thank you sir.. :) It is purposely meant to be viewed as an amateurish and helter skelter example of stop motion, put together in five minutes in a dank basement somewhere in suburbia. There are no cute woodland creatures or talking toys. I'm not really comprehending your "prejudices" charge, but it's not the first time I've heard that. But I can say, when that issue is pressed, I've yet to hear a convincing explanation of exactly where "prejudice" is represented. Most admit after reflection, that it's more of an "uncomfortable" feeling, which is the precise intent.

McTodd, I'm going for the second "there is satire"... :)  

Thank you both, peace to you and yours.

Alan   

Comment by MartindeMadrid on August 14, 2012 at 11:32pm

Alan,

Thank you for being a gentleman in your response.  I did look at the video, and some of the information on the gentleman whose acts it is based upon, and commented on the YouTube channel in which the video appears.  While by no means a fan of what we ex-hippies used to lambast as "lawn order," I have also worked alongside law enforcement when I was a firefighter and emergency medical technician on ambulance duty, and from being around them have a lot of respect for what they often go through, too.  

My take on what the protagonist in the video did is that he was basically being passive-agressive with the officers, and that they were very restrained for quite a while as he basically wore a huge chip on his shoulder, just daring them to knock it off (NOT a smart move -- the best way to deal with that situation is to shut the F. . . up and immediately comply with their orders, NOT start being a smart aleck, and then, if you feel your rights were violated, to do so though proper legal channels -- the police have a saying, "better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6." -- being uncooperative is seen as being potentially life- threatening to them and citizens nearby and is NOT tolerated).  Well, predictably, and to his great delight, they finally had enough of his antics, and arrested him.  Although the charges were eventually lowered to insignficance (and not dismissed as he claims), I feel, he was provoking them at worst, and at least, was making a complete small herbivore of himself.

While I do confess to being waaay left of Left, probably radically so (after all, I live in Ecuador!), I do not agree with completely misrepresenting the truth to poke fun at someone who has an opposing view (be they of any political or religious persuasion), which I felt your clip definitely did, hence my objection and reference to taking the "low road." 

Satire I have no problem with.  It has not only a long and useful history of exposing the folly of people, especially politicians, but does so in a way which causes all of us to also laugh at ourselves as a species when we take ourselves too seriously (after all who hasn't honestly caught themselves being downright stupid at times, I certainly have).  However, satire becomes distorted into bad taste and worse when it seeks to invent folly rather than charictature the truth.  Much of the respect I had for John McCain before the 2008 campaign was restored when he courageously corrected an elderly lady who stated that Obama was ". . . an Arab. . ." by saying that her idea was totally false and characterized his opponent as an honorable American, a good man ". . . who I happen to have some differences of opinion with. . ."  Would that all our social intercourse could be so unselfishly and correctly honest and brave.

Comment by grecodan on October 14, 2012 at 12:50pm

Actually, it was Voltaire who is generally credited with the quote attributed to Citizen Paine, above. 

Would that all our social intercourse could be so unselfishly and correctly honest and brave.

Indeed! And Citizen Paine would agree with that!

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