Weekly Roundup: PC Is For Political Children Edition

If you think political violence in this country is limited to Portland fascism, er, anti-fascism, you should see what’s been done to an eight-year-old girl who makes fun of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The idea of threatening or intimidating children because their politics disagree with yours is utterly beneath contempt…

…hold on a minute…

…do eight-year-olds really have any politics of which to speak? Aye, there’s the rub.

The “MiniAOC” account was funny, true — but it was in no way consensual. Eight-year-old children don’t have an innate desire to parody politicians, any more than they have an innate desire to be marched through a gauntlet of social media holding a “Fuck The NRA” sign. You can’t be in favor of the former without implicitly endorsing the latter. MiniAOC might have been amusing, but it was fundamentally abusive. Not only did it put a young girl in harm’s way — because who can be sure that some blue-haired beast wouldn’t attack her at school or on the street? — but it put her future at risk. I can guarantee you that girl in question, whom we will not name, will eventually have to interview with, or work for, someone who in no way appreciated the MiniAOC shtick.

Lately I’ve been thinking about when I’ll stop mentioning my son on social media. Over the past few years, my Instagram account has mostly consisted of parenting stuff. At some point I have to hand control of John’s online “brand” over to him. That’s obvious, right? I wouldn’t want my mother posting about me on social media, even at the age of 47 — and I sure as hell wouldn’t have wanted her doing it when I was fifteen. So there will have to be a time when I vanish my kid from my online identity so he can have a life of his own. Right now I think his twelfth birthday would be a good time to do that. Which isn’t to say that I’ll let him post on social media when he is twelve; that’s a great way to meet the Tony Podestas of the world. This will just be the time at which I no longer use his image or his words online.

Fortunately for my son, I don’t have enough recognition as a writer for my existing work to have a Christopher Robin effect. I don’t think he will ever be defined in any meaningful way by what I’ve already written. The rest of his story should be his own to write. Nor do I wish to use him as a means by which to signal my virtue or my social conformance to the world, the way the mother of that “Desmond Is Amazing” person does. So he’s going to disappear. Which will be fine with him, and fine with me. And for the record, he has no political leanings whatsoever. Which is normal for children, believe it or not.

* * *

This week at Hagerty, I praised a brilliant man, shilled a bit for a great overseas arrive-and-drive, plus I reviewed all Chevy trucks great and small.

Bark had nothing on TTAC this week.

22 Replies to “Weekly Roundup: PC Is For Political Children Edition”

  1. AvatarDaniel S

    As a man with an 8 year old, I identify strongly with this.

    The fact that I have very strong political opinions also factors into it but some other things play larger roles in this issue for me.

    An 8 year old is simply not wired for the sort of complexity and nuance that it takes to be able to process these issues at a level that honor the complexity involved. Kids that age process things as black and white, right or wrong and interjecting them publicly into issues where adults with team mentalities and shitty impulse control feel justified in acting on some of the most base emotions with feelings of moral superiority… its pathological at best.

  2. AvatarNewbie Jeff

    Good point, as always Jack, especially from the perspective of a parent (which I am not).

    …but why does the American Left get to corner the market on adorable little kids carrying their brand? Little kids are captured “adorably” in full Pride dress, watching naked men dry-hump each other at an x-rated parade… Leftists laud the “wisdom” of kids used as billboards in the gun-control movement… my poor 6-yr old nephew has to wear a “FEMINIST” shirt despite not understanding a single thing about it, and no one (especially the skeptical grandparents” says a thing. The reason they use kids is obvious… it’s a disarming way to push radicalism, to sell it as something as delightfully bucolic as a kid selling lemonade on the neighborhood sidewalk…

    “MiniAOC” offered a lighthearted humanity to those of us who think the real thing just might be a little nuts… and that’s probably what the Left sees as most threatening: not that she disagrees with their politics, but that she humanizes the people that disagree with their politics. Unfortunately the lesson she learned, that we all learned, is that the Left rules, and will continue to rule, the digital landscape. Even little kids must be progressive, or not at all.

  3. AvatarBen Johnson

    A bit of a counter point: My boys had mostly fully formed political opinions by 12, or at least had a heck of a lot more wisdom that I did than I was 12 and I’m just projecting.

    In my opinion, a bit of Seneca, Bible, C.S. Lewis, and Mark Twain are a good bulwark against fat purple-haired hysterical types.

    • AvatarEverybodyhatesscott

      Kids shouldn’t be used to talk about politics. Now we’re destroying 16 year olds who have no business being on tv cause they said stupid shit. I don’t even want to know the stupid shit I said at 16

  4. AvatarCJinSD

    I turned seven years old during the 1977 school year, which I spent attending Hawthorne Elementary in a suburb of Atlanta. We made scathing jokes about President Jimmy Carter. We didn’t have to regurgitate our parents’ remarks. His every TV appearance starting with his campaign speeches made him an object of ridicule in a manner that any sentient eight year old could appreciate from watching AOC. We had songs about the dolt that no adult could have influenced. My niece, who has been neutralized by public schooling since, was quite clever and insightful when she was seven years old as well. As a 21 year old, she knows more about hair dye than she does the world around her, but it took years of conditioning to reduce her to the intellect of a CNN commentator.

    If MiniAOC’s parents were writing her scripts, then everything you wrote applies. If she’s just a clever child who sees the obvious about AOC, then there’s nothing wrong with her expressing her views. There should really be a difference between making videos and marching in a sea of imbeciles, but I accept that the lines are blurred by online marxists every day.

  5. AvatarNewbie Jeff

    “If MiniAOC’s parents were writing her scripts, then everything you wrote applies. If she’s just a clever child who sees the obvious about AOC, then there’s nothing wrong with her expressing her views.”

    This is my point… is there an age where someone is too young to be a political pundit? Or merely having fun impersonating a political figure (or any figure.. celebrity?) I get that Jack is putting some thought into “age appropriateness”, as he discussed…

    …but I think clarity is important here. MiniAOC is neither actually harmful nor particularly resonant, it’s just fun. It’s probably fun for the kid, too.

    No, it’s an issue because the leftists at BigAOC’s feet are so triggered by it. The kid is in danger because the triggered Left is dangerous. Bullies win big here… one giant leap for BigAOC, another small step for the creep of leftist authoritarianism.

    • AvatarCJinSD

      There used to be a word for intelligent and articulate children like MiniAOC. Precocious. You don’t hear it much anymore. Maybe it’s too hard for Democrats to dismiss accusations of molestation from children whose agency is recognized.

  6. AvatarMyles

    As an American, I’d like to think we can continue to have nuanced discussions about these things.
    As a matter of politics, unlike a lot of the commenters here, I tend to agree with AOC in principle on a lot of topics. And as a political figure she will simply have to deal with being parodied.

    But yeah we all have to leave kids out of it. What I see here – and as a Los Angeles resident, I see this a LOT – is primarily a parent using their child for personal gain. In this case I t’s not even the politics, so much as a way to MONETIZE their offspring, that looks and feels gross to me. And making money, no matter what people say, definitely crosses party lines.

    • AvatarCJinSD

      Does this apply to child actors as well? Asking for consistency.

      Do your principles include lying to bring about a Marxist revolution and destroy the idea of self-governance and individual rights? That’s what it means to agree with AOC.

      • AvatarMyles

        Question 1. Yes. I see damage all the time and I don’t like it. I even directly addressed it in my original post, but you’re too busy thinking you know what I think. Articulated further to assuage your sense of a lack of “consistency”.

        Question 2. She’s not out to destroy individual rights, no matter how you attempt to frame it. And if you think I’m going to bother arguing that point on someone else’s personal website, feel free to consider yourself the victor here.

        • AvatarNewbie Jeff

          Answer 2: I’d consider the oppressive taxation and society of pervasive government compulsion that BigAOC is proposing as a pretty effective destruction of individual rights… anyone here ever worked for the government? Yeah. If BigAOC gets her way, we all will, no matter what we do.

          She’s also the first politician I’ve seen who’s bragged about sending jobs OUT of her state… curious if you agree with her on that in principle?

          But BigAOC’s main problem is that she utterly lacks substance. Democrats know it and I’m sure the party is trying to do damage control, but as Pelosi is well aware, BigAOC sure has a lot of “followers”. BigAOC herself is probably aware of this shortcoming, too, thus why she avoids any discussion of realistic policy nitty-gritties, much less a substantive debate with her critics. Instead, it’s just a snarky tweet that says “you’re wrong” yet somehow extricates herself from the discussion without really explaining how you’re wrong… kind of like what Myles just did.

          • AvatarMyles

            For me to say that I agree with AOC on many *principles*, than have you make sweeping and biased generalizations on what she proposes, hardly makes me guilty of ducking a question. Just that I disagree with your premise, rendering your question moot.

            What we can agree on (maybe) is that she feels that she *is* fighting for the rights of her constituents. Seeing as this is a post on nuance, we can definitely disagree on how that can be achieved, but that’s not the same thing. Arguing that she lacks substance ignores her work in committee completely.

            Both sides are really good at declaring the other side is DESTROYING AMERICA STAND UP WITH ME PEOPLE but again, nuance would demand that neither side holds the upper hand in righteousness, no matter how hard we try to frame them as evil. It’s, to put it bluntly, horseshit. We need the checks and balances more than ever.

            And we can also agree that she is green and will make mistakes, but she is hardly alone in that area. I still say, especially given you way you posed the argument, that having a substantive discussion on these matters will not happen here, even when the tone is civil – not enough room to cover all the ground.

          • AvatarCJinSD

            Socialists killed one hundred million people in the last century and are going to great efforts to rehabilitate their image and crush access to truth in order to repeat or exceed their past accomplishments. Moral relativism is bullshit. There is no equivalence between people who care about individual rights and believe in God and people who believe that what they think constitutes the greater good no matter how many eggs they have to break on the road to promoting themselves to being gods. You serve evil. That’s why you spend your time pretending it isn’t a thing.

          • AvatarMyles

            Hey Newbie Jeff, see my point now? Apparently I think I’m God. PLUS ol’ CJ says I don’t believe in God, or anyone that disagrees with him for that matter apparently, and now I’m supposed to defend myself from a religious perspective as an accused murderous socialist Pseudo-Deity.

            Yup. I’ve been exposed for the devil I am, and conversations are well nigh impossible when one is burning in hellfire.

            Find the nuance in any of that. Go ahead, I dare ya.

  7. AvatarShocktastic

    Wow. Such haterade (my iPad converted haterade to hate race). I’ve watched this precocious child’s videos. It’s pretty tame compared to her anti-ISIS videos but it seems our government funds ISIS or helps them get Javelins or TOW missiles from the United Arab Emrates to Syria but when a child says our political system is corrupt then everyone must claim SHE IS WRONG or some other rant like IT IS FOR THE CHILDREN. You should watch the vid where she goes off on her critics while wearing a burkha. Meanwhile, it appears the barren vagina enemies of free thought have won.

  8. AvatarNewbie Jeff

    Myles: I don’t want to speak too much for CJ, but he’s characterizing BigAOC, not you. He said you serve evil, not that you are evil. I saw that as deliberate nuance, but that’s between you two…

    Sure, we can absolutely have a substantive discussion… it’s occurring as I type. You’ll just have to stop ducking questions with the suggestion that you’re not guilty of ducking questions. Directly: Oppressive taxation and pervasive government compulsion aren’t “biased generalizations” of BigAOC’s big ideas… she’s literally on record with proposing 70% tax rates, and introduced a resolution in Congress that would inject the federal government into every facet of American society “because climate change”…

    Additionally, BigAOC’s big book of big ideas says the government will “Create millions of good, high-wage jobs and ensure prosperity and economic security for all people of the United States”. In real life, BigAOC was instrumental in a political campaign that prevented a large national corporation from bringing good, high-wage jobs to her own district. Again… just so you don’t duck the question… where “in principle” do you agree with BigAOC, the part where the federal government will magically create high-wage jobs for every person (notice it doesn’t specify “citizen”), or the part where she actually destroys high-wage job opportunities for her constituents?

    • AvatarMyles

      Duck the question? Again, this comes down to somebody demanding responses based on the premise that I must “defend” AOC.

      Let’s discuss just ONE of your statements. Her *idea* about a 70% tax rate – which, critically, was not an actual policy proposal submitted to a vote – is strictly for some people who make over $10m. It was presented as an idea to offset costs of policy proposals I’m sure you disagree with, but that’s besides the point here.

      The point is, you present that as if she’s trying to do that to everybody and I must defend it. That one statement alone would take pages for us to argue over (and again, in your case, I completely believe it would be a passionate but legitimate debate).

      I’ll point out that at America’s best times in history economically, the tax rate was *more* than that for top earners, and only fell after Reagan’s HUGE tax cuts based on trickle-down economic theory… and how long would it take us to argue over whether *that* was good for America? Or what economic model is better?

      Yet.. you feel this is something we can debate here? This isn’t a topic we can parse here with any substance, and you know that’s true.

      I love a good argument, but yeah, I’m not seeing this as a productive use of time.

      I have devils to serve today, after all. It’s Monday.

      • Jack BaruthJack Baruth Post author

        To quote the great John Mayer

        “Is there anyone who / ever can recall / anyone breaking rank at all / because of something someone yelled real loud one time”

        I am endlessly fascinated as to how people come by their political affiliations. I think white conservatives are basically afraid of the future — I’ll include myself in that, once I became a parent, I started worrying about the future in a way I never had when I thought the movie would end at my death. And I think white liberals are driven by the need to triumph over people who are very close to them otherwise. The vast majority of genuine progressives I know felt disenfranchised by society at some point, usually during their childhood.

        • AvatarNewbie Jeff

          I wouldn’t say I’m afraid of the future… it’s more like I’m afraid of the destruction of it. Does it assign me a political affiliation? I mean, I certainly have no illusions about the Republican party… but I guess I’m “With Them”, considering the other option is the party of racist Doublethink, “all the men in this country should just shut up”, reparations, assassination by allegation, open borders, “free” healthcare for any person physically present in the country, and oppressive taxation to pay for whatever they deem “morally necessary” within a widely erratic moral compass.

          Oh, and the party’s brightest young star is essentially a woke-programmed idiot with no shortage of boosters who demand we all take her seriously, and that means no mockery “or we’re gunna kill you! Love trumps hate!”

          8 year olds, dude.

        • AvatarCJinSD

          “I am endlessly fascinated as to how people come by their political affiliations. I think white conservatives are basically afraid of the future — I’ll include myself in that, once I became a parent, I started worrying about the future in a way I never had when I thought the movie would end at my death. And I think white liberals are driven by the need to triumph over people who are very close to them otherwise. The vast majority of genuine progressives I know felt disenfranchised by society at some point, usually during their childhood.”

          Look at who tried the hardest to protect Jeffrey Eppstein’s secrets. They’re the same people who are lying about who is friends were now. Conservatives aren’t afraid. We’re just willing to accept the truth that is in front of us while liberals either lack the character to reject comforting lies or are pursuing the leftist goals of normalizing pedophilia and eliminating people they don’t like in order to hoard resources in accordance with their zero sum game world view. Sure, they were disenfranchised. They’re made out of the worst stuff on earth.

  9. Avatarbluebarchetta

    Jack, some of your best pieces have been about your son’s karting and BMX riding, but I get why you have to let that go. It takes courage to be an outspoken libertarian/conservative these days, and the spineless pukes you offend won’t hesitate to go after your children.

    I suppose this is why Mark never writes about youth soccer anymore, either.

  10. Avatarhank chinaski

    Other than the source photoshoot, which frankly begged for ridicule (and got it), I’m not familiar with any of miniAOC’s (or by extension, her parents’)work or positions. It’s reasonable to assume that she enjoys being the center of attention as much as any girl of that age. Her parody nailed it. Bravo.

    As far as the response to it, ‘the stuck pig squeals the loudest’. It hit home because bigAOC is an ignorant, petulant child, born into privilege like most of her ilk. When little AOC’s father is rendered unemployed and destitute by the hive, at least she’ll be able to walk the street to feed her family. The new AG (barring losing a recount) in big AOC’s district wants to decriminalize prostitution, among other things.

    I don’t expect poor Desmond to make it to twenty. There is a special place in hell for his parents, and his father in particular.

    The helicopter rides can’t come soon enough.


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