South Park continues to deliver this season. Trey Parker and Matt Stone prove themselves master satirists in this week’s episode titled Sponsored Content.
The premise is simple: ads are everywhere. You see a news story you want to read and click on link. Yet as soon as the page loads. If not that, then the page so full of ads the article is unreadable. So you download an ad-blocker for your browser, and that solves the problem until some sites find a workaround.
Now some sites will not allow you to view the content without allowing the ads (or pop-ups) through. Of course, people have the option of ignoring such sites, which brings in the final method of advertisement: sponsored content.
You have seen it. It hides in plain sight, masquerading as news articles. There is the article about lowering dental fees or the one about insurance. There is the one about the changing prices for various foods and the one about ski resorts. Sometimes they are so well hidden that you do not realize what they are until the middle of the article. Other times they are so lazy they are little more than a slideshow.
This is the theme that underlies the episode. Jimmy runs a school newspaper that catches PC Principal’s ire for the use of the word “retarded.” He tries to force Jimmy to edit the word out because it is “insensitive” and make Jimmy come to him for approval of any article. Jimmy refuses and stands up for free speech.
PC Principal bans Jimmy from handing out the paper on school property, so Jimmy decides to deliver the paper to the community by hand (on a Thomas the Engine car no less). People marvel at the paper’s pure news. No ads, not sponsored content. Just the facts.
The episode keeps coming back to this, and ends up concluding with the theme ads ruining our media and our understanding of the world. However, where the show shines is in its brutal take-down of the PC culture.
Jimmy constantly asking PC Principal if he is biased against handicap people (which is Jimmy’s preferred pronoun) is just the beginning. By far the best scene is the party the PC Bros throw for South Park’s disabled community to prove they support marginalized groups. What happens is a thing to behold, and I do not want to ruin it expect for one part.
During the party, one of the PC Bros flirts with a woman by talking about how concerned he is for marginalized groups. He then asks if he can take her upstairs and “totally crush your pussy. Would that be acceptable to you?”
The woman says, “Oh, why, I guess it would.”
And the PC Bro delivers the best line of the episode: “No, I’m sorry. I need affirmative consent. I’ll need you to say ‘Yes, you make take me upstairs and crush my pussy at this time.'”
And the next morning:
The sad part is that one can see this not only happening, but scores of progressives applauding this if it had not been obvious satire. Of course, this take-down does not address situations like what Shoe0nhead brilliantly satirized:
Granted, it is a common stereotype that men involved in feminism are only interested in having sex. Now that feminism has taken control over other social movements, it makes sense people would extend this stereotype to men involved in progressive politics. It is unfair to label all men interested in social justice as simply trying to get laid, yet it is rather funny.
However, the observation made by Sharon Marsh in the episode stands regardless of the context: “Ever since you joined this PC thing, all you’ve done is bully people.”
And that is really all most of this is about. We saw it when the Black Lives Matter group hijacked Bernie Sanders’s rally. We saw it when students at University of Missouri tried to block a student journalist from reporting about their protest. We saw it when students Claremont McKenna College protested the “lack of support from the Claremont McKenna College administration for students of color and others with marginalized identities.”
All of their behaviors amounts to little more than bullying. This is what modern social justice is now about. It is solely about gaining and maintaining power while engaging in the very bigoted, hateful, discriminatory prejudice they claim to oppose. And unlike in South Park where Jimmy could use his status as a handicap individual to put PC Principal on the defensive, that does not work in real life. In the real world. presenting one’s status as a member of the marginalized group the so-called “social justice warriors” claim to speak for will only lead them to attack the person.
The only way to resolve this problem is by showing it for what it is. Once people see how badly the PC, social justice crowd behave they will stop wanting to support them. You do not need to take my word for it. Just ask feminists.