Dingus of the Week: The "We Will Adopt Your Baby" People
Links and a specialty drink recipe for the revolution
This is the Friday newsletter where I make fun of something stupid in the news. Remind you of something good and give you a specialty drink recipe to drown your doom in. If you love this Friday newsletter, consider becoming a paid subscriber.
There are a lot of bad things happening all the time. But right now, I want to focus on a meme.
Last week, after the repeal of Roe v. Wade, thousands of pro-abortion protesters showed up outside the Supreme Court. Counterprotesters showed up, and among them was a couple holding a sign that read, “We Will Adopt Your Baby.” Noelle Fitchett, a grad student, spotted the couple, took a picture of them, and posted it to Twitter.
The image immediately went viral and became a meme. Because we will still be making memes right through the apocalypse. We will meme the end of the world if it means a few more likes on Twitter. In fact, in 100 years, when alien archaeologists finally unlock the primitive technology of our phones buried under the ocean floor after the rising tides have consumed our cities, they will see not our thoughts, they will not read our poetry or hear our music, they will only have our memes. One thousand years from now, alien graduate students will be writing papers on the significance of two men shaking hands and connecting the man-walking-with-his-girlfriend-while-checking-out-another-woman meme to the fall of mankind.
Musicians playing the cello on the deck of the Titanic have nothing on the thousands of people making memes as the world burns. Memeing while democracy dies in America is the new fiddling while Rome burns.
The couple in the picture are Latin American anti-LGBTQ activists. They are not American citizens, cannot legally adopt in the U.S., and also, adoption is not the opposite of abortion. Adoption is a long, arduous, and expensive process. And adoption comes with its own complications and its own problems. In December, Elizabeth Spiers wrote an op-ed about her own adoption and how it’s not in anyway a substitute for abortion.
There are also 407,000 children in foster care in search of homes. Not that foster care is equivalent either. But the point is, this isn’t about adoption. Abortion is not the reason couples cannot adopt. This isn’t even about saving the babies, because if it was about saving the babies, we would have paid parental leave, we’d have a federally funded school lunch program, SNAP benefits would be expanded, the child care tax credit would have become part of our society instead of expiring, we’d have affordable child care and universal health care.
On Meet the Press this weekend, Peggy Noonan expressed that now that the fight to overturn Roe was over, perhaps the party could turn to helping families. To their credit, the other guests laughed at this moment, because it’s not about the babies. It was never about the babies.
Runner-Up: The 4th of July Weekend
Bitch, I just lost my right to bodily autonomy and my Miranda rights and you want me to celebrate freedom. WHAT FREEDOM?
Where is this so-called American freedom? I’m looking really hard for it. But all I can find is White Claw in every flavor and a Taco Bell tostada with a Cheez-It inside.
The Supreme Court has been chipping away at voting rights, several states are impeding the right of LGBTQ people to even exist, I can’t make my own health care decisions. So I ask you, what freedom? Tell me specifically what I am supposed to be celebrating? A bunch of white guys who wrote a Constitution calling Black American citizens as less than people and writing women out of it all together? At this point, I long for the malignant rule of the crown over the theocracy of the Supreme Court.
And Now for Something Good:
I’ve always been a Lake Michigan person myself. But this week, Lake Superior put the “great” in the Great Lakes, when some shitposter, who I have never heard of, and whose accomplishments I don’t care about, tried to dunk on the Lake’s Twitter account for supporting the right to an abortion. Fitton quote tweeted Lake Superiors pro-abortion tweet, writing “Water is wet and abortion kills a human being.”
Lake Superior, earned it’s name, by replying, “Thomas not even your first talking point is correct. Water is not wet, what water touches is wet. I’m confident I have a lot more experience making things wet than you do.”
Just magnificent stuff.
Also, in Minnesota, edibles are now legal. But how it happened was hilarious. Here let me just quote from a text my friend sent about this: “The senate HHS chair (GOP) literally had no idea he was legalizing them. This other senator (whom he hates) negotiated the bill and did know. She just like...didn't mention it to him. Now he wants to roll back the law.”
Nope. Sorry, bro.
What I’ve Been Reading:
Well, I finished Jessamine Chan’s The School for Good Mothers, and I sobbed so hard I woke up my son who was sleeping next to me. The book is fierce and powerful and so intensely human. It’s also really hard to read as we enter a world where women will be forced to give birth and not have the resources to mother.
I also started Trust by Hernan Diaz, which is very good so far and a lot less emotionally traumatizing.
I haven’t read a lot on the internet this week. On Friday, I saw a man in a truck try to run over protesters. And as the week went on, I’ve watched that attack get legitimized in the local press, who have bent over backwards to justify the hit-and-run that put two women in the hospital. All week, I’ve been getting emails, tweets, comments, and Instagram comments about how I and my friends should die. So, with all respect to the internet, I haven’t looked at it much. (But if you’ve read something good online, please post it in the comments.)
In this newsletter, I had not one but two posts. One about how we fight for our rights. It’s partially the story of the attack on Friday. It also has a lot of links to many resources and funds that people can donate to and organizations to support. I know a lot of people didn’t click on the links because I can see how many clicks the links get in the dashboard. So, if you are despairing, do something. Here is a list.
On Wednesday, I wrote a behind-the-scenes look at Chuck Grassley and some bits that I had to cut from the profile. Nothing super juicy, just some interesting context. The best part of the newsletter (as always) is people posting their Grassley experiences. Did you know Grassley used to offer to run with constituents as long as they didn’t talk politics?
And, while I now consider myself to be an expert on Iowa’s longest serving senator, I had not ever come across this picture of him until some kind stranger slipped it into my DMs. I want to be very clear. The only good reason to DM me is to tell me you love me or send me antelope pictures. No other reason is acceptable.
If you donate any amount to the GoFundMe set up for the victims of the attack at the protest on Friday in Cedar Rapids, send me a picture of your receipt to eclenz at gmail and I will give you a free one-year subscription to this newsletter.
I will be speaking at the Planned Parenthood rally in Des Moines on July 10, at 12pm at the Capitol building.
Also, on July 14, from 5-7pm, I’ll be interviewing Democratic gubernatorial candidate Deidre DeJear in Iowa City on the rooftop of the Chauncy building. The event is ticketed, so click this link for more information. If you don’t have Facebook (I sure don’t), this link works too.
What I Am Drinking:
Like I wrote last week, Ryan Barker from Fifth Wheel Cocktail Club in Iowa City will now be making us special drinks to pair with our despair. I just didn’t think my occasional wine sipping and Bud Light seltzers were inspiring anyone. Also, I’m not going to lie. Mentally, I have been in a dark place and so I cut back on drinking while I try to triage my mental health. So, Ryan is stepping in. Ryan is one of the best humans I’ve ever met and he knows good food and good booze. If you live locally to me (Eastern Iowa), Fifth Wheel offers cocktail delivery. If you don’t live locally to me, mix your own drinks like the peasant you are. This isn’t an ad. I paid Ryan for this.
This week there are two cocktails. The first cocktail is inspired by the French Revolution. The second is inspired by the singer Utah Phillips’ statement on the radical power of memory. “Yes, the long memory is the most radical idea in this country,” he said. “It is the loss of that long memory which deprives our people of that connective flow of thoughts and events that clarifies our vision, not of where we're going, but where we want to go.”
2 oz cognac
.25 oz Bigallet China-China Amer
.25 oz demerara syrup
2 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
2 dashes green Chartreuse
Build over ice. Garnish with a donation to your favorite direct action organization.
The Long Memory
2 oz gin
1 oz Combier Peche de Vigne
.75 oz fresh lemon juice
.5 oz Cocchi Rosa
Shake with a lot of ice. Strain over fresh ice. Best enjoyed outside, in conversation with friends.