Duck Dynasty; a Civil Rights Victory?
Judging from what I’ve read in recent news stories, the things my mother tells me about Duck Dynasty are true. I’ve never seen the show myself, but my mother says: “Duck Dynasty is awful! That show makes me sick to my stomach! The men in that show are disgusting. They’re stupid, bigoted, racist, sexist jerks. Whenever I see their ugly faces they make me so angry! And you know what bothers me most about Duck Dynasty? All of the guys on that show look JUST LIKE YOU!!!”
Now if my mom had said, “Hey John, have you heard of this band: Whitesnake? I heard something by them the other day and thought they might be a band you would like.” I would have dismissed her opinion completely. However, for as little as she knows about my taste in popular music, the woman knows her TV, and she knows obnoxious behavior when she sees it, so I believe that what she says about Duck Dynasty is true, but a couple of things puzzle me about the whole Duck Dynasty phenomena.
First: How is it possible that people who look like me have a show on commercial television? Call me old-fashioned, but I remember TV as remarkably well lit place, inhabited entirely by attractive people. I thought that was the reason people watched TV. That is, to fill their ugly lives with images of attractive people. Apparently those days are long gone.
Second: Why do the Duck Dynasty guys want to look like me? Did my didgeridoo playing inspire them to make duck calls? Has this blog influenced them in any way, or do they just like the way I look? I suppose it is possible that the Duck Dynasty guys arrived at this look independently, the same way I did, through extreme, long term neglect of personal hygiene, but still, why would people who want to be on TV make that kind of investment in slovenliness? Did they think it would help their careers? It sure hasn’t helped mine.
Maybe success requires more than simple ugliness. Perhaps success demands stupidity. If that were the case, I’d expect more people to enjoy the fruits of success. I’ve seen lots of stupid, ugly people, and until now, I’ve never seen any of their faces on a beer cozy before, and I doubt many of them have their own TV show, but most of them watch a lot of TV.
I guess Hollywood has gotten the message that stupid ugly people want to see more people like themselves on TV. Maybe the bigwig TV moguls have felt the pressure from the “Ugly Liberation” and “Stupid Pride” movements. I guess you could see Duck Dynasty as a sort of perverse civil rights achievement, the way women everywhere knew that they had gained stature in society when tobacco companies began marketing to them, or the way gay people felt the first time they saw an Ikea commercial targeting them as suckers for their cheap flat-packaged furniture.
Now that I think about it, I can’t think of a better way to tap the vast reserves, and growing stockpiles of otherwise useless ugliness and stupidity, than with a show like Duck Dynasty. Stupidity and ugliness are clearly Americas most abundant renewable resource. In recent years stupidity and ugliness have spread like kudzu, choking out beauty and smothering intelligence and creativity everywhere. It’s about time someone found some use for it and cut it back a bit.
I wouldn’t count on Duck Dynasty for reducing the amount of stupidity and ugliness in America. No, Duck Dynasty celebrates the ugly and stupid. It encourages stupid ugly people to come out of the closet, and it tells young people that it’s OK to be stupid and ugly. Duck Dynasty helps people get in touch with their inner ugliness and stupidity, and encourages them to explore their stupid and ugly tendencies.
Even if we forget the show altogether, that Duck Dynasty swag I see (everywhere I look) promotes the ugly stupid agenda all on its own.
Face it. If you are stupid enough to buy a Duck Dynasty T-shirt, you are stupid enough. If you weren’t ugly enough before you bought the shirt, you certainly will be, once you put it on.
Further, Duck Dynasty helps make society more tolerant of stupid, ugly people, and before long, thanks to Duck Dynasty, we will all accept stupid and ugly as normal. I mean, stupid and ugly are already pretty normal. However, Duck Dynasty celebrates a special kind of stupid and ugly, that real ugly kind of stupid, and that real stupid kind of ugly that they try to weed out in public schools, but that still flourishes in places like Texas, Mississippi, and Alabama, and in smaller pockets all over this country.
Duck Dynasty makes that kind of stupid ugliness seem normal, healthy, fun, and entertaining, and provides stupid and ugly role models for millions of young Americans to learn from. Isn’t that the kind of civil rights victory we need right now?