Of memes and mainstream media : How CNN re-ignited the Great Meme War
The end of CNN?
CNN is on a rapid descent into the garbage bin of American cultural history, and their demise may fittingly be a death by a thousand memes.
The controversy began on July 2, 2017 when Donald Trump tweeted a GIF of himself pummeling WWE chairman Vince McMahon, with a CNN logo superimposed on his head, at a 2007 Wrestlemania event. As expected, whenever Trump dangles his personal brand of mainstream media trigger bait, CNN couldn’t resist and eagerly swallowed it hook, line, and sinker.
Que the faux outrage machine!
Anchors and pundits alike took to the airwaves in one whining accord decrying Trump for “encouraging violence” against members of the media.
That’s right, folks. In the vacuous echo chamber of the progressive elite, Trump posting a humorous meme online is now tantamount to a call for literal violence against them. Curious how CNN, of all media outlets, is suddenly so quick to condemn the alleged encouragement of politically-motivated violence. After all, they certainly seem to have no problem encouraging violent actions against Donald Trump, his supporters, or anyone whom they have deemed “deplorable”.
Everyone hates a cry-bully
Days before the election, CNN essentially “wargamed” a Trump assassination scenario in which an Obama cabinet member would assume power. Surely no one at CNN thought that such a discussion could potentially influence an unstable person to attempt to harm Trump or his cabinet members during the inauguration. Besides, unstable people never digest the mainstream media’s hysterical and violent rhetoric and actually hurt people for politically-motivated reasons; just ask Congressman Steve Scalise.
Remember when the network conducted a sympathetic interview with the “Trump stage-rusher” just days after he had been arrested for trying to hop onstage with the then presidential candidate to “confront him” for being a “bully”? In the piece accompanying the interview, the man is described as a “bright and intelligent” young college student and activist who simply wanted to be heard. His actions were not an inappropriate and disturbing display of aggression coming from a clearly troubled individual, NO, he was doing the right thing by “protesting” against a Fascist. Might praising his actions encourage others to do the same?
What about months upon months of claiming Donald Trump is “literally Hitler” and his supporters nothing but racist NAZI sympathizers? Might that encourage violence, CNN? Or how about incessantly beating the dead horse of the completely debunked “Russia hacked the election” narrative; A narrative which largely aims to frighten ill-informed people into believing that the President of the US has been illegitimately installed in the White House by Russia and is Vladimir Putin’s puppet? (The Russia narrative was further proven false just weeks ago when three CNN journalists were forced to resign over false claims the US Congress was investigating links between members of Donald Trump’s administration and a Russian investment fund.) Or how about the entire MSM’s current peddling of the “Donald Trump is mentally ill – #25thamendmentnow!” nonsense?
Oh, and lets not forget everyone’s favorite pasty peddler of violent propaganda, Kathy Griffin…
Might any of this “encourage violence”, CNN?
Clearly the elites in the mainstream media have become nothing more than progressive propaganda merchants who routinely peddle pro-political-violence rhetoric to their largely ignorant (sometimes unstable) audiences. They are crazed ideologues, bullies who demand that we commoners conform to their politically correct tyranny. But don’t expect any of these fear-porn propagandists to suddenly have a crisis of conscience and acknowledge their deep hypocrisy. Not surprisingly, living in a self-aggrandizing, politically correct echo chamber tends to foster a general lack of self-awareness – a stunning lack of self awareness that has perhaps never been more clearly on display than when CNN took it upon themselves to target and publicly threaten the Reddit user they alleged to be the originator of the Trump wrestling GIF.
Pride goes before a fall…
On July 4th (ironic if you ask me) CNN published an article announcing that they had indeed “found the Reddit user behind the Trump wrestling GIF” – A user called HanA**holeSolo.
The Reddit user first shared the GIF of Trump pummeling Vince McMahon with a CNN logo in place of his head Wednesday of last week, according to CNN. CNN and others in the MSM then generated a controversy over the GIF after President Trump tweeted a supposedly altered version of the original on Tuesday. Why CNN believed this meme to be the work of HanA**holeSolo, and not perhaps a similar GIF from an entirely different source is not addressed however.
After being tracked down by CNN, HanA**holeSolo issued a public apology on the subreddit /r/The_Donald and deleted all of his other posts. However the apology has since been taken down by the moderators of /The_Donald. No doubt the mods know, as should everyone, that this was a forced apology given under duress.
In a stunning display of disregard for both freedom of speech and online privacy, CNN has publicly threatened to “dox” (reveal the personal identifying information of) the Reddit user should he post something objectionable to CNN in the future. Andrew Kaczynski, senior editor and founding member of CNN’s KFILE, writes of the possibility that CNN may yet dox HanA**holeSolo, saying :
“CNN is not publishing “HanA**holeSolo’s” name because he is a private citizen who has issued an extensive statement of apology, showed his remorse by saying he has taken down all his offending posts, and because he said he is not going to repeat this ugly behavior on social media again. In addition, he said his statement could serve as an example to others not to do the same.
CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.“
CNN has become so drunk with power that they have publicly blackmailed a private citizen in an attempt to force them to give up their right to freedom of expression online. Not only that, but they are literally congratulating themselves for it. Just look at the title of Kaczynski’s piece “How CNN found the Reddit user behind the Trump wrestling GIF” – One would think they had tracked down a notorious serial killer, but no, they found a guy who posted a GIF on Reddit. Well, I know I for one can sleep soundly again knowing that CNN has tracked down this monster and forced him to give up his right to speak freely and express himself online in a way that’s protected by the First Amendment.
Further proving their megalomania, CNN has made a point of painting HanA**holeSolo as a racist bigot who has posted lots of hateful content online in the past as a naked attempt to justify potentially doxxing him in the present. Because he has sinned against the Church of Social Justice, CNN’s minions believe that they possess the moral high-ground no matter what awful acts may be committed against this vile sinner should he be unrepentant.
READ : CNN contributor Kirsten Powers “CNN journalists should have no pity for anonymous internet trolls”
CNN’s sheer lack of ethics and decency and their arrogance about said lack during this debacle has been absolutely stunning to behold! I suppose unethical behavior isn’t really surprising coming from a network whose own health producer believes that, “all the nice cutesy ethics that used to get talked about in journalism school” are “just adorable”. In fairness, I think John Bonifield’s words are merely a reflection of what many of us already know – American journalism has self-destructed and an authoritarian, far-left propaganda factory has been built atop the rubble.
Make no mistake, this blackmail threat is not just aimed at this particular Reddit user for having dared to make a funny MEME at CNN’s expense – It is a resounding threat made against anyone who would dare use such forums to expose the lies of the mainstream media and speak freely against them.
In fact, it’s now being widely reported that CNN has potentially singled out and threatened the wrong person. After their mafia-style bullying and shameless moral grandstanding, it turns out that the meme Donald Trump tweeted was probably made and posted by a different person. Not only did CNN terrorize some humble meme farmer, they terrorized the wrong one! This proves my point – HanA**holeSolo could have been anyone. He could have been you.
The message CNN wants you to take away from this incident is “We are powerful, and we will force you to submit by any means necessary”. They have effectively put a horse head in the bed of the anonymous internet and dared anyone to speak against them in the future.
Predictably (to everyone except CNN, evidently) this mafia-style attempt to silence criticism of the media has not in fact served “as an example to others” to refrain from their anonymous sh*tposting. Rather it has simply served as the spark that has ignited a furious backlash and all-out meme war against CNN on social media – A war which is long overdue.
CNN, along with the rest of the MSM, have long looked-down their well-bred noses at that “basket of deplorables” who carried Donald Trump to the White House. They have for years now recklessly and falsely labeled them with the social scarlet letters of “racist”, “misogynist”, “homophobe”, “Islamophobe” etc. for the crime of expressing reasonable views and valid concerns. The media has mocked them, slandered them, and even encouraged violence against them. They have used every platform at their disposal to deride, malign, and marginalize this ever-growing voice screaming into the American political void demanding to be heard.
Can you hear them now, CNN?
The Meme War rages…
When CNN threatened HanA**holeSolo, they roused the simmering ire of a social media giant – A legion of sh*tposters and meme creators who was, by the mainstream media’s own admission, a formidable force that likely influenced the outcome of the 2016 Presidential election, and has attempted to do the same with European politics in recent months.
Now this anonymous legion stands battle-ready to once again fight in this ongoing conflict known as the Great Meme War. Their forces are amassing on both 4Chan and Reddit and sharing strategies to wage their war of memes on CNN.
It appears the collective anti-CNN war-gaming going on in every dark corner of social media is already having a real-world effect as the rating for CNN’s app in the Apple app store fell to 1 star after a sudden barrage of negative reviews since the Reddit controversy.
Contrary to what some may think, this movement is not simply comprised of immature people with too much time on their hands posting juvenile rants and memes on the internet (But to be sure there are quite a few of those people involved). Many who are participating know that there is something much larger than funny memes at stake. They understand that freedom of speech exists for those ideas that are different or offensive, and to protect those who express said ideas. They know that if CNN is allowed to silence one of their voices, they will all be silenced eventually. Like the boiling frog, it may happen slowly, but it will happen.
The reaction to the #CNNBlackmail story has been rapid, ferocious, and unforgiving for good reason. If CNN were to stand unchallenged in this it would be a potentially devastating blow to how people would or perhaps even should communicate online. This was a blatant attack by the establishment media on the free marketplace of ideas that thrives on social media and throughout the internet.
They hate that marketplace.
The media is threatened by it because if people are allowed to share uncensored ideas they may just start thinking for themselves – and as Mika Brzezinski of MSNBC said, it’s the media’s job to control what you think. Forums like Reddit, 4Chan, YouTube and alternative media sites challenge that control.
The MSM is desperately clinging to their waning power with a rigid but ever-loosening grip – and the CNN Meme War is further proof that their claim to power has ended.
A couple of my own contributions to the #CNNMemeWar
Note to CNN : If you wish to speak to me about my memes there’s no need to hunt me down and write a ridiculous article about it. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow me on Twitter @infectedinfo
Some of the best #CNNBlackmail memes from around the internet
WATCH : A compilation of some of the best Trump vs. CNN memes