Where would we be without the anti-vaxxers, nut-jobs, conspiracy theorists, flat earthers, god-botherers, fake newscasters, tinfoil helmet wearers, alien abductionists, first contacters, country and western fans, climate change deniers and teetotallers? We would be bereft of hilarity on our social media feeds that’s where. There’s nothing like a “happening” to bring the worst out in people and there’s no better place to do it than your platform of choice (I needn’t list those I think). They are funny though, those people who get all exorcised about some imaginary slight they have suffered bless their little cotton socks.
Whether it be their ‘rights’ or ‘beliefs’ or ‘fundamental freedoms’ there’s always something that will irritate like a grain of sand under their collective eyelid. One imagines them thumping a pub bar, making their pint tremble like it was an approaching Tyrannosaurus in Jurassic Park and shouting “But it stands to reason”. One imagines them, in fact, to belong to Britain First or some such ideological and intellectual cul-de-sac. But I’m OK with that. Unlike a lot of folk I’m not about ‘de-friending’ them or ‘blocking’ them or removing them from some self-generated list. Why would I do that? I WANT to know what they are saying. How else am I to engage with them? And I do want to engage with them partly because I’m short on laughs right now and partly because I’m not a Nazi and I think that they should be able to nurse their mental illnesses in public if that’s what they want. I could, of course, take the easy route and simply live in an echo chamber where everybody talks and thinks like me. Imagine that. Sends shivers down my spine just to contemplate it. As has been pointed out on innumerable occasions I am an opinionated arsehole with poor writing skills, political retardation and a loathsome taste in music. I don’t wish to associate with people like that. Nut jobs are so much more fun.
And so it came to pass that this week fellow to the People’s Republic of Liverpudlia – The Popular Front of Coventaria – marched an elderly woman (Maggie – born in County Fermanagh which is not unusual in Coventaria) in front of the cameras to watch her being ritually humiliated by having a Filipino matron jab her with what might be described as a sense of hope. Nut jobs were all over that as you might expect. Mobile telephony devices the land and indeed the world over were pinging as if their lives depended on it. Here it was – the start or possibly the beginning of the end. The best and worst of times. What many seem to have forgotten is that this week marks the anniversary of the official death of smallpox. 9th December 1979 marked the point that smallpox as a disease was finally eradicated. Smallpox and associated/similar disease had been recorded for millennia (at least as far back as Ancient Egypt). And it was a bitch. Horribly mutilating and with a death rate at 30%. Fuck that. You don’t want it and because of vaccinations you’re not going to get it. Ever. Here’s a very brief overview of what happened: Smallpox is dead
That said my cousin’s uncle’s father’s sister called “bollocks” on that on my private social media group so I’m beginning to question whether Edward Jenner was in fact a Tory invention and when would be the right time to get on my spaceship out of here. I just wish the voices in my head would stop being so contradictory. Make it go away.