Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Question Authority. Live Extremely. Blog Your Narcissism.

Via Jesus' General and Miss Poppy, we meet one Becki Snow, who is currently suspended in a dynamic tension of hunger and self-righteousness. Snow, in a bold gesture of authority-questioning and extreme living, is about a dozen days into a sympathy hunger strike for Terri Schiavo, during which time she has issued bulletins and manifestos to the frosted loons who read her blog. Here's a random sample of Snow's "witless witness" to the power of martyrdom:
If I wonder what it's like to bungee jump, I do it. If I wonder what it's like to hike into the mountains and live there without anything but what I can carry in a backpack, I do it. If I wonder what it's like to have a child without benefit of medications, I do it. (It's not THAT bad. But then again...)

However, there are those among us who are timid, shy, unable to overcome their fear of experiencing pain or exhilaration or humiliation. They are the ones who, in their fear of defeat, never experience victory. They would much rather accept the opinions of experts who will tell them how it feels to bungee jump, or how beautiful the mountains are, or how wonderful it is to be fully aware when a child is born of your body. These people are not to be condemned - they help the world to turn upon it's [sic] axis in an orderly fashion, unhindered by the curiousity of exploration.

I am not one of those people.
No, Becki, you're not. You're the kind of person who wonders what it's like to be brain dead, and then attempts to mimic that condition as accurately as possible with each stray thought. You're the kind of person who attempts to give voice, in blog form, to the experiences of a woman you've been persuaded to regard as the most recent face of God.

Here's another laugher:
No euphoria. At least "SO FAR." Thanks for the tip, Becki. Keep us posted on that euphoria thing.

The entire blog gurgles with this sort of gross sentimentality, and — as if to underscore the bathos of it all — features an archive of close-up webcam photos of Becki's anguished, contemplative face. It also repeats the predictable and utterly bogus historical analogies (e.g., did you know the Nazis referred to useless eaters?!? Makes you think . . . . [Pause five seconds here for vacuous silence . . .]), while effortlessly invoking Gandhi, that fanatical vegetarian, about whom we can be reasonably certain that Becki Snow knows nothing. In Becki's mind though, here's how it works: Gandhi refused food; Becki refuses food. Gandhi believed strongly in his cause; Becki believes strongly in her cause. Ergo, Becki's hunger=Gandhi's hunger, and Becki's Cause=Gandhi's Cause.

Becki might consider the following guidance from Gandhi himself:
Whenever you are in doubt, or when the self becomes too much with you, apply the following test. Recall the face of the poorest and the weakest man whom you may have seen, and ask yourself, if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to him. Will he gain anything by it? Will it restore him to a control over his own life and destiny? In other words, will it lead to swaraj [freedom] for the hungry and spiritually starving millions? Then you will find your doubts and your self melt away.
The so-called "pro-life" movement cannot answer Gandhi's question, because their construction of "life" is so ethically vacant and depthless that the entire question of "freedom" no longer appears to matter. I suppose we should get used to this.