I’m all out of bubblegum…
ALEX SPENCER, Week 5: They Live
Picture the scene: Last Sunday. A pub. I sit down with some friends and begin to explain the premise of this article.
Twenty minutes in, a bald, middle aged man with sunken eyes and a demeanour he thinks is more threatening than it actually is calmly walks over to our table, phone in hand. One by one, he takes pictures of me and my friends.
“Be careful who you talk about in pubs, gentlemen.”
He goes back to his table. But an hour later, when we leave, he’s still sitting by the door.
“Take care, gentlemen,” he says, scrunching his face up into his best possible scowl, or fig impersonation – it was hard to tell.
I told my friends that I was going to write an article about the reptilian conspiracy at the heart of the Student Left. And they overheard me.
Now they’ve found out. They’re coming for me. My days are numbered. I’ve upset them and they’ll make me pay like so many others.
Because they really don’t like…well, anything. They don’t like criticism. They don’t like engagement. They don’t like you.
Perhaps you know one? Look to your Facebook accounts: they’re the ones constantly sharing articles, spouting hundreds of patronising, irrelevant Trigger Warnings in the process. Look to your Twitter Feeds: they’re the people pointing out that their cause is LITERALLY A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH from the comfort of their keyboard in King’s.
They’re easy to spot: they have PR skills resembling a broken puppet attempting to solve a Rubik’s cube and the collective sense of humour of a citrus fruit.
This column isn’t about politics. No, this column is an ad hominem. Or it would be, if it wasn’t for the fact that homo (-inis) [Latin] means person. And I’m not talking about people.
Because they’re too angry, too self-righteous, too selfish. They spend more time on social media than the rest of us could possibly manage and simultaneously get on with the rest of our lives.
One thing’s for sure – whatever they are - They live.
They live to be angry: they rage with the incandescent fury of a thousand flammable Gordon Ramsays. They are waiting to combust at the mere suggestion that they might be wrong, or that they might like to explain their motives to anyone who isn’t in their inner circle.
They live for self-aggrandisement. They’ll add you to Facebook groups, only to publicly shame you. They’ll wade into arguments that don’t concern them on behalf of groups they’re not a part of:
“Let’s all go swimming…”
“…you can’t say that. There are some people out there who can’t swim and you’re excluding them.”
“Err..hi there, I can’t swim and I just wanted to say that I didn’t…” “…BE SILENT I AM REPRESENTING YOU.”
They live to appropriate: they’ll seize any opportunity to take what’s yours and claim it for their own. They’ll take over your magazines, liberating the poor souls you’ve forced to write for them; they’ll take away your ability to speak about politics itself. In the words of Antoine Dodson: “they climbin’ in yo’ windows, they snatching yo’ platforms up.”
Too true, Antoine, too true.
But what are they? Where have they come from? These beings can’t be people. People don’t act like this. People are reasonable.
Maybe they’re really human-sized puppets controlled by angry space wasps intent on carving out a meaningless, unhelpful, rage-fuelled existence for themselves and the real people around them after the destruction of their homeworld.
Perhaps they’re manifestations of a super-intelligent AI trying to take over social media by literally filling it with inane rants, distracting people from the useful work waiting to be done out in the real world.
What if it’s a tory conspiracy? An attempt to discredit the Left by filling it with actors playing wholly unreasonable, unsympathetic characters. Maybe they’re tories in disguise…ever seen Theresa May at a CDE rally? Didn’t think so.
Personally, I think they’re space lizards. They live among us. Reporting back to their base on the moon. David Icke, Alex Jones – they’re both right. Forget Bilderberg, it’s the NUS you should be worried about.
But think what you like – one thing’s for sure: they’re not helpful. They don’t make the Left more credible. They deal in division and prejudice. We don’t need them.
But now they’re coming for me. It falls to you not to let them take over.