Ockham’s first law of activism

As prosperity increases, the supply of injustices fails to meet demand. This results in a tendency to attempt to fight the previous generation’s battles as if they had not already been won.

We’re in a legal mood this week. Yesterday, Sailer’s First Law of Female Journalism, today we have one of our own.

When I was growing up, kids used to read weekly comic books. In England, a popular comic book for boys was “The Victor”, consisting mainly of tales of Allied Forces’ bravery between 39 and 45. It was highly persuasive to a young boy’s brain, I definitely thought the idea of fighting in WW2 was cool.

I’m sure this type of thinking probably guided a mate of mine in his life decisions right up to the moment he suffered PTSD when being evacuated from HMS Sheffield. I also wonder if other friends ever questioned whether Belfast kids chucking rocks at them whilst on patrol along the Falls Road were not quite analogous an experience as shooting at SS officers shouting “Gott in Himmel!” and “achtung Tommy!” as they’d first hoped for when signing up for duty.

Of course, some battles are truly inter-generational in duration; the battle to defeat world poverty, for example, has been with us forever and only now seems to have a possible end in sight, Kung Flu self-induced recessions notwithstanding.

If one views the world through the suggested First Law of Activism filter, the thankless task of trying to make sense of some of the insanity playing out in the media and social media becomes a little easier.

The increasing trend of ascribing to the evils of racism any disparity in outcome or perceived slight becomes far more rational when viewed in the context that these people are actually fighting the problems of their parents’ age. Without a Hitler or an Apartheid to fight, we are faced with the choice of either searching for the next worse problem to solve or we must pretend we’ve not already won.

If you’re pulling on the virtual armour to campaign to rename “Coon Cheese” because, despite it being the surname of the founder, it used to be an offensive noun for black people, you may have been a victim of Ockham’s First Law of Activism. By the way, I’ve personally not heard it used since perhaps the late 1970s, I suspect you’d have to explain the context to most people born since the 1980s.

In the meantime, there’s compelling evidence of an actual genocide taking place in the same longitude as Australia, which one can only assume bothers these people far less than the cheese. We could point to other egregious wrongs to be righted but what’s the point? If your efforts are being focused on the name of a cheese, we’ve either solved all the major human rights issues globally or you’re suffering from a problem of prioritisation.

With this context, let’s look at a current active example:

Background; in Australia, kids get fed “fairy bread” at parties. It’s basically white bread with butter and coloured candy sprinkles.
Don’t judge. It’s been a tradition for decades.

A week or so ago, a petition appeared campaigning to rename it because it’s offensive to, well, fairies, I suppose. Now, one could read that last sentence and roll your eyes whilst sighing about crazy wokistanis getting vicariously offended on behalf of other people (or “vifence” as we call it here). Alternatively, even a cursory investigation would suggest to most people with a IQ above the temperature of a baby’s bath water that this petition is a mildly amusing prank.

One clue is offered by the following post from the petition’s author, who happens to share the same name as a type of locally sold sofa:

A journalist at News.com.au didn’t bother checking though and fell for it. That’s hardly surprising, we’ve not been sending the greatest minds of our generation into that industry for quite some time.

The comments under the petition are perhaps the most illuminating. There’s clearly a huge number of people who got the joke and are playing along with it. However, there’s not an insignificant number who didn’t realise it was a spoof AND agreed with the “injustice” it described (offending fairies by naming sugary bread in their honour) enough to write a comment of support and signing in their own name.

Bill’s Opinion

Comedy is a cultural Rorsach Test.

People not realising the petition was a joke is to be accepted as normal. There are multiple conditions described in the DSM-5 which result in the sufferer being unable to comprehend and engage with humour. Paranoid personality disorder (PPD), for example, affecting up to 2.5% of the population.

Not realising it was a spoof AND agreeing with the seriousness of the “injustice” to the point where you’d sign it and add a comment of support suggests a different type of mental illness altogether.

In the meantime, have some sympathy for the mental prisons in which poor Vivienne, Janette and Roseanne are existing. If they’ve spotted the joke and are playing along, they’re not very good at humour:

So, Debbie McGee, what first attracted you to the millionaire Paul Daniels?

The circling of the drain leading us down to the cesspool of stupidity continues to pick up speed. The evidence for this is contained in this classic example of Sailer’s First Law of Female Journalism.

That law states; The most heartfelt articles by female journalists tend to be demands that social values be overturned in order that, Come the Revolution, the journalist herself will be considered hotter-looking.

I’m not going to fisk the article in detail because it is both repetitive and boring. I hope you’ll agree I’m not doing it a disservice with the TLDR version thus:

On dating apps and websites, men can often be very creepy. Sometimes this manifests itself in an expressed preference for specific physical features and racial stereotypes. Some men find Asian women attractive.

That a journalist has spotted the phenomenon of creepy men on dating sites is not particularly interesting, at least it’s a break from “reporting” celebrity Twitter spats. What’s more curious is the reasons offered and the people offering these reasons.

At the risk of being a little cruel, I do need to illustrate the reference to Sailer’s Law with some pictures. These three academics have provided explanations as to why some creepy men on Tinder prefer Asian women:

And these women have complained about creepy men on Tinder:

I think this might be some kind of Woke Purity Test that we’re not supposed to notice what is immediately obvious to anyone with eyes, or if we do, we’re not supposed to say what we see.

The first picture is of Dr. Michelle Aung Thin, who doesn’t present any empirical data to support her claim that men who find Asian women attractive do so due to “Oriental stereotypes in historical and popular culture”.

Our second picture is of Dr. Sophie Loy-Wilson, who claims men find Asian women hot due to well documented “racism against Asian women in the 19th and 20th centuries”.

The third picture is of Dr. Shawna Tang, who has managed to get inside the mind of the man who murdered workers and bystanders in an Atlanta massage business, and can categorically state it “was evidence of Asian women being the subjects of sexism and racism, which could be traced back to colonialism in Asia”…. as opposed to his well-documented struggle with evangelical Christianity and a sex addiction. Probably no need to bother with a prosecution and trial then, eh?

Bill’s Opinion

Anyone who has ever dated other humans will know there are a bunch of bloody weirdos out there, of both all genders.

It is somewhat unfortunate the three academics who claim to know for sure why some men prefer young, pretty, lithe Asian women all look like they’ve fallen out of the ugly tree and hit every branch face first on the way down.

I’m sure it’s just one of those strange serendipitous coincidences these academics aren’t hot yet they are certain the reasons some men like cute women can be blamed on something something Hong Kong brothels during the Opium Wars.

I suppose we’re not allowed to call it racism when (comparatively) rich white men are targeted by young women in bars across Asia as highly-desirable future spouses?

In the meantime, if you find your fingers hovering to swipe right on a profile of a cute woman on your hook up app of choice, don’t comment on her ethnicity. Say she looks like she’s got a great personality or something.

Intersectional Boolean Logic

I’m sure most of us have played Cluedo (or “Clue” if you speak ‘Murican) before; there’s been a murder, Dr. Black shuffled off this mortal coil and your job is to determine the murderer, weapon and scene of the crime using a series of observations, eliminations and a final deduction.

It’s a process of elimination as you rank order sort the suspects, weapons and location then remove them from your investigation.

Well, another clue just dropped in the Intersectionality version of Waddington’s classic. We may be about to learn which racial group has more Wokémon points than another if this continues much longer:

Jamie Chung accessorises with a “Stop Asian Hate” handbag.

No, I’d never heard of her previously either, but she made it in the news with the massive activist work she has undertaken with, erm, some words on a purse. Our generation’s Rosa Parkes, indeed.

“Asian Hate” then, what is it and, assuming we can agree on the definition of “Asian”, who is guilty of it?

The answer to that second question is where those who have leaned a little too far over their logical skis are going to find discomfort. If one has a fixed world view where racism and race-based violence flows exclusively from one group, the Stop Asian Hate campaign might introduce you to a feeling of cognitive dissonance.

Why? Well, this 2019 reprint of a 2010 San Francisco Chronicle report might give us a clue. Turns out the victim is often Mrs Kim, the weapon was an unregistered pistol, the crime scene was a Korean convenience store and the murderer was Dr. Black.

Bill’s Opinion

There’s probably only three ways this campaign is going to go.

The first is an honest data-driven discussion in the media about the actual perpetrators of the majority of this particular crime category. Unlikely, based on everything we’ve learned over the last few years.

The second is a misdirection by pretending the reason Robert Long killed 8 and injured one Asian massage parlour employees and other bystanders was a deeply-felt racial hatred despite his obvious previous strenuous efforts to overcome this by paying to have sex with them on a regular basis.

The third and most likely outcome is the hashtag will quietly atrophy as newsrooms quickly spike the results of their investigations into the ethnicity of the main perpetrators.

In the meantime, given there have been millions of global sales of the game of Cluedo, let’s assume each game is played once every couple of years, why is nobody outraged about the genocide of hundreds of millions of Dr. Blacks? Could they have made it any more obvious, perhaps the weapon was a noose and the murderer was a lynch mob?

The life of Brian

Here’s one for the coffee table collection, Brian Hartzer’s autobiography:

For those who’ve arrived here since our mildly unhealthy obsession with Brian’s Wokepac subsided and have therefore missed all the fun watching his slow-moving car crash of a career, perhaps start with this and then read any of the subsequent posts under the Wokepac category.

I’m sure the book will be a fascinating read, explaining the key to Brian’s excellent and almost magical ability to connect (or engage, if you will) with the average Australian.

Most management books seem to have seven rules. Seven is a good number for bullshit advice.

What might Brian’s seven rules consist of, perhaps?

Could we respectfully offer the following:

1. Over-promote people based purely on genital configuration and rig the quota numbers, if required

2. Attend every woke event in the calendar

3. Don’t pay attention to the Risk Department when they suggested the IT systems were enabling 3,000 cases of child sexual abuse

4. Assume everything is going to be great now we have 50:50 diversity in leadership

5. Ignore the year on year decline in share price and market share

6. Front up to APRA with a pathetic and worthless mea culpa

7. Resign as an absolute professional failure, after destroying shareholder value and the credibility of a 200 year old bank whilst maintaining the highest relative operating cost base in the industry

Bill’s Opinion

There are people to take advice from and there are people from whom it’s best to learn by doing the opposite of their example.

Brian is in the latter category.

Don’t be too surprised to find his next career move is Celebrity Strictly Ballroom and I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here.

Consent craving

As is often the case, multiple stories on a similar theme are suspiciously appearing in the media and on people’s Creepbook feeds at the same time.

Exploring the reasons behind the coincidence of the trend, the narrative, can be the theme of another day.

Meanwhile, the current cause du jour is sexual harassment, rape and murder of women by men.

It shouldn’t need to be said, but I’m certain we can all agree those are bad things. Reducing them from our societies should be high on the priority list of everyone.

Note, I didn’t say “eliminate”.

It seems to me, the nexus of anger is to be found between the concepts of reduce and eliminate.

There’s clearly anger. Anger at the murder of Sarah Everard, anger at multiple sexual assaults and allegations of sexual assault by various political workers in Canberra, anger at domestic violence and the fact it’s committed mainly (but not exclusively) by men.

One of the banners at the Australian protest stated we should, “End Rape Now”. I would love to hear the placard owner’s thoughts on how a transition to that world might be achieved.

Banners at the London protests took issue with the fact it isn’t always safe for a lone female to walk on the street.

These statements of protest are clearly well-intentioned uses of rhetoric and hyperbole, but are they helping?

To return to that nexus; if you believe a world with zero rapes is possible, calling for a curfew for men would make sense.

If you rejected that idea, though, the screaming around the theme “all men are rapists” has the effect of drowning out a more sober discussion about practical actions to achieve reduction.

A related conversation was had between a group of fellow parents at our local high school recently; “the school should teach our children about consent“, was the cry.

An unpopular opinion was offered by one foolish soul:

a) I send my kids there to learn maths, English and science. I’ll teach morality, thanks.
b) If your kid doesn’t already know how to respect other people’s bodies by Year 7, YOU are the problem.
c) “Consent” has a specific legal definition which no teacher I’ve met would be capable of teaching in a one hour struggle session.
That went down like a cup of cold vomit, obviously.

Bill’s Opinion

Unusually for Spiked, this is sensible take on the problem.

It is not safe to walk home alone. It’s never been safe to walk home alone. Regardless of whether you are female or, and I cannot stress this strongly enough, male.

As Brett Weinstein stated recently, we are all descendants of rapists and murderers. The statistical probability you aren’t is so unlikely it’s not a credible option. Genetically, we have the capability within us. The miracle is that it doesn’t happen with much greater frequency.

To consider a zero rape world feasible is to believe millions of years of genetics can be overridden for 100% of the population 100% of the time.

If this describes your view, may I politely suggest you meet more human beings.

If you have a son, teach them to keep their hands to themselves unless invited. If you have a daughter, teach them most men are lovely, but some are cunts and they don’t often wear badges to explain which group they are a member of.

In the meantime, if you want to feel safe walking the streets, don’t do it after 6pm if there’s a “man curfew”; the men who stay home won’t be the ones you need to be concerned about.

Meghanivelli’s The Prince

Marry him or marry me

I’m the one that loved you baby can’t you see?

Ain’t got no future or family tree

But I know what a prince and lover ought to be

I know what a prince and lover ought to be

When is a prince not a prince?

This may be a silent question in many British minds currently.

When you “resign” from being a prince, do you cease being a prince?

What if we say you’re no longer a prince? Or the royal family say you’re no longer a prince?

Perhaps you cease to act in a way we would associate as “princely“? Still a prince?

Yes, probably.

Plato’s work on ideas and forms might help us here. Or, for those who are “bears of little brain“, like me, let’s think about my Grandad’s broom instead:

Grandad broke the shaft of the broom and replaced it. A few years later, the brush of the broom was too bare to be usable, so he replaced that. The broom was handed to my father who, in turn, had to replace the shaft and the brush a couple of times. I have the broom now and I’ve replaced both components too.

Is it still my Grandad’s broom?

As an idea, yes. As a form, no.

The British monarchy is something that doesn’t usually exercise my mind. When I think of it at all, I consider its current iteration as being of marginally more benefit than cost.

Why?

Similar to the way the US constitution uses the concept of God as a source of inalienable human rights, the UK unwritten constitution has evolved to view the Queen as the omnipresent benevolent figurehead, due considerably to her incredible personal discipline of keeping well out of matters of current affairs.

The corollary of this is the Napoleonic code in Europe, where human rights come from the government. Anyone who’s ever met a politician would find that concept repellent if they thought about it for a moment.

This burden of stoic and silent “duty” clearly sits uncomfortably on the shoulders of the following generation of royals. Charles has at various times expressed many half-baked opinions on climate, architecture, town planning and agriculture.

William wants us to stop having as many children as him, because he’s learned about Robert Malthus.

And Harry’s opinions are, well, whatever the fuck Meghan tells him they are.

Bill’s Opinion

“Prince” Harry is still a prince and, unfortunately for all of us, will be until and after he dies in a tragic road traffic accident on the way to the 2023 rugby World Cup final in Paris.

One has to have some sympathy for the fellah, though. Apart from the glaringly obvious massive privilege of his birth into a level of luxury and comfort us plebeians can only dream of, he was also handed the disadvantages of being a bit dim and ginger.

This seems like an impossible version of the game, “would you rather?”. Would you rather be poor and intelligent or massively wealthy and thick as mince? Tougher to pick than a broken nose.

Basically, he’s that mate you know who woke up one Sunday morning next to a “10” and then burned every bridge of friendship and family in order to keep her. Anyone who tried to suggest to him that her personality was attractive in inverse proportionality to her looks was ostracised immediately, preferably in a loud virtuous display to further prove his love and devotion to his girlfriend.

If the white Fiat Uno doesn’t get him on Le Peripherique, he’ll most likely top himself about three months after she grows bored of him. I’ll give it another two years, maximum.

Jenna Hates the IWD

No, not the erstwhile Intellectual Dark Web, subsequently disbanded because Sam Harris can’t get over his extreme case of Trump Derangement Syndrome. Instead, Jenna Hates wants to cancel the International Women’s Day (today, by the way).

As many of Jenna Hates columns often do, this one takes three or more seemingly unrelated elements and then stitches them together in a quilt of misandry using a thread of logical fallacies.

Marvel at the dexterity with which she simultaneously claims an alleged rapist is innocent until proven guilty but then points out the chances of a woman ever making a false accusation of rape are minuscule, to the point of being nearly impossible.

Actually, if you read her column carefully, she doesn’t even offer him the olive branch of presumed innocence before chucking this feel-pinion in:

Just for the record, the director of Monash University’s Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre, Kate Fitz-Gibbon, tells me it is rare – very rare – for a woman to make a false allegation of rape.

Got any data to back that assertion up?

Nah, no need for academics to bother with supporting evidence when making claims of truth.

Fortunately, here in the real world, we have access to search engines which suggest somewhere between 2 to 10% of rape allegations are fabricated (source 1, source 2, source 3).

So, we could “believe all women” and send a lot of innocent people to jail, or we could, I dunno, use the existing legal processes to test these claims and try our hardest to maintain some level of justice and standards for society to operate within.

Jenna Hates is not so concerned about that idea however, because all the circumstantial evidence points to Porter being a member of the political party she hates Nazi scumbag.

Exhibit 1 – He made a political decision Jenna Hates, erm, hates:

While he was minister for social services, he oversaw the destruction of the national sexual assault and counselling hotline, 1800 RESPECT, moving it from a women-led service to one which became part of Medibank, a company now profiting from rape.

By the way, does anyone else wonder whether Medibank’s legal team are planning on challenging that allegation? Get the popcorn in.

By that logic, Celgene, the manufacturer of Revlimid, is profiting from cancer. Don’t hold your breathe for the class action law case.

Exhibit 2 – There are allegations of his philandering:

It also doesn’t help his brand that he was one of the politicians pinged on the Four Corners episode Inside the Canberra Bubble, reported by Louise Milligan, where it was alleged he was seen “kissing and cuddling” a young woman staffer at a popular bar.

One can’t be sure what Jenna Hates hates the most about this; the alleged infidelity, the kissing, the age of the woman or the popularity of the bar?

Exhibit 3 – He’s had failed marriages:

In the meantime, he has had two marriages fall apart. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

One feels there may be an element of projection going on there. Has Jenna Hates loved and been rejected by any chance? Say it ain’t so.

Bill’s Opinion

As commentator Michael van der Riet infers on a reply to an earlier post, if you are prepared to suspend your standards simply because a convenient stick to beat an opponent presents itself, you have rejected the right to be taken seriously in future.

But yes, Jenna Hates, he definitely did it because he’s been divorced twice and changed the funding model for a support help line.

Burn him and anyone else who reminds me of my ex-husband!

“What about justice for the victim?”

For those of you (about half, looking at the stats) outside of Australia, a quick catch up on the background of this story:

It has been alleged a senior Federal Minister raped a girl in 1988. The woman committed suicide last year. The police have investigated the rape allegation and have found no evidence compelling enough to recommend prosecution.

Whatever the truth is, the situation is tragic. Tragic because a person was so disturbed they felt their only option was to end their life, and tragic because a man has a cloud of suspicion hanging over him but he and we have no way of seeking closure, either via a conviction of a crime or full exoneration.

Such is the imperfect world of criminal justice, unfortunately. That it happens all the time doesn’t make it any more tolerable, but there’s not a huge list of credible alternate systems with which we could replace the current version.

Many column inches have been partisanally hacked out on the subject, with the predictable red team/blue team split determining whether one is suddenly in favour of creating a shadow justice system or a moralistic championing of “the rule of law”. We could take these opinions seriously if they were in the context of a back catalogue of previously applying the same standard to their own side.

Very few, if any, are.

One such example is the TV appearance on ABC’s QandA of MP Anne Aly. She interrupted an opponent’s defence of the legal system with the words, “What about justice for the victim?“, scoring a solid 9/10 as a soundbite on the ABC’s show, which, as anyone who can tolerate watching it knows, is a show designed purely for soundbites rather than epistemology.

However, as a statement likely to take the sum total of human knowledge forward, it scores minus 1 million out of ten.

It’s a perfect example of the loaded question fallacy. The question assumes a crime has been committed and the victim is the female. Neither of which has been actually proven.

We expect our politicians, almost all of whom have no real world experience, to be partisan hacks. Their incentives are set to deliver such outcomes, so it’s unsurprising when we receive such mendacity.

What remains of journalism is delivering similar one-eyed tosh, too. Here’s one at the Grauniad which conflates three totally separate issues and ties them up with an obvious and predictable bow of duh patriarchy.

Humour me for moment as I lay out Katherine Murphy’s three unrelated topics:

1. Julia Gillard’s “misogyny speech” – more on this below.

2. A current ongoing rape investigation – let’s hope due process is followed.

3. An allegation from 1988 – the weak argument leaning on Le Coefficient de Gillard.

The Gillard speech is this particular type of journalist’s emergency grab bag whenever there’s a weak argument requiring support.

What they choose not to realise is the world divides into two groups;

1. People who think Gillard’s speech was analogous to MLK’s “I have a dream”, and

2. Those who saw it as a desperate ad hominem attack to divert from the awkward fact she was a dead duck PM relying on a highly compromised MP to cling to power.

Nobody in the history of the world has ever been convinced of an argument by being directed to Le Coefficient de Gillard.

Bill’s Opinion

Whilst legally obliged to vote in Australia, I choose to spoil my vote with increasingly realistic depictions of genitalia.

The reason for my conscientious objector status to casting a vote is because I am holding out for a voting option of a candidate who is willing to explain a standard and show they are prepared to hold their own side to it.

When they arrive on the ballot paper, I’ll vote for them.

In the meantime, if your view is, for this exceptional case of an allegation from the year before Taylor Swift and the entire cast of Hogwarts were born, we should suspend our justice system and do something else, perhaps you want to look around at your closest male friends and family and ask yourself, is this the future standard you want them to be held to?

Just expanding on this, do you want your father, brother or husband to be expected to resign from their job because of an unproven allegation from 32 years ago?

Alternatively, perhaps let’s accept the imperfect current system of criminal justice as the best we’ve found to date. If you have an alternative, you are more than welcome to describe it and start a movement to persuade us. Please keep Chesterton’s Fence front of mind if you do, though.

Pole Position Patronising

Motorsports don’t float my boat; I would rather repeatedly slam my dick in a drawer for an hour instead of expending time and money to watch other people drive around a track.

However, some people must think it has merit.

Consequently, there’s an event in the USA called The Daytona 500. Cars, driving around a track for a long time, that kind of thing.

Fascinating, I’m sure.

Quite rightly, the sports network, ESPN, report on it.

Here’s an article, for example:

The headline may confuse you. Let me explain; a driver, who happens to be of a particular ethnicity, was briefly in the lead in a 200 lap, 800 mile race. He subsequently finished 17th.

This, apparently, is historic and very much worthy of being written about on a global sports website.

Bill’s Opinion

Is it possible to write a more patronising and condescending article?

I don’t know anything about Bubba Wallace (see my admission above about how uninterested I am in motor sports) but, if he’s like every adult human I’ve ever met, I imagine he would be hugely embarrassed by this article.

Perhaps the only way this would have been more infantilising would be if ESPN had created a special participation award for Bubba’s 1 in 200 lap lead.

In 2021, we are constantly chided for our apparent racism by the sort of people who write these articles. Yet it has seemingly never crossed the author’s mind that, by treating Bubba Wallace like a small child participating in a Primary School sports day, they are demonstrating extreme racism; the racism of low expectations.

I sincerely wish Bubba all the best and hope he one day learns how to drive fast enough to beat drivers of other ethnicities.

I won’t be watching the race though, as I have an urgent appointment with a chest of drawers.

You’re all winners!

Betteridge’s Law of Wokery

The Buccaneers embody Tampa’s love of pirates. Is that a problem?

No.

But wait, there’s more:

When the National Football League expanded to 28 teams in 1973, the league awarded Tampa an expansion team, prompting a name-the-team contest in 1975. “Buccaneers” won, a reference to the pirates who frequented the coasts of Florida in the 17th and 18th centuries. But team executives wanted the logo to be a “classy” pirate — a cross between Robin Hood, Errol Flynn, the musketeer D’Artagnan and pirate Jean Lafitte. It was a logo the team maintained until 1997 when they switched to a more aggressive, menacing Jolly Roger.

The last time the Jolly Roger was aggressive and menacing rather than a mildly amusing children’s joke, the year started with “18”.

Yet, while this celebration of piracy seems like innocent fun and pride in a local culture, there is danger in romanticizing ruthless cutthroats who created a crisis in world trade when they captured and plundered thousands of ships on Atlantic trade routes between the Americas, Africa and Great Britain.

Stop right there. Just stop.

Why? Because it takes these murderous thieves who did terrible things — like locking women and children in a burning church — and makes them a symbol of freedom and adventure, erasing their wicked deeds from historical memory. These were men (and women) who willingly participated in murder, torture and the brutal enslavement of Africans and Indigenous peoples.

Ok, there we go. You’re a racist. We’re all racist.

Is there a Microsoft Word macro thingy to run to automatically churn this formulaic bollocks out?

Start Menu/Setttings/System Updates/Install Microsoft Word Wokerator Plug-in.

There then follows a potted summary of some selected elements of nautical history, utterly irrelevant to a game of American Football.

Perhaps time has dulled us to the atrocities committed by these 17th and 18th century outlaws. Or perhaps it’s the fact that if pirates of the Golden Age were bloodthirsty, so too were the nations who opposed them. They willingly and purposefully massacred millions of African and Indigenous peoples in the name of colonization. Pirates, then, are seen as romantic heroes — the underdogs fighting the establishment — whom historian Marcus Rediker refers to as proto-democratic, egalitarian and multicultural.

Should we celebrate their complicated legacy? It’s a question Tampa Bay has to contend with as we collectively contemplate other major sports mascots with dubious legacies, like their Super Bowl rivals in Kansas City.

Bill’s Opinion

Don’t invite Jamie H. Goodall to a Superbowl Party and for fucksake don’t ask for her opinion about Halloween.