Here at the Wretched of the Snark we attempt to supply our devoted readers with insightful political commentary (mixed in with Star Wars references) and social criticism (mostly concerning how awesome Christina Hendricks is). However everyone in a while I also put out an earnest personal article about my relationship with my wife or my development into an opinionated young adult. Sometimes the articles that I write here get published in a place where more people can see them, but most of the time when I write about my marriage it’s basically only for my friends and family to read, or it is just an exercise for my own use in articulating my feelings about the most important relationship in my life.
I say all that to make it clear that I don’t begrudge anyone for writing about their marriage, even if it’s tone is drastically different from something that I would ever dare to write. However when I read Fox News “comedian” Steven Crowder’s latest magnum opus in trolling for wingnut welfare, I once again felt compared to step in describe exactly how this dude doesn’t know what the fuck he is talking about and is also the personification of this wonderful Dead Kennedy’s song.
Let’s dive into Mr. Glass Jaw’s latest post “A man’s top-5 reasons to grow up and get married” (his words in bold and indented)
Six months ago, I wrote a column here at Fox News regarding the fact that my wife and I made the choice to wait until marriage. Some people claimed offense. As per usual, I’m okay with that.
The “some people” you were talking about were not actually “offended”. Rather we merely pointed out that your entire argument was an incomprehensible garbled mess of misogyny and insecurity designed to defame an entirely imagined opponent. But you were saying…
Here’s why; I’m pro-marriage. I always have been, always will be and I’ll make no apologies for it. As a matter of fact, most of you should be apologizing to me. Yeah, I said it. Whether you’re one with a successful marriage who’s remained silent on its myriad virtues, or merely a single, lonely critic… America, you’ve got some ‘splaining to do.
So we need to apologize to you for you writing a dumb article because we were unable to tell from your fantastically shitty analysis that you were defending an institution that we also happen to support? That’s some MVP worthy narcissism there hoss.
Sadly, marriage has become a punchline in today’s society. From referring to the wife as “the old ball and chain” to nearly every poorly written sitcom that we watch, the message we’re sending to today’s generation is clear… Marriage = no fun.
In what sitcom since 1975 has the phrase “ball and chain” been used in an earnest manner? Are you so obtuse that even transparent irony is flying over your head (don’t answer that).
Men on TV constantly joke about how wives are incredibly expensive, demanding and overall vacuums of all things fun. By that same token, the women complain about their fat, lazy, insensitive husbands as they swoon over their trimmed, manicured and chest-waxed Hollywood counterparts.
If you are a person who follows Crowder’s career in writing (and god help you if that is the case) you might have noticed a trend in this paragraph. Young Steven seems to continually link all the problems of the world directly to two main groups of people: hussies (all women who disagree with him), and men with waxed chests who threaten and enrage him for some untold reason. I’m not saying that Crowder is a shallow angry closet case, but it’s just interesting that the personification of his never-ending straw man argument always seems to resemble Channing Tatum.
Ever see a commercial with a wife and husband shopping together? Yeah, we always play the idiot.
Are you seriously making a sociological conclusion based on a paper towel ad?
I know plenty of people my age that will never get married because they genuinely believe the false cultural meme that marriage has sadly become.
That’s interesting, most of the people I know might never get married because they are gay and live in a state where your friends at Fox helped passed constitutional amendments to ban the legal recognition of their love. Ask Hannity about it, he was there in 2004.
There’s only one problem. It’s completely untrue.
Even more of a problem, those who know it to be untrue often do nothing to correct the lie.
Are you talking specifically about the writers on the crappy sitcoms you are watching? Because if that’s the case you are right. TV writers for the major networks will probably never make a sitcom that perfectly embodies the complexity of modern married life within the framework of a 22 minute show designed to sell ad space to Kraft. I’m sorry if this is crushing realization for you.
As someone who comes from a family of lifers (along with my wife), I just want to say, flat out…
… Marriage is a really good deal.
This is the part where I point out that Crowder just disparaged the use of one metaphor to marriage (“ball and chain“) daring to suggest that the institution might not be fun, and then he calls himself a “lifer”- a phrase most often employed to describe people sent to prison until they die. His editor over at Fox needs to stop drinking on the job.
Let’s assume for a second that you don’t think of humans as inherently spiritual beings. So let’s remove the fact that married people claim to be happier, more fulfilled, complete and purposeful. Some of you are even thinking,
“Love? Who needs love!”
Okay. Here are a few purely statistical reasons as to why marriage (when done correctly) is conducive to an undeniably better life. Hold onto your butts.
OH SNAPP CROWDER’S GONNA GET ALL EZRA KLEIN ON US TO PROVE HIS ARGUMENT THAT NOBODY REALLY IS ARGUING AGAINST. ALERT THE PULITZER JURY!
1. You’ll be richer – Yes. Not only do married couples make more, save more, have a higher net worth and qualify for more benefits/financial incentives than lonely, single folk… but your kids will be richer too. Which brings me to my next point
Oh look at that! Steven’s linking to a Heritage Foundation piece used to lobby dumbass Congressmen into stripping the social safety net in favor of subsidizing worthless “marriage classes” as a panacea to poverty. This dull, and disproven solution is part of a larger “correlation equals causation” method of distracting policy makers from worrying about actual systemic problems (like horrendous wage inequality) and instead pushing their own awful social agendas. So while it’s refreshing to see Crowder using Google to support his assertion, he stepped in a giant pile of fail if he’s going to use a Heritage fact sheet (whose sources completely contradict each other by the way) to prolong his ignorance.
2. Would somebody please think of the children!! – The single biggest indicator of child poverty is whether both original parents are still together. Not only that, but children in married households get better grades, are less disruptive in class and less likely to develop behavioral disorders than children from non-married households. So be married long and prosper. Your kids will too.
Crowder has now expanded his doctrinal research into citing the Family Research Council, a vicious hate group whose purpose mainly revolves around influencing the law to deny marriage rights to gay people at all costs and designing educational policies designed to bully gay kids to death.
But that’s besides the point.
I love that Crowder is vomiting up this oft-repeated myth about the nature of poverty in modern America. Despite it being more or less completely irrelevant to his own main thesis (MARRIAGE IS GOOD SHUT UP HATERS), it’s also demonstrative of how the Conservative movement has essentially eaten its own tail.
A generation ago Conservatives would use the correlation between marriage and poverty as part of a comprehensive approach to defaming poor people as lazy free loaders. This tactic allowed the GOP to gain political power through providing middle class voters an easy scapegoat for the growing inequities in our society without addressing any actual problems (or admitting a degree of shared responsibility in) prolonging poverty. After 40 years of being able to dismantle most elements of the Great Society and New Deal only to see poverty increase exponentially in the process, voters and activists like Crowder not only repeat the lie (in order to prolong its diminishing political usefulness) they outright believe that poverty can be fixed simply by having two poor people marry each other and magically become self-sufficent. It’s truly amazing to watch.
3. You’ll have more sex… A LOT MORE SEX – Okay so you may not want kids. You may despise them. I get it. Sticky hands.
Is Crowder talking about masturbation as a birth control method? If so he needs to be more clear in doing it. Also gross.
Let’s say you’re just another selfish, narcissistic bachelor (or bachelorette) who quite frankly, isn’t deserving of the unconditional love you may oh-so-luckily find. You just want the sex.
Again Steven, just because the single people who you hang out with are sociopathic wannabe date rapists who are incapable of loving other people does not mean that all people interested in mainly sexual relationships are criminally awful. Maybe if your social circle expanded beyond the John Birch Society Junior Auxiliary you might find some nice single people who don’t skeeve you out.
Here Crowder is citing an article written by the estimable bigot Maggie Gallagher, a person so devoid of happiness and sexual fulfillment that she can only cum when watching a baby seal being beaten to death with a crucifix on Christmas Eve. Both Crowder and the author’s who wrote the linked article again posit their entire argument supporting the inherent awesomeness of marriage on the same old correlation equals causation argument. The entire eight page article is just a series of bullet points saying “Single people report this, and married people report this. Thus marriage is awesome the end fuck you“. No arguments are provided to support or explain their canned conclusions, but instead the reader is left to simply jump into the circular-thesis of “marriage is good” and roll down the hill of faith-based reasoning and come crashing into conclusory town.
Here’s a perfect example of where Hollywood gets it wrong. In the real world, while Alfie fruitlessly toiled away at picking up harlots from the bar, suffering a mean case of whiskey-wiener, Mr. Cleaver was getting busy on the regular. Them’s the real breaks.
Holy crap dude you seriously need to update your Netflix if you are going to insist on using movies and television to promote your own twisted view of society. I recommend this movie in which the characters all pursue meaningful explorations of their relationships and sex lives in order to achieve a greater understanding of the modern human experience. Also there are lots of really hawt ripped guys with waxed chests blowing each other (not that you necessarily are into that sort of thing).
4. You won’t be such a pathetic sloth – Married people are more productive. Married men in particular, have higher employment rates, work longer hours and receive better wages. It’s time to stop wading through puddles of your own filth as you reach for the hotpockets and have a dame whip you into shape. You’re welcome.
Looks like Steven apparently got bored of hyperlinking at this point in the article so I can’t directly refute whatever bullshit think tank he is drawing this idiotic conclusion from.
However it is interesting what he is essentially arguing here. Basically Crowder, the ardent individualistic conservative is telling his waxed chested layabout straw man that his own economic failures are due to his own laziness and “single” tax filing status. Crowder then predictably prescribes just working longer hours as part of the solution (despite the fact that American workers are already stretched their breaking point). But then he also declares that the almighty individualist is always going to be held back in terms of success unless he decides to take on the extraordinary expense of time and money necessary to start a family. How exactly is that supposed to work?
5. Don’t die sick, miserable and alone. This would seem to be self-explanatory. Sadly, it’s not. Young people think that being young and single is the “fun and free” time of your life, while marriage is something that can wait for the days when you’re ready to grow fat, boring and settle down. Married people not only live longer lives, they live healthier lives. There are too many factors at play here to even list. From married people statistically maintaining healthier weights, being more active and having lower mortality rates, to married women incurring less severe illnesses, enjoying better cancer survival rates and of course… lower rates of domestic abuse (as opposed to those merely cohabitating). Yes ladies, it’s true, living with an uncommitted, self-absorbed jackass can be hazardous to your health.
Yes ladies are you just living with your domestic abuser? Well it’s your goddamned fault that he’s hitting you because YOU WON’T PUSH HIM INTO MARRYING YOU! Once you put a ring on your man and engage in a legally significant (and expensive to undo) relationship with him he’ll stop coming home and raping you.
Steven, I hate to bring this up but there are plenty of people who die sick, miserable, and alone. In fact here’s an entire documentary of people who fit that exact same description that you so heartlessly applied to people who have not been married in the eyes of the state. As your parents probably did not let you watch anything other than the 700 Club growing up, let me bestow some history on you.
In the 1980’s gay people (at least at first) across the US began showing signs of a mysterious cancers (including the delightful Kaposi’s sarcoma) that attacked their immune systems. Without treatment the disease left its victims vulnerable to a whole host of awful infections, funguses, and forms of pneumonia that would eventually kill them. What was later discovered and named HIV/AIDS left an entire generation of people in this country without family members, friends, and lovers as the disease was left to mutate and evolve in its deadliness- simply because it initially only seemed to affect people that your friends in the conservative movement hated.
Many of these people wanted to be married to their partners as it would have meant that the people that they loved would receive a portion of their estate after they died (instead of the families that rejected them), but the law as you know specifically prohibited this from happening. For those who did not live in progressive places like San Francisco life was even worse. Men riddled with AIDS in most parts of the country did in fact die alone in intensive care. Not because they were unloved but rather because their partners were specifically prohibited from seeing them because bigots like your friends at the FRC refused to allow the law to require this small act of mercy extended to people they considered to be sub-human.
So forgive me if I refuse to attach your idiotic marriage cure-all to the scary thought of dying alone by simply making a joke or calling you an asshole. What you are saying here is just wrong in every sense of the word. I know that you thrive on the idea of offending folks like me out of some sort of base need to prove your own self-righteousness by incensing others so I won’t give you the pleasure. Instead I’m just going to post this picture of David Kirby (a man who you believe should have been legally prohibited from marrying) on his deathbed and hope that you have an ounce of shame left in your dried husk of a soul.
Oh wait here’s a youtube video of Young Steven explaining his views on gay rights:
Well I tried.
All of this to basically say that people need to start being more honest and vocal about the virtues of marriage. Americans need to stop feeding and buying into the lie that we’ve all been fed. Whether you’re young old, male, female, marriage (when done correctly) will make your life, and this country better off. The facts are undeniable. If the facts aren’t enough, maybe this’ll help…
Picture coming home every night to your best friend, your greatest fan, and your number one supporter. She (or he) makes each good day better, and each bad day good again. Every day, you get to live what is essentially a 24/7 sleepover party with the greatest friend you’ve ever had.
… Now add sex and sandwiches.
Get married, like, now.
This is where I feel most sorry for Crowder and his understandably taciturn wife.
For a person who gained notoriety by exploiting the niche market of insecure assholes brimming with white panic and rage, he is remarkably earnest in his own sense of undeserved moral supremacy. He would be a much easier person to hate if he was a more intelligent demagogue who was simply exploiting rubes for their cash by selling them books full of him shitting on the poors and perverts. Instead Crowder desperately wants to be both simultaneously correct (without exception) and objectively funny- which is a hard task to accomplish when your world view is shared only by the angriest and most intransigent people left in this country.
He is constantly battling against the “oppressive left” by constructing this facade of maturity and self-created fulfillment. In truth he has accomplished little beyond attaining a position as the court jester for the forces of fascism and somehow convincing someone to marry him. Not to pathologize his idiocy too much, but as a massive poser with little to no experience outside of his comfortable bubble of bourgeoisie conservatism it must be difficult for him to justify his own success. Thus we are left with self-contradictory paragraphs like this one where he advocates for his readers to essentially “MAN UP” and become mature adults, while at the same time Crowder’s best attempt at analogizing marriage is to describe it as a sex-filled sleepover with someone who will help you make money and maybe be there when you die, a description that most teenagers would find to be lacking in substance.
Mr. Crowder might know what it takes to troll your way to the top of a media giant like Fox News, and mazel tov to him for selling out his soul in a way that will feed his future children in a much more sustainable method than the one I am currently pursuing. However I’ll be dammed if I’m going to take marriage advice from someone whose own insecurity and immaturity keeps him from pursuing the even shallow sort of self reflection necessary to see that he doesn’t know a single fucking thing about how to create and preserve a complex adult relationship. As a married person myself I truly hate to see someone careening towards an inevitable divorce, but I have to say that if Crowder truly cares about his marriage he might want to stop mindlessly lecturing the masses with his own brand of pointless humor, and might want to make an effort to broaden his own world view.
Or he can go fuck himself while the rest of us carry on with our lives and ignore his trolling. His choice really.