‘Commodity Activism’ is “That ‘Thing’ You Do”

andy warhol 2

Everyone knows all about everything in the era of ‘fake news’, because it no longer matters whether the details are ‘accurate’, so long as people appear ‘interesting’. The late Andy Warhol — the ‘no-talent’ founder of postmodern pop art —better explained how in the future, everyone will be famous for 15 minutes. For him, this meant applying color to Campbell Soup cans because pop art was all ‘about liking things’.

Mr. Warhol would be proud to learn that ‘the future’ he predicted has arrived. We’re all caught idolizing our mirror reflection. As a patient with both severe bipolar disorder and OCD, I’d be blind to the increased campaigns for public awareness for mental illnesses, and how few will choose to read up on what’s out there, as well myths now being debunked. Yet there are equally as many absurdities through the rise of ‘commodity activism’. Some examples include ribbons commemorating ‘Bipolar Awareness Day’, ‘Autism Awareness Day’, or ‘Suicide Prevention Day’. Beyond the expiration dates, all these things seem to be forgotten.

Colin Kaepernick 2

Nike, by way of Colin Kaepernick, proved that by embracing racial tribalism and terrorism, billions of dollars can be made at the expense of true heroes in law enforcement.

If you’ve ever purchased a bracelet for one of these causes to direct attention to a day or month celebrating each cause’s agenda, you know exactly what I’m talking about. That’s because you’ve bought into the whole hot mess like the typical consumer embracing a fad. There’s little to distinguish the natural tendency to ‘collectivize’ through tribalism, like a pack of wild hyenas justifying wearing such bracelets signaling our virtuous nature; we do, after all, feel the need ‘to belong’ based on our natural inclination for association in our communities. How else might the human race go forth and be fruitful? This is commodity activism is for you.
Je Suis Charlie Hebdo
Whenever I see ‘ribbon days’ for people with bipolar disorder (like myself), I often question, rhetorically, just who these people are trying to impress. On the surface it all appears so wholesome, so selfless: a sign that indeed, humanity is innately good, not bad. Of course, during these months of ‘celebration’, of becoming ‘woke’ to the hopeless plight of the mentally-ill and disadvantaged, patients as well as their families and friends join together in solidarity, flooding Facebook and Instagram with thousands of ‘hashtag remarks’. It isn’t applying hyperbole for tags going viral to include something like #IAmBipolar in order to trigger vacuous ‘appeals to emotion’; or with the Charlie Hebdo shootings in Paris in 2015 through the nauseating #JeSuisCharlieHebdo. Likewise, I’ve read others post #IAmMuslim or, if you are actually a Muslim in Europe following the increased number of jihadist atrocities, #NotInMyName. If a mosque happens to be hit by a disgruntled nut job within the ancient racial and ethnic demographics of Europe (or New Zealand, where white Europeans comprise the bulk of the population), people suddenly begin posting they are suddenly ‘Muslims’, when in fact they’re not. Meanwhile, those Muslims responding to the Charlie Hebdo shootings who did not actually commit the crime merely deflected their passive aggressive attention to the matter there were people of their religion guilty of an atrocity — and that they, though not guilty, wanted to participate in the misery of others by deflecting all the blame to those mocking them for telling a lie. The extremists are almost always the most brutally honest demographic, in spite of their violent nature. The question therefore requires society to identify the guilty parties; and why all the robotic passive aggressive deflections through subtle accusations against the rest of the kafir-dominated West. Did the same outrage manifest for the ‘Easter worshipers’ in Sri Lanka killed while attending morning Mass manifest within the mainstream media? The matter it is so offensive to mention the name of Jesus Christ in any way is disturbing — as are the secular Left and Muslim populations celebrating the event.
Gap Africa

While the Gap continues earning millions off exploiting low wage labor inside sweat shops within Third World countries, the quest to eliminate AIDS from Africa will not.

Livestrong Bracelet Nike

Nike seems to profit most from exploiting a ‘charitable cause’.

Entire words in the English dictionary have been ‘sold’ into near extinction through t-shirts and ball caps. Six years ago for example, I made the conscious decision to purchase an ‘End the R-Word’ t-shirt: a movement which quickly ended the common medical label used to diagnose people with specific learning disabilities (mental retardation) due to its abuse by some, especially children, even the entertainment industry. While substitute teaching the year following college graduation, I stood in solidarity with a number of colleagues, yet never considered the consequences due to this shortsighted naiveté. Today, nearly seven years later, I am ashamed I ever bought the accursed shirt. How righteous was I really in 2012 when in 2019, ‘the woke’ English dictionary appears to shrink almost every day? And again, who is this all about, and why so many now piggy-back aboard the runaway bandwagon? Why do people increasingly self-identify as a patient or victim — with some even claiming ‘they suffer more’ than the patient — during the age of the ‘selfie’ if not for some unrequited desire for unearned, unsolicited attention? Ribbons for Bipolar Awareness (or depression) have become the new ‘Livestrong’ or WWJD fad: commodities of our commercialized culture which people buy and wear them, often not knowing what the particular cause is or means, much less even care or ever intend to research what they are. When Lance Armstrong went down for doping after his last Tour de France victory, the fate of his charitable organization selling the yellow bracelets sunk with him on the Titanic. Was it actually the cancer research for which the world donated a few dollars for a ribbon? Or did Armstrong seek to exalt his name by augmenting his reputation during his ascent into one of the greatest American sports heroes ever? Regardless of the reality, this need by Armstrong and the customers buying those bracelets had more to do with appearing ‘interesting’ than acknowledging morality. If people really want to contribute to cancer research, there are tax deductible charities or hospitals to which one can make a donation, quietly.
We Are the World

(Romans 12:2) Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Social justice is now a cancer metastasizing like a pyramid scheme: everyone wants to be part of something greater than himself after watching the news — and if we could all just join hands together over social media, sing “We Are The World”, or vilify all men through the #MeToo movement based on the scandalous behavior of movie executive Harvey Weinstein, our pain will become the same as the victims: and because of this, we will all somehow be healed, for our eyes will then be ‘opened’. However, I reject being celebrated one month out of the year as a victim of my illness in the same way others seek to validate a deviant pansexual lifestyle at Gay Pride parades: where thousands gather, donning all sorts of rainbow colored attire or trinkets, to remind everyone that being ‘gay’ means they are special and entitled to an ‘affirmative action’ legal segregation from the ‘oppressive’ heterosexual hierarchy. Most women will not ‘shout their abortion’ like the narcissist Oprah Winfrey simply for the shock value. My mental health issues do not expand beyond being conditions with symptoms uniquely my own, and there is no need for me or anyone else to profit at my expense (or anyone else’s) over the ‘merit’ of being diagnosed, nor to seek attention from those who might know what the ribbon symbolizes. The average person will not pay the slightest attention at the grocery store to what appear to be pagan icons all its own. Nor will I share a viral hashtag, claiming ‘I am a Muslim’ and therefore, blaspheme against the Lord.

Bipolar disorder and OCD are illnesses, just like others with cause for concern, no more, no less. If you care about people, you will demonstrate this the other 364 days or 11 months of the year.

It is what it is.


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