Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The eternally echoing hipsters

This quote from the Bohemian Henry Clapp struck me by how modern it sounds. 

 “We are opposed to slavery of every kind,” he wrote, “but we are more opposed to what is stupidly called antislavery, for the simple reason that it has no distinct aim or purpose, and consists of nothing but a series of noisy and unmeaning howls.” Lincoln, Clapp charged, “has merely used the negro as a stepping-stone to power, and is now ready to kick him aside, and let him go to the devil.”

Hipster claptrap is the same as it ever was.  The more obtuse the logic the hipper it is.  I specifically think of the Americans who condemn US ethical lapses while standing next to Hugo Chavez or a Castro brother.  Those who find equality in comparing Madison, Wisconsin protests and Cairo protests.  Those who assert that abolishing the police would eradicate crime.  Those who think a total lack of government would lead to peaceful, equitable communities.

The only thing that changes is the clothing and the slang.  And even that doesn't change that much.

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