I’m probably the last person on the internet to post this video, but I promise I have a point. And there’s always the off-chance that you haven’t seen the Insane Clown Posse’s ode to ignorance, “Miracles”.
Prior to watching this video, if pressed to think about it, I probably would have concluded that ICP is Republican. I would have based this information off this site’s long-standing history of making fun of conservatives who can’t rap trying to do so, a particularly comical brand of entitlement poisoning. But I would have never guessed that ICP was Christian rock (or I guess rap). But that is indeed what they are.
I had the good fortune to watch this video after reading Ta-Nehishi’s smackdown of apologists for the Confederacy, where he accurately described the stance of movement conservatives as “proud of being ignorant”:
This is who they are–the proud and ignorant. If you believe that if we still had segregation we wouldn’t “have had all these problems,” this is the movement for you. If you believe that your president is a Muslim sleeper agent, this is the movement for you. If you honor a flag raised explicitly to destroy this country then this is the movement for you. If you flirt with secession, even now, then this movement is for you. If you are a “Real American” with no demonstrable interest in “Real America” then, by God, this movement of alchemists and creationists, of anti-science and hair tonic, is for you.
He got the usual “don’t stereotype all Republicans” blowback, which of course is a comical strawman, because I think most of us are aware that movement conservatives aren’t all Republicans. There are also the David Brooks of the world, happy to exploit movement conservatives for economic gain. But I swear to you, the chest-thumping proud ignorance of this “Miracles” video really captures the zeitgeist of movement conservatism. Check out the lyrics:
Stop and look around, it’s all astounding
Water, fire, air and dirt
Fucking magnets, how do they work?
And I don’t wanna talk to a scientist
Y’all motherfuckers lying, and getting me pissed
It’s true! Scientists are conspiring to hoodwink the public about magnets. You thought the conspiracy to make up global warming was thick, but the conspiracy to make us think that magnets work because of magnetic fields, created by electrons in motion? They’re out to prevent us from seeing that it’s pure fucking magic. And that conspiracy has been going on for more than a century now. But I can’t make fun of it better than Cracked, so I won’t.
I just loved seeing the “proud of being ignorant” stance distilled so neatly into a shitty rap song. Or, for that matter, such a naked expression of the fact that people who reject science and hide behind god are lazy ego-monsters, who don’t think they should have to read a book or listen to an expert in order to feel like they know something. What’s interesting is that so many more movement conservative types put way more effort into defending their aggressive intellectual incuriosity, demonizing college professors and the liberal elite for thinking they’re sooooooo smart. The creationists and defenders of the idea that the Civil War wasn’t about slavery could take a page out of ICP’s book and just belligerently declare that it’s all magic, instead of trying to create arguments that mimic the rhetoric of the hated smarty-pants who actually know what they’re talking about. The mimickery is sort of sad, really. Conservatives lay claim to moral superiority because of their ignorance, but apeing the knowledgeable they claim to despise demonstrates an underlying insecurity. But not the guys of ICP! Their pride in being ignorant is untainted by any residual shame.