Debating the 2020 GMC Acadia vs 2020 Nissan Pathfinder just got a whole lot easier. Well, scratch that. Saying that it’s ‘a lot easier’ might be an overstatement, but it may have gotten ‘a little bit easier’ depending on how easily you’re influenced by what you see online.
Acknowledging the volatile nature of the world we live in, there are a number of topics that will play a major role in both the 2020 Presidential race and the policies that are formed on either side of it. And if the last two election seasons are any indication, social media will play a huge role in influencing our collective mindsets, and how we feel about such developments.
Speaking personally, one of the most disheartening realizations of the last eight years has been the extent of misinformation and uninformed social media debate coming from all points of the political spectrum. As stated so eloquently in the charter of the Association of American Proctologists, “tales opiniones ano est, surrexit unus omnium” (“opinions are like assholes, everyone’s got them”). But it seems that most of the political opinions and insights being offered up online are coming directly from the assholes themselves. There’s very little content of unbiased insight and value to be found online, and yet, we keep scrolling – battling with one another using memes and snippets, most of which are devoid of any applicable context. And it would appear that Planned Parenthood, the oft-lamented nonprofit reproductive healthcare organization, might be the latest victim of chronic misinformation as a result of a simple meme.
This meme (and variations of it), have made its way across social media platforms for quite some time now.
Depicting the rear window of Nissan Pathfinder inundated with an immense family of stick people, the image was offered up as a tongue-in-cheek criticism of that one particular family (or at least the stupid ‘stick family’ trend, in general). But over time, the meme would be used offensively against birth control detractors and then defensively by religious groups. And like so many memes before it, the original intent would be bastardized, lost amidst constant reposting, and misinterpreted too many times to count. As a result, the Nissan Pathfinder, a mainstay of the Nissan lineup since 1987, now finds itself being used to unofficially endorse Planned Parenthood, while simultaneously being used to vilify the organization.
In a now-famous Tweet, President Donald J. Trump shared the image back in 2019, while pushing the Title X initiative that would defund Planned Parenthood. The Tweet read, “I like this family. Looks like a great family of proud Americans and Trump supporters. But they should have bought a GMC Acadia instead of that Nissan Pathfinder.”
Massachusetts Senator, 2020 Presidential hopeful and Planned Parenthood ally retweeted Trump, pointing out that he clearly misunderstood the meme because “some of them were dogs, not people.”
A statement issued by the office of Monica Kerrigan, Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Global, addressed the issue as follows, “Planned Parenthood is committed to ensuring access to quality health care, education, and information for individuals and families worldwide. Unfortunately, our level of commitment – combined with the operational obstacles we’re faced with – leaves us little time to appreciate the nuances of internet meme culture. That said, we wish the best to any immediate family with twenty-five members, and are glad to offer services and support to those families who’d prefer not to. Also, both President Trump and Senator Warren might be functionally [mentally disabled].”
But speaking of retards, one of Planned Parenthood’s greatest critics comes in the form of the infamous Westboro Baptist Church, a hate group out of Topeka, Kansas who collectively hates… Well… Pretty much everyone. We reached out to the WBC for their thoughts but, according to a WBC spokesperson, “none-them too good with words.”