Friday, December 19, 2014

Kim Jong-un Can Kiss My Tuchus

I am distraught over the decision by Sony executives to cancel the release of "The Interview" in the face of North Korean intimidation. If it were only an issue of free speech or free commerce that would be bad enough. The shame of belonging to the generation that folded in the face of hacked emails and veiled threats while Pearl Harbor and Omaha Beach are still living memories is hard to bear. But it is the precedent that this capitulation sets that is truly intolerable. If North Korea can get everything it wants and more from this piddling act of terrorism, to what lengths will the next bully that doesn't like some aspect of U.S. culture go? A great American once warned against the capacity of fear to feed upon and perpetuate itself, and I wonder if our cravenness in this instance will plant a seed that will bear terrible fruit in years to come.

The custodians of the marketplace have failed us in this instance. It is up to us as individuals and citizens to redress this wrong. I hesitated to write this blog, as I am as vulnerable as anyone to cyber-mischief. But that hesitancy itself reinforced my distress at the insidiousness of this attack. So many of us now live, in part, on the internet. Thus, in subjecting Sony to digital retribution the North Koreans deliberately telegraphed that they can get to anyone.

There is only one answer for it. It has become the patriotic duty of every American (indeed, every citizen of the world) to publicly insult Kim Jong-un. If enough people do it, in blog posts, Twitter feeds, Facebook statuses, and other media, it will be impossible for the North Korean gestapo to retaliate against everyone.

I deliberated over whether I should title my blog "Kim Jong-un Can Kiss My Ass." It is true that the English insult is more immediately recognizable, so perhaps I have cravenly bought myself some cover by hiding behind a less widely familiar phrase. But it is not my fault if the North Korean espionage community is both vicious and clueless. Besides, if they are going to try to police comedy they had better buy themselves a Yiddish dictionary.


Anonymous said...

If civilians had died because those Theatres became targets of Lone Wolf terrorists, people would label Sony Irresponsible and your blog might have been about that.

Releasing on the internet and a limited number of theaters where security could be assured sounds like the right step.

Keep in mind a few weeks later Charlie happened in France - who's to say there isn't an equivalent here that would have done similar at the Theatre?

Madman of Chu said...


I can't speak for how others would have reacted in the scenario you describe, but I can assure you that I would never blame the victim as you suppose. When you call Sony's actions "the right step" you give them credit for deliberation that the evidence simply does not bear out. As for your last hypothetical, as far as I can understand it, empirical facts demonstrate that it is completely baseless. The film has aired, no "lone wolf" terrorists have emerged from the shadows, on what evidence can you plausibly claim that this was ever a possibility?