This guest post was submitted by Grand Forks attorney Meg Morley. You can read her blog here.
It’s clear to anyone who knows me at all that I am a complete nerd. I’m a history nerd, a comic book nerd, a grammar nerd, a law nerd, and a politics nerd. Those categories are just the tip of my nerdy iceberg.
As a politics nerd, I have been a faithful viewer of the White House Correspondents Dinner for a long time. I always looked forward to the quick wit, clever banter, and biting humor that accompanied this event. Also, no matter who happened to be our President at the time, the event was always a classy one.
Michelle Wolf was the comedian invited to the WHCD this year. I was excited to hear Ms. Wolf’s take on the state of politics in our country today. I expected potshots, parodies, and puns. What I saw was a ridiculous mess — sophomoric and silly at best, vile and offensive at worst. Since the WHCD, I have read reviews and posts from friends and colleagues that applaud Ms. Wolf’s “performance”. They call her a hero, a champion, honest and forthright, and a comedic genius. I disagree.
Some defenders of Ms. Wolf say that she was just giving back what the other side has dished out. Is that necessary? When you throw garbage at garbage, all that means is that you’re stooping to the level of whomever threw the first piece of trash.
Any message loses credibility when it’s delivered in a manner that is strictly for shock value. Ms. Wolf made a remark at the WHCD regarding abortion. The joke centered on Vice President Mike Pence’s anti-abortion stance position. “He thinks abortion is murder,” Wolf said, “which, first of all, don’t knock it ‘til you try it — and when you do try it, really knock it. You know, you’ve got to get that baby out of there.”
I have always been and will always be pro-choice. That does not mean that I am pro-abortion. How does making a joke about what is a very serious issue help anyone? Abortion isn’t funny and it shouldn’t be used as fodder for comic material.
I have called out pro-lifers I know who seemingly cherry pick their reasons for being pro-life. They call abortion murder while simultaneously applauding stem cell research. I can’t and won’t snicker at inappropriate jokes about abortion while I simultaneously applaud any work that is designed to protect the dignity and privacy of all women who exercise their legal right to choose. I have long supported Planned Parenthood and will continue to do so. Do I wish Cecile Richards had made a public statement that abortion is no laughing matter? Yes, I do. However, it’s her right to defend Michelle Wolf’s words just as much as it is my right to be offended by those same words.
I know that there is no place for me anymore in the Democratic party. This has been so for quite some time and I wrote a blog post about the subject in January 2017.
My feelings have not changed, except I become more and more aware as time goes on that the political party I once loved no longer exists. Does this make me a Republican? Oh, HELL NO. It just makes me Meg; and if the type of behavior I described above is indicative of what the “cool kids” think is A-OK, then I am very happy to be a nerd.