I am not a percentage point, I am a man.

I am one of over 312 million people living in the United States. You would think that with that many people, it would be easy for me to find a group that I can identify with, but it’s not. I don’t think it’s possible for anyone really to find a group that fits them perfectly. Maybe that’s because I can’t imagine what it’s like to allow myself to be forced into a certain hole. I’m an individual. I refuse to stop being me just so I can have the comfort of being part of a larger group.

That’s why these “I am the 2346%” campaigns are really starting to piss me off.

There are two major % campaigns going on the US right now. The first and loudest is the 99%.

The 99%

These are the people that bitch about being part of the 99% of the country that isn’t mega-wealthy. Interestingly enough, this is also the percentage of people in that movement who are only bitching because they don’t know how to do anything else.

Also, it is my rough estimate that this is the percentage of them that have not voted in an election because they were too busy smoking pot and playing Metal Gear Solid.

It isn’t that I disagree with them, either. I think they’re doing something important and raising awareness for some serious problems that are gnawing at the very foundation of our country. My problem it, it’s hard to take them seriously.

I mean, you really want to try to convince me you did your absolute best to find a job, then maybe you shouldn’t do that while your nasty dreadlocks poke out from behind the crustified hoodie that you haven’t washed in three years. Seriously, you can’t smell like cheap weed and try to convince me you did your best to find a job at the same time. I won’t believe you. It’s an image thing.

Can you imagine the impact that the Occupy Wallstreet movement would have immediately had if they had shown up looking like they were ready to interview for a job, instead of showing up looking like they were ready to head to Burning Man?

Big Life Secret: Wear a tie, get respect.

No one important, and by important I mean actually votes, is going to take you seriously when you’re wearing tie-dye, drinking a frappocino, and tweeting on your brand new iMac. By the way, another way to not convince me that you are struggling despite being responsible with your money, owning a brand new, $2500 iMac and sipping on a $7 cup of coffee from Starbucks.

Those might be things you should buy after you pay your bills. Then, maybe you wouldn’t be so far behind all the time.

The 53%

From the moment the 99% guys began organizing the Occupy Wall Street movement, the remaining 23 brain cells that make up the Conservative Hive Mind kicked in. They went out and found the douchiest looking members of the TEA party, dressed them up like hip, young people and started taking their own cellphone shot Tumblr pictures.

Now that the Republican party has taken control of Congress again, these people have decided that they are suddenly okay with the status quo, and that the fact that their lives are falling apart due to government corruption is okay, as long as it isn’t a corrupt black guy. Of course the entire thing is being run and developed by the ironically-named, conservative blog, Red State.

Based on the several dozen tumblr entries I’ve glossed over in an anger high, these people

want you to all know that they are too proud to take aide from anyone else, and anybody that does accept help needs to shut the fuck up and get a second, third or forth job. Apparenlty they believe that working 80-90 hours a week shouldbe normal. They think it’s totally cool to work yourselves to death for minimum wage just to make ends meet. That means there isn’t a problem at all, right? You know, being worse off than we were back in Feudal Europe?

The .00000032%

I suppose I’m one of them, though, right? I mean, I’m part of the 53% of US citizens that pays their taxes so that the 99% can sit on their asses in a park in New York and shout poorly rhymed, overly mouthy slogans at the 1% that collects all my taxes then uses them to buy a cannon they can fire bird shit out of at my head.

I am one person in a country of over 312 million.

I know that there are problems with our government. I think the marriage of big business and Congress is probably the most important one of them all. I’m proud that I live in a nation where people will stand up and say, “Screw this noise, I don’t want this.”

However, we can’t just stand up and scream that we have problems. America is 235 years old. I think it’s time we stopped acting like toddler. We can’t bitch and scream to get what we want. We need to get off our asses and do something about it.

You’re making progress America. Showing that we have a problem is the first step. Now, we need to find a solution.



8 thoughts on “I am not a percentage point, I am a man.

  1. Stereo.* says:

    I get your anger at both sides but I think it’s a bit of a generalisation to say that the 99% are basically all drug toking slackers who haven’t done anything they can to actually better their situation and result to whining because it’s the only thing they know how to do. 

    I DO agree with you that protests only go so far and that at some point, other forms of action will have to taken to effect a solution rather than just a “movement”, but it all helps.

    1. I don’t think it’s a fair generalization, but I it IS what they are projecting as their image. I have a really hard time taking someone seriously about their economic woes while they’re drinking $8 coffee from starbucks and typing on their $2400 Macbook pro. It’s even worse when they’re protesting “evil corporations” while wearing $300 shoes made by slave labor in third world countries.

      I’m saying they have a point, but they need a much better PR firm.

      1. Stereo.* says:

        But are you talking about actual people that you know/have seen doing so or are you just assuming that that’s what most of the people who make up the “99%” are doing?

        1. It’s a combination of the people that I met in person at OccupyKC and the people that are putting their images up. I feel like 1 out of 10 people on the 99% tumblr is being genuine and the rest are obvious attention whores.

          Maybe I’m wrong, and it doesn’t affect the importance of what they’re doing. I just think image is a part of that, and it needs to be acknowledged. There are problems with this country, but I didn’t just get handed anything, I worked my ass off for what I have, and there are a lot of times when I feel like the majority of these protestors are expecting to make $100k a year without starting out making $25, or less.

          I feel like it spits on the people that have worked for what they have. People like my parents that literally pulled themselves up from nothing.

          I know that it sucks you can’t just go out and get a job dressed like a flithy hobo. It sucks worse for the actual hobo. Try taking a shower and getting a haircut, and then complain that the market is hostile.

  2. Here’s my take.  There is a vast majority of folks in the U.S. that are just scraping by, working hard or having lost their jobs, trying to make it.  Many of us that are disenchanted with Wall Street and the Old Boys network (and I’ve worked for those aplenty) don’t have the luxury to go out and protest.  I am so distressed that the Tea Party is making any sort of headway that it’s not funny.  There is such an undercurrent of racism, sexism, etc.  Unfortunately, I fear that racism is a much more powerful incentive than much of what is being voiced by OWS.  I saw something in an article this morning that said that the people against the OWS movement are suddenly “fine with the status quo.”  That is, as long as it’s not run by a black man.

    My husband & I have always worked hard.  We got married young, and did without a lot, so that our kids could have.  We grew up very differently…he never had anything, and I never did without.  Our life now is much better than it was ten years ago, but that’s because we never stopped believing that you have to earn your way.  We’ve had luck, combined with our hard work. 

    I don’t think that every person that’s part of OWS is a slacker or people that aren’t trying to find jobs.  I do think that the movement attracts people that are much more liberal.  That’s the whole point, though, isn’t it?  If the alternative is a return to small mindedness, racism, anti-feminism, etc., then maybe I should head out to the park.

    1. I wish I could just say, “No seriously, go out to an Occupy movement to see, and smell, these people. You’ll understand where I’m coming from.

      I don’t disagree with their reasons for being there. The country is fucked up. I have, after talking to them for some time decided that they have the collective intelligence of a hobby horse, but at least they have the free time to drive people like Glenn Beck and Anne Coulter completely insane.

      That’s a plus in my category.

      The people I have met, some of whom I have known for years, that are part of the occupy movement have the same problem in life that the entire movement has now:

      They don’t really have a goal in mind, they just want someone to fix all their problems so they don’t have to do any work for themselves.

      Are the problems real, yes. Are these hipsters the people I want solving them.

      It’s better than a toothless, redneck, teabagger.

      What I am really hoping, though, is that Obama sees these people and goes, “You know what, it’s time I grew a pair of fucking testicles.”

      Our president needs to put on his big boy pants and stop playing softball with these corporate teet sucking assfaces like John Boehner.

      That’s the best we can hope for, because the OWS guys are doing what they’re doing right now for the same reason they have scrubby beards and nuthugger jeans.

      It’s fashionable.

  3. I’m going to be completely honest here.  Just scraping by in this country is a hell of a lot better than being wealthy in 90% of the world.  We take a lot for granted in America and we will bitch about a lot because we are the “haves” and when we don’t have all we think we should we complain, but there are literally MILLIONS of people out there that would gladly trade their lives for what we consider impoverished over here.

    I’m not saying that a lot of the complaints aren’t legitimate or that there aren’t people legitimately hurting; and I’m not saying it’s right, just that we tend to forget it’a a global community when it’s OUR comforts that are in danger.

  4. Patti Murphy says:

    Fun, fun commentary on a very serious subject. Well done. I enjoyed every word.

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