Donald Trump

Let's Avoid Fake Outrage over Madonna's Violent White House Fantasy

Safe spaces for me, but not for thee.

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Madonna
Terrence Jennings/Polaris/Newscom

For proof that the snowflake tendency runs as deeply among Trumpites as it does among campus censors, look no further than the Madonna controversy.

Yes, the dowager duchess of pop, the 58-year-old who sings about being a "girl gone wild," has let her mouth land her in hot water again. Her speechcrime this time? To admit in public that she fantasized about blowing up the White House after Trump won it.

In an otherwise typically Madonna speech at the Women's March in Washington, D.C. — all "fuck you"s and "look-at-me"s — she said she had "thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House." She thought better of it, though, and decided it would be more effective to challenge Trump with a "revolution of love" and through her music. Ick. Maybe the blowing-up wouldn't have been so bad after all.

The outrage was instant and predictable. The right-wing bits of Twitter went into meltdown. This was incitement to violence, they said. Breitbart got stuck in, whipping its readers into a Twitter-frenzy with reports on Madonna's "profanity-laced speech" and claims that her violent remarks are going to be investigated by the Secret Service (it's not clear whether this is true.)

Then came the talking heads. Brit blowhard Piers Morgan charged Madonna with going beyond mere "rudeness" and instead saying something "incredibly offensive"—to which we might wonder what's wrong with being incredibly offensive. He accused her of "fueling an idea" to "assassinate" Trump. "Publicly threatening to blow up the White House is a serious criminal offence", he said, and "Madonna should be arrested."

Newt Gingrich was up next. He told Fox & Friends that Madonna is part of "an emerging left-wing fascism"—get a grip, Newt—and "she ought to be arrested." The inevitable petition wasn't far behind. There's always someone who wants to Change.org out of existence an idea or image they find offensive. So far 6,500 people have signed the petition calling on the Department of Justice to "Arrest Madonna for Making Threats Against the White House."

Here's the thing that these pearl-clutching wailers and tweeters, these right-leaning Safe Spacers don't seem to understand: Madonna made no threat to blow up the White House. Nor did she incite anyone else to. She merely talked about a fantasy she had had.

She "thought an awful lot" about blowing up the White House. She thought it. To arrest her for this would be to arrest her for committing a thoughtcrime, for imagining something. It would be as mad as arresting her for her murder of that bloke in the movie Body of Evidence, which she also didn't really do—that, too, was a fantasy, an image.

What next? Arrest film directors who have used CGI to depict the White House being destroyed? Feel the collar of anyone who's written fiction about the killing of a president? After all, those fantasies might also trigger some hothead to do something he shouldn't. Maybe all stories and dreams and thoughts of doing harm to politicians should be outlawed.

We shouldn't only defend Madonna because she didn't actually "threaten to blow up the White House," as the possibly illiterate Morgan put it. We should also defend her because heated speech, hyperbolic speech, even violence-tinged speech, is a legitimate part of political discourse and should remain absolutely free.

There was a Supreme Court ruling that put this very well. In Watts vs the United States in 1969, the justices said that political talk often includes "vehement" and "unpleasantly sharp" attacks on public officials and even forms of criticism that sound violent but which are really just crude or super angry.

They were ruling on the 1966 case of a young man who was convicted of knowingly threatening an individual's life—the President's—during a rally in D.C. against police violence, when he said: "They always holler at us to get an education. And now I have already received my draft classification… and I have got to report for my physical this Monday coming. I am not going. If they ever make me carry a rifle the first man I want to get in my sights is L.B.J." The Court threw the conviction out, ruling that it was not a realistic threat to kill President Johnson but was merely a "crude" way of expressing "political opposition to the President."

And so it is with Madonna. She was crudely stating political anger. She was expressing political exasperation in an unfiltered way. We must have space in the political realm for crudeness and nastiness and stupidity and all the rest.

Of course genuine incitement to violence, where you use words knowing that they could imminently and directly contribute to the physical harming of an individual, is not a free-speech issue. But violent fantasies are. Violent thoughts are. Violent-inducing speech is not a free-speech issue, but violent-sounding speech—"I could kill that son of a bitch," "I thought about blowing up the White House"—is. Feminists should bear this in mind. Some of them are defending Madonna today, which is cool, but in the past they've sometimes been too quick to depict porn or misogynistic music as forms of violence.

The Madonna controversy is striking for what it tells us about the Trump era. Which is that its promised war on P.C. might be a bit of a sham, and these right-wing railers against Safe Spaces and triggered youths might not be as big on free speech as they'd like us to believe. Their freakout over some throwaway comments by Madonna is as mad as when campus snowflakes lose the plot over scenes of sexual assault in Shakespeare. All of you, listen: these are fantasies; they won't harm you.

NEXT: Will Donald Trump Cut Public Broadcasting Loose, Or Will He Decide He's the Man to Make It Great Again?

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  1. “revolution of love”

    That totally means something. Really it does!

    1. Yeah, it means someone’s stuck 50 years in the past.
      I knew a Trump would bring back the hippies. Now if I can just find my beads…

      1. Beads means something different now.

        1. Indeed, American society has considerably evolved in recent years, and the suggestion that the speech-crime of this woman was in some manner acceptable, is highly inappropriate and unpresidented; I would remind Mr. O’Neill that his proper duty as editor of Spiked is to keep the British public informed whenever the American national leader chooses to promulgate a set of alternative facts in one of his important tweets. Soon, hopefully, we will begin to establish certain limitations with respect to the “expressive” capacities of those who do not understand how this works. Surely no one here would dare to defend the outrageous “First Amendment dissent” of a single, isolated judge in America’s leading criminal “satire” case? See the documentation at:

          http://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

    2. Ron Paul uses the same phrase (or at least a logo designed to suggest it)…

    3. Meaning: “you’re going to love people whether you like it or not, or suffer the consequences, and an essential part of love is buying people stuff without asking for anything in return.”

  2. Golly gee, could I possibly care less about what Madonna says about anything, or what anyone says about Madonna?

    Nope. Wasting time on this trivia is an opportunity cost, in the form of something potentially worthwhile that hasn’t gone researched, analyzed, and written.

    Nobody gives a fuck what pampered celebrities think about politics. Quit pretending it matters. Thanks.

    1. Incidentally, I haven’t seen any evidence that Trump actually groped anybody.

      There’s an obvious double standard there on the left.

      Making a big deal out of Madonna behaving like a Trumpian braggadocio is simply bringing attention to the left’s hypocrisy.

      The left is wrong on this sort of thing–and they need to have their faces rubbed in it.

      1. I agree. It is necessary to call out the left (and right) when they are being hypocrites.

        Sadly, Reason is also correct in that some Trump cultists have really drunk the Kool Aid and are really, actually, genuinely outraged at Madonna’s statement and are thus being utter hypocrites (having criticized the leftist SJW snowflake melt-downs).

        I am seeing a lot of Trump cultists turning into the very thing they used to ridicule, but this was predicted well in advance by many sane people, including many libertarians and #NeverTrumpers. We all knew the Trump cult-of-personality would not be much better than the Obama cult-of-personality.

        1. I think there’s a lot more Fake Outrage than real outrage. And contra Brendan, it’s totally called for. People who claim Palin practically shot Giffords herself should live in fear that their preening will come back to bite them or they’ll never learn to cool it. And if anything happens to Trump or the White House, I will totally blame Madonna, not because I believe it but just to make her defenders try to defend her.

          1. Yes and no. That concept would be great if it made either side seriously consider their hypocrisy and rethink their words and actions. Instead, it does nothing but convince them to double-down on the hypocrisy because the other side is being a bunch of hypocrites.

            There is simply no point when either side honestly considers their own hypocrisy. Instead, we just have an endless war of ever-escalating hypocrisy driven by the the clear hypocrisy of the other side.

            On the rare occasions when members of either side stop the insanity and actually take the high road, they only end up being run over and their futile attempts to be reasonable are quickly forgotten.

          2. This. I’ve gotten really sick of the Left and their apparent belief that they can heap abuse on people and not have it come right back at them.

            If you’re going to take a swing don’t be surprised when someone swings back. They need to live by the same standards they are trying to force everyone else to live by.

      2. Very much so, but I think it may be hopeless. I remember Amy Schumer and Lena Dunham, two women who have openly bragged about sexually assaulting people, one an infant, purporting to lecture people not to vote for Trump because he was accused of sexually assaulting someone.

        Even Mister Magoo could see the hypocrisy in that a mike away.

      3. “The left is wrong.”

        There, FIFY

    2. Wasting time commenting on H&R all day, on the other hand….

      Nobody gives a fuck what pampered celebrities think about politics.

      All available evidence would appear to contradict you there.

    3. I agree… let’s stop with the fake outrage over what Madonna says and think about the real outrage that is coming from the fascist wannabe that WhiteAmerica has entrusted to run this Republic of Bananas

      1. Most redundant handle ever

      2. Ya know, if you want to avoid the imposters, you’ll have to pick a handle without an ‘l’ in it. May I suggest ‘American communist?’ Or ‘American retard.’

        1. Retard is pretty much assumed when they openly claim to be either a socialist or communist.

          Whether it’s naturally occurring and/or controlled substances is the actual question.

      3. That guy left office on Friday after eight years of marxist bullshit.

      4. You’re so cool. Will you teach me how to troll like you? I want to slurp your California sunshine balls. Gawd you’re hawt!
        Please keep trolling Gerald B. I’m gonna explode!

  3. Here’s the thing that these pearl-clutching wailers and tweeters…

    And the first example of these people is Piers Morgan?

    1. He does seem firmly in the Trump camp, which I find odd. Not that Trump is exactly a right winger.

      1. They’re friends from a while back, evidently. If you wanted to point out Morgan’s hypocrisy, just pull up his gun control arguments.

        1. They’re friends? Well that certainly lowers my already low opinion of Trump.

          1. You might just get responses stating that you have some sort of disorder, SK.

      2. Piers is staging a comeback on Trumps headwind

  4. “Here’s the thing that these pearl-clutching wailers and tweeters, these right-leaning Safe Spacers don’t seem to understand: Madonna made no threat to blow up the White House. Nor did she incite anyone else to. She merely talked about a fantasy she had had.”

    You don’t seem to get the hypocrisy on display by the left, here, and that seems to be at the center of the right’s reaction to this.

    1. Oh for christ’s sake, stop defending the pearl clutching of the right wing variety. Madonna is ridiculous, and any complaints about her are equally ridiculous. There is nothing more pathetic than a wannabe libertarian still clinging to his right wing tribal identity.

      1. They’ve become PJWs – Poetic Justice Warriors. They’re not here to demonstrate the stupidity of war; they’re here to laugh at the stupidity of attacking by applauding the same abhorrent behavior of the attack. It’s going to get really old.

      2. I think it’s fair to complain about her remark about blowing up the White House suggesting she is a malignant bitch, of which there is much other evidence as well.

        But the complaint that it was a true threat and illegal are plainly false.

      3. Difference between the right and the left is the left complains about you for simply existing and needs a safe space because of it. The right complains when you act like an asshole.

        I

      4. Unfortunately, there are lots of wannabe libertarians who still have a right-wing tribal identity. They can’t be trusted to be objective when it comes to judging the actions of people on the right and the left. They think only the left has “special snowflakes” and “safe spaces”, when that couldn’t be further from the truth. The right uses things like the FCC (censorship) and the DEA (drug prohibition) to try to turn the entire country into their “safe space”.

  5. Tell ya what; I’ll excuse her violent fantasies about the White House if she’ll excuse my violent fantasies about her.

  6. I was assuming all these rabid calls from the right against the left were just tossing the left’s rhetoric from the past eight years back at them, but it does seem like it’s morphed into sincere outrage. These pendulum swings just keep getting stranger.

    1. I think it is part of their “fight back, never give an inch” mindset, which is completely counterproductive when it comes to something like Madonna’s speech.

      1. Even at 58, I’d still give madonna an inch or two.

        1. I would not…them days are gone

          1. You fair weather fan.

    2. Even if it was just “a taste of their own medicine”, that doesn’t excuse it. If you spend eight years decrying something, and then *immediately* sink to their level, they’re going to use that as an excuse to stay low (or go lower), which will cause the other side to use that as an excuse to “go lower”, etc., forever embraced in an endless downward spiral of shit.

      This is not a struggle that can or will ever be “won”. You aren’t going to wake up someday after a particularly devastating twitter back-and-forth and see the left suddenly vanish in defeat. The only thing this accomplishes is making the right as shitty as they are, and permanently giving up all claim to the intellectual high ground (and I do mean permanently, since again, this is not a struggle that will *ever end, ever*). It will keep going until the last principle is sacrificed on a pagan alter to the holy chant of, “But They Started It”.

      1. If anyone can rise above petty insults, it’s Donald J. Tump.

        1. You go to war with the POTUS you have, not the POTUS you want.

          I have to say, I’m shockingly pleased with the majority of his cabinet picks and stated intentions so far.

          The problem is, unlike a disturbing number of the commentariat, I haven’t forgotten the cardinal rule: all politicians are lying pieces of shit and them tossing you a few rhetorical bones doesn’t mean shit.

          We’ll see how the next four years pan out. If he cuts federal regulations by 75%, I’ll dance naked in the streets.

          1. This pretty much describes where I am, too.

          2. I like this Gojira guy.

            1. Don’t. He will only break your heart.
              *lip quiver*

              1. And Tokyo.

          3. Trump might actually do some good things. My feeling is that the better something he does is, the madder it will make the left. Even if it was something they would cheer on if Obama would have done it.

            My biggest fears about Trump are the appointment of Sessions and what that means for the war on drugs, and Trump’s law and order rhetoric.

            1. I’m just disgusted by how many people spent eight years blasting Obama for mouthing empty platitudes, but as soon as Trump gets in, then everything he says totally portends what he’s going to actually do! And you apparently have to have the secret decoder ring to know when he means what he says, and when he’s totally just trolling, yo.

              The right are selling their souls for a few months of shadenfreude, and over the last eight years of the left making me hate them so much, I had stupidly forgotten that the right is comprised of a bunch of retards, also.

              Even if it was something they would cheer on if Obama would have done it.

              Already happening. I read several lefty rants about his cancelling the TPP already today. Apparently he was supposed to rework it to enforce stricter standards on our trading partners, but now he’s flushed away all American credibility forever and nobody will ever do business with us again.

              1. “nobody will ever do business with us again”

                Yeah, I’m 100% certain that’s going to happen. No one wants any of those nasty old dollars.

                This is the thing about the left. Everything is overly dramatized with them. This TDS has just taken it to a new level. People howling about his finger on the button and they were perfectly willing to elect one of the biggest war monger ever.

          4. I neither voted for him or trust him. Ditto Madonna.

            1. Wish I could say the same. I voted for Madonna once. It was a small municipal election, and so didn’t get much national coverage.

              1. I’d have voted for her during her Like a Plissken phase.

          5. Yeah, I like getting rid of TPP too. And the upcoming assaults on abortion rights. It’s going to be awesome.

            1. But not quite as awesome as an Obama-sanctioned drone strike. KABOOM!, right?

          6. Sounds good to me. I’ll join in … but donations to keep me from doing so gladly accepted 🙂

          7. If regulations are down by even 10% at the end four years I’ll be fucking thrilled.

          8. We’ll see how the next four years pan out. If he cuts federal regulations by 75%, I’ll dance naked in the streets.

            Careful….Crusty Juggler might hold you to that. Well, him or jesse, depending on how you’re built.

        2. I agree but he did implement corporate america’s greatest trick….the hiring freeze

      2. the problem is the right has always stood back while the left made outragious claims and even acted upon them to continually put down the right. Trump has become the answer to that and maybe its time to give them their own medicine since acting honorably and ignoring such acts has not worked so far.

    3. These pendulum swings just keep getting stranger.

      Would you claim, Fist of Etiquette, that these “rabid calls” and the seeming “sincere outrage” associated with them are akin to a doctrine of the meanof sorts?

  7. that its promised war on P.C. might be a bit of a sham, and these right-wing railers against Safe Spaces and triggered youths might not be as big on free speech as they’d like us to believe. Their freakout over some throwaway comments by Madonna is as mad as when campus snowflakes lose the plot over scenes of sexual assault in Shakespeare. All of you, listen: these are fantasies; they won’t harm you.

    Truth.

    1. Truth threats, mr. Woodchipper.

    2. Dare, Crusty. I dare you to take Winston’s mom to your place next time.

  8. Madonna is part of “an emerging left-wing fascism”

    Of course, Progs are fascists or at least proto-fascists. I don’t see why that would be controversial in the least.

  9. To admit in public that she fantasized about blowing up the White House after Trump won it.

    I was at a party full of aging lesbians and they were openly talking about assassinating Trump. I shrugged and went back to my drink.

      1. Free drinks, presumably.

        1. I apologize for being unclear. Why were the lesbians allowing him to drink their free hooch?

          1. “Allowing?” They were *trying* to get him drunk, don’t you see?

            For what, only he and SugarFree know.

            1. It’s the bull shark semen extract that makes him so alpha.

        2. I figured he must be an aging lesbian.

      2. Establishing an alibi. The only reason he’d want anyone to know he was hanging out with murderous lesbians would be that there’s some other thing, something much worse, of which he might otherwise be suspected.

        He’s probably the guy who advised [name of sports team] to [describe stupid maneuvre] and lose [important game].

      3. Why were you there?

        I’m sexually non-threatening.

      4. He’s into pegging and they tend to be pretty good at it.

    1. Not to be pedantic, but all lesbians are aging. They are not immortal, or I would be joining their ranks.

      1. Correct. He should have used aged, like aged steak.

        Example: The lesbians’ labias looked like aged flank steaks hanging on a clothes line.

        1. Thanks a lot, FH. Now I am craving fajitas.

          1. Fuck. Now I want fajitas. Nice reversal.

        2. +1 Costco beef roll

  10. I seem to recall a wood chipper incident and the deluge of support coming from the left. Time for us to pay it forward.

  11. Hoist on her own petard. I agree in principle, but she can piss up a rope.

    1. At least call Madonna the scumbag that she is as you defend her free speech rights. Isn’t that how we do it?

      1. I thought this was how we do it.

      2. Good catch!

    2. Actually, she probably can. I imagine she’s at least tried.

      1. No doubt. Word.

  12. I think what makes the Left angry is that their dirty tactics are being used on them and it’s working. I’m not going to say that the Progressive movement is dead but they are gaining less and less influence in the eyes of the American public. People are tired of their shit.

    1. Their brand has been severely damaged by identity politics and they’re actually going to double down on it now as the solution. When that fails to work, as it will, I’m expecting violence.

      1. As long as said violence divides cleanly amongst 2nd amendment advocates on one side and responsible common sense “citizens” on the other –I’m in baby

    2. No, progressivism is totally gaining influence. Its the democratic party that just got whupped, but they hardly have a monopoly on thinking they can make the world a better place with the use of force.

  13. I don’t think anyone on the right is actually scared of this ever happening, just annoyed by the hypocrisy of the left.

    But hey, way to deliberately miss the point to make good with the cocktail circuit crowd

    1. And displaying the same kind of hypocrisy is the right way to react?

      And Piers Morgan is hardly on the right. This is just idiots freaking out (proably deliberately to score some kind of a point). They are all hypocrites.

  14. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for Southern New York has investigated commenters on this website for saying less.

    1. And the culpreet shall not be forgiven.

      1. Indeed we won’t just preetend it never happened.

  15. The same assholes who wants to get rid of our Second Amendments are the same assholes who dream of the President being assassinated. The irony is too rich.

    1. They never said that they want bomb control, just gun control.

  16. I’ll tell you the difference on the fake outrage here…. the folks on the right are playing tu quoque, and pretending to be outraged because that’s how the left acts.

    Meanwhile, when the left has fake outrage, they actually passionately believe it. Kinda like the “how big is your crowd” controversy. The bulk of the left enjoying their BS outrage actually believe in the depth of their heart that it is an unprecedented evil for Trump to answer “crowd size” comparisons with “audience size” comparisons.

    So the right is mostly outraged at the hypocritical nature of the left and their media supporters who writhe in agony, apoplectic that some Republican dare refer to a female Democrat elected official as “coming unglued” over some issue, because that is misogynistic and evil….. all while ignoring their own party’s denizens who are actively seeking out sexual relationships with underage girls in their online chats.

    This is the same situation. Sara Palin says her team is going to “target” vulnerable democrats and the world explodes with hysteria over the notion that she’s advocating political assassinations. So now when Madonna actually does say she’d like to physically (not metaphorically) blow up the white house, they are rightly saying “hey, where’s your moral outrage now?

    Almost nobody on the right actually gives a flying xxx what Madonna said, but it is quite instructive to note where the outrage fell silent.

    1. “I’ll tell you the difference on the fake outrage here…. the folks on the right are playing tu quoque, and pretending to be outraged because that’s how the left acts.

      Meanwhile, when the left has fake outrage, they actually passionately believe it.”

      I think you’re on the nose there, but I’d add something.

      The difference is that the right doesn’t really want Madonna prosecuted for this, but when the left go after people for saying things lie this–they demand action.

      They want hate speech laws, they want to go after our Second Amendment rights, etc., etc.

      1. The difference is that the right doesn’t really want Madonna prosecuted for this,

        And you know this how?

        1. What worse punishment could be meted out to her other than that she remain her utterly disgusting and talentless self?

        2. Not like I know that 1 + 1 = 2.

          My read is that when the social justice warriors call for someone’s head (or go after Trump for merely saying something about groping women), they really want action.

          My read is that the right are calling out the social justice warriors on Madonna’s statement for being hypocrites.

          I’m sure there are some on the right who would laugh at the specter of Madonna being prosecuted–but my read is that isn’t what this is about. It’s about calling the left out on their hypocrisy.

          1. It’s about calling the left out on their hypocrisy.

            Which can easily become, “they want to criminalize speech, so we should criminalize it, too.”

            1. I agree.

              But I don’t think that’s what this is about.

              They aren’t trying to enact hate speech laws.

              They aren’t trying to ban people from having guns over this.

              In California, they were trying to put people on a hate speech list like a sex offender list.

              This isn’t like that.

              This isn’t like saying the FBI should throw the Bundys in prison because they’re racists.

              This is saying that the social justice warriors with their safe spaces and their hate speech codes are a bunch of fucking hypocrites.

      2. Because no-one cares what Madonna says. Under Bush, she moved to England.
        Most people don’t care what “celebrities” think.

        1. Almost nobody on the right actually gives a flying xxx what Madonna said

          It seems like a lot of people spend a lot of time making fun of what celebrities think.

        2. I wish it were true that most people don’t care what celebrities think.

          The celebrity endorsement market suggests otherwise.

          Papa Johns has made millions in pizza sales who ordered their pizzas because Peyton Manning told them to.

          Three great needs drive humanity: sex drive, hunger, and the need for voyeurism. Celebrities are about voyeurism. So is porn–especially celebrity porn.

          1. At times, we vicariously experience the fabulous lives of celebrities. In darker moods, we glory in their scandals.

            I don’t want to obsess over the scandals, so I content myself with looking at the covers of the supermarket tabloids. Now that my supermarket no longer carries the aliens and bigfoot variety of tabloid, it’s pretty much all celebrity pregnancies, celebrity weddings, celebrity couple fights, celebrity divorces, etc.

            1. I can’t wait for the “Trump Meets Space Aliens” issue of the Enquirer.

            2. Who did Bat Boy endorse?

    2. +1

      I do have to add, the party of stupid, actually does take action against stuff in their party. Congressman steals, caught in the bathroom with an unager resigns etc. The evil party just spins it away with the media’s help.

      Reason doesn’t know what to do since the party of stupid is actually not being as stupid at the moment and playing by the evil party rules

    3. I’d say the thinking on the right goes as follows:

      “If those are the rules of political rhetoric when we made barbed metaphors and spleen-venting noises in the past, then we’re going to apply those same rules to you in turn, rather than keep playing the old ‘we’re taking the high road’ game that lets you keep getting away with a double standard. And if you sincerely believed that we were making real, credible, deadly threats when we made those kinds of noises, then that’s actually good reason for us to think that the same kinds of noises from you truly are real, credible, deadly threats – and to react accordingly.”

      1. That’s essentially the argument I just read from Ace at Ace of Soades HQ.

    4. when the left has fake outrage, they actually passionately believe it

      I really don’t think they do. They know damn well that racism wasn’t the only reason people criticized Obama and they know that not all pro-life people hate women and just want them to be pregnant all the time. It’s just a club to beat your opponents with.

      1. I’m really skeptical, at least from my interactions with progs. If it was simply a club, I would expect that their line of emoting would change when I challenged them versus when I silently sat and observed. In my experience, it doesn’t. Abortion is inherent to femininity. Your place in the grievance pyramid dictates who you can and cannot criticize.

        For example, check out Crowder’s interaction with college SJWs. It’s the same grievance posturing, even though he is “undercover.”

      2. Idk, I’m regularly surprised at how many bus stop and coffee shop and barroom conversations I overhear are of the ‘white people just can’t stand having a black president’ or ‘those right wingers don’t want us women to be able to work’ sort. Hell I hear some of it from my mother. Lots of ‘normal’ people seem to sincerely believe it. Hell, it’s not uncommon for me to hear it proclaimed in all seriousness that Trump’s victory demonstrates that half of Americans are white supremacists, and I’ve heard that at least once from a libertarian leaning person.

        Maybe it’s the specific crowd I hang around, but I don’t take it to be mostly disingenuous or in jest.

  17. I think this is right-wing score-settling.

    Sarah Palin inciting some madman who killed people in a movie theater. The Tea Party being full of violent fanatics. Toxic right-wing rhetoric. Etc.

    They were just waiting for a left-wing example to throw back in the Left’s faces, and they didn’t have to wait long.

    1. The second paragraph was a paraphrase of talking points about the right during the Obama administration – I wasn’t stating my own views.

  18. I’m not going to speak for Newt or Morgan, but most people on the right are just throwing it back in the left’s face there Brandon.

    In a land, where a pop tart shaped like a gun gets you suspended.
    In a land, where if you right Trump in chalk, people have to go to safe spaces.
    In a land, where you couldn’t say anything about Obama because you were racist, homophobic, ignorant, etc

    This is amusing. If we recall, when Obama was elected it was can’t we all get along. When Hillary was winning, it was the country is great. Now that Trump is in…people are protesting…what exactly because he wasn’t even in office.

    You reap what you sow. So much winning at the moment.

    1. It’s shitty that we have free riders benefiting from the sweat and tears of people who fought for free speech, but it’s not a compelling reason to abandon it.

    2. Even if that’s what it is, it’s a totally stupid and hypocritical thing to do. “The other guys do it too” is a terrible reason to do anything.

      1. True enough. But so swings the pendulum.

      2. So what tactic do you suggest they take? Sit there and take it? That’s worked oh so fucking well. Try logic and rational discourse? These people are not logical or rational and their idea of ‘discourse’ is exactly what we are seeing now, throwing temper tantrums like 3 year-olds.

        The Left has garnered a great deal of animosity over the last 8 years for acting like a bunch of douchemonkeys. They’ve even been attempting to re-create the salem witch trials and destroying peoples lives and businesses.

    3. Am I the only one who read this comment with the “movie trailer narrator voice”?

  19. If Madonna wants a “revolution of love,” why did she support Hillary Clinton, a bloodthirsty warmonger?

    1. I revolution of love for Nixonian politics!

    2. That would mean she has principles. But like all progressive celebrities they conflate partisanship with principles.

  20. I am no Trump fan. But these celebs are tone deaf. But I am for free speech. Even if it makes one sound stupid as long as it is honest. I believe most of the stories about Trump. At the same time, there are people in Hollywood who do things to women worse than what they accuse Trump of. Funny how many of these same celebs don’t take Hollywood to task.

  21. I really like Spiked.com and O’Reilly, but he missed the mark here. Threatening to blow up the Whitehouse (no matter how far fetched or jokingly said) is still a serious comment, according to the Secret Service. That’s kind of why we can’t joke about killing the president.

    It’s a disingenuous comparison to say being outraged by a joke about bombing the Whitehouse is the same being outraged by someone saying there are only two genders.

    Try again, sir

    1. I would love to see how things went down if Normal Joe Shmo uttered the same thing on Twitter.

    2. Threatening to blow up the Whitehouse (no matter how far fetched or jokingly said) is still a serious comment, according to the Secret Service.

      If that were true, the Secret Service would constantly be tracking down people who jokingly talk about harming the president. They may be humorless, but they aren’t stupid and know the difference between a joke and a threat.

      1. The only reason they don’t track down that stuff is lack of resources. Given enough money, the govt would do anything it wanted despite the parchment barrier.

        1. OK, fine. Everything sucks and is hopeless. Happy?

          1. Passive aggressive. Don’t do it, Jeb.

      2. …they aren’t stupid and know the difference between a joke and a threat.

        Actually, they don’t. It’s not that hard to find cases going back to the 1960s where someone who was “just kidding” ended up being interrogated for many hours over a joke.

        1. It’s also pretty easy to find examples of people making such comments and nothing else happening.

        2. The Secret Service has certainly talked to Madonna, considering how she was trying to walk back what she said today.

          I know Reason has to play both sides and I appreciate that, but to suggest that both sides are thought police is laughable.

    3. you can not joke about anything, guns , bombs etc on a plane either so there is applicable cases where people are arrested for just talking or even just making of a video that got people killed on the other side of the world.

  22. As far as I’m concerned, let the left keep on talking. Let them talk all they want. They’re destroying themselves. All we have to do is sit, watch, and enjoy.

      1. Pretty funny

  23. Actually this is healthy. I doubt she actually ever seriously considered blowing up the white house. It was hyperbole resulting from frustration and misunderstanding. But by saying it, followed by a suggestion for more constructive approaches, takes away an excuse for others who might not be as pacifist by nature. In fact, the biggest risk here are the violent Trumpkins – a possible false flag operation. Of course, it’s hard to get away with such shenanigans in the age of the panopticon. This is all very funny.

    1. Of course she didn’t but would that stop Preet?

      There is no doubt celebrities get away with much more – i.e. De Niro threatening to punch Trump.

      Make a threat here. If it gets picked up by some left-winger or a prosecutor gets wind of it, it’s much easier to bully commenters.

      I don’t mean to offer my own ‘tu quoque’ here mentioned by O’Neil but there’s a grain of truth in it.

  24. little does anyone suspect that controversy was the only point of her little tirade.

    actually, everyone suspects it, but it’s sort of like when a little kid paints a picture that isn’t any good. you pretend, because crushing the soul of a child is just not american.

  25. I have to wonder what the reaction would have been if any celebrity had publicly expressed a fantasy about blowing up the White House on Jan 2X/2009.

    I’m certain that if any “commoner” had done so on Jan 2X/2009 he or she would have been subjected to intense interrogation.

    I seem to recall that there was some significant outrage on the left over some of Ted Negent’s shit about Obama. Could be wrong.

    1. No, it’s exactly right and the part that irritates me personally – that is the double standard.

    2. I think our go to response to this should be to defend Madonna by saying that it was just locker room talk, see if the lefties appreciate the irony.

  26. “…We shouldn’t only defend Madonna because she didn’t actually “threaten to blow up the White House,”

    Indeed. Just like we should defend Nazi free speech, the idiot virgin (?) deserves defence on this matter lest we become the very things on the left we loathe where such matters are concerned.

    Was she like this during the Reagan years? Not that I really care.

    1. Not exactly.

      She was better looking.

      1. Low bar there, Jim.

    2. No article defending Richard Spencer? That twerp got slugged by another twerp. Must we defend every vile person? Isn’t it enough to just say the government shouldn’t prosecute them and they shouldn’t have violence brought upon them?

      And yes, I just lumped Madonna in with Spencer. Their both vile and annoying

      1. I think Tubie Shur wrote one.

        1. +1 Robbie Horse.

  27. “Net Neutrality Critic Ajit Pai Named New Head of FCC”
    […]
    “”I look forward to working with the new Administration, my colleagues at the Commission, members of Congress, and the American public to bring the benefits of the digital age to all Americans,” the statement continued.
    The highest-ranking Republican member of the committee, Pai has served as commissioner since May 2012. During his tenure he’s been highly critical of the net neutrality regulations enacted by the commission under Wheeler’s tenure.”
    http://www.sfgate.com/entertai…..878156.php

    Hoooo-f’ing-RAY!
    “Net Neutrality” = lefty feel-good term for gov’t meddling in the market.

    1. Uh, market? We’re talking about telecoms here.

    2. I wonder Ajit flies a lot…

      Because that would make him a Pai in the sky!

  28. Madonna should be fed feet first into a woodchipper.

    Ah, the good old days. What’s become of us, boys?

  29. Change ‘Like a virgin’ to ‘Like a woodchipper’.

    Now that this tune is firmly in your mind for the night, my work is done.

  30. Well, she can be thankful that she didn’t say that she wanted to put the Whitehouse into a wood chipper.

    1. Refresh. How does that work again?

  31. Oh please, Reason. If a normal person and not a left-celeb had said that, they would be under arrest and charged with a crime. Could you fucking imagine if someone did what she did when Obama was in the white house?

    1. If a white person said they were gonna blow up the White House after Obama won?

      I don’t think I could imagine. That person would probably have already been tarred and feathered, fired and deported to Siberia.

  32. Now Madonna is just gonna blow the terrorists to blow it up for her.

  33. Madonna’s opinion about pretty much anything means absolutely nothing to me. The only irritation I do have is the hypocrisy that is rampant within the left, the silence from the left, the history that the left has in regard to blowing up this very kind of thing when it had to do with B.O. It’s no surprise, but it still irritates.

  34. C’mon Brendan, really? Nobody on the right thinks Madonna is going to blow up the Whitehouse. But they have slowly been learning the left’s Alinsky techniques and throwing the outrage right back in Madonna’s whore face is giving the left a good taste of the left’s own medicine.

    1. Which is why they are idiot hypocrites.

      The left doesn’t really mean it when they do it either. It’s just a tactic to smear your opponents.

      1. Actually the left does mean it. They just can’t bring themselves to touch those icky guns so they figure if they cry enough someone will do it for them.

      2. You don’t know the left. These are people who believe they lost the election because of the Russians. By the way I am not an American and niether do I stay in America. Just enjoy the circus thats all.

    2. Someone gets it. Alinsky 101, make your opponents live up to the values they claim to have.

      1. Precisely.

  35. Brit blowhard Piers Morgan …

    You know Morgan’s a big ol’ lefty, right?

    1. Did someone suggest otherwise?

      1. Yes.

        For proof that the snowflake tendency runs as deeply among Trumpites…

        The outrage was instant and predictable. The right-wing bits of Twitter went into meltdown.

        Here’s the thing that these pearl-clutching wailers and tweeters, these right-leaning Safe Spacers don’t seem to understand:

        The Madonna controversy is striking for what it tells us about the Trump era. Which is that its promised war on P.C. might be a bit of a sham, and these right-wing railers against Safe Spaces and triggered youths might not be as big on free speech as they’d like us to believe.

        The entire point of the article is to declaim these accusations from the right. Making one of your main talking points a comment from a leftist does not support that argument.

    2. He’s not that big.

  36. As soon as I saw the title I knew it was going to be some kind of extreme joke about killing or terrorism or something by Madonna that was absurd to equate to SJW’s freaking out over a “vote trump” sticker.

  37. “an emerging left-wing fascism”

    Please. What power do left-wingers have in this country? None. Why are libertarians concerned about left-wing fascism when we have a bonafide fascist in the WH?

    1. What power do left-wingers have in this country? None.

      Fastest memory-holing in communist history?

    2. What power do left-wingers have in this country? None.

      “We only control the mass media organs, educational system, entertainment complex, and bureaucracies nationwide, but other than that WE HAVE NO POWAH, GAIZ!!”

      1. Also, several states including California. We have no power! Except the largest state’s government.

        1. And the federal courts Obama and Reid packed with Dems before the 2014 elections.

    3. Liars lie.

  38. Surely, there’s a between a public figure expressing her fantasy about “blowing up the white house” before a hostile Trump hating crowd (in a time when anti Trump antics are becoming increasingly dangerous) and a college student getting booted out of the student government because she posted “all lives matter” at Facebook.

    No one at Breibart is actually urging Maddona to be arrested and prosecuted. She did make an ill advised statement that deserves outrage and some scrutiny from secret service (who also contacted Trump when he made the “second amendment people” remark), which would be 10 time worse if she made that exact comment while Obama was in office.

  39. SERIOUSLY… who in their right mind would be surprised that Madonna said she “Wants to BLOW the Whitehouse?”

    1. When I first read about this nonstory, I did think about that bit from Arrested Development. “She said what? That’s terrible, they should really call the Secret Service. Uh, you mean ‘up’, though, right? Because otherwise it sounds a little different, but, uh, yeah, that’s completely unaccep… you forgot to say ‘up’ again. But listen, let me call you back in a bit, okay? Bye.” (to bystander) Madonna said she wants to blow up everyone at the White House.

  40. I really wish she’d get lost.

  41. I’m rolling in late but thought I’d drop a comment, before reading through the comments… so I assume someone else has pointed this out but shouldn’t old Maddie be busy giving bj’s to all those guys who voted for clinton… or was that only if she won…. I would think when she says she’s gonna blow up the whitehouse the response was shaddup and go suck some dicks

  42. blah blah blah.

    if some high-profile schmoo had expressed a desire to “lynch” Obama at a major rally, the outrage would be epic, melodramatic, ubiquitous, never-ending, and anyone daring to suggest it was ‘fake’ would be torn apart in the streets as admitted neoconfederates.

    i think most sane people recognized long long ago (*and well before this sort of thing) that we live in an age of perpetual-hyperbole and reductio-ad-Hitlerum.

    basically, ALL outrage is “Fake” outrage.

    because ‘being outraged’ has lost all its inherent social currency.

    In fact, the most “radical” posture of late is to shrug and go, “so fucking what”?

    1. Obama, hell all a person has to do is put a noose up near a university and the police come looking for every white guy since its assumed its a lynching threat against all blacks and all the students are cloistered in safe spaces until someone anyone is fingered as the nazi culprit

  43. Speaking of feigned outrage – anyone on Reason talking about the attacks on Barron Trump? I’m sure the illustrious staff-writers would be singing a different tune if the Obama girls were similarly disparaged.

    1. there’s a reason “Okay / Not Okay” are more in vogue than “right and wrong”

  44. Of course the outrage is fake. It’s simply there to highlight double standard. If no one even pretended to be outraged, no point gets made. By responding with fake indignation, we can follow up with an honest discussion about the double standard and the real snowflake nature of most of the left–whose outrage had the situation had been reversed (i.e., if Clint Eastwood had commented about bombing Pres. Clinton) would have been real and unbounded.

  45. GODDAMMIT!
    More tabloid personality-based bullshit.
    Meanwhile, the drone strikes have continued in Yemen, now under Trump’s lackeys (duh, like they’d stop).
    The NSA is still logging all of this commentary, your emails, texts, phone calls, Google searches, porn streams, and maybe even watching and listening on your phone or laptop, RIGHT NOW (!!1!).
    You think “Law and Order” Trump is going to back off civil asset profit-sharing?
    GODDAMMIT!

    The flamboyant change of executive and its media backlash is just a distraction, and change in executive priorities is just a change in the tread pattern of the boot.

    Git off mah lawn!

  46. No, she shouldn’t be arrested for this. But she should do time for Body of Evidence. Or maybe the casting director should.

  47. I was gegetting Madonna confused with Barbra Streisand for a second. I don’t know which of them that’s a bigger insult to.

  48. I was gegetting Madonna confused with Barbra Streisand for a second. I don’t know which of them that’s a bigger insult to.

  49. At least she didn’t threaten to rub that nasty old gash on him.

  50. For proof that the snowflake tendency runs as deeply among Trumpites as it does among campus censors, look no further than the Madonna controversy.

    Is that the way Reason is going to work for the next 4 years?
    Start every article with some idiotic slur against Trump and Trump supporters?
    These false equivalences with the Left seem the favorite.

    Is it just your personal hatred of Trump supporters that turns you into a retard, or does management demand these slurs as part of a clickbait campaign?

    Maybe the latter. The idiocy does seem tacked on. Get rid of the subtitle and the first sentence, and you have a reasonable article.

    Campus snowflakes are complaining about ideas they want banned.

    The reaction against Madonna’s comments were hysterical overreactions that her dreams of violence amounted to advocacy of terrorism. There’s some tiny bit of truth that “wouldn’t it be great if Trump was assassinated?” amounts to incitement to violence. But not much. About as much as the Right guffawing over “helicopter rides” for the Left.

    The rage against Madonna’s sharing her wistful fantasies about “wouldn’t it be great to assassinate Trump?” is a failure of *degree*, not of kind.

    The Left equating their offense taking with evidence of violence against them, justifying censorship and violence in return, is a failure of kind for those who believe in a free society.

    1. #RealLibertarianAlternativeToReason

  51. The left has spent the last decade in exaggerated distress at every imagined slight from the republicans. When you use such tactics on others, it is always important to remember that eventually, those people will have the opportunity to use the same tactics on you. That is one of the advantages of keeping things civil.

  52. Well, lucky for her that her fantasy didn’t involve a wood chipper or she’d be in serious trouble.

    But never mind what she said, what’s with her look? I know she changes that as often as normal people change the oil in their car, but when did she decide to to cop the Crypt Keeper’s look?

    Is someone doing a reboot of Tales from the Crypt?

  53. Moron.

    We’re making a stink about it because for the past 20 friggin YEARS we’ve been subject to THEIR fascist reactions of anything WE say.

  54. Misses the point completely. Sorry, but this is about forcing the left to eat the shit sandwich that they created.

  55. It’s not even giving them a taste of their own medicine. Their medicine was far less potable.

    The lefties were accusing us of stoking violence for even saying abstract things that could be interpreted in perfectly legal ways, like “Obama is threatening the future of our country and has to be stopped.”

    Then this twat goes on stage and explicitly encourages blowing up the White House, and suddenly it’s off-limits to criticize her for it. Amazing.

    1. Yeah, flipping your shit over ‘blow up the white house’ may be stupid, but the author is wrong to suggest it’s on the same level as flipping your ship over refusing to call a tranny by the right pronoun, or over someone criticizing the BLM movement.

  56. Adults need to act like adults and not overreact if the “material girl” says something stupid.

  57. “Of course genuine incitement to violence, where you use words knowing that they could imminently and directly contribute to the physical harming of an individual, is not a free-speech issue. But violent fantasies are”

    As far as I could tell from the wandering comments here, no one yet has pointed out that this speech was given to a huge crowd collected to express displeasure thru to rage against the constitutionally elected president. This moves the comments from the authors “violent fantasy” to the public stage, where one or more of the (insert number from your preferred counting source) people present could accept that comment as instruction or permission.
    So the proper response, which seems to be the one being followed, is a Secret Service investigation. It most likely will not result in charges or arrest, but it will officially determine that she was not actively involved in an assignation attempt.
    At least this administration is using investigations before filing charges.

  58. Try making Madonna’s outrageous comments as you board an airplane if you think words won’t get action.

  59. I don’t want Madonna arrested, but I fail to see how Reason concludes that histrionic reactions from a few folks on the right (who are not Donald Trump) proves that Donald Trump’s war on PC culture is fake.

  60. You’re right. Instead of fake outrage over political fetish fantasies, lets do talk about what’s really outrageous.

    Do Madonna and Ashley Judd actually live in this country? I think it’s offensive they showed up for face time. Money and fame let them head out for parts unknown long ago. Neither one of them had been heard from in this country for years while John and Jane Q. Citizen of every stripe who are stuck here lost liberties to this country’s government. Don’t show up late to the party and claim to be some kind of spokesperson. Let the people who struggle finally have their say rather than stepping on their lines.

    To all the liberals and democrats now joining the limited government circle I say welcome, but don’t get too high on yourselves either. In my opinion it took you long enough to notice we were all getting corn-holed by the Government of the good ole US of A.

    Welcome to the “Watched List” you all thought was so extra creamy just six months ago from those of us who have been on it for a long time now.

  61. Rush Limbaugh criticised her heavily, but said she was just blowing off steam with the White House bit.

    Thought you might want to mention a figure like him if you’re gonna tell us they’re all getting “soft” on us now.

  62. Better yet, let’s just continuing ignoring Madonna as she spirals further down into the black-hole of irrelevancy.

  63. Madonna is an idiot period. I won’t waste time on her and had actually forgotten she said this. But let us put this way. Imagine someone fantasies killing her and lets her know. I am sure she would freak out.

  64. “She was crudely stating political anger. She was expressing political exasperation in an unfiltered way. We must have space in the political realm for crudeness and nastiness and stupidity and all the rest.”

    Yeh…let’s hear that same opinion the next time some right-wing nutjob spouts off in the public arena. People who are sick and tired of the bizarre double-standard in the political space are a large reason Trump got elected. Keep dismissing filth from left-wing nutjobs like Madonna and Judd, and he’ll be re-elected in a landslide.

  65. Is there anyone more weepy that a Trumpster? Is there anyone over the age of 12 who hasn’t fantasized about blowing up the Whitehouse at some point?

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  66. I have a fantasy of blowing up 1747 Connecticut Ave., NW Washington, DC 20009

    Are you scared yet?

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