On Franklin Road and North 21st Avenue in Caldwell, Idaho, this little sign above exists. Even though it really bears no repeating, here's what it says
On the left is a picture Aurora shooting suspect, James Holmes - the man behind the largest mass shooting in American history - and a count of the number of his victims. We all freaked out, yes. On the right is a picture of our President, Barack Obama, with a statement that reads, "Kills thousands with his foreign policy... Wins Nobel Peace Prize."
We'll give you a second to take that all in. Phew... okay. Let's talk.
The billboard is sponsored by the Ralph Smeed Foundation, named after a late Idahoan libertarian activist. Maurice Clements, a member of the Foundation, told the local paper
that the message was about reaction: "We're all outraged over that killing in Aurora, Colorado, but we're not outraged about our boys in Afghanistan."
We've seen some racy shit in the past four years but, whoa, this one hits a whole different level - i.e. the level where your President is compared to a suspected cold-blooded murderer. Nonetheless, we have to give credit where credit is due. Since Obama entered the Oval Office, yes, there have been thousands of deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan, including our soldiers, enemy targets and citizens. Yes, drone attacks have spun out of control and the remote control killings of innocent people have been heavily reported on. Yes, he did win a Nobel Peace Prize upon arrival in Washington. And, yes, we are outraged about our boys in Afghanistan.
But, regardless, making a connection between the foreign policy of the United States of America and the massacre of twelve people at a midnight premiere of The Dark Knight Rises is downright idiotic. It is an amateur attempt in political criticism, in which the absurd six degrees of separation is pulled out to receive shock value.
It's like the 'Bush is Hitler' signs of yesteryear or the Stalin/Mao/[insert dictator here] billboards of Obama - the fringe that do actually believe that bullshit need hyperbolic narratives to explain points that cannot explain in coherent sentences. Here's how we can explain it to them: Barack Obama is not like James Holmes. James Holmes is like James Holmes and Barack Obama is like Barack Obama.
Ironically, above the billboard is the message, "Making Statism Unpopular." Luckily, anyone who disagrees with that statement is caught on what looks to be two cameras dangling from the bottom of the sign. Big Brother is watching you, Idaho. And only you.