The Meme Givith and the Meme Taketh away

Readability

The Meme Givith and the Meme Taketh away

Vinny Gam­bini: Build­ing a case is like build­ing a house. Each piece of evi­dence is just another build­ing block. He wants to make a brick bunker of a build­ing. He wants to use seri­ous, solid-​looking bricks, like, like these, right?

Bill: Right.

Vinny Gam­bini: Let me show you some­thing. (holds a play­ing card face up) He’s going to show you the bricks. He’ll show you they got straight sides. He’ll show you how they got the right shape. He’ll show them to you in a very spe­cial way, so that they appear to have every­thing a brick should have. But there’s one thing he’s not gonna show you. (turns the card, to show the edge) When you look at the bricks from the right angle, they’re as thin as this play­ing card. His whole case is an illu­sion, a magic trick.

My Cousin Vinny 1992

A few days ago we talked about the Meme police. mak­ing sure you get a mes­sage that can’t get out of your head.

The prob­lem of course with push­ing and estab­lish­ing a meme is that even if you build a meme that appears solid, even if you show the straight sides, the right shape, a meme that has every­thing the mes­sage you want to sell should have, every once in a while real­ity turns the card on its side/​a>.

George Zim­mer­man, the man whose acquit­tal on mur­der and manslaugh­ter charges in the fatal shoot­ing of Trayvon Mar­tin set off a wave of protests across the nation, helped res­cue a fam­ily from an over­turned SUV four days after the ver­dict, the Semi­nole County Sheriff’s Office said in a state­ment Monday.

The state­ment said that on Wednes­day, at approx­i­mately 5:45 p.m. ET, the sheriff’s office responded to a sin­gle car acci­dent at an inter­sec­tion in the San­ford, Fla., area not far from where Zim­mer­man, 29, shot Trayvon, 17, in Feb­ru­ary 2012. The state­ment said a blue Ford Explorer had run off the road and rolled over with a fam­ily of four inside.

Now nor­mally if you have facts that are incon­ve­nient to your meme or your nar­ra­tive such as say, the slaugh­ter of young black men by other young black men, you can hide it or ignore it.

But once a Zim­mer­man is thrust into pub­lic view, sud­denly every­thing he does becomes news. News that can’t be ignored by places like Good morn­ing America:

and the today show

Visit NBC​News​.com for break­ing news, world news, and news about the economy

that is the tar­get audi­ence for your meme.

And why couldn’t they ignore it, because the story was already out on face­book and all over the net so much so that my wife already knew about it before I could tell her.

You can spin such a story but you can’t ignore it and if you’re very unlucky you might end up with a follow-​up story that makes your meme look worse:

The fam­ily res­cued from a car acci­dent by George Zim­mer­man, days after he was cleared of wrong­do­ing in the fatal shoot­ing of unarmed black teenager Trayvon Mar­tin, can­celed plans to thank him pub­licly because they fear being linked to some­one reviled by many Amer­i­cans, Zimmerman’s lawyer said on Wednesday.

The fam­ily, who really wanted to thank George for doing what he did pub­licly … real­ized that in any way con­nect­ing your­self with George Zim­mer­man is right now very toxic,” Mark O’Mara, Zimmerman’s lead attor­ney, told CNN.

The George Zim­mer­man as an evil racist killer meme might be a most com­fort­able lie for the most loyal mem­bers of the Obama team, but for the pub­lic in gen­eral it is in real trouble

Vinny Gambini: Building a case is like building a house. Each piece of evidence is just another building block. He wants to make a brick bunker of a building. He wants to use serious, solid-looking bricks, like, like these, right?

Bill: Right.

Vinny Gambini: Let me show you something. (holds a playing card face up) He’s going to show you the bricks. He’ll show you they got straight sides. He’ll show you how they got the right shape. He’ll show them to you in a very special way, so that they appear to have everything a brick should have. But there’s one thing he’s not gonna show you. (turns the card, to show the edge) When you look at the bricks from the right angle, they’re as thin as this playing card. His whole case is an illusion, a magic trick.

My Cousin Vinny 1992

A few days ago we talked about the Meme police. making sure you get a message that can’t get out of your head.

The problem of course with pushing and establishing a meme is that even if you build a meme that appears solid, even if you show the straight sides, the right shape, a meme that has everything the message you want to sell should have, every once in a while reality turns the card on its side/a>.

George Zimmerman, the man whose acquittal on murder and manslaughter charges in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin set off a wave of protests across the nation, helped rescue a family from an overturned SUV four days after the verdict, the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement Monday.

The statement said that on Wednesday, at approximately 5:45 p.m. ET, the sheriff’s office responded to a single car accident at an intersection in the Sanford, Fla., area not far from where Zimmerman, 29, shot Trayvon, 17, in February 2012. The statement said a blue Ford Explorer had run off the road and rolled over with a family of four inside.

Now normally if you have facts that are inconvenient to your meme or your narrative such as say, the slaughter of young black men by other young black men, you can hide it or ignore it.

But once a Zimmerman is thrust into public view, suddenly everything he does becomes news. News that can’t be ignored by places like Good morning America:

and the today show

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

that is the target audience for your meme.

And why couldn’t they ignore it, because the story was already out on facebook and all over the net so much so that my wife already knew about it before I could tell her.

You can spin such a story but you can’t ignore it and if you’re very unlucky you might end up with a follow-up story that makes your meme look worse:

The family rescued from a car accident by George Zimmerman, days after he was cleared of wrongdoing in the fatal shooting of unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin, canceled plans to thank him publicly because they fear being linked to someone reviled by many Americans, Zimmerman’s lawyer said on Wednesday.

“The family, who really wanted to thank George for doing what he did publicly … realized that in any way connecting yourself with George Zimmerman is right now very toxic,” Mark O’Mara, Zimmerman’s lead attorney, told CNN.

The George Zimmerman as an evil racist killer meme might be a most comfortable lie for the most loyal members of the Obama team, but for the public in general it is in real trouble