As I have written before, I hate the words narrative and meme. I hate those words because they’re lazy: people unconcerned with reality — especially those in the media — tend to absolve themselves of intellectual nonfeasance with fealty to the narrative and the meme.
As much as I hate these words, I must use them here. There is a narrative developing about the incarceration of Kim Davis — a meme. It goes like this: Kim Davis, because she was jailed by a federal judge, has become a martyr for the cause of mythological literalism.
But martyrdom is a wildly narcissistic creature. There can be no martyrdom without the klieg lights: a martyr with no audience is just a rube. And to want such an audience — for such a self-centered display of “selflessness” — one must be consumed with affection for one’s self. Martyrdom is the ultimate triumph of id over ego.
Nothing can ruin a good run at martyrdom like being made a fool. One of the sharpest arrows in the warrior’s quiver is mockery. When a would-be martyr is nothing more than the butt of a joke, a pathetic punchline, it becomes rather unimaginable that her sacrifice should supply her narcissistic appetites. Being laughed at is not any narcissist’s aim.
That is why I praise Heaven for this image:
Think what anyone would think while beholding this: a loser; a degenerate; a swollen bottom dweller; a joke. And who put this pitiful creature there? That’s right: the gays.
This self-appointed vicar of Christ was dragged this low by those she herself thought to be the lowest kind of life. Who is on the bottom of whose shoe now?