Listen, I love to hate Amanda Palmer. She bugs the shit out of me, but I’m morbidly fascinated by her lunacy. I do enjoy a very small handful of her songs. (Mostly it’s all whiny political bullshit and hey abortion is self care so suck it, which is not OK with me.) I’ve used a lyric or two in a photo caption. I even shot a self portrait for the Three Women Project that was a reinterpretation of one of her photos, though it was meant to be humorous (and I kind of got in a dig in the description). Plus I like the occasional Neil Gaiman photos, because despite his loony politics, I’m still a fan of his work. But she puts herself out there, with what I feel like is an open invitation for people to criticize her. I genuinely think she feels like it’s a win when people attack her.
This is less an attack and more of a wildly incredulous WTF is wrong with you people?
I’ve been thinking about this post for days and I’m still pissed off about it. I read it Saturday and immediately sent it to my Ali and ranted about it and ranted about this mindset and thought that my usual routine of sharing with my closest and ranting for a bit would get it out of my system. But it didn’t. I’m still utterly flabbergasted that this is the way her evening went down, if this is indeed a factual representation of events.
Done reading it yet? Great. Please tell me I’m wrong in thinking that …
THERE ARE SO MANY WAYS that this problem could have been solved that did not include “sit around and tweet my despair for six hours waiting for an ambulance to arrive in a major metropolitan city.”
For instance: Put her in a car and drive her to A&E yourselves. (That’s what they call the ER over there in the monarchy, but just always makes me think of the cable channel on which I used to watch City Confidential.) No car? Call a taxi. Tag an Uber or Lyft. Take a bus. (You moved her so she’d be more comfortable, so clearly you weren’t that concerned about damaging her further.)
Or how about this? You spend your entire career crowdsourcing everything from props to places to play to places to stay. Why not instead of tweeting your despair, tweet a request for an EMT? Surely someone who is qualified could have been found. Call a private ambulance service – you most certainly have the money for it.
Failing all of that, stick her in a bloody wagon and walk her to Emergency.
But you didn’t do any of those things.
Instead, you bragged about treating them to a lovely meal, you bragged about trying to keep her spirits up with song, you only went to bed when they insisted on it. And you all just sat around waiting for someone else to come along and solve your problem for you, while you blamed conservatives for your woes and managed to turn this into a metaphor for America. Bet you still think socialism is the tits though, don’t you? How long do you think you’d have to wait for an ambulance in the U.S.? (From my Googling, it looks like the national average is around 14 minutes. Granted that’s subject to vary depending on location. 14 minutes. Not 6 hours.) What if she were having a fucking heart attack? You’d just sit there and watch her die, I guess. Because Tories.
But this just exemplifies for me everything I hate about progressivism: You won’t get off your ass and fix the problem. You fully expect someone else to do it for you. Tory cuts? Where do you think the money comes from? It’s like Margaret Thatcher said – (and obviously I’m paraphrasing) eventually you’ll run out of other people’s money. There’s no excuse for making that poor woman wait 6 fucking hours for an ambulance. You should have acted.
OK, I’m done now. It just makes me so angry. “If you can, you must” my ass. You tell this big tale of woe to say that help is not on the way, and yet, you still did nothing to help. You could have been the help. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe there’s more to the story that she didn’t share. I don’t know. I wasn’t there, obviously. I would never have been invited. I can only go on what she chose to share with the world. And what she chose to share with the world is absurd. It could have been a post to say “I realize I should have been the help. I wish I had acted in this way.” But it wasn’t. It was a post to say America is doomed. Because Tories. Because conservatives. Because someone should be solving these problems for us.
I have no patience for that.
Mr. Rogers said look to the helpers. How about you just be a helper?
Also? That’s not how you use excoriating. Just FYI.