Laughing At War

David Ramirez, Feature Editor

So far, 2020 has given us: The Corona Virus. Australia’s wildfires. The WWIII memes. Our president’s impeachment. Perhaps our generation has dealt with enough of the world’s current darkness, so to no surprise, the WWIII memes have taken the media by storm; Grinding out a multitude of voices and differing opinions. Another quick disaster in the history of 2020.

WWIII is a vast subject, so for that reason, the memes have cultivated many likes, retweets and some of the most complex comments on the internet. To the audience, it could just be a meme that removes some tension and worries off our shoulders.

“It’s controversial because a lot of people are making jokes about them, and then other people are [taking] them more serious than they should be,” senior Collin Mavrinac said.

But others have disagreed, feeling this meme is insensitive to our soldiers and, of course, war.

“[The memes] made me realize how some people are messed up and [don’t] care about others that are in the army,” sophomore Jazmin Martinez said. “The [soldiers] are the ones going to war and are the ones [that have] to take risks.”

The danger that may occur is blurred to us. Behind a phone, many scenarios seem so surreal, so either we take it and make jokes, or fear it.

“We’re in a very safe position that we don’t have to [care] about what happens in reality,” Mavrinac said.

Those who made memes about it got their 15 seconds of fame because so many people of our generation can’t grasp that this as actually happening, ergo the ones who fearfully speak on this topic will most likely be unheard.

“On the news, it feels so far away, but when people make memes out of it affecting them, it makes [me question] what if this will happen to me,” Bamford said.

“I’ve got bigger priorities like school, I don’t want to worry about the end of the world,” Mavrinac said.

Our avenue to technology allows us to produce these memes, but so do our mindsets. Our generation’s news is filled with the nit and gritty quotidian. Propaganda exists but is not as powerful in our state as it once was. Now we have opinions. We have our individual thoughts present on the internet. Youthful brains now have access to all these opinions, these dark subjects, perhaps it’s just become too much that our solution is to laugh at a grim reality.

“People are not [happy] with what’s going on in the world, and I think that is affecting our mindset. It’s easier to make jokes [about] it to express how unsure [we] are on what’s going on,” Bamford said.

While some understand the humor these memes bring to the table, a lot of people will disagree. For some, it’s not taking their chill pill before engaging on the internet; instead, people analyze it differently and grasp the darkness more than they do the humor.

“The jokes about the girls [wanting to cook] to not be drafted bothered me because it’s so hypocritical, which I get is the [irony], but it’s taking a lot of steps back. That [meme] unsettled me the most,” Bamford said.

“It doesn’t show affection to those [who] are going to war and those who would be affected [by the loss],” Martinez said.

Is something like this genuinely affecting us? If it is, why are we making it a one-second twitter moment? While it is excellent to use platforms to speak about these things, more outlets can help bring more eyes to it. But how can we when our eyes are now looking away?

The memes have undoubtedly died down; they’re fading right on cue as our generation decided it to. We laughed at war for a multitude of intricate reasons, and we also called it out for going too far. But now it’s time for the new disaster of the month so we can harp on it and forget about it.

“It was [massive] but then lost momentum,” Bamford said. “I’m not sure if it’s because the idea of war is unsettling or if we’re just bored of it.”