The Silliest Take of the Week: 8/4/2019

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Welcome back to The Silliest Take of the Week Project, my weekly attempt to stave off the existential horror of everyday existence by mocking bad writing on the Internet.

For those of you who are new here, here’s a general description of the project, and you can click here for the STOW Archive!

A Double Whammy from Erick, Son of Erick

Erick Erickson, A TweetTwitter, 7/30/2019; and Erick Erickson, “Donald Trump Has More Humility Than Pete Buttigieg,” The Resurgent, 7/31/2019

Erick Erickson has haunted these halls before, and will likely do so again. Erickson is a conservative evangelical blogger and one-time CNN contributor who once refused to support Donald Trump, until all those mean Democrats left him no choice but to abandon his principles (with a heavy heart, no doubt; with much soul-searching, no doubt) earlier this year. Now, he’s mostly mad at Mayor Pete Buttigieg, one of the bajillion people who is running for the Democratic nomination at the moment. Mayor Pete is openly gay, and is also openly Christian. This really affronts Erick Erickson, who occasionally vents these frustrations by saying things like this:

After we’ve stopped rolling our eyes, we might just take this for the usual internecine denominational warfare that, though desperately boring, is fairly commonplace in American Christianity. Yet a day later, he dashed off a quick blog post on his website (The Resurgent) where he said, uh:

Even I am shocked that I would talk about President Trump and humility, but in this one regard he actually does exercise more humility than Pete Buttigieg.

President Trump has said more than once he has never felt the need to repent for anything. That raises questions about his salvation that I have explored in the past and also why I continue to think evangelicals who constantly cheer everything he does are doing his soul harm.

Pete Buttigieg is a practicing homosexual who willfully refuses to recognize Holy Scripture identifies that as a sin. He will not repent either. Not only that, but Buttigieg is also okay twisting scripture to justify abortion.

There is a big difference, however, between these two unrepentant sinners. Donald Trump does not lecture Christians about their faith and Buttigieg has made it a central part of his campaign.

So yes, in that regard, President Trump has more humility than Buttigieg.

(That’s the entire post, for the record).

I don’t think Donald “Two Corinthians” Trump declines to “lecture Christians about their faith,” out of an overabundance of humility. I suspect it’s because he could be easily convinced that Habakkuk is a kind of sandwich. I would pay very good money to watch Donald Trump try to explain, in even the simplest terms, any single phrase in the Nicene Creed. I would like to ask Donald Trump about what kind of airplane Pontius Pilate liked to fly.

This isn’t the Silliest Take of the Week because once I stopped laughing about the idea that anybody could parse President Trump as humble about anything, I got pretty depressed.

The Silliest Take of the Week: 7/28/2019-8/3/2019. Or: Dora and the Lost City of Yikes

Todd McCarthy, “‘Dora and the Lost City of Gold’: Film Review,” The Hollywood Reporter, 7/28/2019.

A Dora the Explorer live action movie came out the other day, and this writer was tasked to review it. He didn’t like the movie very much. He thought it was childish, and that there were never really any stakes, and that all the peril was manufactured and likely unimpressive even to children. I haven’t seen Dora and the Lost City of Gold, and I’m unlikely to, but that makes sense to me. I’m willing to bet that Dora and the Lost City of Gold is not a very good movie.

But throughout his review, there are some weird lines. We are told that “Dora’s grown up a bit . . . but the audience will remain largely hormone-free.” McCarthy says the movie is “sanitized” and “squeaky clean.” He notes that the filmmakers chose not to have Dora and company be played by 8-year-olds, but rather to “[up] the ages of its protagonists to a more hormonal demographic.” The actress playing Dora (16, in the movie’s canon) is “actually 18 and looks it.”

It all falls into place once we get to the last few sentences, and with a dawning surprise, we all realize the nature of McCarthy’s real problem with Dora and the Lost City of Gold.

There’s a palpable gap you can’t help but notice between the essentially innocent, borderline-pubescent nature of the leading characters and the film itself, and the more confident and mature vibes emanating from the leading actors. The director seems to be trying to keep the hormones at bay, but there are some things you just can’t disguise, perhaps human nature first and foremost. Dora seems committed to projecting a pre-sexualized version of youth, while throbbing unacknowledged beneath the surface is something a bit more real, its presence rigorously ignored. To be believed, this story should have been set in 1955.

That’s right, friends. The problem with Dora and the Lost City of Gold is that it’s just not sufficiently horny.

That’s it for this week, folks! I had a few others lined up, but they mostly just made me angry. Please keep sending me the Silliest Takes you find, to sillytakes@gmail.com! Have a good week, and I’ll see you next time!

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