The Assassinator

For all of human history, it had been the scholars, the intellectuals, and the literate who were at the opposite end of the sword and the rifle, or inside the cellars, hiding, and in the jail cells, rotting, when a new leader, group, or government came to power, having first usurped it without provocation, without need, and without support. The scholars were a quiet group, expressing their disdain only through that polite medium of literature, wherein their loud exclamations and asides occupied the pages of pamphlets secretly disseminated within alleyways and produce carriages. The intellectuals labored in ideas and context, always aware of the greater implications surrounding each new movement or conquering ogre that sprung upon the stage of present times—they, too, were a quiet lot, though their adoption of pseudonyms allowed them a greater presence and visibility within the public sphere, as they regularly published treasonous works for general consumption. It was up to the literate, the messengers, to rise above the square, to shout over the cabbage peddlers and tobacco exporters, the wife-seekers and women-sellers, and read to them the new treaty, or the new manifesto, or the new declaration that condemned the brutes who now declared themselves rulers.

The ruling brutes, of course, would not stand for this. And so, they persecuted these scribes, these slaves to intellectual service, and killed them in every imaginable way possible, reveling, always, in their own brutality—indeed, for it would serve as a message to any future insurgent—and breathing in relief.

At some point, however—historians thought it better to declare the exact date unknown—the scholars and the intellectuals and the literate decided to let go their passivity and prepared themselves for the next attack they knew would eventually come, when the next despot or dictator blamed the scholar for moral depravity, the intellectual for social ills, and the literate for spreading lies. Meeting in secret, the scholars and intellectuals and literate came together to find a way to reverse their present misery, remembering that misery had plagued all of their ancestors. They sent a machine back through time to commit the same acts of violence so often committed against them, knowing that it was too late for irony; no, this was an act of justice—the brutes would not hide behind the call for dialogue and civility now—and this machine would target the personalities that time after time proved inimical to the continued existence of scholars, intellectuals, and literate alike. They sent back a machine that would protect their future existence, whose only purpose was to eliminate the demagogues, the beguiling personalities, and the influential idiots—those were the most dangerous, for their audience persisted in their dedicated viewership, despite the barbarities extolled from their screens. The Audience possessed a rapidly deteriorating intellect caused by the constant presentation of opinions cleverly, dangerously, disguised as facts and as true—truth in the absolute.

“Thinking,” the influential idiots argued, “is for the enemies of this great nation. We do the thinking for you. We work very hard and put in many hours to present you the truth about this country, the harsh truth, undiluted, untampered, and un-biased, because the truth has no bias, and because you are smart enough and adult enough to see it for what it truly is.”

The Audience, being affirmed in their intelligence and patriotism, swarmed towards these characters who spoke quickly and jumped from one provocation to another, who interjected themselves with the mention of rapes and murders, of riots and drug addiction, ever repeating these words to maintain The Audience’s attention, further reinforcing their granted maturity and inculcating oft-repeated, and therefore important, buzzwords. Topics like these, after all, were only for adults. This nation, the influential idiots would say, was going to Hell, but banks are blameless; every pillar of society, they would lament, was quickly crumbling because the poor refused to work; everyone was out to get us, they would warn, because they’re jealous of our freedom, of our Christian God, of our prosperity. The Muslims want to destroy this country; the Jews want to control what you think; the Asians want to sell us to China; the Mexicans want to take our jobs; the blacks can’t help but commit crime.

“Say it with me, once, twice, three times again,” they would instruct. “And tomorrow we’ll review.” And review they did.

It was for this reason that the scholars, intellectuals, and literate sent back this machine—the amount of absurdity propagated through mainstream means had reached unbelievable heights. They sent their brutal savior: The Assassinator.

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