How I Got Thrown Out Of The Michiganders Against Excessive Quarantine Facebook Group: A Short Story

If you read my last post, you know I’ve taken issue with some of the protests which have popped up around various state capitals. Fun story: In writing that last sentence, I almost wrote, “protests which pooped up”, which was horrible spelling but also funny and accidentally accurate.

A lot of that anger came from an incident on Friday when my friend, the fantastic comedian Aimee Blaze, pointed out a group being led by a real doofus who wanted to plan a protest in the town of Ottawa, Illinois. How many people reside in Ottawa? Around 18,000. How many people did this group want to descend on the town? 100,000.

That seemed a little excessive.

I had so many questions. Why choose Ottawa as your protest site? What would you do if the police came? What were group members thoughts about the new Fiona Apple album? I immediately joined the Facebook group that was planning this and began posting queries. Much to my surprise and joy, dozens of other comedians also joined and within a few hours, we had taken over the site for a nonstop assault of silliness.

Within a few hours, almost all of us were thrown out of the group and our messages were deleted. Crazy enough, I was able to rejoin the group, but after one post was again removed and permanently blocked. It felt… pretty good. Look, I am all about using humor as a healing tool and a way to distract people from the medical nightmare that we’re currently living in. I am, however, also about using my humor to smack down people who are doing things I find harmful and dangerous.

I would like to say that this was my last experience. But, of course it wasn’t. It only fueled by bloodlust.

When you’re a comedian, you’re Facebook friends with a lot of other comedians. Being Facebook friends is a weird thing. Some of these people I’ve never met. Some of these people I don’t find very good comedians. Some of these people I aggressively dislike. Why am I still Facebook friends with them? My therapist wants to know the same thing.

On Wednesday, a Michigan comedian posted about a group called Michiganders Against Excessive Quarantine. They were, apparently, behind the protest which took place last week and are filled with a lot of people spreading some really unhealthy and dangerous ideas. So, of course I joined the group. But, Wednesday was a busy day. I celebrated my son’s birthday, watched Survivor with my wife, and then recorded a podcast.

After taking the dog for a walk, I opened up my Facebook and saw my timeline was filled with a whole bunch of crazy talk from Wolverine Staters. I wondered how many posts it would take from me to get booted from the group.

It took three posts before I was blocked.

So, what exactly did I post?

To preface, I want to say that I hadn’t thought about blogging about this while I was posting, which means I didn’t get any screenshots. So, I apologize for not having proof of my mayhem, but you’re just going to have to take my word for it.

So, here were the posts:

  • In a comment to a thread, someone posted a meme with George Washington saying “He who feeds you controls you.” That felt wrong to me, so I researched the quote and found that it wasn’t George Washington who said that quote, it was Thomas Sankara. If you don’t know who that is, don’t worry. I didn’t either. Sankara was the president of Burkina Faso from 1983-1987, and was a Marxist-Leninist revolutionary who is often referred to as “Africa’s Che Guevara”. I made a comment explaining the history and pointing out that this amazing quote was really that of a Marxist and not of a founding father.
  • I made a post asking this question: “Suppose we were able to create a machine which could, with 100% certainty, tell us who a person contracted COVID-19 from and we were able to see that someone got the coronavirus from a person who attended one of these stupid protest rallies. Should we be allowed to charge these people with a crime? Like, maybe not murder, but definitely manslaughter, right?”
  • Ok, this was the silliest one of all of them, and also my favorite. A person made this long-winded anti-stay at home post, which is obviously par for the course for this kind of group. Where this woman stood out, however, was that her profile picture was framed with a sign that said, “Stay home. Save lives.” So clearly, this wingbat believed that the right thing to do, at least for a while, was to stay home. At one point, she was a Michigander IN FAVOR of excessive quarantine. I simply pointed out what her frame said. Her reply was removing the frame and a simple, “Fuck you.”

All three posts came within the span of, at most, three minutes. Then, I was blocked.

Was I going too far? I dunno. Maybe.

But, at some point, we all need to vent. We’re all powder kegs waiting to blow, and if there’s anything we can do to open up the pressure valve and let some steam out, then it’s probably for the best. And, honestly, I hope everyone is safe, from those who are fighting hard to get people to stay in and be safe to even the most extreme Michiganders against excessive quaratine.

We’re still all in this together. I promise to start acting like it.

Well, for now, at least.

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