Of all the wonderful gifts the internet has bestowed upon humanity, there is perhaps none more precious to me than the now famous Crying Jordan meme. After Michael Jordan's tearful Hall of Fame induction speech, an image of him in tears took on the secondary purpose of being photoshopped onto anyone the internet wanted to portray as being sad or upset about pretty much anything. The creativity of some of the memes is nearly unmatched, leading to it becoming so popular that then President Obama brought it up when giving Jordan the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In other words, as far as internet memes go, the crying Jordan meme is nearly as prolific and celebrated as the basketball career of Jordan itself.
Which is why it's somewhat odd that the loser of a local township committee election went completely bonkers when he himself got "crying Jordan'd."
Cinnaminson (N.J.) mayor Anthony Minniti lost his bid for re-election to the township committee Tuesday when a retired police sergeant defeated him in the Republican primary. When a Facebook user Crying Jordan’d Minniti’s campaign flyer and posted the image to the Cinnaminson Friends & Neighbors page, well, the mayor got real mad:
“Obviously, I’m disgusted by this post, but sadly not surprised,” Minniti said about what he described as the “inflammatory, outrageous rhetoric” of the Facebook page. “It was only a matter of time before someone took this moblike behavior too far, and this is definitely too far,” he said. “Hate has no place in Cinnaminson, and this needs to be treated with the seriousness it warrants.”
In other communications, Minniti has suggested not just that the meme is an output of some demonic hate-engine, but that it's racist. Why? Because the Jordan meme is barely known in common circles and its true purpose is to put white people in "blackface." Yeah, seriously.
Portraying any white person in blackface is racist and unacceptable. There’s no question about that,” he said. “If this was such a well-known meme and this is something everybody knows about, why did the Facebook administrator pull it down? It was flagged as racist by others. It was taken down because it was racist, or deemed racist by the administrator.
We'll do the easy part of this first: the crying Jordan meme is most certainly not racist. Jordan himself has noticed the meme and has reportedly received it with somewhere between a shrug and mild annoyance. Also, I'm fairly certain our first ever black President would not toss around jokes about a racist meme while celebrating an African American award recipient. In addition to all of that: shut up, it's not racist. It's just not.
But it's worth noting that this is a story about a person who lost a mayoral election at the primary stage in a small town in New Jersey. I'm not certain how many people would be aware of the story at all, nor would they have seen the following meme in question, had Minniti not chosen to throw his shit fit about it all. But I'm fairly certain that answer could be stated as "less", with so much media coverage over Minniti Streisanding this into the mainstream.
Anger about being the subject of a meme that then makes that meme go viral is not anger well spent.