comScore George Carlin Is Trending Because 2020 | The Mary Sue

George Carlin Is Trending Because 2020

George Carlin in Dogma

The late, great comedian George Carlin is trending on Twitter because of a question about who would best handle 2020’s bonkers story and “light it up.” George Carlin is the correct answer.

The brilliant, uncompromising, always-astonishing Carlin passed in 2008. He never saw the Trump era, but he sure as hell lambasted its ilk for decades, and he would’ve had the kind of withering/hilarious commentary that we need to make sense out of a senseless President and a senseless year.

To prove it, Carlin fans have been tweeting old clips and quotes from his bits that demonstrate the more America changes, the more it stays the same—and why we need deftly outspoken critics like Carlin, who could make us look at the stark realities of the world that we are living in.

Carlin started trending in response to the question, “Pick one stand up comedian, past or present, who would take the 2020 story and light it up.”

(George Carlin followed by that other late, great comedian and social commentator Bill Hicks, another favorite of mine, is the doubly correct answer. We will also accept Lenny Bruce.)

Carlin was the answer on many people’s Twitter tongues, and several people took the opportunity to post this video of Carlin riffing on how America works, circa 2005, mashed up with our current-day political problems:

“Say what you want about America, land of the free, home of the brave … we got some dumb ass motherfuckers floating around this country,” Carlin says, as though anticipating the rise of QAnon. “Dumb ass motherfuckers.”

And why is this observation more relevant than ever? Carlin continues:

“The politicians are put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don’t. You have no choice. You have owners. They own you. They own everything. They own all the important land. They own and control the corporations. They’ve long since bought and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state houses, and city halls. They got the judges in their back pocket. And they own all the big media companies so they control just about all of the news and information you get to hear …

But I’ll tell you what they don’t want. They don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that. That doesn’t help them. That’s against their interests. It’s a big club and you ain’t in it. By the way, it’s the same big club they use to beat you over the head all day long.”

Sound familiar? Remind you of the dire straits of any current-day nation?

And because various ideologies like to try and lay claim to Carlin as one of their own now, back when the mash-up video initially went viral in July, Carlin’s daughter Kelly posted on Twitter to clarify exactly what her father stood for.

This wasn’t the first time Kelly spoke out about her father’s truths.

Other fans were quick to showcase Carlin moments that perfectly call out the hypocrisies that run rampant in America and society at large.

And now we go to God Himself to weigh in with the last word:

(image: Lions Gate Films)

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Kaila is a lifelong New Yorker. She's written for io9, Gizmodo, New York Magazine, The Awl, Wired, Cosmopolitan, and once published a Harlequin novel you'll never find.