International Forecaster Weekly


I don’t know if it’s the chemicals from the contrails, or the fluoride in our water, or what, but there’s a level of bizarre raging across our nation the likes of I could never have dreamed.

Bob Rinear | September 12, 2020

We live in very convoluted times. On a week where the entire country should be screaming for the truth to finally come out about what 9/11 was really about, and who pulled off that horrible tragedy, what are people really concerned about? Dots. Periods. Seriously, read on…

One thing about Americans is that they have a fascination with outdoing, or “besting” the next guy. If you’re a daredevil that just leaped your bicycle over two cars, someone will do three. If you make your comedy by using foul language, someone else will take it to the extreme to where every word is a cuss.

Nothing exemplifies that notion more than the current state of “wokeness.” So, what exactly is woke? Well that’s a damn good question, since everyone tries to outwoke the next guy. So, let’s see what the street has to say about it:

Woke, as a political term of African American origin, refers to a perceived awareness of issues concerning social justice and racial justice. It derives from the African-American Vernacular English expression "stay woke", whose grammatical aspect refers to a continuing awareness of these issues

Franky I like this explanation better: Like “politically correct” before it, the word “woke” has come to connote the opposite of what it means. Technically, going by the Merriam-Webster dictionary’s definition, woke means “aware of and actively attentive to important facts and issues (especially issues of racial and social justice)”, but today we are more likely to see it being used as a stick with which to beat people who aspire to such values, often wielded by those who don’t recognise how un-woke they are, or are proud of the fact.

I like that one, because I’m very proud of the fact that I’m not woke. You won’t see me kneeling during the national anthem. You won’t see me raising a fist and chanting for BLM. You won’t see me protesting for the rights of transvestites to read storybook hour to kindergarten kids. Nope, I’m simply not woke.

So you can imagine my amusement on Saturday when I was driving to the farm market. Now, if you want an example of extreme woke, simply tune into NPR radio, and you’ll get exposed to more woke than you can handle. Those folks ( according to them) have the high road on everything. They know how you should act, speak, lean politically, you name it. Oh and by the way, Trump has never been right, or done the right thing. Ever. Not once. He’s so bad, he’s never even done something right by accident. Just sayin…

Well, on Saturday mornings, unless there’s something big going on, I do the grocery shopping. Especially true over the past year, since the wife had her cancer surgery and all those rounds of Chemo and radiation. Even before covid, my job was to keep her from contacting any bug that could really knock her out, because her immune system was so compromised.

As crazy as it would sound, I like to listen to NPR. No, really. I truly like to get an insight on what the left really believes, so I can try and understand some of their bizarre ideas. Since I started listening to them about 6 months or so ago, there’s probably been about 500 times where I had to shake my head and wonder if I just heard what I heard, or maybe it was some form of esoteric comedy that I simply don’t get.

So, I hop in the car early Saturday, and the conversation is about periods. Not those monthly annoyances that females have to contend with, no…we’re talking the little dot at the end of a sentence. Evidently if you’re really good at being woke, if someone sends you a text and uses a period at the end of their statement, it’s a micro aggression to you. It upsets you. It sounds harsh to you.

I really had to check my sanity with a dip stick. Was what I was hearing, real? A comedy of sorts? What the heck???? But yes, it was quite real. In fact that same day, NPR did an article about how horrible non woke people are for using that little dot. Check it out…

Katherine Rooks remembers when she first learned that a punctuation mark could wield a lot of power.

The Denver-based writer had sent her high school-aged son a text message about logistics — coming home from school.

"I could tell from his response that he was agitated all of a sudden in our thread. And when he came home, he walked in the door and he came over and he said, 'What did you mean by this?' "

Rooks was confused. How could an innocuous text message send confusion?

"And so we looked at the text together and I said, 'Well, I meant, see you later, or something. I don't remember exactly what it said.' And he said, 'But you ended with a period! I thought you were really angry!' "

Rooks wasn't angry, and she explained to her son that, well, periods are how you end a sentence.

But in text messaging — at least for younger adults — periods do more than just end a sentence: they also can set a tone.

Gretchen McCulloch, a linguist and author of the book Because Internet: Understanding the New Rules of Language, told NPR's All Things Considered last year that when it comes to text messaging, the period has lost its original purpose because rather needing a symbol to indicate the end of a sentence, you can simply hit send on your message.

That doesn't mean the period has lost all purpose in text messaging. Now it can be used to indicate seriousness or a sense of finality.

But caution is needed, said McCulloch, noting that problems can start to arise when you combine a period with a positive sentiment, such as "Sure" or "Sounds good."

"Now you've got positive words and serious punctuation and the clash between them is what creates that sense of passive-aggression," said McCulloch.

Binghamton University psychology professor Celia Klin says a period can inadvertently set a tone, because while text messaging may function like speech, it lacks many of the expressive features of face-to-face verbal communication, like "facial expressions, tone of voice, our ability to elongate words, to say some things louder, to pause."

Our language has evolved, and "what we have done with our incredible linguistic genius is found ways to insert that kind of emotional, interpersonal information into texting using what we have," said Klin. "And what we have is things like periods, emoticons, other kinds of punctuation. So people have repurposed the period to mean something else."

And that something else is passive-aggression.

A 2015 study conducted by Klin confirmed as much. Researchers asked undergraduates to evaluate a text exchange that included an innocent question and the answer "Yup." Some saw "Yup" with a period and some saw the word without.

"And we found consistently through many experiments that 'Yup' with a period resulted in responses that were more negative. So people thought 'Yup' with a period was less friendly, less sincere, and so on."

"I actually really don't like getting text messages that end in periods because it always feels so harsh and passive-aggressive," said Juan Abenante Rincon, 24, a social media manager for Adidas. "Like, are you mad? What's going on? Like, did I do something wrong?"

Emma Gometz, a biology student at Columbia University, said the phenomenon can feel especially harsh when the message is brief, like a lone word followed by a period.

"If it's like 'OK.', that's like, 'I don't want to talk to you anymore,'" said Gometz, 21.

Kalina Newman, 23, a communications coordinator for the AFL-CIO, said, "It's in the same vein of somebody saying, 'We need to talk,' and then not saying what they want to talk about."

In other words, enough to send a chill down anyone's spine.

One thing about the left, they’re never short of ever more trivial things to be offended about. They’ll go out of their way and do headstands if it helps them find some new ‘micro-aggression” to whine about.

How about you? If I texted you the word okay and then put a period at the end, would you fret the rest of the day that there was aggression there? Would you be searching for the deeper meaning that I was trying to convey? Would you burn up excess mental energy trying to find out what could possibly be wrong? Or would you say “Bob said yeah” and move on with your day? Yeah, mee too.

But I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. The world of the woke never cease to amaze me. Just today I learned about a workshop taking place. Lululemon is holding a workshop to "decolonize gender" and "resist capitalism".

I am happy to admit that I’m so unwoke that I don’t even know what decolonize gender could possibly mean. I also find it obtusively ironic that LULU sells yoga stretch pants that probably cost 3 bucks, for 128 dollars, but they wish to resist capitalism?

Woke is political correctness on crack and meth. Every news outlet has what they refer to as a style guide that everyone has to follow. It’s the outlines of how people should talk when addressing things. Forbes has a 47 page guide. The first 3 pages are wokenbabble about inclusiveness. In it they do all manner of linguistic gymnastics to explain how you’re supposed to refer to different populations of people. Black people should be capitalized. White people are lower case. Use gender-neutral pronouns like “they” or “ze” instead of she or he. When writing about LGBTQ using a + includes all other nonhetero/cis-normative identities…

I liked it when life was easier. Periods never bugged me. I’ve never wanted or even thought I needed to decolonize gender. The idea of “cultural appropriation” as being an offense, seems over and above the realm of normal brain function.

Remember Kooks Burritos? Two women that went to Mexico on a holiday, had a tremendous experience eating these wonderful lobster burritos. So when they got back to Portland, they opened a burrito shop to sell these wonderful taste treats.

Not long after word got out that two white women were selling Mexican food, social media exploded! Close to 2,000 comments flooded their reviews and woketards started showing up with signs and bullhorns accusing them of “cultural appropriation”. They believed that white women shouldn’t be allowed to sell Mexican food.

Soon after the story went viral thought-pieces started popping up in publications like the Daily mail and The Washington Post, causing even more woketards to converge upon this tiny burrito shops doorstep. Those who accused Kooks Burritos of the ultimate sin of “cultural appropriation” went on to state they were “peeking through every window & every kitchen” to find white people using recipes that don’t belong to them.

Shortly thereafter, Kooks Burritos quietly closed its doors and said they had received dozens of death threats. (Keep in mind these are the people who level charges of “Fascism” in every breath)

And so it is. I don’t know if it’s the chemicals from the contrails, or the fluoride in our water, or what, but there’s a level of bizarre raging across our nation the likes of I could never have dreamed. Getting upset over a period. We’re doomed. Just sayin…