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Internet Insider – New National Symbol of Hate

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Michael Pochron – Editor

More stories from Michael Pochron

A Final Farewell
May 24, 2017

“Pepe the Frog” has been officially named a national symbol of hate.

Pepe is usually depicted as squinty eyed with wide, red lips pressed together in sort of a grin. This frog was originally created in 2005 in an online cartoon called “Boy’s Club” that was made by Matt Furie.  

The image of Pepe the Frog is now being used in a way that is different from it’s creators intent.  In joke form, Pepe can be found all accost various message boards and websites such as Reddit, Tumblr, 4Chan and 8Chan.

Recently this joke has been misused by involving itself with the politician Donald J. Trump by taking the frog and Trump and meshing them such as having the frog with a blonde toupee giving a speech at a podium. but in Trump’s case, any attention is good attention and he took advantage of this and embraced the joke. However the media really took notice when Donald Trump Jr. posted a photo on Instagram that was mocking Hillary Clinton’s speech about “You can put half of Trump supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables.” The picture that Trump Jr. posted was of Trump and his allies, including Pepe, lined up as the cast of “The Expendables” but with the title changed to “The Deplorables.”

After the media found out about Pepe, so did everyone else including the Anti-Defamation League. Now this is most recent addition to the ADL’s Hate on Display list and is labeled as a national symbol of hate categorizing the frog with other symbols such as the swastika, burning cross and even the Confederate Flag.

This recent addition to the Hate on Display list has caused a widespread wave of shock and terror to many Internet users, myself included. In my personal opinion I believe that Pepe should not belong on the Hate on Display list. Even though Pepe is an example of the internet’s darker side,  it is not directly harming or attacking anyone and is supposed to be taken light heartedly rather than seriously. I also believe that comics or anything on the internet should be protected by the creator to help prevent anything else be warped and twisted to the level that Pepe has been.

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