I am seeing the “They Live” meme being hucked out there like no one’s business recently, and I find it odd. If you aren’t aware of it, it takes the form of two pictures side by side one in color that looks “normal” and the other in black and white depicting a horrible alien or subliminal message being thrust into the brain of people who see it without the sunglasses. This is how the sunglasses in “They Live” the movie made in 1988 work.  Now as it is an easy way to take a jab at someone who says something you don’t like, it is good to mention that the specific alien race in that movie was trying to make all of the humans complicit in their highly  policed world. They Live is a social commentary on Reaganomics and how we are subliminally made to consume, reproduce, obey etc.

People have been comparing their opposing views to the aliens from They Live since right after the movie came out. Here is the thing, everyone thinks they are the protagonist of the story so sometimes they think it is up to them to be the one out in front, like they should be the example that everyone follows and this is exactly why we are where we are at this moment. You can call it what you want but to me it feels like some people want to look good in other people’s eyes so they go out of their way and go further into the extremes to show how good of a person they think they are to everyone else. Not everyone can smell a disingenuous person, but there are a lot of them out there and many can be manipulative. Why am I going on and on about this? Because there is a civil war happening within a civil war right next to another civil war within a civil war if you couldn’t see. I am watching two parties erode themselves from the inside because they can’t agree on anything. Meanwhile each little faction fighting each other are having circle jerk parties over what good people they are.

There is a scene in this movie where the two main protagonists duke it out in an alley because one is trying to convince the other that there are in fact aliens who are intentionally turning us against each other and making us consume not only literally and figuratively with money but also into political garbage.  Nada (Roddy Piper),tries to put the sunglasses on Frank (Keith David), and Frank tries to stop him but eventually the glasses get put on his face and he sees the world for what it is. Now imagine that scene, except after Frank puts the sunglasses on, Nada continues to punch him over and over again for the rest of the movie because he think Frank still doesn’t get it. This is what is happening and it isn’t constructive.

I understand that not everyone knows how to work as a team, but it isn’t up to the people who know how to work as a team to try and understand where the people who can’t are coming from. If you don’t know how to work with a team it doesn’t mean you are a natural leader, it means you NEED TO LEARN how to work with a team. Selfishness comes natural to humans, our favorite thing is number one and its okay. There is so much going on right now and people’s first responses to something bad is to attack each other. Here is another reference you might get, ever see the Twilight Zone episode, “The Monsters are Due on Maple Street”? That one doesn’t end as well as They Live and that’s from over fifty years ago.

In conclusion, we need to work together if we want to make progress and tearing each other down on social media so other people can see it and think of how good we are doing by being so strict with each other does not help one bit, this is just slows down the progression we are trying to make.

-KG(Schwartz)