Stripping for Kony; What ‘Middle England’ made of Jason Russell

25 Mar

Jason Russell: Proved that you don't have to be a college student to be nude in public.

Schadenfreude: Satisfaction or pleasure felt at someone else’s expense. It’s a word that perfectly synopsizes the case of filmmaker Jason Russell, of Kony 2012 fame. The Evangelical Christian was arrested last weekend, following a naked meltdown on the streets of San Diego.

Although possibly afflicted by psychosis, it was hard not to giggle as the 33-year-old, in full nip, stomped about the pavement like a sugar-filled youth.

But even funnier than Russell’s public nudity, has been the reactions to it. Nowhere was this better exemplified than on the web pages of the Daily Mail.

 “Don’t believe everything you read in the news” said Octavia from London. “Keep in mind the best way to discredit someone is to pretend their crazy”. Hmmm. While we all like a good conspiracy theory, it’s hard to see the sanity of a man who masturbates on a street corner on a Saturday morning.

One Daily Mail reader suggested that Russell’s odd behaviour was a ‘publicity stunt’ to bring attention to his cause. One would hope not. The last thing the public wants to see is Bono’s ‘tackle’ tackle the plight of orphans in Ethiopia, or Roy Keane’s arse endorsing guide dogs for the blind.

Befitting of the paper of ‘Middle England’ , one reader saw the need to import Russell Brand into the conversation. “The sort of thing I can imagine Russell Brand doing one day” said William from Liverpool. No need. The great bane of Daily Mail sensibilities did this ‘sort of thing’ in 2003, masturbating atop a satellite van during a May day rally, giving William ample reason for post-hoc disgust.

Not all readers corresponded to type. Unable to resist a dig at Evangelical Christians, Torsten from Boston said that “born again Christians do things differently”.  Of course, Russell’s not the first, and certainly won’t be the last, member of the ‘God Squad’ to go off the rails in such debauched hilarity.

As you would expect, the comments tended to veer toward the incoherent. But even within the jumbled mess of misspelt words poor grammar and crazed mental calculation, a general public feeling could be deduced. One that said that while it’s wrong to poke fun at someone in mental distress, it’s hard to resist a giggle at a grown man in the buff.


One Response to “Stripping for Kony; What ‘Middle England’ made of Jason Russell”


  1. Invisible Children: genuine charity or money making scam? « Jodie Hirst Professional Portfolio - April 19, 2012

    […] Stripping for Kony; What ‘Middle England’ made of Jason Russell Schadenfreude: Satisfaction or pleasure felt at someone else’s expense. It’s a word […]

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