In case you missed it:
On Christmas Eve, President Biden and Dr. Biden were fielding calls from the NORAD Santa tracking service, speaking to children about Santa and the upcoming holiday.
Something Presidents have been doing for years.
Parents from Oregon called, and the President spoke kindly to their son. At the end of the call, the father shouted “Let’s go, Brandon!”
If you’re not familiar, this is an infantile code used by right wing cowards that means, “F- Joe Biden.”
Naturally, Americans possessing intellect and reason were appalled that a father might use his son’s phone call to shout coded obscenities to the President of the United States on Christmas Eve after he spent time speaking to his son.
It might have ended there, but then the man, Jared Schmeck, proudly posted a video of himself making the call and shouting the coded obscenity on social media. His wife later did the same. So rather than choosing to remain anonymous, Schmeck outed himself as the man who used his son’s phone call on Christmas Eve to insult the President.
So the internet went to work.
By Christmas day, Schmeck’s name was trending on Twitter as Americans rightly criticized him for his indecency and stupidity. Schmeck then turned to the media, complaining that he was “being attacked for utilizing my freedom of speech” in the aftermath of the event.
“I understand there is a vulgar meaning to ‘Let’s go, Brandon,’ but I’m not that simple minded, no matter how I feel about him,” Schmeck said. “It was merely just an innocent jest to also express my God-given right to express my frustrations in a joking manner.”
Failing to realize how people other than himself – specifically those criticizing him – also have a God given and Constitutionally protected right to free speech, the internet went to work again, digging through public records to figure out who this guy is.
It turns out that who works for his father’s company after resigning from his job as police officer in 2018.
His father’s company, Winema Electric, received $439,923 in PPP loans last year, plus Schmeck himself has received $3,000 per child in child tax credits.
According to the company’s website, Winema Electric is a company “grounded in Christian values.”
Later in the day, it was discovered that Schmeck’s father, a former Navy SEAL, was charged by federal prosecutors in 1991 for trafficking in illegal firearms and ammunition, including automatic weapons, assault rifles and grenades.
Probably something his father would have preferred remain in the past.
Schmeck and his wife have since taken down their social media accounts,.
Winema Electric’s Google and Yelp ratings have plummeted as people are now giving the company poor ratings for employing someone who would shout vulgarity at the President on Christmas Eve after talking to his kid.
The company’s website, which has also been taken down, lists an employee Code of Conduct, which reads:
“Respectful to Others: We have a zero tolerance policy against abusive, intimidating, harmful, harassing, or offensive language and behavior.”
One might think that Jared Schmeck’s job might be in danger, but he works for Daddy, who can’t be happy about all of this but probably won’t fire the boy.
Currently the internet is attempting to determine the reason why Schmeck resigned from the police force in 2018. They are also attempting to discern how the company’s PPP loan was spent and if Schmeck qualifies for the child tax credits that he has claimed.
This all seems like a lot to endure for a stupid, callous comment made on Christmas Eve, but remember that the comment was followed by Schmeck’s very public, very prideful boasting, then followed by his whining about his First Amendment rights while rejecting the First Amendment rights of those who have criticized him.
He also hasn’t apologized or expressed any regret whatsoever.
He’ll probably be running for office in Oregon by the end of the week.
The reaction to Schmeck’s stupid, infantile remark admittedly seems excessive to me, but for the past four years, we’ve watched so many people act indecently, lie, cheat, steal, and attempt to subvert democracy with impunity. Kyle Rittenhouse, killer of two unarmed men in Kenosha, has been a recent star of the right wing media circuit and been proclaimed a hero by pundits like Tucker Carlson. Pardoned felons like Steve Bannon and Michael Flynn continue be revered in certain conservative circles.
Actions require consequences.
Recently lawsuits have been brought against those who lied on Trump’s behalf by claiming that the Presidential election was stolen. Election workers and the companies Smartmatic and Dominion Voting have all sued the likes of Fox News, Newsmax, OANN, Rudy Giuliani, Sidney Powell, and many more for their false, defamatory, and damaging claims.
Billions of dollars are at stake, and the media companies in particular are very worried.
Perhaps Jared Schmeck is a good, decent man who made a stupid mistake and lacks the courage and internal fortitude to acknowledge his mistake and apologize. Maybe his understanding of the Bill of Rights is lacking because he was absent from school on the day that the First Amendment was discussed. Maybe Schmeck resigned from the police force for perfectly good reasons. Those child tax credits were probably perfectly legal. Maybe he and his father actively support the kind of social safety net that made PPP loans (a bill constructed and supported by Democrats) possible.
I hope all of that is true.
But actions have consequences, and when you make a stupid, indecent decision in front of an audience of millions, then you double down on that stupid, indecent decision by bragging about it on the internet, bad things are going to happen.
There’a a big difference between posting comments about the President on social media and speaking directly to the President on live television.
Jaded Schmeck is finding that out the hard way.