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The ‘forcibly removed from the premises’ meme hits on the fears brought by Trump’s presidency

Tumblr was on to something—even prior to Election Day.


Jay Hathaway

Internet Culture

Posted on Nov 15, 2016   Updated on May 25, 2021, 2:23 pm CDT

On Tumblr, a new meme format has been born. 

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Know Your Meme traced the format, with its three quick noun-colon status updates, back to this August post by a Tumblr user called Psiduk: 

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Since then, hundreds of Tumblr teens have been “forcibly removed from the premises” of a wide variety of places both real and fictional. The Panera, Thanksgiving dinner, the movie The Lion King … 

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In some cases, it doesn’t even need the punchline: It’s implied that the narrator is forcibly removed for his or her outrageous behavior. The most common transgression is the one from the original post: strolling in with a dick out. 

As with much of Tumblr, “I am forcibly removed” has become predominantly fandom-driven. Jokes in the format have spread across the whole spectrum of TV, movies, anime, and video games. And Hamilton. A lot of Hamilton.

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It’s been popping off in recent weeks, making the jump from Tumblr to Twitter:

And even Vine:

The rise of “I am forcibly removed from the premises” seems to have two primary drivers: One is the “dicks out for Harambe” meme, which is still hanging around, all these months after the ape himself was killed. On Reddit, some have suggested the “dick: out” part of the forcibly removed meme led to a surge in its popularity.

The other is the election of Donald Trump, which has led to legitimate fears that members of vulnerable groups will be literally or figuratively “removed from the premises” of the United States. It’s also led to calls for Trump himself to be removed from the premises of his future home in Washington, D.C.: 

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*First Published: Nov 15, 2016, 9:54 am CST