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How Spongebob Squarepants became the perfect meme to mock Donald Trump
It’s the meme for our political moment.
Mocking Spongebob, the sarcastic Spongebob Squarepants meme that burns people by repeating their statements back to them in sneering mIxEd CaPS, has proven itself over the past week to be the perfect meme for our dumb moment in history. When President Donald Trump fired FBI director James Comey, then allegedly leaked classified intelligence about ISIS to Russia, Mocking Spongebob was there.https://twitter.com/hokiecritter/status/863642438283538432
If you take everything Trump says and put it above the mocking spongebob meme it starts making sense— deadexgrlfriend (@lezzlord) May 11, 2017
I feel like everything Donald trump tweets about can be used in the mocking spongebob meme.— Literally a Lizard (@Raven_Fur) May 12, 2017
The Trump version of the Mocking Spongebob face, created by Adam Padilla (and shared below), has emerged as the perfect meme to convey Trump’s third-grade approach to dealing with criticism.https://www.instagram.com/p/BUIAJUdDmyy/?hl=en&taken-by=adam.the.creator
"Don't give away classified info to the Russians"— LABOR OG (@Alt_Labor_Me) May 15, 2017
Trump: dON't GivE aWAy cLassiFIed inFo tO tHe RussIANs pic.twitter.com/FvsEpUjAcK
The president’s actual response to the intelligence leak controversy wasn’t far off. He even employed “plus,” affecting the manner of a playground retort.
As President I wanted to share with Russia (at an openly scheduled W.H. meeting) which I have the absolute right to do, facts pertaining....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 16, 2017
...to terrorism and airline flight safety. Humanitarian reasons, plus I want Russia to greatly step up their fight against ISIS & terrorism.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 16, 2017
Trump has certainly engaged in his own childish mockery in the past. Perhaps the Spongebob meme seems to fit him so naturally because we remember the time he viciously imitated a disabled reporter on the campaign trail:
Who could have foreseen that, in 2017, one of our most incisive forms of social commentary would be to lampoon our reality TV-star president by comparing him to a cartoon sponge who lives in a pineapple under the sea and clucks like a chicken whenever he sees a plaid pattern?
Jay Hathaway is a former senior writer who specialized in internet memes and weird online culture. He previously served as the Daily Dot’s news editor, was a staff writer at Gawker, and edited the classic websites Urlesque and Download Squad. His work has also appeared on nymag.com, suicidegirls.com, and the Morning News.