A great meme is one that prompts the receiver to share it. Memes tug on emotions in order to replicate between hosts. One of the classic memes from the anti-war movement of the 60's1 is "Make love, not war". The meme was born out of opposition to the war in Vietnam. It is a great meme because it is short, memorable, and includes to polar opposites, love and war. The meme was painted across bare chests, on posters, and printed on buttons. It is so catchy that is still circulates today.
Fast forward 50+ years to 2020 and the world looks very different than it did in the 60's. Sure, there is still war being fought around the world by America, but 2020 is unlocking the gates to a new era. The pandemic and global economic crisis are inspiring many new memeplexes. We are seeing an uptick in collectivism as well as individualism. While the state is looking to keep its seniorage and power, the individualist movement is creating memes that challenge the status quo.
Of the many memes that make up the individualist memeplex, pro-gun memes are among the strongest. Pro-gun memes not only mock the state, but with with the invention of 3D printing, the state's attempt to silence and stifle the proliferation of guns is a fools errand2. Pro-gun advocates push the position that an armed society is more free and more prosperous.
Make Guns Not War by Clancy Rodgers takes a classic anti-war meme and flips it on it's head. It evokes feelings of emotion from both collectivists and individualists alike. It's simple changing of the word "love" with "guns" gives the feeling that this isn't quite right. You expect to see love and you get guns instead. It goes against everything the state teaches us. How can making guns lead to peace? How do you make guns and not war? This is exactly what you're programmed to think, and this internal question makes it powerful.
Make Guns Not War is a mutation from the classic anti-war meme Make love not war that has a modern twist. It's a meme for the individual, advocates peace, and encourages self sovereignty through 3D printing guns.
Regardless of where you stand, the symbolism in this mutated meme is radical and it begs the question... will you propagate the meme?
The 60's was wild. The war machine was full tilt and Americans were discovering psychedelics and the hippy movement was born. The meme "Make love not war" inspires many meme's including "Breasts not bombs". This is a classic use of sexuality in a meme to get hosts attention. Also excellent use of the three word meme. ↩
Fool's errand is a task that has little to no chance of being successful or beneficial. ↩