Real life can sometimes be so ridiculous that it feels like the world is acting out a script that critics would describe as “a little too on the nose.” Take, for instance, the “Gun Couple,” an impossibly WASPy husband and wife who turned out to “protect” their honest-to-god estate from passing Black Lives Matter protesters by waving around firearms in a subtlety-free encapsulation of contemporary white American paranoia.
The pair—married lawyers Mark and Patty McCloskey—were filmed last night standing outside the walls of their imitation-brand Versailles in a sort of casual Friday militia uniform of capri pants and polo shirts, holding a pistol and assault rifle. The McCloskeys were out and armed in response to a crowd of peaceful protesters on their way to demand Mayor Lyda Krewson’s resignation following a news briefing where she “read the names and addresses of several residents who wrote letters to the mayor suggesting she defund the police department.”
The two wave their guns around (often pointing them at each other with all the subconscious familial loathing of a proper WASP couple) as protesters yell to each other to keep walking past them. The pair pace around shouting at the crowd, Patty McCloskey placing a hand on her hip like she’s waiting in line for a salad spinner refund and her khaki-clad husband Mark striking the sort of poses that he must think make him look like a hardened SEAL working undercover to protect an ornate local dentist office.
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These two dipshits are horrifying on so many levels that it’s at least nice that they’re so easy to make fun of. Since footage of them appeared online, Twitter’s been filled with observations about their outfits…
… how absurdly well the couple work as a symbol of this moment in time…
... and an excellent Scarface joke.
Twitter’s also discovered what the McCloskeys were so determined to defend: A gaudy mansion whose original owners, according to an article about the Gun Couple’s restoration work, wanted to “build a Renaissance palazzo.”
That same article is filled with all sorts of details that also read like parody. For example, the house, which was meant to stand as “one of the most lavish and grand houses in the Midwest,” was built in the early 20th century by the Busches and a family called, ominously enough, the Fausts.
The only way this whole scene could even more fully resemble a fevered satire of modern America is if the president implicitly endorsed the Gun Couple’s actions alongside a flurry of messages hoping to endanger the safety of Black Lives Matter protesters by attempting to identify them to law enforcement.
Luckily, this is real life and that would never happen.
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