No More Che Day
Thursday October 7th, the Utah State University College Republicans took to the patio on campus to celebrate the death (Oct. 9th, 1967) of Ernesto “Che” Guevara, “The Butcher of La Cabaña,” and beloved t-shirt icon of trendy liberal hipsters world-wide. Guevara who did so much (or was it so little?) to destroy capitalism, is now a quintessential capitalist brand. His mug now adorns mugs, and also hoodies, lighters, key chains, wallets, baseball caps, denim jeans, and of course those omnipresent T-shirts with the photograph, taken by Alberto Korda, of the socialist heartthrob in his beret during the early years of the revolution. Forty years after his death the image is still the logo of revolutionary (or is it capitalist?) chic.
College Republicans decided to celebrate the death of Che and capitalism by handing out a wide variety of brand name cookies, purchased at Wal-mart because Che would have really hated that. Brand names such as Keebler, Nabisco, Little Debbie, and Pepperidge Farm were available on the College Republican’s table for students to pick from. When offered a free cookie from amongst the huge selection, most students said something to the effect of “Wow, there are so many different types I don’t know what one to pick.” Che hated capitalism and America- once stating “Whilst contemplating the final defeat of capitalism, we must decide who is at its head, and it is the United States of America.” He also declared that the United States of America was the great enemy of mankind.
Throughout the day many young liberals argued with us, most in a civil manner stating their disapproval but without harsh or vulgar word choice or tone. However, one young “useful idiot” did go bazurk on us as we attempted to explain to him the posters showing victims of Che that were provided generously by the Young Americas Foundation. The student freaked out calling the College Republicans sick for hating Che and celebrating his death. On the verge of tears he yelled saying that it was the worst booth he had ever seen on campus and that we were celebrating the death of the one person who stood up for the voiceless and fought the terrible oppressors (The United States?). Several students momentarily stopped from making their cookie selection in an attempt to figure out what he was yelling about, and as soon as he was finished went right back to making their snack choice. That one “freak-out” made the whole day completely worth it.
The booth attracted lots of attention, created meaningful conversation, and even led to a few subsequent hate-filled faceook status updates from campus liberals. A professor named J.P. Spicer who teaches an on campus spanish class on Che even stopped by to grill us, criticize our fliers, and argue briefly with us. Our booth helped educate hundreds of students about Che, and the terrible atrocities he influenced.
Many students had never heard of Che, and left the booth resolved to never purchase a shirt with him on it. One girl commented on our celebration by stated “Wow he must have been pretty evil if you are celebrating his death.” We whole-heartedly agreed. Another student told us that he owned a Che shirt but didn’t know anything about Che. After we informed him who Che really was and what he stood for, the student pledged to not wear the t-shirt ever again.
The booth and “No More Che Day” was a monumental success!