Pepe the Frog – I still don’t get it

Recently while thumbing through Facebook I came across an article from NPR about Pepe the Frog. I know that I live in my own little world most of the time, but I do like to think I have a pretty good idea of what is going on outside of my world. After reading this article I am beginning to think my world might be a little smaller than I thought.

From what I could find during a very brief Google search the above image, done by Matt Furie in 2004, is the original created as part of a comic.

Fast forward 12 years and the Anti-Defamation League now considers Pepe the Frog to be a symbol used to spread hateful messages.

I didn’t know Pepe existed. I didn’t know that the ADL has a database of images that they believe spread hate. I don’t understand why Pepe has been chosen as the posterchild (postermeme?) for white supremacy. I just don’t get it. Even after reading several articles about Pepe and his racists connotations that were created by different groups. I just don’t get it. I don’t think I ever will.

NPR is the only news outlet that I have seen covering this story. I don’t feel comfortable speculating how other outlets would approach Pepe. He has had a varied history and his future will continue to evolve. Currently, he is a symbol, at least to some, of white supremacy. Maybe Pepe’s future will not be so dark.


One thought on “Pepe the Frog – I still don’t get it

  1. Your blog post is so interesting—I too had no idea that this meme was being used as a platform to spread hate. I thought your last sentence was brilliant—stylistically it seems to comment on both the binary of light/dark skin tones and personalities. NPR never disappoints, and neither did your discussion of meme development in popular culture.


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