A supposedly local group helped bring Ron Branstner to Aberdeen Thursday for his Two-Hours Hate against refugees, Muslims, Mayor Mike Levsen, Lutheran Social Services, Hillary Clinton, liberals, the United Nations, and other convenient scapegoats. The “Americans First, Task Force of Aberdeen, SD” has not identified itself or its funding sources. It has a Facebook page that appears to have been created this month. At the same time, a similar page has appeared for “Americans First, Task Force of Huron SD“. The AF,TF Huron About page offers this sole short description: “To keep Huron informed on the status of our community“; the AF,TF Aberdeen About page offers no information. Both group pages share a November 2015 Breitbart article peddling Branstner’s anti-Lutheran Social Services crackpottery.
As far as anyone can tell from the outside, these AF,TF pages could be sockpuppets of Branstner himself.
AF,TF Aberdeen did have this card available at Thursday’s event:
No names, no direct contact information, nothing on the back, no identification of whether the card is from the Aberdeen group or the Huron group.
But joining that consistent, confounding comma is a superfluous apostrophe. A student of the Mary Haug School of Literary Analysis, I assume every text conveys authorial intent. I have thus Twitter-hypothesized several interpretations of the card as presented:
- “Celebrating America’s diversity by using different fonts for the apostrophe and the comma.”
- “When all caps isn’t enough, IN’SERT: EX”TRA/ PUNCTU—ATION!∆£π√€¡”
- “Whatever’s first, it belongs to just one American.”
- “Sweaty hero gazes at quivering maiden. “Is this your first,”—(considers appropriate euphemism)—”task force?”
- “American’s First, because English is our language to punctuate however the heck we want?”
- “AFTF— because an apostrophe is a terrible thing to waste.”
- “Translation: “Hey, task force! American is first”?
- “Quick, American’s First, before those foreigner’s, use up, all, of our, apostrophe’s, and comma’s.”
AF,TF Aberdeen foils the Haugian assumption on the apostrophe, but affirms its comma use:
Pay attentive: whoever AF,TF are, they meant their name to be commacal.