Sunday, February 20, 2011

Rick Santorum has a Google problem.



Back in 2003, Rick Santorum compared gay sex to bestiality and pedophilia, and pissed off Savage Love writer Dan Savage in the process. One of Dan's readers suggested that Dan hold a contest to name a gay sex act after Santorum. Dan went with it, and the winning definition was "the frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the byproduct of anal sex." Then Dan created the website "Spreading Santorum," and his readers Google-bombed Santorum so whenever one typed Santorum into Google, the first result is usually "Spreading Santorum." Try it sometime.

So now, Rick Santorum has a problem. He wants to run for President, but he has this Google problem. Many people don't know of him, so the natural reaction is to Google Santorum. And, then they see the "Spreading Santorum" website. Santorum doesn't like being called santorum. It hurts his feelings. It makes him feel like, well, santorum. So, Santorum is complaining about santorum, playing the victim card, trying to gain sympathy and perhaps campaign dollars. Santorum feels like he's being picked on. Poor Santorum. Poor, poor Santorum.

Dan Savage has responded to Santorum's whining with,
All we did was make a dirty joke at his expense. There has been no effort to strip Rick Santorum of his civil rights, no moves to nullify his marriage, no one has suggested that his children be taken out of his home, no one is trying to prevent him from having more children. No one has compared Rick Santorum to a dog fucker or a pedophile. Compared to Rick Santorum, my readers and I have been models of decorum and restraint.
As the campaign moves forward, Santorum will try to fix his problem, probably with a Google-bomb of his own. But, I don't think he can out-bomb Dan Savage and his readers. They will just step up their efforts if necessary.

Instructions for Google-bombing are readily available. And, in case you're wondering, you are allowed to place links in the comments section here. Have fun.

Update: Yesterday, The Colbert Report covered this with some delight.

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