Welven Da Great: Exploitation of the Mentally Challenged

My middle schools kids kept getting on my nerves with all of this “got eem” stuff. I had no clue as to who they were imitating. Then, they kept repeating the ever funny-but-always inappropriate “deez nuts” as if Dr. Dre didn’t put out The Chronic over 20 years ago. With some keen research (I am a nerd, you know), I found out where it all came from. All of this was due to the comedic approaches of Welven Da Great.

The only problem is tat Welven Da Great is mentally challenged. And then, I cared for the popularity of the phrases even less than before.

You know, there was a day when mentally challenged/disabled people were actually those that we just didn’t try to laugh at. I know that plenty of us did behind closed doors. However, many of us steered clear of using their affliction as comedic fodder. In fact, we were told NOT to laugh at them regardless of how funny they may have been. In my day, you had to have respect for people’s conditions.

In the day of microwaveable fame, Instagram success, and Youtube yuppies, certain considerations go out the window.

Welven Da Great and Internet Fame

Nowadays, anybody can become “internet famous”. It seems that many of us are now being entertained by those that can’t help themselves. From Welven Da Great’s inclusion of the tried-and-true “deez nuts” response to Atown’s little man follies, the World Wide Web seems to be tickled. Even The Real Wings has gotten his fair share of love through Youtube and Instagram. If there is proof that 15 minutes of fame can happen to anyone, then these three are sheer proof.

However, I think I may be bothered by this situation. Is it me or is the new hustle dependent upon the ability to pimp someone’s mentally retarded cousin?

Welven Da Great and the Big Issue

Don’t get me wrong on this one: I do respect the hustle. I like that Welven is taking his disability and turning it into a positive. I also like the fact that Atown and The Real Wings are getting money. It is something to transform your life from the “easily avoided” to being part of the “wanted”. Thus, this is not a knock against anyone’s hustle.

Still, I would be remise if I didn’t point out the elephant in the room always eating the boiled peanuts which is reality. On some level, we have to realize that a lot of these situations are exploitive. It is time to be honest: are we laughing with these guys or are we laughing AT them? All money and success aside, are we expecting more people to find their mentally retarded family to pimp them out on social media. I would hope the sum of their lives would account to more than Facebook likes, retweets, favorites, and double taps for hearts.

Welven Da Great and Being Hustled

The saddest part is that these young, disabled men will ride this fame out until it flames out. And why shouldn’t they? For all intents and purposes, they should be getting it while the getting is good. So, you know they will host as many parties, events, and do enough interviews to (at least) stretch out that fifteen minutes of fame a few seconds here or there.

Yet, there are those that are taking advantage of these people with haste. Personally, I never saw the amusement of listening to a mentally challenged young that that reminds me of Sid from Ice Age. Nor do I find it funny to see mentally challenged people used for pranks and gags. Once the fame is gone, are people really going to care? Are these men really going to hold onto a shred of the fame and attention they have attained?

Welven Da Great Epilogue

To be frank, fame is fleeting. I wish no ill will on any of these young men. However, a lot of their situations reek of exploitive measures to cash in with the quickness. All the fame in the world can’t ever make me feel completely assured about these situations. In the end,America is the land of the hustle; even if by “hustle” we mean “put a donut in my retarded friend’s face”.