Engagement rings are barbaric because men are awful or something

Thinking about getting engaged, guys? Best hold off on shopping for some big, gaudy rock to give your special lady. It’s not because the diamond industry is an incredibly rigged racket which keeps prices inflated many orders of magnitude above their actual worth. (Which is true.) And it’s not because you’re supporting bloody oppression of miners. (Probably some truth there as well.) No, it’s because giving a woman a diamond ring is just a reminder that she’s little more than chattel to be traded among powerful men. Seriously… I read it in Salon so it must be true.

The engagement ring is not, as diamond advertisers of the last 80 years or so have insisted, a symbol of love: it’s a sort of down payment on a virgin vagina.

I’ve always thought giving engagement rings was a slightly unsavoury custom, given that it began in an era when women were chattel, more or less. It’s hardly romantic. The rings remind me of a time when women couldn’t own property because they were property. Well, except for widows. There’s a reason that Merry Widow of opera fame was so merry…

Then, engagement rings functioned as a sort of retainer — a lease-a-womb scheme, if you will. The unspoken part of the deal was that an engagement often allowed for a sampling of the goods.

A broken engagement was like a business deal gone bad: there were economic consequences and the injured party (the woman, who was acknowledged to be more vulnerable) was entitled to compensation.

So are we here today to debate the merits of glittery engagement jewelry? Hardly. It’s a silly question. But it does bring to light the story of how a couple of scamps set up a parody Twitter account called @salondotcom. The account was tweeting all sorts fake headlines which were right in line with the over the top, liberal linkbait which Salon regularly serves up. Of course, you’ll note that I’m referring to the account in the past tense.

At approximately 5:50 P.M. EST, it became known that Twitter had shut down @Salondotcom, a hilarious parody of Salon run by The Daily Caller’s opinion editor, Jordan Bloom, and his roommate, Rob Mariani. @Salondotcom constantly tweeted fake headlines that perfectly aped Salon’s everyone-is-racist-and-Republicans-are-worse-than-Hitler shtick.

That’s a pity, because the material was pretty good. To give you a sense of it, here’s a quick quiz for you. (No peeking!) See if you can guess which of these headlines were from the parody account and which were actually from Salon.

How Melissa McCarthy sold out overweight women

From wet T-shirts to oral sex contests: A brief history of sexploitative party games

I was poor, but a GOP die-hard: I hated government—even as it was the only thing trying to save me. Here’s how, one day, I finally saw the light

Okay, I apologize. That was a trick question. Those were all actual Salon headlines. (Just follow the link if you doubt it.) But the parody account was doing their best to keep up with them.

Nanoaggressions: Science reveals structural oppression too small for human eyes

Should GMOs come with trigger warnings?

Ten signs your cat might be racist

Plenty of folks have been getting in on the action using the hashtag #FreeSalondotcom. Feel free to jump in yourself or just add your own in the comments. Here’s one of my own humble entries.