I’m sure you’ve seen the “Success Kid” meme by now. It’s the one of the little chubby-cheeked kid caught in mid-fist pump. It’s a meme that’s gone viral many times over, and while the image of the little blonde-haired boy is about as cute as they come, you know who’s not? Iowa Rep. Steve King.
If you aren’t familiar with Steve King, let me catch you up: Walk outside and step in dog shit then hang that shit-smeared shoe on a racist broom handle and then have the racist broom handle act all offended and confused that it’s being called a racist, and that’s Steve King.
Well, the “Success Kid’s” mom, who also doesn’t care for a racist broom handle wearing a shit-stained sneaker for a face, isn’t cool with the fact that King has been using her son’s photo for a fundraising campaign without her permission, which she would never give him.
Laney Griner told the Washington Post that she found out about a week ago that her son’s copyrighted image was being used to push for campaign funding for one of the most anti-Semitic, white nationalist racists to ever claim that he’s none of those things.
The ad shows Sam’s face over a photo of the U.S. Capitol alongside the words, “FUND OUR MEMES!!!”
“I was filled with rage. It made me so angry,” Griner, 44, from Jacksonville, Fla., told the Washington Post. “It was just kind of shocking.”
Griner said not only is she liberal, but she added that she’s really liberal and you know who isn’t? Steve King.
Steve King is so racist that he once argued that all cultures weren’t equal while also arguing that his statement wasn’t racist.
Steve King is so racist, he actually asked why the term “white nationalist” is offensive.
Steve KKKing is so problematic he once argued where would America be if it weren’t for rape and incest?
Needless to say, Steve King is a Republican. Griner is not and notes that she doesn’t want her child’s image associated with King’s trash ass.
From the Post:
On Monday, Griner’s attorney sent a cease-and-desist letter, demanding the congressman and his campaign take down the meme from all platforms associated with them and acknowledge the misuse in a public apology, among other requests.
Stephen Rothschild, a lawyer for Griner, told The Post that as of late Monday, he had not received a response. The letter demands action by Wednesday. Otherwise, it says, Griner will sue King, his campaign and a conservative fundraising site that featured the ad for copyright infringement and violating Sam’s “personality rights.” King and his campaign did not respond to requests for comment.
“I don’t want anyone thinking I was willing to accept any amount of money for them to use it,” Griner said. “There’s no amount of money I would take for that.… We stay away from negative attachments, and this is about as negative as you can get in my mind.”
Griner learned that King was using the image Thursday after a reporter from Media Matters for America tweeted the image out. The image had been posted to King’s WinRed Facebook page, on which he was begging for donations “to make sure the memes keep flowing and the Lefties stay triggered.”
Griner immediately took to social media to blast King as a “vile man” and the Republicans as a “disgusting party,” the Post notes.
“When you look at Steve King’s Facebook, it’s just one super offensive post after another,” Griner told The Post. “It’s just the antithesis of what the meme’s reputation is,” she said.
Griner noted that the “Success Kid” image was captured when Sam, who is now 13, was at a beach near their Jacksonville home. It was a photo of a moment taken on a new camera. Griner was hoping for shots of Sam playing along the beach, Sam wanted to stuff sand in his mouth. The result was “Success Kid” showing young Sam holding a fist full of sand in his tiny fist.
Griner told the Post that the image was copyrighted in 2012 and she has given Coca-Cola, General Mills, Microsoft and even President Obama permission to use the image.
“I’m a big supporter of Obama, so that was good for me,” she said.
Griner wanted it made clear that she doesn’t fuck with Steve King’s politics, his face, or his racist-ass views.
“It’s really about the message and the person who’s using it, who’s letting it be part of their brand,” she told the Post. “Steve King is just not someone who should be using it. Hard to imagine any mother would want their child to be associated with that.”