Dear Emily,

I have no interest in watching Tiger King. In fact, the more I hear about it, the less I want to watch it. I can’t fathom spending seven hours with meth head murderers who exploit exotic animals. Does this make me un-American?

Michelle G.


Dear Michelle,

“Americanism” is a topic of much consideration for people these days. American can mean so many things. Being American means legally toting a gun and having any haircut you like. It means choosing to get married or stay single. It means being a singer and owning wild cats if you want it to.

Being an American means participating in a gay polyamorous relationship! Actually, the state doesn’t look too kindly on that. In fact, I’m pretty sure that’s what fundamentalist Christian nightmares are made of. But enough about that.

In other words, living the American dream and being an American means different things for different people. The Tiger King Joe Exotic’s version of Americanism is likely a unique one, all his own. You might just be a “different” kind of American. And in America, our differences are celebrated.

Oh but wait! You were asking about the show itself, right? Um… to answer, I don’t know. It seems like a mess, but it appears to be entertaining to many others. So appreciate it for the joy (or lack thereof) that it’s bringing to others.

Best of luck,

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