I pretty much only know via books, but being persecuted appears to suck. Anne Frank, the dude in Invisible Man, every character in the field of postcolonial studies—the only good thing about these people’s situations is that they are fictional and we sympathize with them. The real lives and diaspora on which they are modeled offered no such comfort, in both cases pretty much by definition. Actual persecution is a drag, but imagined persecution—especially when it’s imagined by members of a comfortable majority—rules. You get none of the actual inconvenience of institutionalized prejudice, plus the benefits of victim status. Today is Friday, and our link section is chockablock with jerks who have convinced themselves that they are crushed under the heels of jerks. Won’t you manufacture a smug self-pity with me?