Whatever happened to masochists? I remember reading about them in college, and now they seem to have disappeared, along with cripples and fools.

And where are the dummies? There used to be a lot of stupid kids when I was in school. We had crazy people, too. Of course, I grew up in a big city, where crazy people tend to accumulate and so are plentiful, but I still see them all over, some of them nearby. There aren’t quite so many crazies in smaller towns, but they stand out more. The dummies blend right in.

Public schools now seem to lump the stupid kids with the crazy kids, which I think is a bad idea. Stupid is not crazy, although there’s bound to be some overlap. Tardos and crazies have special needs. Don’t we all.

It’s not as though masochists are aberrations or unnatural or something. Like you, masochists are simply part of the wonderful range of human variation—our glory. They’re the natural, logical, organic counterparts to sadists, of whom there is a plentiful supply, mostly cops and soldiers. (Cops don’t get drummed off the force for excessive kindness, because people like that don’t want to be cops.)

I think the apparent shortage of masochists is one of the reasons the United States is sliding rapidly into blatant fascism—the Patriot Act, rampant police brutality, Homeland Security, and all sorts of state-sanctioned murder and diminished respect for people. The sadists don’t have enough masochists to keep them occupied and out of government.

What are sadists supposed to do without their natural counterparts? When the sadists have too much time on their hands, they start looking around for anybody they can find, and the non-masochistic among us don’t like that.

Now, we all know that masochists are still amongst us, just like the tardos and cripples. New names don’t mean new lives. Masochists didn’t go anywhere; they’re just in the closet, so to speak, out of fashion. Masochists can be spotted, though, even with no special equipment, if you know where to look. Act mean; they’ll come to you. Are you a masochist? Lie down and be counted.

I think we can counteract much of the militaristic lunacy in the country simply by outing masochists so the sadists can find them, because sadists are not smart, they’re just mean.

So expose all the masochists you know, and you know you know some. Hold them up to ridicule, berate them, point them out in public, really embarrass them. They’ll love it. Pick your masochist carefully, though, because they’ll love you for caring enough to abuse them, and that could be awkward, unless, of course, you’re a sadist.

Please, do your part to flush the masochists like hunting dogs flush birds, and while we’re waiting for the masochists to take the heat off the rest of us, be kind and take a poor, lonely, frustrated sadist to lunch. Or, if you prefer, make a masochist take you.