Aung San Suu Kyi finally obtained internet access this past week following her 15-year stint under house arrest, marking it her first experience with the World Wide Web since its creation. After hours of browsing, Suu Kyi summed up her initial reaction in three words.
“What the hell?” Suu Kyi asked, eyes wide in disbelief. “What is this shit? A human linkage so extensive that it can spread innovative ideas in minutes, and you use it for this? I don’t even…”
Her loss for words eventually turned to rage, as she contemplated unanswerable internet questions, such as “Who are these people?” and “What the hell are they talking about?”
Suu Kyi was reportedly barraged with thousands upon thousands of homemade cat videos. Penis enlargement ads flashed across the screen. Girls making duck faces seemed to mock the 65-year-old who had given up the last 20 years of her life to promote freedom of expression. These experiences with the internet and its inhabitants have convinced Suu Kyi that “maybe free speech isn’t exactly the best way to go.”
“These people are seriously nuts” she told sources. “The internet should be used to educate people on the evils of the world so that they might combat tyranny. But everyone here is an idiot.”
Suu Kyi has been an advocate of democracy since her return to Burma in the 1980s, but the internet has convinced her that maybe the Chinese government has something right.
“No, really, I’m serious” she insisted. “I don’t want these people choosing my government officials.”
People close to Suu Kyi attempted to change her immediate reproach of the World Wide Web, citing a popular video as an exception to the unadulterated weirdness that plagues the internet community, trying to keep a straight face as they pleaded. After much resistance, Suu Kyi finally agreed to view “Two Girls, One Cup” under the pretense that it might restore her faith in public opinion.
She has declined to allow a press release of her reaction to the video, but commented that the viewing was “one of the worst experiences of [her] life. And that’s saying something, because [she] spent 20 freaking years under house arrest.” She also publicly declined Facebook friend requests from Barack Obama and an ironic one from Hu Jintao, admitting that “she didn’t know how to work this stupid thing.”
It seems that after two short months free in the digital age, where everyone is a politico, a filmmaker, an amateur porn star, or a virtual farmer, the promise of a working democracy has been shattered in the eyes of its once solid activist. Even when asked whether or not she believed that Wikileaks used the Internet to further democratic ideals, Suu Kyi echoed the world’s attitude, responding with a sonorous “Let’s be honest, no one reads that shit anyway.”