Not A 10? Better Stay Home This Spring Break

Not a 10?

Warning: The following is not an April fool’s joke. This week, the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs decided that it would help naive American spring breakers by giving them some useful travel hints about not getting scammed abroad on Twitter. This was one of them.

You can pick your jaw up off the floor now. But, let’s give the State Department some credit. It can’t be easy to turn information about unsafe travel conditions, scams and terrorism into sound bite-like quips of 140 characters or less. After all, most of us would likely ignore these wise words of wisdom if they weren’t presented in a clever, digestible manner, much like this Virgin America air safety video. Add the hashtag #SpringBreakingBadly and it’s fun to learn about all the ways your vacation can go horribly wrong. 

The problem is that there is nothing funny, cute or sexy about this campaign. Instead being written by an overenthusiastic post-grad with a brand spanking new bachelor’s degree in PolySci and a minor in Media Studies, it sounds like Roosh V knocked back a few too many beers and hacked into the State Department’s Twitter account with a few of his MRA buds for some sexist fun times.

Not only was that tweet offensive, it also doesn’t make any sense. Let’s break it down. By “Not a 10 in the US? Then not a 10 overseas,” are they trying to say that the American standards of attractiveness are universal? Because they are not. Did you see this article and several like it featuring a woman photoshopped to represent every country’s ideal beauty standard? Let me fill you in if you missed it. The gist is what’s hot in Egypt is not in Italy. So, good news if you aren’t a 10 in the US, your beauty might be more appreciated someplace else.  

On a totally separate note, we need to address the issue of being forced to buy expensive drinks. Have you seen the markup on liquor lately? We’re all being robbed. 

I also wonder if the State Department is implying being ugly makes you more vulnerable? Take that woman for example, you know, the one who is less than a 10 and doesn’t get hit on at home. According to the tweet’s logic, the local stud chatting her up at Carlos’ n Charlie’s in Cancun only wants to use her for free top-shelf margaritas. And then when she’s drunk, he only wants to rob her and not take advantage of her sexually or anything. 

Or maybe the tweet is a warning to all men who look more like Ed O’Neil than Joe Manganiello, that the Sofia Vergara lookalike who’s been hitting on him all night really just wants his cash and not his body.

As you can image, I wasn’t the only person who was confused. After several users pointed out how the tweet could have been interpreted as sexist, the State Department clarified that it was in fact gender neutral.

Sadly, this isn’t the only doozy in the #SpringBreakingBadly campaign.

Show the scam artist who’s really boss by snorting all the coke out of those bags just before you head off to the airport. #dontOD

Wait… foreign jail isn’t a boutique theme hotel? #bedbugs

It turns out those knockoff Louis Vuitton bags aren’t only crimes of fashion. #solastseason

At least this one is useful. #SlowClap

After enough complaints, the State Department was finally forced to admit that perhaps their tweet addressed to less than perfect looking people (so everyone), could have been interpreted in a way they hadn’t exactly intended.

Sure they do. But, what I really want to know is if the State Department’s (former) social media rep is a closer to a 2 or a 10.

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