You can call him crazy, but he did something more extreme than anything you or I (especially you) would ever even consider doing for anything, except possibly to bring about the creation of a triple-stuffed oreo.
But he did it for Tibetan independence, one of the last remaining "classic" causes. The slogan "Free Tibet" has been around so long that when you see it on someone's shirt you can't be sure whether they're a political activist or just bought it at Busted Tees as an ironic throwback.
It's been decades since then, and a couple thousand hippie love-ins, a few roasted monks and one The Golden Child later, Tibet is still under imperial rule.
Well, it must be the full moon or something, because shit is getting serious again. I'll recap:
Laid back ruler who stresses peaceful protest, universal oneness and wears flowing yellow robes all day.
A tiny nation of inoffensive people totally geographically isolated from everyone else who want to be their own country.
Only kind of pizza you can find has chicken eyes on it.
It's kind of hard to sound sincere harping on something so obvious but for fuck's sake already: FREE TIBET. China, unless you've got some desperate need for a supply of cheap yellow robes, you have no reasonable excuse for what you are doing.
Now they're fighting back, and you take it as an excuse to call them "insurgents?" What the fuck were they for the last thirty years of totally peaceful protest? You suck, your coal mines suck, and your quality control guys need to get a serious talking to before they just start sending us crates of poison gas.
Remember that monk. He fucking DID that. Our founding fathers did a lot of shit for our independence, but they sure as hell didn't light themselves on goddamned fire. This guy knows what he wants, in a way and to a degree that should get your attention, if not your respect.
And China can call him an "arsonist" all they want; he's still way more badass than John McClane walking over the shards of glass at the end of Die Hard.
Although McClane would probably still win in a fight. Unless the flaming monk managed a good pin early on, but then it'd just be sort of a tie.
But I digress...FREE TIBET!
When not blogging for Cracked, Michael practices self-immolation as head writer and co-founder of Those Aren't Muskets!