There’s something wonderful happening at Change.org, a website for social and political issues that usually hosts earnest petitions by Amnesty International and the Humane Society. A new petition is making the rounds that makes me proud to live in a democracy. It’s asking NFL Senior Vice President Greg Aiello to consider hiring GWAR, the self-described Scumdogs of the Universe, the “destined destroyers of not only the human race but also reality itself,” to headline the 2015 Super Bowl halftime show. “The time for GWAR to address the nation is NOW,” writes Jeff Cantrell, a video producer in Morehead, Kentucky, who started the petition and has no connection to the band (other than loving their music maybe a little too much).

Gwar

And here’s the really amazing part: People are taking the campaign seriously. In the time it took me to write this paragraph, the petition went from 43,107 signatures to 43,209. GWAR’s fearful leader and head filth monger, Oderus Urungus, came out in support of the petition with a press release, commanding “all of our followers, their families, and indeed anybody who has ever existed to sign this fucking thing, and in fact for those who have already signed it to create multiple fake email addresses and sign it again!”

Everything about this petition is astonishing and perfect. So it’s especially heartbreaking that it’s probably not going to happen. GWAR won’t be playing at the Super Bowl. Not in 2015, not ever. What the hell are you thinking?

The GWAR petition is hardly a unique snowflake. Over the last year, there have been an abundance of signature-courting online movements, all devoted to changing music in ways it’s unlikely to be changed. There have been petitions to help Ke$ha fire her producer, petitions to convince Kanye West to write a song called “Binders Full of Women,” petitions to ban all dance music because it’s “turning our children into drug addicts and murderers,” and petitions to stop Abercrombie & Fitch from making mean Taylor Swift t-shirts. There are petitions devoted to stopping artists from making music, and petitions begging them to keep making it. There’ve been at least three petitions this year asking for a new national anthem, the latest making a weirdly compelling argument for Drake’s “Started From the Bottom.” What do all of these petitions have in common? Not a single one of them has a snowball’s chance in hell.

So why bother? Pulin Modi at Change.org says it’s not always about changing anything—embrace the delicious irony!—but just the act of making your voice heard. “It’s getting people to talk about what they do and don’t like about mainstream pop culture,” he says. “It’s inspiring them to be active in expressing their opinions.” That’s all well and fine, but this is America, and America is about winning. Just once, I want to see one of these petitions win—the weird ones, not the ones asking for more funding for music education in schools. The ones asking restaurants in Park Slope to stop playing all that hippy-hoppity music—I want them to surprise everyone and make a lasting, if stupid, difference.

I took a closer look at five of my favorite recent music petitions, talked to the people who helped create them, and evaluated their chances of succeeding.

Petition #1: Let GWAR Play the Super Bowl

Is This a Joke?

“I am serious as a heart attack,” says Cantrell. “People assume I’m trolling and I genuinely take offense to that.” He got inspired—or more accurately, enraged with the fury of a Jagermonsta—after reading this article about Bruno Mars getting booked for Super Bowl XLVIII. GWAR was mentioned only in passing, as a joke in the headline. For Cantrell, the GWAR-dissing “lit a powder keg of emotion inside of me.”

Signatures As Of This Writing

43,414

No, Seriously, Is This a Joke?

“Sixteen years ago, my brother-in-law let me tape off his copy of Scumdogs of the Universe,” Cantrell says. “I studied the artwork and when I got home I listened to that tape over and over and imagined what the shows must have looked like.” How many young men and women like Cantrell are there out, who can only daydream about what goes on at a GWAR show? They’ll never know the horror-entertainment of a goblin in assless chaps, or a maggot that devours “hot bitches,” or what it’s like to be covered in several hundred gallons of hot blood and alien jizz.

Why The Petition Deserves to Work

GWAR is exactly what the Super Bowl halftime show deserves, and I don’t mean that as an insult. Look at what’s incurred the wrath of Super Bowl audiences over the last decade. Janet Jackson’s nipple was exposed for a fraction of a second. Prince played his guitar in silhouette and it kinda looked like a deformed penis. And just last year, M.I.A. flipped the bird to the camera and maybe said a dirty word. Each time, audiences responded like salāt had just been made mandatory in public schools.

Clearly people watch the halftime show because they want to be offended. If they think a nipple and a middle finger are obnoxious, just wait until they witness the decapitations and disembowelments that are par for the course at a GWAR performance. Once they see a band in foam codpieces scream-singing “America Must Be Destroyed” while rape-murdering the cast of “Up With People,” their moral outrage will (for once) not be an overreaction.

Anger is so much more satisfying if it’s justified.

Why It Probably Won’t Work

The problem is right there in the petition. “GWAR is more American than apple pie,” Cantrell writes. I’d love to believe that was true, that the majority of people in this country will find the humor in “Raped at Birth” or “I, Bonesnapper” (two new songs from GWAR’s just-released record, Battle Maximus, which you should purchase immediately) or can grasp the irony in GWAR’s cartoon carnage. But the United States, I’m sorry to say, doesn’t have an especially good sense of humor. They think Neil Patrick Harris is funnier than Ricky Gervais. They’re going to love Bruno Mars.

Petition #2: Declare the Ukulele the Official Musical Instrument of Planet Earth

Is This a Joke?

“I’m not kidding,” says Pete Gray, or “Pineapple Pete,” who started the petition. He’s played the ukulele for 30 years and founded the Uke School, an online school for ukulele basics. Also, his nickname is actually Pineapple Pete. “I don’t see this petition as a long-shot, or a hail-mary, or an uphill battle,” he says, his tongue purportedly not in his cheek. “I see it almost like tossing a lit match into a fireworks warehouse. If it catches, there will be no stopping it.”

Signatures As Of This Writing

566

No, Seriously, Is This a Joke?

Everything in my body—my beating heart and easily-amused soul—want to make fun of this petition, but Gray—sorry, Pineapple Pete—is so charming and infectiously enthusiastic that sneering at him just feels mean. I have an email from him the length of a novella, explaining how the ukulele is to modern civilization what the piano was to 19th century Europe. “If even 1% of the avid players and fans in the world signed this petition, it’d be all over,” he wrote. “The UN would crumble under that kind of pressure.” Arguing with his math is like complaining that the last 30 minutes of Caddyshack wasn’t believable. Stop being a humorless asshole.

Why The Petition Deserves to Work

Have you seen that video of Warren Buffett playing the uke on Chinese television, doing the most adorable version of “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad” ever captured on video? Buffett is worth somewhere in the ballpark of 60 billion goddamn dollars, and he might very well be building a death ray to destroy us all. But after watching this video, I want to give him a hug. So yeah, official musical instrument of Earth? Why not? That can only be a good thing for humanity.

Why It Probably Won’t Work

Because of this. Never forget!

Petition #3: Name an Intersection in Brooklyn After the Notorious B.I.G.

Is This a Joke?

Not according to LeRoy McCarthy, the Brooklyn native who started the petition and wants the intersection of St. James Place and Fulton Street renamed “Christopher Wallace Way.” Question his motives and he’ll send you a Source magazine article with a photo of the late Biggie Smalls taken on the very corner that McCarthy wants renamed. Case closed!

Signatures As Of This Writing

3,450

No, Seriously, Is This a Joke?

The Christopher Wallace Way campaign has its own Twitter account, and Facebook page, and Instagram, and Tumblr, where McCarthy answers all your burning questions about the campaign, like why he’s not petitioning to have the intersection called “Biggie Smalls Way.” I mean, isn’t that like naming a street after Iggy Pop and calling it “James Newell Osterberg Avenue”? “He had several rap names,” McCarthy explains. “Notorious B.I.G., Big Poppa, Biggie Smalls, Frank White, and others. They’ve all been suggested as street names. But Christopher Wallace is the kid from the neighborhood who became a man among men.”

Why The Petition Deserves to Work

Just a few years ago, the only way a rapper could’ve had any city-owned property named after him was if a fan tagged it with spray paint. But last May, a playground in Brooklyn Heights was rechristianed “Adam Yauch Park,” after the dearly missed Beastie Boy. “This is a new time for New York City,” McCarthy says. “The newly elected City Council is younger and hipper. Many council members grew up in New York at a time when hip-hop music was the soundtrack for the streets, clubs, bar mitzvahs, BBQs, block parties and pop culture.”

Why It Probably Won’t Work

Biggie isn’t the first deceased rapper with a weight problem from a New York borough who probably deserves his own street corner but probably isn’t going to get it. In 2000, and then again in 2011, fans of the late Big Pun tried to have an intersection in the Bronx renamed “Big Pun Place.” It never happened. And Big Pun died of a heart attack, a relatively family friendly way to die (at least in hip-hop circles.) Biggie, after attending a party in L.A. with Crips and Bloods gang members in attendance, was gunned down, possibly in retaliation for Tupac Shakur’s murder. Which, I’m sorry, is a hard thing to celebrate. Biggie’s importance to hip-hop and music in general is undeniable. But a “Christopher Wallace Way” in Brooklyn seems as likely as a “Fatty Arbuckle Boulevard” in San Francisco.

Petition #4: Give Ozzy Osbourne a Knighthood

Is This a Joke?

Helen Maidiotis, a housewife and mother from Sydney, Australia, who cooked up the petition, originally wanted knighthoods for everybody in Black Sabbath. But after a year of campaigning, she sent an email to the Honours Cabinet, the U.K. office that makes all the big knighting decisions. “I asked if I was going about it the right way and if there was anything else I need to do to better my chances of getting the band knighted,” she says. The Cabinet wrote back with some constructive criticism, telling her it was unlikely that the entire band would be knighted at once, and to try lobbying for just the most prominent member. “Which is why I chose Ozzy first,” she says.

Not only is she serious, she’s gotten some pointers from the British monarchy.

Signatures As Of This Writing

3,316

No, Seriously, Is This a Joke?

Maidiotis has heard from some people—”well-known in the music business,” she says—who find the whole thing ridiculous. “I will not disclose any names as that is not my style,” she says. “All I will say is that I am very disappointed in these people as I have looked up to them most of my life and don’t want to shatter other people’s dreams.”

Obviously she’s talking about Ronnie James Dio. Wait, no, he’s dead, right? Okay, rest of Black Sabbath — one or all of you need to stop being dicks about this. Maidiotis did what she could to get you a meaningless British royal title. Can you please get back to rocking in the background and stop pissing on Ozzy’s last chance at public buffoonery?

Why The Petition Deserves to Work

Knighthood isn’t the same thing as sainthood. The history of British knighthood is like a “who’s who” of history’s greatest drunks, perverts and weirdos. Isaac Newton was knighted and he once jammed a large needle “betwixt my eye and the bone as near to the back side of my eye as I could” just because he wanted to “see what would happen.” British TV personality Jimmy Savile was knighted in between diddling (allegedly) thousands of kids. Mystic and drug fiend Aldous Huxley was offered a knighthood but he turned it down, probably because he was too stoned on peyote. Henry Morgan was knighted, and he was a goddamn pirate. Denying Osbourne a knighthood because he once snorted ants or peed at the Alamo or bit the head off a bat would basically be missing the entire point of genius.

Why It Probably Won’t Work

Nobody—not the people who love Ozzy or the people who think he’s the devil—will ever be able to say “Sir Ozzy Osbourne” with a straight face.

Petition #5: My Chemical Romance Stay Broken Up Forever

Is This a Joke?

Absolutely. The petition is a response to another petition, created by My Chemical Romance fans emotionally wounded by the band’s sudden retirement last March. “They ended so abruptly,” the pro-MCR petition writers complained, “without saying goodbye…. properly. They need to do it correctly if they’re going to do it at all.” Dan Ozzi, a Brooklyn-based blogger for Vice and Jaded Punk, created his petition as a reasonable retort to all the fanboy weeping. “If we have to hear about a MCR reunion,” he wrote, “we might stab ourselves in the brain with eyeliner and kill ourselves.”

Signatures As Of This Writing

125

No, Seriously, Is This a Joke?

“It is a joke in that I didn’t think this petition would have an effect on the band,” Ozzi tells me. “But it is not a joke in that I do genuinely wish My Chemical Romance just sits on their money forever and we never have to hear about them again.”

Why The Petition Deserves to Work

As Ozzi points out, My Chemical Romance has been in existence for exactly 12 years, four times longer than Minor Threat, a better band in every conceivable way, was making music. To borrow Ozzi’s words (and his all caps), this factoid is “FUCKING DEPRESSING.”

Why It Probably Won’t Work

Even Ozzi admits that his petition is a useless gesture. He was mostly making a point about the arrogance of music fans. “Why is everyone with an Internet connection so entitled to things?” he says. “(My Chemical Romance) is breaking up. They don’t owe you a farewell tour. They don’t owe you anything. Fuck off.”

A music petition about online music petitions being pointless and whiney and self-indulgent? Huh. I’m not going to come out and connect the dots, but there’s a lesson in there somewhere.

(This story originally appeared, in a slightly different form, on MTVHive.com.)