Pop Goes The Political Culture Week of June 11
By Rebekah Kuschmider, MPU Co-host
Do you know how hard it is to write a pithy and relevant pop culture round up after a week where pop culture took a determined backseat to the horrors being committed at the southern border of the US? Every time I get online to see what’s going on the world, I’m smacked in the face with news like this:
You can’t just click away from that kind of information and start scrolling on TMZ’s feed to see what Kanye is up to.
I’m sure my compatriots and I will talk at length about what’s going on but I also know that the four of us at MPU already agree that the new policy of family separation is inhumane and can and should be stopped by the stroke of a presidential pen. We also know that it won’t be stopped that way because that’s not how things work in the age of Trump. Instead, I strongly recommend that each of you take some action to prevent the further traumatization of children and families. Slate published a good round-up of things we can all do so click on over and find a way to do you part.
Now that we’ve touched on that, here’s the news that’s not fit to ‘cast!
The Bible Says Nope: Speaking of people protesting the treatment of families on the border, major religions are weighing in and they’re not echoing Jeff Sessions’ bizarre contention that establishing a legal system that’s deliberately cruel is Biblically supported. This video features representatives of numerous Christian denominations calling out the moral crisis our nation is in and imploring others stand against bigotry.
You Lie!: After months of being castigated for letting the president lie and lie and lie right to their press-pass-hungry faces, members of the White House press corps are finally starting to challenge the Liar in Chief. This week he once again tried to tell reporters that the policy of family separation at the border was the Democrats’ fault. Trump expected the usual Hannity-esque acceptane of his version of reality from the crowd of reporters so imagine his surprise when they started clapping back. Needless to say, he didn’t take kindly to it.
“Quiet!” President Trump says to a reporter: “She’s so obnoxious. Quiet.” pic.twitter.com/nZE0bUPGoP
— NBC News (@NBCNews) June 15, 2018
It’s like Nasty Woman 2.0.
Lawrence O’Donnell praised another reporter for calling attention to a lie and led to this Twitter exchange:
It really is astonishing that he was the only one asking the question but perhaps he won’t be alone as time goes on.
Gossip Guy: Well, maybe some reporters will start talking about lies but probably not the ones at supermarket checkout staples In Touch, Life & Style and Closer. The three tabloids were purchased this week by AMI, owners of The National Enquirer, among other publications.
This is important, first of all, because media consolidation of any kind is troubling. Think about the Sinclair Broadcasting buy up of tv stations. That’s been practically dystopian. We need a diverse and unbiased base of media outlets in order to get to the heart of important news.
Now, you might say that the exploits of the celebrities that grace glossy gossip rags hardly need unbiased coverage but let’s not forget that AMI is the company behind shutting down embarrassing stories about Trump. Remember how AMI bought exclusive publication rights to Karen McDougal’s story about her affair with Trump, then never published it? Yeah. That’s why this matters.
We want more major media companies, not fewer. This news and news of other mergers in the telecom industry plus the end to net neutrality an mean changes to the way we get information. And when you have a president who openly admires the methods of Kim Jong Un, a dictator notorious for keeping his citizens cut off form information, you should really be concerned about retaining your access to news because you can be pretty sure he’d be just as happy to take that access away.
TRUMP on Kim Jong Un (note the final two sentences): “He’s the head of a country, and I mean he’s the strong head. Don’t let anyone think anything different. He speaks and his people sit up at attention. I want my people to do the same.” (via FOX) pic.twitter.com/ed9AMRl9ny
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) June 15, 2018
Until the day Donald Trump actually finds a way to shut us down, all of us at MPU will continue talking about the hard hitting news and the news that doesn’t hit very hard at all. Tune in to the podcast to hear more!