Trump Boycotts Oreos. When Will Media Boycott Trump?
Stephen Colbert compared binging on Trump jokes to binging on Oreos — but are we the ones over-indulging in Trumpapolooza?
In his new gig as host of Late Show, Stephen Colbert is bringing some of his patented whip-sharp wit to skewer our Must See TV-level fascination with Donald Trump. To some, Trump is a “tellin’ like it is” hero, and to others a brilliant train wreck (I’ve covered why that is in a previous post). But there’s no denying he is a delicious dish of delight for comedians, and Colbert and his writing staff have found a unique take on the media’s Trump obsession by linking it to binge eating.
Trump recently reported that while he loves Oreos, he will never eat them again. Never. They moved their headquarters from Chicago to Mexico, a very personal betrayal, so Trump is now going to have to find another, more American cookie to eat as his midnight snack.
Colbert likened his own lack of control in making jokes about Trump to a lack of control in eating snacks like Oreos, and proceeded to gorge on Oreos while dissing Trump. While this makes a great bit, like most great comedy, it also presents a bigger question: Are we over-indulging on Trump coverage the same way we over-indulge with everything in this country? Are we treating this election like a Netflix series we can’t stop watching?
In the 2008 election, the comparison at the time was that it felt like a reality show. Who would get the Democratic nomination, Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton? Who would win the general election, Obama or John McCain? It played out like a reality series, and like many shows of that genre, it ended with us voting for our favorites.
But television tastes have changed since then, and we live in the age of “I just watched every episode of House of Cards/Orange is the New Black/Kimmy Schmidt this weekend and I’m half ashamed and half proud.” If this is how we consume entertainment, and news is increasingly packaged as entertainment, then it’s not terribly surprising we are pushing “play next” on the Trump show.
Binging on anything is never a good idea, even if it seems pretty harmless. As Colbert says at the end of the bit, “I’ll hate myself in the morning,” and it’s my feeling America might have the exact same feeling when it wakes up from binging on Trump. Have a glass of water, America, and maybe read a book instead. It's good for you.
OREO PHOTO CREDIT: Mandel Ngan/AFP
TRUMP PHOTO CREDIT: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Explore how alcohol affects your brain, from the first sip at the bar to life-long drinking habits.
- Alcohol is the world's most popular drug and has been a part of human culture for at least 9,000 years.
- Alcohol's effects on the brain range from temporarily limiting mental activity to sustained brain damage, depending on levels consumed and frequency of use.
- Understanding how alcohol affects your brain can help you determine what drinking habits are best for you.
If you want to know what makes a Canadian lynx a Canadian lynx a team of DNA sequencers has figured that out.
- A team at UMass Amherst recently sequenced the genome of the Canadian lynx.
- It's part of a project intending to sequence the genome of every vertebrate in the world.
- Conservationists interested in the Canadian lynx have a new tool to work with.
If you want to know what makes a Canadian lynx a Canadian lynx, I can now—as of this month—point you directly to the DNA of a Canadian lynx, and say, "That's what makes a lynx a lynx." The genome was sequenced by a team at UMass Amherst, and it's one of 15 animals whose genomes have been sequenced by the Vertebrate Genomes Project, whose stated goal is to sequence the genome of all 66,000 vertebrate species in the world.
Sequencing the genome of a particular species of an animal is important in terms of preserving genetic diversity. Future generations don't necessarily have to worry about our memory of the Canadian Lynx warping the way hearsay warped perception a long time ago.
Artwork: Guillaume le Clerc / Wikimedia Commons
13th-century fantastical depiction of an elephant.
It is easy to see how one can look at 66,000 genomic sequences stored away as being the analogous equivalent of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. It is a potential tool for future conservationists.
But what are the practicalities of sequencing the genome of a lynx beyond engaging with broad bioethical questions? As the animal's habitat shrinks and Earth warms, the Canadian lynx is demonstrating less genetic diversity. Cross-breeding with bobcats in some portions of the lynx's habitat also represents a challenge to the lynx's genetic makeup. The two themselves are also linked: warming climates could drive Canadian lynxes to cross-breed with bobcats.
John Organ, chief of the U.S. Geological Survey's Cooperative Fish and Wildlife units, said to MassLive that the results of the sequencing "can help us look at land conservation strategies to help maintain lynx on the landscape."
What does DNA have to do with land conservation strategies? Consider the fact that the food found in a landscape, the toxins found in a landscape, or the exposure to drugs can have an impact on genetic activity. That potential change can be transmitted down the generative line. If you know exactly how a lynx's DNA is impacted by something, then the environment they occupy can be fine-tuned to meet the needs of the lynx and any other creature that happens to inhabit that particular portion of the earth.
Given that the Trump administration is considering withdrawing protection for the Canadian lynx, a move that caught scientists by surprise, it is worth having as much information on hand as possible for those who have an interest in preserving the health of this creature—all the way down to the building blocks of a lynx's life.
The exploding popularity of the keto diet puts a less used veggie into the spotlight.
- The cauliflower is a vegetable of choice if you're on the keto diet.
- The plant is low in carbs and can replace potatoes, rice and pasta.
- It can be eaten both raw and cooked for different benefits.
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