Dear Onion

Your piece about President Obama going on a killing spree with an illegal gun is a complete mess.

Obama shoots two people at point-blank range with an "unregistered .38-caliber revolver", then threatens to kill another person each week in order to "fill [his] heavenly palace with slaves for the afterlife"? In light of recent mass shootings, saying that this piece is in poor taste wouldn't even begin to cover it.
WASHINGTON—More than a week after President Barack Obama's cold-blooded killing of a local couple, members of the American news media admitted Tuesday that they were still trying to find the best angle for covering the gruesome crime.


"What exactly is the news hook here?" asked Rick Kaplan, executive producer of the CBS Evening News. "Is this an upbeat human-interest story about a 'day in the life' of a bloodthirsty president who likes to kill people? Or is it more of an examination of how Obama's unusual upbringing in Hawaii helped to shape the way he would one day viciously butcher two helpless citizens in their own home?"

"Or maybe the story is just that murder is cool now," Kaplan continued. "I don't know. There are a million different angles on this one."


The New York Times newsroom is reportedly still undecided on whether or not to print a recent letter received from Obama, in which the president threatens to kill another helpless citizen every Tuesday and "fill [his] heavenly palace with slaves for the afterlife" unless the police "stop the darkness from screaming."
I get that the Onion is trying to comment on the media here, and on the "Everything Obama does is cool" phenomenon ("Or maybe the story is just that murder is cool now," ). But there are better ways to criticize the media, and Obama worship, than by using a recent string of murder sprees.

Furthermore, this article positions a black American man who some still insist on calling a "secret Muslim"* as a violent criminal who thinks he is storing up slaves in his heavenly palace. No doubt, hipster irony makes this all okay, and I am the real racist xenophobe for pointing out that we do not in fact live in a glorious post-racial society where these jokes would be just the same if they were made about Bill Clinton. But I'm not buying it.

There is surely commentary to be made regarding the headline coverage of the recent shootings (see, "Police: Kids Killed Because Mom Left", after the man in Washington State killed his five children). This article makes no such commentary. Rather, the Onion is exploiting the recent shooting sprees in order to skewer the news media's love for Obama.

The Onion piece does take a weak swing at the news media's exploitation of violence:
"It's enough of a tragedy without the press jumping in and pointing fingers or, worse, exploiting the violence. Plus, we need to be sensitive to the victims' families at this time. Their loved ones were brutally, brutally murdered, after all."
But then, the Onion is doing exactly the same thing.

I came across this piece on another blog where the editor posted it because he thought it was hilarious, so I am not linking to it.
*As though it's understood that being Muslim is a bad thing. I swear, if I never see that trope again it'll be too soon.

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