SNL pulled out all the stops in its season finale before the POTUS left the country for his first overseas trip. Alec Baldwin donned his yellow wig & orange makeup, the Rock & Tom Hanks announced their 2020 candidacy, and anti-Trump politics fueled the following sketches, inserting politics into everything possible. I was reminded of something I'd read about a week ago, and please forgive me but I can't remember the source. It was a news story that described how SNL has crossed the line between comedy and "ridicule," and it focused on Sean Spicer - and Melissa McCarthy's increasingly-cruel portrayal of him. It's one thing to "mock" a public figure, like Kate Mckinnon's dead-on Clinton impression (the way she moves her hands like claws is spit-out-your-coffee brilliant). But unlike Darrell Hammond's equally dead-on Trump ("a-ba-ba-baaaah"), Baldwin's impersonation is as offensive as black-face ... and I'm completely baffled that the PC-movement allows it to happen. And as a gay Trump supporter, whenever I watch comedians like Baldwin ridicule the President, it's hard not to feel like they're ridiculing me.
It would be one thing if Robert Bigelow were a conspiracy blogger, or a snowflake celebrity who's read every David Icke book. But this is the man who founded Bigelow Aerospace, one of four private multi-million dollar companies driving the space race in the exact same way that Henry Ford once drove the automotive industry. Space travel is as inevitable to the 21st century as cars were to the 20th, and in less than a hundred years, we went from horse & buggy to men on the moon. Dismissing this successful businessman is no different than dismissing another successful businessman who happens to hold the current Oval Office ... and less we forget the exciting foreshadowing he gave us in his inauguration speech: We stand at the birth of a new millennium, ready to unlock the mysteries of space, to free the Earth from the miseries of disease, and to harness the energies, industries and technologies of tomorrow. The world is about to change in a very big way, so it's important we stop ridiculing that change's messengers.
Speaking of harnessing new energies/industries/technologies, earlier this week I came across an article about the Ford Motor Company, and how the corporation now realizes that gas-powered engines are approaching obsolescence, and must be replaced by new/cleaner ideas. Yesterday I read a story explaining that within a few years, up to 50% of the current retail workforce will also be eliminated, again by new technology - and as a 15-year Barnes & Noble vet, that one hit close to home. (Did you know there are YouTube channels devoted to exploring dead malls?) It's hard not to feel caught in an invisible tsunami as wave after wave of new ideas, technologies, and evolving social trends hit us like trucks, making us wonder if anything we learned in college applies to the modern world. Such change makes us insecure, so we lash out at those we feel are the reasons for our frustration, but when we ridicule the messenger, we're just showing others how scared we really are -