Sunday, April 30, 2017

Thanks for Coming and Try the Guilt Trip

Someone named Hasan Minhaj headlined last night's White House Correspondents Dinner, the one at which the current POTUS was a no-show.

Who the heck is Minhaj?

Apparently, he's known for his appearances on The Daily Show (a program I haven't watched since well before Jon Stewart's hair started to turn grey--which explains my ignorance re Minhaj).

Some of the comedian's Muslim fans in academe describe him like this:
Hasan Minhaj is an Indian-American Muslim comedian, actor, and writer. He is one of the most prominent Muslims in mainstream media. His comedy skits and segments on television often deal with issues pertinent to American Muslims. In the wake of increased Islamophobic rhetoric and discourse that perpetuate anti-Muslim sentiments in the United States, it is necessary to have voices like Minhaj’s represented. Minhaj’s political commentary holds the American government accountable for its policies and attitudes towards Muslims. Through the use of comedy, Minhaj creates a space in which Muslims and other marginalized peoples can cope and heal, and in which people can examine American policy through a critical lens.  
Guess that helps explain his comedy stylings. This "gem" from last night's do, for instance:
“We gotta address the elephant that’s not in the room. The leader of our country is not here. And that’s because he lives in Moscow, it is a very long flight. It’d be hard for Vlad to make it. Vlad can’t just make it on a Saturday! As for the other guy, I think he’s in Pennsylvania because he can’t take a joke.”
Could be. Or it could be he didn't want to intrude on the "marginalized peoples" in the throes of all that, um, coping and healing.

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