Mixed Media

Dinesh D'Souza Says Obama Hasn't Lived the "African American Experience" Because He Grew Up in Hawaii

| Wed Jan. 21, 2015 10:23 AM EST

Barack Obama is an African American man. He is black and he was born in Hawaii. He is the president of the United States.

Despite all this, conservative author and convicted felon Dinesh D'Souza tried to convince Fox News host Megyn Kelly on Monday that the president has not lived the "African American experience" for reasons that first included the president not having "descended from slaves on either side of his family." 

When asked for clarification, considering Obama indeed has "black skin and grew up in America as a black man," as a rather shocked Kelly correctly noted, D'Souza answered, "Well he grew up in Hawaii."

"That's America!" Kelly reminded him. 

Unable to put the breaks on his thought process, D'Souza trailed on with mentions of the president's past trips to Indonesia and Kenya as further proof he has not lived the true African American experience.

"Oh come on Dinesh! That does not deprive him of the African American experience."

This all follows a series of bizarre tweets from D'Souza, in which he compared himself to Martin Luther King Jr. and Obama to J. Edgar Hoover. 

Monday's segment concluded with our momentary hero, Megyn Kelly, asking D'Souza how his time holed up in a community confinement center after being convicted of campaign finance fraud was going. 

 

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If You Watch "The Good Wife," This Tweet Is Going To Blow Your Mind

| Tue Jan. 20, 2015 10:01 PM EST

The Good Wife is the best show in the world. It's on hiatus until March 1 and I was really upset about it but at least this happened tonight:

Thank you, S. Alexander Smith. I want to be your best friend.

(via James West)

Alabama School Superintendent Stops Students From Going to See "Selma"

| Tue Jan. 20, 2015 1:12 PM EST

Last week, a school superintendent in Alabama turned down a request from a group of high school students to go to a screening of Selma, the critically acclaimed film about Martin Luther King Jr.'s crusade for civil rights in Alabama, because it is filled with naughty curse words.

Superintendent Hugh Taylor told Al.com his objection stemmed from a recommendation made by "Kids in Mind," a website that appears to guide overbearing parents to which movies are acceptable for their kids to see. 

I understand the movie has a lot of historical value. The request was denied based on language. [The website] told me there were about two F-words in that movie, which I presume may mean more. The school that wanted to go [Collinsville High] is a multicultural school and [the website] said there were going to be 26 African-American connotations, which I thought would probably be inappropriate. I deemed this movie in particular inappropriate and that's my job as the head of the school system to make those decisions.

Taylor's decision, which he says was made in part out of concern for Dekalb County's taxpayer money being spent on "filthy language," comes as theaters across the country are hosting free-screenings to hundreds of thousands of students hoping to view the same film. Despite the national embrace and Selma's official PG-13 rating, however, Taylor said he simply could not permit students to experience a movie with the "F-word in it." 

"I'm just not going to do that," he said.

"I"m telling you I'm denying this because of the language," an insistent Taylor protested too much. "I'm trying to explain to you because I don't think it's going to be told correctly. That's why I have a hard time talking to the media, because I want the truth to be told. I'm denying it based on language. Just make sure you put that in, please." 

"I don't rule over these people with an iron fist or a big club," he added. 

Alabama is one of three states in the country that simultaneously observes Robert E. Lee Day alongside Martin Luther King Day.

(h/t Mediaite)

Ty Segall's new EP, "Mr. Face," Is a Tasty Treat

| Mon Jan. 19, 2015 6:00 AM EST

Ty Segall
Mr. Face
Famous Class

Ty Segall just can't stop making music—solo, in his band, or in collaboration with others; on singles, EPs and albums. He unleashes a flood of psychedelic garage rock with manic fervor, suggesting a condemned man desperate to be heard before his time runs out. If his prolific output sometimes cries out for an editor (especially when it comes to the songwriting) Segall's unfeigned, life-affirming enthusiasm is never less than irresistible. The physical version of the four-song Mr. Face EP is a pair of translucent red-and-blue seven-inch vinyl records billed as "the world's first playable pair of 3D glasses," but it's a tasty treat whether or not you dig novelty packaging. The jumpy title track is an acoustic rave-up that hints at a strong Violent Femmes influence. Elsewhere Segall is his usual exuberant self, plugged in and happy to blast. And coming next week: the Ty Segall Band's Live in San Francisco on the Castle Face label, a full-length set of feedback, heavy riffs, big beats and yowling vocals, guaranteed to cure the blahs with caffeinated pizzazz.

"Baby Turtle Eating Strawberry" Is the Most Adorable Thing I Have Ever Seen

| Sun Jan. 18, 2015 3:02 PM EST

I don't know if this is real. I don't know the context. I saw it on Twitter and it appears to be from some fly-by-night viral Vine account. So full disclosure, that could very well be an ambitious USC undergraduate in a turtle costume. Maybe that strawberry was created by Industrial Light & Magic. Having said that, I don't care. This is so adorable. I've never seen anything this adorable. And I've seen adorable things! I've seen bunnies hold hands and beagles wrestle. This baby turtle puts them all to shame. It makes the porcupine eating a pumpkin video look like Unforgiven. Unforgiven is not adorable! It's a blood soaked black hole from which cuteness cannot escape. That is how adorable this vine is.

 

 

via Lauren Evans.

"Daily Show" Explains the Absurdity in Alabama's New Abortion Law That Appoints Lawyers for Fetuses

| Fri Jan. 16, 2015 9:32 AM EST

Back in September, Mother Jones reporter Molly Redden investigated a new law in Alabama forcing pregnant teenagers seeking an abortion to first receive parental consent. If she is unable to get permission, the teenager is then put on trial, giving judges the right to appoint attorneys to defend the unborn fetus.

This all sounds insane. Last night, "The Daily Show" sent correspondent Jessica Williams to the state to investigate. Here's how some of that absurdity played out:

"You get a call from a fetus seeking legal representation, then what happens?" Williams asks unborn fetus attorney Julian McPhillips. 

"I cannot get a call from a fetus for anything much less legal representation," he answers.

When questioned about how he meets in confidentiality with his unborn client, McPhillips shoots back, "I cannot communicate with them directly, you know better than to ask the question."

"Well I don't know! You have a crazy ass job, sir. I don't know what's in the realm of possibility and what's in the realm of not possible." 

For more on how judges humiliate teens seeking abortions, read our in-depth report here. 

Watch below:

 

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We Have Some Bad News For You About That Hilarious Dog-Walker Craigslist Ad Everyone Is Talking About

| Thu Jan. 15, 2015 4:24 PM EST

Update, Sunday, January 18, 2015: We have more bad news. Apparently this dude is a plagiarist. Yahoo Tech editor Jason Gilbert wrote this Craigslist post years ago and the guy in Seattle stole it. 

On Sunday, a "dog-walker" in Seattle posted a Craigslist ad offering their services to "rich-ass dog owners." The lengthy—and hilarious!—ad took the internet by storm. One site went so far as to call it the "Great American Craigslist Ad.

HEY RICH-ASS DOG OWNERS:

Are you at the office 23 hours a day in a coke-fueled effort to squeeze every last penny out of your 20's and 30's?

Are you going out of town with your post-divorce trophy-girlfriend to visit your slave ship collection in the Barbados?

Do you work for a corporation that received Tarp money?

I AM YOUR DOG-WALKER

I am the most radical, bitching, mind blowing dog- walking experience in all of Seattle. All dogs are STOKED when I'm around, regardless of breed or sex. Your dog is gonna be on me like Charlie Sheen on a porn star mad of amphetamines; when I'm ascending toward penthouse suite in your private elevator, bitch's nipples are gonna be ROCK HARD.

Do I have experience walking dogs?

I'M A HUMAN BEING, OF COURSE I HAVE EXPERIENCE WALKING DOGS. THIS ISN'T LINEAR ALGEBRA, FOLKS; ITS DOG-WALKING

The heroic rant continues. Other people found it quite amusing as well and deemed it the latest "great American Craigslist ad." 

But when reached for comment, our "dog-walker" revealed the hard-hitting truth. 

Ummm... I posted this as a joke. I have surprisingly gotten people that want me to walk their dogs. Ive got more marriage proposals and offers for sex more than anything. I prefer to remain anonymous but i will tell you that I am married with a daughter and contrary to my post(that is a joke) I make a comfortable living and I'm pretty much your average joe family man. The reason I posted it is to show what happens when you go to college and stack up student loans and dont have a plan afterwards. you'll turn out having to walk dogs with a shitty outlook on society.

The moral of this story is that nothing on the internet is ever true.

Sorry, guys.

Here is a screenshot of the ad for when it gets taken down:

Charlie Hebdo Unveils First Cover Since Paris Massacre Featuring Image of Muhammad

| Tue Jan. 13, 2015 3:15 PM EST

Warning: An image of the controversial cover appears below.

Charlie Hebdo unveiled the cover illustration for its first issue following last week's deadly attack on the magazine. The cover, for what is being dubbed the "survivors' issue," features an image of the Prophet Muhammad holding a "Je Suis Charlie" sign. The words "Tous Est Pardonné"—"All Is Forgiven"—hang above. A tear is falling from his eye.

"We don't feel any hate to them," cartoonist Zineb El Rhazoui, who survived the attack and worked on the new edition, told the BBC, referring to the terrorists. "We know that the struggle is not with them as people, but the struggle is with an ideology." Asked if the cover might alienate Muslims who have spoken out against the violence and in support of the satirical magazine—after all, Islam prohibits the portrayal of Muhammad—she said that Islam ought to be treated like any other religion and that anyone who is offended need not buy the issue.

Charlie Hebdo's decision to print an image of the prophet appears to be in direct defiance of the two terrorists who executed 12 of the magazine's staff members last week. Past covers in which the prophet was illustrated, many times in crude or offensive light, have drawn the ire of Muslims throughout the world, prompting repeated threats of violence against the controversial publication. Since the attack in Paris, various news outlets, including the New York Times and the Associated Press, said they would not be publishing Charlie Hebdo images depicting the prophet because of its "deliberately provocative" intent. Other publications, including the Washington Post and the Guardian, have gone ahead and published the latest cover, citing freedom of speech, the covers' newsworthy element, and the special role that scorching satire has in French political and cultural life. For the Post, it is the first time a depiction of the prophet has appeared. Executive Editor Martin Baron said that although the paper prohibits material that is "deliberately" offensive, Charlie Hebdo's newest cover did not meet that measure; the Guardian explained it would be publishing this cover because of its "news value."

While Charlie Hebdo has historically skewered all religions and various government figures, in the past few years, its editors have specifically targeted Islam. Given France's fraught relations with its Muslim population, many have questioned whether Charlie Hebdo went too far, or as one French politician once put it, chose to "pour oil on the fire." Following last week's attack, Adam Shatz wrote in the London Book of Review:

Charlie Hebdo had an equal opportunity policy when it came to giving offense, but in recent years it had come to lean heavily on jokes about Muslims, who are among the most vulnerable citizens in France. Assia [a pseudonym Shatz refers to in his piece] does not believe in censorship, but wonders: "Is this really the time for cartoons lampooning the Prophet, given the situation of North Africans in France?"…If France continues to treat French men of North African origin as if they were a threat to "our" civilisation, more of them are likely to declare themselves a threat, and follow the example of the Kouachi brothers. This would be a gift both to Marine Le Pen and the jihadists, who operate from the same premise: that there is an apocalyptic war between Europe and Islam. We are far from that war, but the events of 7 January have brought us a little closer.

The issue is set for release January 14, with an estimated 3 million copies being printed. The normal circulation for the magazine has been 60,000.

 

Update, January 14, 2015, 8:50 a.m. EST: After copies sell out in France, Charlie Hebdo raised its print run to 5 million. 

Jon Stewart Explains What's Wrong With World Leaders Who Censor the Press Claiming #JeSuisCharlie

| Tue Jan. 13, 2015 11:58 AM EST

Citing the importance of political optics, many have vocalized anger over President Obama's notable absence during Sunday's march in Paris showing solidarity with Charlie Hebdo victims. The massive demonstration drew over 1.3 million people, with world leaders including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, also in attendance.

Jon Stewart is among those unhappy with the president's decision. But unlike most of Obama's critics this week, The Daily Show host got to the real reason Obama should have joined his fellow heads of state in "the most powerful game of Red Rover ever." 

"How could the U.S. not be there when representatives of such beacons of freedom and lack of censorship as journalist-punishing Russia was there?" Stewart asked. "Journalist-jailing Turkey was there! Egypt, nuff' said! Palestinian-jailing cartoonist Israel was there!"

 

Watch: Maggie Gyllenhaal Just Gave a Perfect Golden Globes Speech

| Sun Jan. 11, 2015 10:05 PM EST

Maggie Gyllenhaal is great. She just won the Best Actress in a Miniseries or TV Movie Golden Globe for "The Honourable Woman." Her speech was perfect.

"I've noticed a lot of people talking about the wealth of roles for powerful women in television lately. And when I look around the room at the women who are here and I think about the performances that I've watched this year what I see actually are women who are sometimes powerful and sometimes not, sometimes sexy, sometimes not, sometimes honorable, sometimes not, and what I think is new is the wealth of roles for actual women in television and in film. That's what I think is revolutionary and evolutionary and it's what's turning me on."

Watch, watch, watch: