The Measles Vaccine Has Saved Twenty Million Children! Your Snake Oil Bulletin Good News Edition!
We wish we could say good morrow to you, readers, but it most assuredly isn't. Donald Trump won the election and his Legion of Doom is slowly building. While Yr Volpe prides himself on being an enthusiastic (if sarcastic) optimist, we're still working on processing this gut punch. As it stands we're still wading through the depression stage of grief; maybe once the rage bomb drops we'll progress through anger, but this week we just can't.
However, now is not the time to despair though for the love of Obama do we want to. Despite the fact that some 60 million Americans stood proudly on the shoulders of their great orange fuhrer and with a single voice screamed "FUCK YOU, FAGGOTS," we haven't given up on this world. In fact, there are even reasons to be happy this fine day.
So for a single post, we at Yr Snake Oil Bulletin are going to forget the awfulness of the looming Trump presidency / cross burning / multi-level marketing bonanza to present some good news! Yes, there ARE good stories out there. Let's waste no more time because our white smoothie (Xanax, Vicodin, and vanilla ice cream) is fading fast.
New report finds over 20 million children have been saved by measles vaccines since 2000
Anti-vaxxers (don't mention Trump, don't mention Trump) try to pretend that measles is a harmless disease that white children can survive with some chicken soup and a cuddly blanket, but the fact remains that in countries without co-ops and bike lanes, measles is still one of the leading causes of death for children worldwide according to the WHO. The disease still kills over 134,000 people every year, most of them children, but that number is down significantly from 1980 when the number was 2.6 million every year.
That's why it's such a godsend to see a new UNICEF report that found that that 20.3 million children are alive today thanks to the measles vaccine. That is an incredible achievement thanks to medical science. Over twenty million children have a shot at living a better life thanks to a simple injection.
And no, increased sanitation or organic produce or whatever other anti-vaxxer red herring du jour is not to thank for this. It's the measles vaccine. 20.3 million kids who would otherwise be dead are alive today thanks to that singular medical advancement. That's more than the entire population of Florida or New York state! And that is incredible.
There has been an outpouring of support for people threatened by Trump's bigotry
In the wake of an openly misogynistic, homophobic, white supremacist, religious bigot of an administration entering the White House (breathe, Volpe), Americans across the country have taken a stand against Trump's particularly virulent brand of bigotry.
First there is the Safety Pin campaign, which originated as a response the rash of hate crimes that followed Brexit (and now the Donald Trump election). With hate crimes on the rise against people of color and LGBTs, the simple act of wearing a safety pin is an attempted signal to those most vulnerable that the wearer offers a safe space, whether that entails walking a scared Muslim woman to her car, or standing up for the Latino worker on the bus who is being harassed by deplorables, or letting the terrified trans teenager know that someone out there cares about her wellbeing. The safety pin is not enough to stop the bigotry of course, and it probably will not save anyone from the marauding Trumpian hordes, and in the end is probably just a misguided attempt by white liberals that ultimately does little for people actually being targeted, but it does offer a small bit of comfort to the people who are most vulnerable in this wave of discriminatory right-wing revelry -- it speaks volumes about the Trumpettes' movement that their idea of a good time always involves hurting someone who can't fight back.
In addition, individual Americans and even entire local governments have been taking stands for the downtrodden. A teacher in Massachusetts has put signs up around their classroom with encouraging messages for students threatened by a Trump presidency.
It's depressing that a teacher needs to explicitly spell out to girls that no one is allowed to grab them and that black students lives matter, but the fact remains that someone out there is creating a safe place in their classroom. No matter what kind of bigotry those children are facing out in their lives (and we know that Latino, Muslim, and LGBT students are being threatened daily) this teacher won't let that kind of Trumpian assholery stand.
But one teacher in one school isn't enough. That's why there was some small comfort in the governor of New York explicitly calling out the bigotry of the incoming administration. In a statement on Facebook, New York governor Andrew Cuomo came out guns ablazing for basic human decency:
The state of New York has a proud legacy as the progressive capital of the nation, and that is more important today than ever before.
As New Yorkers, we have fundamentally different philosophies than what Donald Trump laid out in his campaign.
So let me be absolutely clear: If anyone feels that they are under attack, I want them to know that the state of New York – the state that has the Statue of Liberty in its harbor – is their refuge.
Whether you are gay or straight, Muslim or Christian, rich or poor, black or white or brown, we respect all people in the state of New York.
It's the very core of what we believe and who we are. But it's not just what we say, we passed laws that reflect it, and we will continue to do so, no matter what happens nationally. We won’t allow a federal government that attacks immigrants to do so in our state.
We are a state of immigrants.
We are the state that raised the minimum wage to $15.
We are the state that passed Paid Family Leave.
We are the state that passed marriage equality.
We are New York, and we will stand up for you. And on that, I will never compromise.
Count on it.
The cynic in us wants to point out New York's long history of *ahem* trouble with policing ethnic and racial minorities, but today is not the right day to do that. Whether warranted or not, the governor minced no words in identifying the source of our nation's rash of hate crimes: Trump. His campaign was built on those sentiments the governor of the fourth most populated state in the nation has said that he won't stand for Trump's explicit call to discriminate against Muslims and Latinos, and Mike Pence's downright psychopathic resolve to cause LGBT people pain. As of yet this is the highest government official who has spoken out against Trump's campaign-promised discrimination, so kudos to Cuomo. Please don't go back on this promise. People's lives really do depend on it.
The Church of Satan is going gangbusters on enrollment
One thing we have to look forward to in the new Trump dynasty is that fundamentalists will once again be the square uncool establishment cronies in suits and briefcases, instead of the edgy underground pseudo-revolutionaries in suits and briefcases, which will make it so much more fun to troll the little stick-up-the-asses.
Perhaps for that reason alone, the Church of Satan is reporting dynamite recruitment numbers in the wake of the Trump victory parade.
"It's crazy," [Church of Satan co-founder Lucien] Greaves said after a speech in front of some adoring fans at CU-Boulder. The emails, registrations, donations and social media posts are pouring in faster than the temple can respond. "People have a desperate need for something to rally to right now."
When your president is a rapist sweet potato fry, Satan doesn't look half-bad by comparison.
The Church of Satan has honed the craft of
trolling fundies to an art, so we can only hope that such a broad and obvious target like Trump (we're calling him fat) will lead to some truly beautiful zombie nativity scenes for the upcoming winter solstice.
"We're on the front lines of some of these battles against theocratic encroachment, especially with characters like Mike Pence holding such a high office," Greaves said.
Oh boy. Look for bearded Mary and leather daddy Joseph with special guest star Reverse Vampire Baby Jesus coming to the Indianapolis courthouse lawn. Hail Satan!
Kittens are suddenly enjoying baths
No, dogs and cats are not (yet) living in sin, but it seems that kittens have finally declared a ceasefire with their mortal enemies: baths.
Okay, yeah, sure. This video is a year old, so this kitten is not reacting to a Donald Trump presidency per se (though like everyone in November 2015, it no doubt loomed ever present in the back of his mind). Yet watching this tiny kitten (who resembles Yr Volpe's own little floofer) gently doggy paddle his way through a faucet stream that he is LIVING for provided yr correspondent with some much needed respite from the awfulness of everything for the past few days.
See? Everything isn't completely awful, friends. Just keep these feel-good stories in mind the next time it occurs to you that Donald Trump and the GOP congress are definitely going to take away your only means of affording your own health insurance and thus your own only chance of affording the drugs you need to manage your recent mental health crisis and--
We made ourselves sad again.