Pope shifts, Scalia dies, and GOP continues assault on abortions
It’s the most miserable time of the year, so let’s partake in everyone’s favorite pick-me-up: Talkin’ bout conspiracy theories! I just discovered a new favorite this week: GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz, literally the creepiest-looking man you’ve ever seen, was the Zodiac Killer.
Was he? Wasn’t he? That’s the beauty of conspiracy theories — there’s no way to know! But sales of this T-shirt spreading the good word, from Timothy Faust and artist Rory Blank, will go to the West Fund, which helps women seeking abortion services in southwest Texas — services that have been more or less decimated by Cruz and his compatriots. In Faust’s words:
Obviously, this is satire. There’s no way Ted Cruz is the Zodiac killer — the dates don’t match up. However, there’s no way of knowing whether Ted Cruz has sworn with his every waking breath to further the agenda of the Zodiac Killer, whom he may or may not love. Hell, with his record in the Senate, he’s on pace to blow past ZK’s record by many orders of magnitude.
Anyway, our chasers for this week will be some other truly wonderful conspiracy theories. Let’s dive in:
SHOT: What impact will Justice Antonin Scalia’s death have on Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the upcoming Supreme Court case that will examine whether Texas’ stringent abortion clinic restrictions are constitutional? It likely means that Roe v. Wade stays safe for another term.
CHASER: There are a wealth of wonderful conspiracy theories around Justice Scalia’s death, but this may be the best one. In this case, the hed truly says it all — from Raw Story: “Cruz-loving End Times pastor uses numerology to prove Obama sacrificed Scalia in pagan ritual.”
SHOT: The pope took time out of riling Donald Trump to declare that “avoiding pregnancy is not an absolute evil,” specifically referring to pregnancies in countries in which the Zika virus is prevalent. Abortion, for those keeping score at home, is still an absolute evil to ol’ Francis.
CHASER: From the insane depths of Tumblr, apparently: The twins in The Parent Trap were actually played by Lindsay Lohan and her twin Kelsey Lohan, whom Disney murdered after the movie’s completion because she wasn’t as good as Lindsay. No one can be, honestly.
SHOT: Your boss — or, more likely, your employer’s insurer — can now mine health data to find out if you stop taking birth control — because God forbid you, a working woman, dare get pregnant!
CHASER: A high school classmate tried to write his term paper on how 9/11 was an inside job. Jet fuel can’t melt steel beams! Frankly, I can’t believe our teacher didn’t go for it, but around the same time Popular Mechanics did the Lord’s (or, more likely, George W. Bush’s) work and debunked the conspiracy theories around 9/11.
SHOT: An abortion ban at a Catholic hospital in Michigan may be to blame for five women’s traumatizing miscarriages.
CHASER: According to Grist’s newest fellow, there’s a bunker under the Denver airport that only rich people know about. To survive a doomsday scenario, perhaps?
SHOT: A new GOP-sponsored bill in Alaska would require doctors performing abortions to try to save the lives of fetuses. Doesn’t that … really defeat the point?
CHASER: Four percent of the American population believes that our country is run by reptilians masquerading as humans.
SHOT: Did you hear about Killer Mike declaring, of Hillary Clinton, “a uterus doesn’t qualify you to be president of the United States?” Emphatically not, my friend, but that’s not really the point. He may have been quoting someone else, but this is a fair analysis of why it still was not OK to bring Hilton’s reproductive organs into the debate: “If you want to belittle an opponent through misogynist rhetoric but don’t want the backlash, don’t do it yourself — repeat someone else.”
CHASER: On Christmas Eve, I had drinks with my ex-boyfriend in a truly bleak Eugene bar while he explained to me that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have an arrangement, and he is actually her secret tool to win the general election. I wish she had picked a less hideous tool, but what can you do!
SHOT: A congressional panel that formed in October to investigate Planned Parenthood has subpoenaed three companies that handle fetal tissue after they did not satisfactorily respond to records requests, an action that Democratic members of the panel have deemed “unilateral and unjustifiable.”
CHASER: Clearly, climate change is the biggest conspiracy theory of all! Gotcha!
NIGHTCAP: We spend so much time talking about human sex issues that we never pay any attention to the coital trials of sea creatures! Last weekend, the Seattle Aquarium cancelled its annual Valentine’s Day event in which locals can watch two octopi smash — because there was some concern that one of the octopi might eat the other.