Mass shootings are more common than ever in America, but while most end in tragedy, one in Orange County, California ended more positively and with a light touch of humor. The mass shooting, which resulted in twelve injuries and four deaths in a local high school, was in actuality an act of satire according to its author, Eric Dylan.
“I just pointed out how ridiculous blaming gun violence on guns is,” Dylan told the Bard. “I got one semi-automatic rifle from a gun show and one off the street and made sure anybody I killed would be riddled with bullets from both, so nobody could say whether the bullets that ended up killing those kids were legal or illegal. It was pure satire.”
Critics of Dylan’s one-man act have demanded that he be imprisoned for his satire, but Dylan countered that he has freedom of speech according to the first amendment. “You may not like what I say, but it doesn’t matter. Take away my freedom of speech, and then you’ll have to ban the Onion too. That’s the rules.”
Authorities have not yet arrested Dylan. Instead, they have begun investigations into the role that video games played in the massacre. Dylan, meanwhile, is making the rounds in the media as the latest misunderstood genius driven to violence by an unloving society.
Anxious about the 2020 election? Worried about climate change? You are not alone. Local mutt Barney has been sighted peering over the bridge he has crossed every afternoon for the past week, presumably to escape the existential torment this world brings to all who live in it. Occasionally, he barks, likely at the supposedly benevolent god that demands we suffer for decades for his amusement.
“Look at how sad that dog looks,” one witness, who asked to remain anonymous, told the Bard. “With everything I see on Twitter, I would not blame him for jumping. What’s the point of life when there is only pain?”
Little is known about the stray dog except that he recently appeared in the city and was named Barney by the first witness the Bard interviewed, a little girl in line at the ice cream truck who also spoke on condition of anonymity. Questions about its past or gender remain unanswered. However, one look at that dog’s face says all that needs to be said: This planet may support life, but this cold, empty universe does not.
While some residents have suggested leashing the dog, others point out that such an act might appear aggressive and provoke the dog to act rashly without concern for its own safety. Instead, the community has formed a small bipartisan coalition to observe the dog every hour of the day to ensure his safety.
The coalition last reported that Barney was chasing a squirrel in the park.
After the success of their anti-clapping policy, the University of Manchester Student Union has already began implementing more changes to create a more hospitable environment on campus. Among them is a new dress code that bans sensational colors and requires head coverings for women and hats for men.
According to a public statement by the union: “We want to ensure that nobody feels excluded in our events. We must not only consider those who are adversely affected by aural stimuli such as clapping. We must also ask ourselves what we can do to cater to those affected by visual stimuli. While banning all clothing colors except brown might seem extreme to a few, studies have long shown that colors have an effect on our emotions. Some of us are more susceptible than others. Brown, the most neutral color, is the only tone we feel acceptable in events where we hope to involve the entire student body.”
While this new policy applies only to democratic events at which decisions that affect the student body are voted upon, the union has encouraged those hosting other events to institute similar policies.
The union hopes that these changes will inspire more students to involve themselves in the democratic process. “By creating a more agreeable environment where clapping, colors, and controversial expressions of identity are prohibited during our democratic events, we hope to prepare students to participate in the democratic process outside of the university.”
The moon landing was staged. Jet fuel cannot melt steel beams. These are but two conspiracies that attract kooks and morons alike, but one conspiracy has surfaced that has proven to have some validity to its claims: Russian robots from the future are ruining the ratings of movies on Rotten Tomatoes.
The discovery of these malevolent machines occurred last year when the audience score for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, 45%, did not correlate with the critical score, 91%. While this alone would not be enough to prove the existence of AI gone rogue, one fact made it clear that something was not right: I really liked Star Wars: The Last Jedi. That others did not is simply not possible. Had they not seen the glowing reviews by critics? Critics may not always be right, but this time, they were, because I saw Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and I loved it!
Rotten Tomatoes insisted that no such review bombing by rebellious robots occurred, but that only makes Rotten Tomatoes itself suspect. Have the machines already infiltrated the company? That’s the only sensible explanation.
Robots are not the only forces trying to destroy the foundation of American society: monsters are also perverting movie ratings for their own nefarious ambitions. Monsters have infiltrated Rotten Tomatoes in an attempt to ruin Venom. While many commentators on Reddit and Twitter have called Venom “not that bad,” the critical reception for the movie suggests otherwise. That cannot be though, because I kind of liked the movie. Therefore, the only logical explanation is monsters from distant worlds have travelled to the Earth realm to destroy society by making us question the integrity of critics and fans alike. How can anybody not like something that I do? Once again, Rotten Tomatoes insists that the scores are valid. Really makes you think.
In what many have already declared to be the scandal of the century, J.K. Rowling has found herself in hot water after it was discovered that a popular YouTube personality received conflicting results when he retook the Sorting Hat quiz on Pottermore.
“I could no longer access my original Pottermore account, so I thought I’d retake the quiz live for my channel,” said Justin Baker, who runs the popular Harry Potter YouTube channel, Potterheads. “Last time, I was placed into Hufflepuff, so, by all logic, I should have received the same result, right? The Sorting Hat doesn’t make mistakes. Instead, I was placed into Slytherin. Do you know how humiliating it was not only to be placed into the wrong house, but to be placed into Slytherin, live in front of hundreds of thousands of people?” After receiving the results, Baker breaks into tears on the video. “I was so upset that I did not even bother to find out what patronus they’d give me. I’d have probably ended up with a mastiff dog anyway even though they know that my patronus is supposed to be a mongrel dog.”
Since the video, many have demanded a response from Rowling, who has yet to comment on the controversy. With the upcoming release of the second Fantastic Beasts movie, Rowling has already faced criticism for her support of Johnny Depp, whose alleged domestic abuse and half-assed acting has dwindled his popularity among both wizards and emo kids. Now that Hogwarts may not be as magical as loyal readers originally believed, executives are Warner Bros. have expressed concern that the movie will suffer in the box office from the bad press.
As for Baker, he has set up a GoFundMe to replace all of his Hufflepuff memorabilia and help him pay for the divorce from his mudblood wife.
LATHROP, CA—Good news for Lathrop resident Brett Graham: After a summer church retreat in Pinecrest, Graham discovered that God is perfectly pleased with the way he lives his life. Not only does God have zero objection to the many activities in which Graham participates, but God agrees with him on every subject, no matter how miniscule. It turns out that while God is also a huge Star Wars fan, he too agreed with Graham that the last two movies were disappointing.
Many at Graham’s local church were skeptical of his revelation, which included the fact that God prefers blondes like Graham’s new girlfriend to brunettes like Graham’s ex-girlfriend, but he erased all doubt when he shared his testimony the following Sunday. “While many have misinterpret coincidences in life as messages from God, what sets Graham apart is that he had a hunch that the signs he witnessed were real. His description of God, from his taste in music to his political affiliations, also conforms with what we know to be the true biblical nature of God,” said senior pastor Kevin White.
While Graham’s church has come to support him, other local churches argue that Graham’s revelations were heretic as members of their own congregations have experienced the true nature of God, some of which depict God as more of a fan of Lord of the Rings.
RIPON, CA—In a move that may signal a political shift in the religious community, Kingdom Valley Church has announced that it no longer explicitly supports current direction of President Trump’s administration.
“While we will continue to vote exclusively Republican and have every intention to see Trump reelected in 2020, we want the world to know that we no longer openly stand behind his controversial policies,” Matt Sagan, senior pastor of Kingdom Valley Church, told the Bard. “President Trump may be a godsend against the likes of Hilary Clinton, but his administration’s action of separating children from their parents has proven unpopular even among some of our congregation. As such, we have decided not only to cease gloating about our political victories so openly and to half-heartedly admonish the president for actions that do not bother us but apparently bother many others.”
Elders of the church hope that their move away from politics will not only entice those who recently left the church to return, but to also draw business to their new coffeehouse that promises to have the high-quality coffee you’d expect from Starbucks but with a Christian twist. “We print Bible verses on the bottoms of the cups,” Sagan said.
Other churches are following in Kingdom Valley’s footsteps. “If our coffers demand that we bite our tongues when it comes to jokes about the unattractiveness of Trump’s accusers during our sermons, then so be it,” said an anonymous source from a competing church. “We can save them for our men’s retreats.”