7 People Besides Greta Thunberg Who Need Donald Trump's "Anger Management" Advice

Why are these people always getting mad about major societal injustices?

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg arrives to deliver a speech at the Assemblee Nationale, French parliament, in Paris, France, 23 July 2019.

Photo by IAN LANGSDON/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

In the wake of Time Magazine's selection of Greta Thunberg as their "Person of the Year", critics of science, ice caps, and the existence of youth have come out of the woodwork to criticize the choice.

She's a scold! A puppet! She's "mentally ill!" She's too young to have anything of value to say! But perhaps none have had more trenchant criticisms of Thunberg than the two Donald Trumps, both Junior and Senile. Don Jr. lashed out at Time for overlooking the Hong Kong protesters, a common thread among critics of Time's choice.

After all, the protests have been going on for more than six months now, and they give Americans an excuse to ignore the protests in the Middle East and Latin America—which implicate US foreign policy—and focus on the crimes of mainland China and the thank you messages to Trump. Instead of honoring the people who honored his father, Time Magazine devoted their cover to, in Junior's words, "a marketing gimmick."

It's unclear which marketing department came up with Greta Thunberg. The planet's? Generations-of-people-yet-to-be-born's? Whatever Madison Avenue genius came up with an impassioned teenage girl with Asperger's trying to save the world, give that guy the Don Draper award for clever gimmicks. Bravo. Never would've thought of it myself.

Not to be outdone though, President Trump tweeted some advice for Greta. Apparently, she needs to work on her "Anger Management problem" and stop involving herself in the grown-up business of destroying the future. Instead, President Trump advised that she should just "go to a good old fashioned movie with a friend. Chill Greta, Chill!" And she took his advice—yay!— altering her Twitter bio to reflect this sage wisdom from one of her biggest moral role models.

With this rousing success, maybe Trump should consider sending similar advice to some other angry people. Here are some current and former rageaholics who could really use a Trump-brand chill pill.

The Parkland Teens

"If you don't do anything to prevent this from continuing to occur, that number of gunshot victims will go up and the number that they are worth will go down. And we will be worthless to you."

Wow, calm down, Emma Gonzalez, why don't you go to a water park or something to take your mind off the trauma you've experienced and the lack of action to address this uniquely American type of horrifying violence.


"Yesterday, December 7, 1941—a date which will live in infamy—the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan."

Damn, Frankie, hold a grudge much? You're almost as bad as your boy Winston "Beach-Fight" Churchill. I know you guys are worried about those Axis powers trying to take over the world, but why don't you go fly a kite and see how you feel in the morning.

Rosa Parks

"The only tired I was, was tired of giving in."

Geez, it's just a bus seat—and the systematic oppression of black Americans that deprives them of society's best resources and the opportunities to improve their lives. Go get a couple scoops of ice cream and you'll feel better.

The Standing Rock Sioux

"The invisibility of our humanity in this country is literally killing our women; they are offered up as easy prey and their disappearances are often lacking consequences for the perpetrators."

Okay, Chairman Archambault, so the decision to run a hazardous oil pipeline through your tribal lands actually points to a general disregard for the humanity of indigenous peoples, and that results in terrifying mistreatment. But have you considered going to a good old fashioned game of baseball? Might help you relax.

Simone De Beauvoir

"All oppression creates a state of war. And this is no exception."

What is it with these feminist political thinkers always getting so hot under the collar about not having the same rights, freedoms, and legal recognitions as men? Just go to a barbecue and stop worrying so much!

James Baldwin

"To be a Negro in this country and to be relatively conscious is to be in a rage almost all the time."

Okay, James, but have you tried not being relatively conscious? Try huffing some good old-fashioned ether, or downing a couple bottles of high-strength chill pills.

Now if these other hotheads would just take President Trump's sound advice before the year is over, maybe Time will change their minds, and give "Person of the Year" to the kind of calm, chilled out person who deserves it.


Foster the People Might Stop Performing "Pumped Up Kicks"

With its school shooting connotations, frontman Mark Foster said it might be time to retire the hit.

Photo by: Nainoa Shizuru / Unsplash

How often does a band's debut single reach No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 and get a Grammy nomination?

Almost never, which is part of what made "Pumped Up Kicks"—the first song Foster the People ever officially put out—so special when it reached the charts in 2011. When the idea of the song struck him, frontman Mark Foster was working as a commercial jingle writer, which explains the song's infectious hook. But the track also has some pretty obviously dark undertones; it's about a kid named Robert who gets his hands on a gun, which led many listeners to believe "Pumped Up Kicks" was about a school shooting.

"I think people filled in the blanks that it was about a school shooting, but I never say anything about a school in the song," Foster said in a 2010s feature for Billboard. "It's really more about this person's psyche."

But as the song grew in popularity and news of school shootings became more common, the perceived message of "Pumped Up Kicks" proved dangerous. Because of the song's connotation and ties to recent school shooters, Foster says he's debating retiring the track for good.

"it's still our most-known song," Foster said. "So it's something that I'm really wrestling with, but I'm leaning towards retiring it, because it's just too painful. Where we're at now, compared to where we were 10 years ago, is just horrific."

Foster The People - Pumped up Kicks (Official Music Video)

Though a band retiring their biggest hit might come as a surprise, "Pumped Up Kicks" bears a gruesome weight: the shooter in Parkland, Florida, reportedly often pretended to fire a gun in his home as the song played in the background, and Foster noted in the interview that a shooter in Brazil had made it his anthem.

"Pumped Up Kicks" was pulled from some radio stations after the Sandy Hook shooting, and Foster the People have already hinted at no longer including it in setlists. They opted out of performing "Pumped Up Kicks" at Life is Beautiful Festival in Las Vegas, around the anniversary of the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival that left 58 concertgoers dead in the same city. Instead, they closed their set with a theatrical cover of "Hey Jude."

"I'm proud that a three-minute song created so much conversation about something that's worth talking about, and I think that every artist dreams of making something that holds its value," Foster explained. "I really feel like I made the earth pause for a second and bend down to hear what I was saying. And I'm proud of that. But I think it might be time to retire it."


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"Joker" Shows What's Wrong With the American Mental Healthcare System

The American Gotham mental healthcare system is thoroughly broken.

I need to get something off my chest: I loved Todd Phillips' Joker.

Normally when I review a movie, I try to approach it from as universal a perspective as possible. To do that, I try to factor in both my own enjoyment of a film and whether or not it succeeds at whatever it's trying to be. This means that different types of movies need to be approached through different lenses and with variable critical criteria. A good reviewer can judge an Oscar contender on the strength of its acting and dialogue and a Transformers movie on how well the robots smash together.

But ultimately, reviews always come down to the subjective perception of the reviewer. So for a movie like Joker, one that's controversial practically by design, let's not even pretend there's a veneer of objectivity. The vast variance in reviews, from a slew of perfect Metacritic scores to a slew of single stars, shows that this is a movie that hits people with different perspectives in very different ways. For me, as someone who has struggled my entire life managing my own mental illness, this was the baggage I brought into Joker.

Joker follows Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix giving an Oscar-worthy performance, but you already know that), a mentally ill man who lives with his mother in the poorest part of Gotham City. Arthur works as a party clown by day and dreams of being a stand-up comedian. Unfortunately, his neurological disorder results in severe depression, delusional episodes, and inappropriate fits of laughter, the latter of which make him a consistent target of derision and violence. He attempts to get help multiple times, attending weekly sessions with a social worker in order to get medical treatment, but the city cuts funding to social services, causing poor, mentally ill people like Arthur to fall through the cracks.

Freshly out of proper medication and facing increasingly brutal stressors in his life (his mother falling ill, getting fired from his job, gang beatings), Arthur finally snaps and murders three wealthy young white men after they beat him up on the train. His actions spawn anti-rich protests, with the impoverished people of Gotham viewing his murders as a symbol of the class divide. As Arthur descends deeper into his violent inclinations and revenge against those who wronged him, so too does the social unrest grow surrounding the blatant class divide.

Many of the movie's events are largely up to interpretation. Due to Arthur's delusions, it's hard to be sure what events (especially in the more violent second half of the movie) are occurring as we see them or are simply playing out in Arthur's head. This means that a lot of the movie's biggest questions never receive closure. For instance, we never actually learn whether or not Arthur killed Sophie (Zazie Beetz), the single mother in his apartment complex whom he obsesses over and holds the delusional belief that he's dating. We also can never be sure if the citizens of Gotham are actually rallying around his violence or if that's a fantasy he's drummed up as well.

But all narrative obfuscation aside, the movie's main message seems crystal clear to me: Our society stigmatizes and fails mentally ill people, especially those who are also poor, on every conceivable level.

I know this firsthand. Trying to get even the most basic psychological assistance within the American healthcare system can be a devastating experience. People who need help to function through their daily lives are expected to expend great amounts of effort to track that help down, only to be told time and time again that it's a dead end. I can't even count the number of therapists I've called who don't take my insurance (even though they list it on their site) and would cost me hundreds of dollars I can't afford per session. Imagine going through this process thirty times during the darkest period of your life, when simply getting out of bed already drains all the energy you have for the day. This is the American mental health system in practice, and it's bad enough that whenever I hear about someone killing themselves due to mental illness, Itotally get it.

Part of what makes Joker such an uncomfortable viewing experience is that the movie forces us to view Arthur's violent actions from a place of understanding. He's not doing what he's doing out of nowhere, for no reason. He's doing what he's doing because the social safety nets that he needed failed him at every step of the way. That's not to say that his actions were "right," but rather that they made perfect sense within the context of everything he had been through. It's a rare movie that portrays someone doing awful things without giving viewers the easy out of categorizing him as an outright villain.

Some viewers saw Joker as an incel power fantasy, but I strongly disagree. Even at his most "powerful," even at the peak of his televised vengeance against talk show host Murray Franklin (Robert De Niro) who made fun of him on national TV, Arthur is still pitiable. He's completely broken and considering the fact that this movie (despite being a one-off) exists within the larger DC mythos, we know that he's doomed to get beaten time and time again by Batman––a rich boy with all the resources Arthur never had.

It's not a power fantasy. It's not just "edgy." It's the truth. If we continue to ignore and stigmatize mental healthcare, people will continue to snap.



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