WASHINGTON—Republicans and Democrats alike are at a loss for words over this nation’s most recent mass shooting incident near the University of California, Santa Barbara which left seven dead, including the gunman—mainly because the Microsoft Office template politicians use to compose their bland almost-reactions is, according to politicians, “all jacked up!”
“It really hinders me from giving the same over-rehearsed half-promises to the American people about the state of guns in this country,” says Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., about the changes.
The senator wants to re-express interest in passing gun legislation that failed to pass last year after the Newtown massacre, but he says every time he tries to write his usual spiel about uniting with Republicans over mental health reform in a timely fashion, his lie is detected by Microsoft’s “bullshit check.”
“It’s like spellcheck in Microsoft Word, in that it detects what’s wrong but it’s also kinda like firearm background checks in that it would TOTALLY eliminate the problem if we let it,” says Blumenthal, before saying with a laugh, “Like that’ll happen.”
The struggle to comment on this tragedy for politicians is not due to the fact that most of the victims of the California shooting were innocent women, or the fact that this is the most recent of more than 44 school shootings since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, but because, “The new template totally messes up the structure of the weird cowboy fiction I tell my constituents hours after a mass shooting!” fumes pro-gun, Republican Sen. Jon Thune.
Thune is angered that template does not reserve a place at the top of the speech for the senator to give his seemingly obligatory, long list of increasingly scary sounding guns he owns to prove how pro-gun he is. It also forces right-wing politicians who say, “Now is not the time to talk gun control” to input an actual time which corresponds with the dimensional laws of our universe that this will be acceptable.
Another qualm politicians have with the new “mass-shooting response template,” is that it lacks a feature to insert acting notes throughout the text.
“Now, tell me how I’m supposed to evoke a response from the people if I can’t do the famous Blumenthal ‘sad-voice-warble-and-swallow’ during my speech?” asks Senator Blumenthal.
“Jeez, without providing automated suggestions as to what platitudes I should say or the distraught facial expressions I should make, it’s like this damn program is forcing America to judge me on my actions as a policy maker alone!”