Ever since I can remember I have always been into movies. Bollywood movies never really caught my fancy, but I would watch Hollywood movies day and night. And I do mean day and night. It was not uncommon for me to watch 5 or 6 movies in a weekend. Then in my teenage years another obsession was added to the list, stand-up comedy, with Bill Hicks being my favourite (he still is). Later in my mid-twenties, shortly after 9/11, I found Allah, so my list of heartfelt obsessions now numbered three.
I have blogged many, many times about all three subjects, including various overlaps between them. However, from an Islamic perspective one must be careful when watching movies dealing overtly with religion. In Islamic theology we are encouraged not to tolerate any real, physical depictions of our prophets for various reasons, so watching movies like The Passion Of The Christ (2004), Noah (2014), and Exodus: Gods And Kings (2014) is a strict theological no-no. A better way of explaining this concept is done by Imam Nouman Ali Khan:
You don’t have to look very hard on YouTube to find Imam Nouman and other scholars talking disparagingly about Hollywood and Bollywood. So where does all this leave a religious movie nut like myself? If I want to get my movie-religion-overlap fix I have to do it in other ways. I have to get it through more conventional non-religious movies such as On The Waterfront (1954), Cool Hand Luke (1967), and Good Will Hunting (1997).
Below are 4 clips from these movies, clips that I think have good, positive religious messages. Where possible I have tried to add my own analysis and understanding of what these clips mean to a practising Muslim like myself. Not to make too obvious a point, these clips are better understood in the context of the full movie, so if you’ve not seen these movies I urge you to do so as they truly deserve the merit of ‘classic’. As always, enjoy!
LOVE OF A LOUSY BUCK
On The Waterfront (1954) is a multi-Oscar winning movie that redefined the genre of acting. Brando was a tour de force in his portrayal of simpleton Terry Malloy, with his performance still being talked about with the utmost respect among fellow actors, especially the scene with his brother Charlie in the back of the taxi.
He won his first Oscar for Best Actor thanks to this movie (his second would come some 16 years later in 1972 for The Godfather). At the time of release the movie had more political undertones due to the McCarthy witch hunts that were taking place, especially in media circles, but over time the religious aspects of the movie have come through in spades.
The scene below is of Karl Madden as Father Barry, giving an off-the-cuff sermon in the waterfront docks to anyone who will listen, after the murder of an innocent dock worker who dared to stand up to the corrupt officials. Here’s an analysis from the blog Reel Christianity:
Speaking up for wrongdoing, especially in a corrupt place, is the kind of thing Jesus did constantly in his ministry. He never shunned sinners, but he called out those in the church that did not minister to those in need. And even before Jesus was doing his ministry on Earth, the Bible talks about caring for those who need it most. Proverbs 31:8-9 reads, “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” This is what, in a sense, Joey Doyle, Kayo Dugan, and Terry Malloy all attempted to do—and what Terry was able to do in the end. He helped put an end to corruption on the waterfront, and believers can also fight for injustice in our own way. Whatever that way is, I pray that you and I would find guidance from God and serve Him in what we do. – Sean O’Connor
POP: He don’t need a doctor…he needs a priest.
FATHER BARRY: I came down here to keep a promise. I gave Kayo my word that if he stood up to the mob I’d stand up with him. All the way. And now Kayo Dugan is dead. He was one of those fellas who had the gift of standing up but this time they fixed him oh they fixed him for good this time. Unless it was an accident like Big Mac says. Some people think the crucifixion only took place on Calvary. Well they’d better wise up. Taking Joey Doyle’s life to stop him from testifying is a crucifixion. And dropping a sling on Kayo Dugan because he was ready to spill his guts tomorrow…that’s a crucifixion. And every time the mob puts the crusher on a good man, tries to stop him from doing his duty as a citizen? It’s a crucifixion. And anybody who sits around and lets it happen, keeps silent about something he knows has happened, shares the guilt of it just as much as the Roman soldier who pierced the flesh of our lord to see if he was dead.
[Somebody throws something in Father Barry’s direction. He ignores them]
TRUCK: Go back to your church father.
FATHER BARRY: Boys, this is my church! And if you don’t think Christ is down here on the waterfront you’ve got another guess coming.
[Tillio throws a banana at Father Barry. The banana splatters him, but he ignores it.]
SONNY: Get off the dock, Father.
TERRY: Tillio, don’t do that.
TILLIO: Whose side are you on, boy?
TERRY: Let him finish.
FAHTER BARRY: Every morning when the hiring boss blows his whistle Jesus stands alongside you in the shape-up. He sees why some of you get picked and some of you get passed over. He sees the family men worrying about getting the rent and getting food in the house for the wife and the kids. He sees you selling your souls to the mob for a day’s pay.
[Somebody else throws something at Father Barry.]
POP: The next bum that throws something deals with me! I don’t care if he’s twice my size!
FATHER BARRY: Now what does Christ think of the easy money boys who do none of the work and take all of the gravy? And how does he feel about the fellas who wear a hundred-and-fifty dollar suits and diamond rings on your union dues and your kickback money? And how does he, who spoke up without fear against every evil, feel about your silence?
TILLIO: Shut up about that. Just watch this.
[Tillio is about to throw something else. Terry punches him.]
TRUCK: [Speaking to Terry’s brother Charlie] You see that?
FATHER BARRY: You want to know what’s wrong with our waterfront? It’s the love of a lousy buck. It’s making love of a buck, the cushy job more important than the love of man! It’s forgetting that every fella down here is your brother in Christ. But remember Christ is always with you. Christ is in the shape-up, he’s in the hatch, he’s in the union hall, he’s kneeling right here beside Dugan. And he’s saying with all of you: “If you do it to the least of mine you do it to me.” And what they did to Joey and what they did to Dugan they’re doing to you. And you, you, all of you! And only you, only you with God’s help have the power to knock ‘em out for good. [Turns to the corpse of Kayo] Okay, Kayo. [Turns back to everybody else and says harshly] Amen. [Makes the sign of the cross and walks away.] – from the movie On The Waterfront (1954)
IT’S ABOUT TIME WE HAD A LITTLE TALK
Whilst Father Barry is certain of his faith, the prisoner Luke Jackson is riddled with doubt. Luke is the quintessential lone individual challenging authority and conformity, unsuccessfully in this case (similar to Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest (1975).
Luke, without perhaps realising it, ends being a Christ like figure in prison, mainly depicted through his devoted disciples who believe in him and will do anything for him. He even seems to resemble the Christian artistic version of Christ after the famous egg eating scene, splayed out in a simple white rag.
Luke, as an unusual Christ Figure, brings a sense of liberation to his fellow prisoners and strikes fear in the hearts of those who use fear and force to prop up their harsh authority. Tyrants, whether they rule a nation or a small prison camp, fear the loss of authority or power, these being the only things which distinguish them from those they regard as scum. Luke is a Christ Figure, not in any moral sense, but in that his life and death serve to liberate his fellow prisoners from this fear of the guards and the unquestioning acceptance of their captor’s authority. – Ed McNulty
[Discussing God whilst walking in the rain. Looks to the skies at the torrential rain.]
Luke: Let Him go. Bam, bam.
Dragline: Knock it off, Luke. You can’t talk about Him that way.
Luke: Are you still believin’ in that big bearded Boss up there? You think He’s watchin’ us?
Dragline: [Gesturing to the prison van] Get in here. Ain’t ya scared? Ain’t ya scared of dyin’?
Luke: Dyin’? Boy, He can have this little life any time He wants to. Do Ya hear that? Are Ya hearin’ it? Come on. You’re welcome to it, Ol’ Timer. Let me know You’re up there. Come on. Love me, hate me, kill me, anything. Just let me know it. [He looks around] I’m just standin’ in the rain talkin’ to myself. – from the movie Cool Hand Luke (1967)
Luke: Anybody here? Hey, Old Man. You home tonight? Can You spare a minute? It’s about time we had a little talk. I know I’m a pretty evil fellow…killed people in the war and got drunk…and chewed up municipal property and the like. I know I got no call to ask for much…but even so, You’ve got to admit You ain’t dealt me no cards in a long time. It’s beginning to look like You got things fixed so I can’t never win out. Inside, outside, all of them…rules and regulations and bosses. You made me like I am. Now just where am I supposed to fit in? Old Man, I gotta tell You. I started out pretty strong and fast. But it’s beginning to get to me. When does it end? What do You got in mind for me? What do I do now? Right. All right. [Gets on knees, closes eyes and begins to pray] On my knees, asking. [Peeks up with one eye, waits. Then opens eyes and crosses arms] Yeah, that’s what I thought. I guess I’m pretty tough to deal with, huh? A hard case. [Clicks tongue] Yeah. I guess I gotta find my own way. [Headlights shine through windows, backs up]
Luke: [Shakes head and smiles] Is that Your answer, Old Man? I guess You’re a hard case, too. – from the movie Cool Hand Luke (1967)
YOUR MOVE, CHIEF
The Oscar for Best Original Screenplay in 1998 was presented to Matt Damon and Ben Affleck for their movie Good Will Hunting. This movie was something the two best friends were working on for several years before finally taking the plunge and making a classic of American cinema, and arguably one of the best movies I’ve ever seen.
The scene below is basically about theory versus practice, a young Matt Damon who reads books and only knows theory, versus the older Robin Williams, who has been there and done that. In Islam there is a concept of someone who has knowledge, someone who owns books, being compared to a donkey carrying great works of literature. In other words, you talk the talk but you are yet to walk the walk. This dichotomy is highlighted by the elder to the younger in the following scene:
[Sean and Will sit on a bench at the mostly empty park. They look out over a small pond with swans, in which a group of schoolchildren on a field trip ride the famous Swan Boats. Will doesn’t look at Sean throughout the speech; he looks away. The scene ends with Sean walking away, leaving Will still sitting there, bewildered, contemplating Sean’s words.]
Will: So what’s this? A Taster’s Choice moment between guys? This is really nice. You got a thing for swans? Is this like a fetish? It’s something, like, maybe we need to devote some time to?
Sean: I thought about what you said to me the other day, about my painting. Stayed up half the night thinking about it. Something occurred to me and I fell into a deep, peaceful sleep, and haven’t thought about you since. You know what occurred to me?
Sean: You’re just a kid. You don’t have the faintest idea what you’re talking about.
Will: Why, thank you.
Sean: It’s all right. You’ve never been out of Boston.
Sean: So if I asked you about art you’d probably give me the skinny on every art book ever written. Michelangelo? You know a lot about him. Life’s work, political aspirations, him and the pope, sexual orientation, the whole works, right? But I bet you can’t tell me what it smells like in the Sistine Chapel. You’ve never actually stood there and looked up at that beautiful ceiling, and seen that. If I asked you about women you’d probably give me a syllabus of your personal favourites. You may have even been laid a few times. But you can’t tell me what it feels like to wake up next to a woman and feel truly happy. You’re a tough kid. I ask you about war, and you’d probably throw Shakespeare at me, right? “Once more into the breach, dear friends.” But you’ve never been near one. You’ve never held your best friend’s head in your lap and watched him gasp his last breath, looking to you for help. And if I asked you about love you probably quote me a sonnet. But you’ve never looked at a woman and been totally vulnerable, known someone that could level you with her eyes. Feeling like God put an angel on earth just for you, who could rescue you from the depths of hell. And you wouldn’t know what it’s like to be her angel and to have that love for her to be there forever. Through anything. Through cancer. And you wouldn’t know about sleeping sitting up in a hospital room for two months holding her hand because the doctors could see in your eyes that the term visiting hours don’t apply to you. You don’t know about real loss, because that only occurs when you love something more than you love yourself. I doubt you’ve ever dared to love anybody that much. I look at you, I don’t see an intelligent, confident man. I see a cocky, scared shitless kid. But you’re a genius, Will. No one denies that. No one could possibly understand the depths of you. But you presume to know everything about me because you saw a painting of mine and you ripped my fucking life apart. You’re an orphan right? Do you think I’d know the first thing about how hard your life has been, how you feel, who you are, because I read Oliver Twist? Does that encapsulate you? Personally, I don’t give a shit about all that, because you know what? I can’t learn anything from you I can’t read in some fucking book, unless you want to talk about you, who you are. And I’m fascinated. I’m in. But you don’t want to do that, do you, sport? You’re terrified of what you might say. Your move, chief. – from the movie Good Will Hunting (1997)
The inauguration speech of El Prez Numero 45 only worsened my delicate Muslim sensibilities. In the speech (a speech traditionally used to promote unity nationally and internationally) he mentioned he would wipe “radical Islamic terrorism” off the face of the earth:
We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones and unite the civilised world against radical Islamic terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the earth. At the bed rock of our politics will be a total allegiance to the United States of America and through our loyalty to our country we will rediscover our loyalty to each other. When you open your heart to patriotism there is no room for prejudice. The Bible tells us how good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity. We must speak our minds openly, debate our disagreements honestly, but always pursue solidarity. When America is United, America is totally unstoppable. There should be no fear. We are protected and we will always be protected. We will be protected by the great men and women of our military and law enforcement. And most importantly we will be protected by God. – Donald Trump, 20 Jan 2017, from his inauguration speech
So many questions arise from this small soundbite alone. Are Muslims part of “God’s people”? Are only Christians “protected by God”? Do new alliances to be formed include a northern-hemisphere-right-wing-Christian alliance, stretching from Trump in America to Putin in Russia, and in the middle you have right wing governments all across Europe? Do old alliances refer to a strengthening of relationships with Israel?
In true Trump style he arrogantly said the ‘what’ but left out the ‘how’, a contradiction pointed out by journalist Paul Green:
Trump’s linguistic presentation is a strange series of soundbites that he believes to be poetry, philosophy and unprejudiced patriotism. He delivers heady promises, rather than practical solutions. A prime example is the way his great notion of “eradicating Islamist terrorism” was uttered in almost the same breath as a remark withdrawing America from its role as policeman of the world, secure inside its own borders. How can he square this circle? – Paul Breen
This issue of “radical Islamic terrorism” is something I have blogged about previously (here and here). It is also an issue the brilliant journalist Robert Fisk alluded to in a recent article:
A bad day for Muslims, I’d call it. The only mention they got in the inaugural tweet was pure Hollywood, and very dangerous. “Radical Islamic terrorism we will eradicate completely from the face of the earth”. Shorn of its Biblical reference – the face of the earth comes from Genesis, does it not? – it was the biggest threat Trump could offer his people. Quite apart from the fact that he can’t eradicate terrorism without looking at why it flourishes (something Donald Trump showed he had no interest in, for this was the most nationalist, selfish inaugural in US history), his 20-minute commercial for Trumpism is likely to be the finest rallying cry the cultists of Isis have received since they started chopping off heads, blowing up monuments and destroying the beliefs of their co-religionists. – Robert Fisk
The anti-Islam vibe was strongly prevalent throughout the inauguration (as it has also been throughout the Trump campaign). This vibe was extenuated by the Reverend Franklin Graham, who was invited to read some parts of scripture on inauguration day. Graham, who supports a president who thinks “Islam hates us,” is an evangelical pastor who thinks Islam is “evil.”
A month after the 9/11 terror attacks, Graham, speaking at the dedication of a new chapel, told the audience that Islam “is a very evil and wicked religion.” Pressed to clarify his comments by NBC, Graham said, “It wasn’t Methodists flying into those buildings, it wasn’t Lutherans. It was an attack on this country by people of the Islamic faith.” In 2014, when asked by Christian Today if his views on Islam had changed since those 2001 remarks, Graham said “I have not changed my opinion at all.” Well, good for you!
Whilst things are confusing and fearful for Muslims over in the States, here in the UK us British Muslims are not faring much better. It is indeed an interesting time to be a Muslim in Britain because on the one hand we have the recent Casey review saying we Muslims do not integrate enough. On the other hand we have American author Janie Johnson saying “London is gone – all Islamic.” And there I was just getting over the fact that Birmingham recently became a no go area for non-Muslims.
With all this going on I thought it would be a good idea to say a few positive things about Islam, something that I have tried to do before. As best as one can, enjoy!
It is hard to be entirely despondent when we live in a country where the Muslim community is integrated enough to produce the mayor of our capital city, the most successful British track athlete in modern Olympic games history, and my favourite winner of the Great British Bake Off. Maybe we should stop looking for enemies within and instead Britains of all kinds could unite against a common enemy. Maybe someone across the pond? We might then discover the future is both bright and orange. – Lucy Porter, on the BBC Radio 4 program The Now Show, Dec 2016 (referring to: mayor = Sadiq Khan, athlete = Mohammed Farah, winner = Nadiya Hussain, common enemy = Trump, pond = Atlantic ocean)
I want to ask you a tougher question. It’s a deeper question about our relationship now to the Muslim community in the United States. Right now the Muslim community is awesome! If a Muslim family moved next door to me I would be the happiest person in the world, because the chance of my kids getting in trouble just went way down, just went way down! Because they have high educational attainment…they are…they’re your people. They have faith, they have family, they’re hard-working. This is the model American community. And yet isn’t there a danger…that this level of miscommunication, this level of misunderstanding, could drive a model community to the margins and actually create the very thing you’re afraid of, which is extremism? Are you worried about that? – Van Jones, on his CNN show The Messy Truth, speaking to Senator Rick Santorum, Dec 2016
We’re not the enemy. We live next to you. We operate on you. We cook for you. We drive you. We teach you. And everything in between. We even entertain you onstage…We are just people who want normal things from life. We are people who fall short and we are people who try our best, just like everyone else. – from the controversial BBC documentary Muslims Like Us, Dec 2016
I will end with this really positive clip from the show Full Frontal with Samantha Bee:
Since 9/11 the number of American Muslim comedians seems to have grown exponentially. One of the best and brightest is Hasan Minhaj. As well as being an accomplished stand up, his main claim to fame are his many appearances on The Daily Show as their Senior Muslim Correspondent. Here is a classic clip from back in the days of Jon Stewart as host:
Hasan is able to use his God given comedy gift to tell the truth in ways more honestly and directly than most, mainly because he understands the potential power humour possesses:
As satirists we get to stand on the sidelines of life and comment on what’s happening. And because we’re not telling any political, corporate, or religious lines, we’re able to honestly say things how they really are. – Hasan Minhaj
This honesty was on full display in June 2016 when Hasan was the guest entertainer at the annual Radio and Television Correspondents’ Dinner in Washington DC. This slot was hilariously filled by Aasif Mandvi the year before (himself a former Daily Show Senior Muslim Correspondent), as mentioned in a previous blog.
Apologies, I should have blogged about this at the time because some of the speech maybe a little outdated in parts (sorry Hasan, Hillary will not be president). Having said that, Hasan’s 22 minute speech is still well worth watching in its entirety. He covers many topics including the usual ones of race, politics, Congress, the election, the media, and religion, but he also manages to squeeze in pizza, wrestling, halal chicken, Home Alone 2, and Back To The Future.
Below is the speech in full, followed by a transcript from the final part where Hasan makes a disturbingly passionate cry for better gun control from Congress after the Orlando shooting massacre. As best as one can, enjoy…
What we saw in Orlando was one of the ugliest cocktails of the problems that we still see here in America. A cocktail of homophobia, xenophobia, lack of access to mental healthcare, and sheer lack of political will. And all of us satirists, we’ve all been yelling out, crying out, for change. But the sad reality is that we are all complicit in what happened. Every day in our workplaces, in our homes, in our religious institutions, there is covert or overt discrimination or phobia towards people of different religious, racial, or sexual walks of life. And we just sit there and we let it happen because it doesn’t affect our bottom line.
“I didn’t say it Hasan. I don’t think it that’s way. They said it, okay. It’s not that simple Hasan.”
And we just go on with our lives because it did not affect our status quo. And the sad reality is that stuff like this is going to continue to happen unless we recognise that civil liberties are an all or nothing game. A rising tide lifts all boats, it’s not pick or choose. So whether you like it or not we all have to step up and fight for each other, otherwise the whole thing is a sham. And until we do that, hijabis are going to get harassed in the streets, members from the trans community are going to be demonised for using the bathroom. And my brothers and sisters in the African American community, their spines are going to continue to get shattered in the backs of paddy wagons until we stand up and say something.
And the thing that hurts me the most is I wished I would have done more. To my brothers and sisters in the LGBTQ community and every marginalised community, I am sorry I did not do more. And the same goes for Congress. We look to you guys as our leaders. You make almost $200,000 a year to write rules, to make our society better. Not tweet, not tell us about your thoughts and prayers. To write rules to make our society better. And ultimately it comes down to money and influence. And right now, since 1998 the NRA has given $3.7 million to Congress. There are 294 sitting members of Congress that have accepted contributions from the NRA, and that doesn’t even include the millions of dollars from outside lobbying.
So before I get up here in my liberal bubble and I ask for gun control and universal background checks and banning assault rifles, we’ve got to be able to have the conversation, and right now, specifically Congress, has blocked legislation for the CDC to study gun-related violence. We can’t even talk about the issue with real statistics and facts. So I don’t know if this is, like, a Kickstarter thing, but if $3.7 million can buy political influence to take lives, if we raise $4 million would you guys take that to save lives? I don’t know.
Ultimately, I just gotta ask you this. Look, when I got into comedy, and when you guys got into media, and when you guys got into politics, we wanted to do the best work we could possibly do. Is this what you want your legacy to be? That you were a could-have-done-something Congress, but you didn’t because of outside lobbying? That you were complicit in the deaths of thousands of Americans?
And look, I know being a member of Congress is hard — you’ve got to placate your base, you’ve got to look out for re-election, you’ve got to answer to lobbyists. But please persevere, because our thoughts and prayers are with you. Good night.
– Hasan Minhaj, Jun 2015, speaking at the Radio and Television Correspondents’ Dinner in Washington DC
Let’s face it, 2016 was a complete horror movie, so much so that if it were an actual horror movie the trailer would look like this:
Now that the Dante-inspired-circle-of-hell that was 2016 is over, I can finally present my list of funniest Trump related quotes of the year. Over the last 12 tumultuous months I have been diligently watching talk shows, news channels, documentaries, and YouTube clips. I have been carefully reading newspapers, magazines, online articles, and blogs. I have been attentively listening to podcasts, radio programs, pundits, and stand-up comedians. I have been meticulously monitoring Facebook posts, Tweets, memes, and viral videos. I have been doing all this in order to collate the funniest quotes about Trump and the American presidential election.
The fruits of my labour are presented below. Yes, these quotes are somewhat funnier if you’ve been obsessively keeping up-to-date with all things Trumpian like what I have. But don’t worry if you haven’t, as there are plenty of quotes for your enjoyment due to them being pure comedy gold in their own right.
“Why do this?” I hear you not ask. I guess the reason for gathering such witticisms is to try and humiliate the ultimate humiliator, with the words below hopefully acting as some kind of seditious act, something to quieten this noisy paper tiger, something that sticks it to da orange man, a man who sees no moral limit in whom he insults openly in public, a man who shows “a cold personal indifference, a separation of man from man” (to quote DJR Bruckner writing in 1972).
My very small act of mutiny is summed up by Anne Karpf:
The world’s natural resources may be at risk of depletion, but there’s one that’s still plentiful and has never been more vital: humour. Not the laughter that provides a temporary escape from the nastiness of the present, welcome though that is. No, the kind I’m talking about is humour that skewers the lies, boasts and taunts of those who claim to have “won”…In times of bigotry and prejudice, we need humour not just for escapism, but also to poke fun at the powerful…Laughing at powerful elites makes them seem less omnipotent. It punctures their self-importance and makes us feel less alone…[These jokes] won’t make Trump disappear, but they can still be an essential weapon against bigotry and prejudice. And all such weapons seem essential now. – Anne Karpf
Perhaps the best explanation of why I am doing what I do comes from George Orwell, who at the time of writing in 1940 was referring to the rather funny and rebellious Charles Dickens:
A joke worth laughing at always has an idea behind it, and usually a subversive idea. Dickens is able to go on being funny because he is in revolt against authority, and authority is always there to be laughed at. There is always room for one more custard pie. – George Orwell
Since Trump is the highest political authority in the free world, each subversive quote below can be seen as the proverbial “one more custard pie.”
However, there is a problem in trying to laugh at someone like Trump: because it is just so darn easy to poke fun at him, doing it in a smart way becomes increasingly difficult. Another more obvious problem is explained by Morten Morland:
You almost can’t ridicule him any more than he unwittingly manages to ridicule himself. – Morten Morland
Despite the fact that he is his own clown, I still feel somewhat compelled to try as best I can to bring this man down a notch or two, even if it is solely for my own egotistical satisfaction. Anyways, please enjoy the following well-chosen selection of Orwell inspired custard pies!
PS Because I am such a generous guy, the very last quote is actually a fresh one from 2017.
A Klan-backed misogynist internet troll is going to be delivering the next State of the Union address. And that is not normal. It is fucked up. – John Oliver
A swastika has been spray painted over Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Police say it’s impossible to tell if the act was committed by Trump’s opponents or supporters. – from r/Jokes SuperCub
A Trump bumper sticker is the modern equivalent to the Confederate Flag. – Hari Kondabolu
According to Trump any place in America where black people live is the inner city. – Roy Wood Jr
After you leave office have you thought of just whispering in Donald Trump’s ear “You were right, I wasn’t born here” just to mess with him? – Samantha Bee, speaking to then President Obama, Oct 2016
All week long I’ve been seeing on TV white men weeping, like they just won some long hard fought civil rights battle. “Move over women and gays and minorities. It’s our turn now.” – Bill Maher
All week pundits and politicians have been asking themselves “How did we get here?” What is the moral GPS that led us to this cliff? How did trump win? Was this the revenge of the white, working class voters? Was Hillary Clinton complacent on the campaign trail? Did we anger the volcano gods? I knew we should have thrown Taylor Swift in there. – Stephen Colbert, 23 Nov 2016
Alt-right is the name they picked for themselves…Calling Nazis and white supremacists the alt-right is like calling OJ Simpson a cutlery enthusiast. – Seth Meyers
America has elected a dumb-ass. – Trevor Noah
America has elected an internet troll as our president. – Dave Chappelle
America has had bad presidents. You can impeach a bad president. You can vote out a bad president. You’ve never had a Donald Trump. Nobody has had a Donald Trump. No one even knows what that thing is. People go “He’s an outsider…he’s not part of the establishment.” He’s not part of the human race establishment. We don’t know what that is. – Trevor Noah
America is the most divided I have experienced in my lifetime, and I lived through the traumatic punk versus disco wars of the 1970’s. – Bill Maher
America rejected a woman who pushed a button on her emails and deleted her history, and voted for a man who could push a button and delete all history. – Rich Hall
American news is rife with propaganda. They have almost no sense of history. So you see them going “And there was a car bomb in Baghdad today.” And they then analyse it and say why do Iraqis hate cars so much. – Frankie Boyle
American politics: The two most unpopular people in the country get to stand for president and the one with the least votes wins. – James Doleman
Americans like Trump because he’s got loads of money, which is sort of their version of being clever. And he’s built all these giant buildings and written his name on them so no one else can steal them. – Charlie Brooker, from his show Charlie Brooker’s 2015 Wipe
Among Trump’s supporters there are people for whom this was 80% about race and the other 20% was about race. – Thomas L Friedman
And so, as I chitchatted over cocktails at a Washington office Christmas party in December, and saw, looming above our heads, the pulsating, angry televised face of Donald Trump on Fox News, I couldn’t help but feel a little nausea permeate my stomach. – Andrew Sullivan
At his rallies Trump takes great pride in not using a teleprompter. He doesn’t want to alienate his base by reading. When I see that hat ‘make America great again’ I always think for his crowd it’s a little wordy. Are they really getting through all of that? “‘Make America…’ Ah, I’ll read it tomorrow.” Next time he runs it’s just going to say “Fuck!” – Bill Maher
At one point, Hillary even brought up how Trump said the Emmys were rigged because Celebrity Apprentice never won one, which means the Emmy Award is the only woman who Trump hasn’t grabbed. – James Corden, referring to the third presidential debate
At this Trump rally we are witnessing history here folks, specifically Germany 1934. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog
Beyond the circus of the election itself the American media has a lot to answer for. The partisan news coverage and the all-powerful movie industry mean that America is in fact the world’s largest producer of dangerous and harmful propaganda…The US media and entertainment sector accounts for a third of the world’s media production. The US military has been known to intervene in the making of Hollywood films. A spokesman from the US Department of Defence has said “Our desire is that the military are portrayed as good people trying to do the right thing in the right way.” Which is helpful as I can never remember which is the right way to bomb an Afghan hospital. – Frankie Boyle
Break up Mein Kampf into tiny parts and it reads like a Trump rant on Twitter. – from Funny Or Die
Congratulations on voting in the most unsuitable orange bobble-headed loose cannon. You reap what you sow. – Annette Falinski
Critics of Breitbart News say it is a hotbed of racist, sexist, and anti-Semitic views, while supporters say exactly the same thing. – Stephen Colbert
Debating Trump supporters is like trying to untangle headphones in a tornado. – Seth Meyers
Democrats feelings range from despondent to scared shitless, depending on skin tone. For the millions who voted against him the concept of president elect Trump has been hard to wrap their heads around, especially when wrapping your head might soon get you arrested. – Samantha Bee, subtly referring to women who wear hijab
Did Obama make being president look so easy that Trump thinks he can do it too? Or did he do such a bad job that it makes Trump think he can do better? – Lenard McKelvey, aka Charlamagne Tha God
Did you know Ivanka Trump is Jewish? She married an Orthodox Jew and she converted. In fact, Ivanka Trump makes love through a hole in the very same sheet her father wears at his rallies. – David Feldman
Do the Republicans know that women can vote now? – Bill Maher
Do you remember when you thought that George Bush was the bottom? That’s as low as it’s gonna get, a guy so stupid that he can’t really speak. It turns out there’s a whole thing underneath that, it goes all the way down to a guy who looks like a melted action figure of He-Man. He doesn’t even really have policies, they are more the sort of things that a drunk would say on a bus when he gets shaken awake by a pot hole. – Frankie Boyle
Donald is learning a little too late that it’s practically impossible to win a general election when you can fit all your policies on the front of a baseball cap. – Rich Hall
Donald really is as healthy as a horse. You know, like the one that Vladimir Putin rides around on. – Hillary Clinton
Donald says he wants to run for president and move on to the White House. Why not? It wouldn’t be the first time he pushed a black family out of their home. – Snoop Dogg
Donald Trump got elected president…I really hope that that is not the deal with the devil that Chicago Cubs fans made to win the World Series. – Wyatt Cenac
Donald Trump is like Jesus for Christians who’ve rejected the teachings of Jesus. – John Fugelsang
Donald Trump is what happens when parents never say “no.” – John Fugelsang
Donald, you know where Russian hackers might find Hillary’s missing 30,000 emails? Where ever you’re hiding your tax returns. – Stephen Colbert
Eat our delicious Arabian food before Trump kicks us out. – restaurant sign in the States
Even though it looks like Hillary Clinton will take the popular vote, we have to accept that the winner of this election was a Washington outsider who no one thought had a shot at running this country. Vladimir Putin. Because while Donald Trump’s position on a lot of issues is unclear, he has a firm position on Putin. and I’m going to guess missionary. – Stephen Colbert
Every time I saw Trump walk across the stage with the family, I thought: my God, they look like the Kardashian Camelot. Beautiful girls married to good-looking guys; the big patriarch with the private plane. I mean, it’s Dyyy-nasty. That is a show people want to watch. Do they want to watch a show with the Clintons earnestly discussing healthcare? No, they don’t. They want a show about making it. – Tina Brown
Everything the media says about Trump is bullshit, and I know bullshit because I have a degree from Trump University. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog
For America, and indeed the rest of the world, Clinton versus Trump will be like being on a bus being driven at high speed towards a cliff by a psychopath, where there’s a chance that a chimpanzee might grab control of the steering wheel. It’s not a question of whether this will make things better or worse, it’s more that the whole idea of “better” may be gradually ceasing to exist. – Frankie Boyle
For anyone who has ever asked why the US needs to address the issue of reparations for its history of slavery, Donald Trump is why. He is the living embodiment of America’s unresolved issues. “How on earth can America consider expelling people of a different faith?!” an appalled England asks of a country created by the people they expelled for having a different faith. – Frankie Boyle
For the first time in our history our president is a steak salesman. – Seth Meyers
For the next four years, the President of the United States, the same office held by Washington and Jefferson, Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt, F.D.R., J.F.K. and Barack Obama, will be held by a man-boy who’ll spend his hours exacting Twitter vengeance against all who criticize him (and those numbers will be legion). We’ve embarrassed ourselves in front of our children and the world. – Aaron Sorkin
Fox News is incredible because I have never seen so many people with spray tans hate people of colour. – Hasan Minhaj
Have you read Trumps new book? Mein Kampf Is Bigger Than Your Kampf? – Jeff Ross
He can’t even comment on inanimate objects without making it sound like he wants to have sex with them. – Seth Meyers
He has clearly said countless awful things throughout this campaign. Any of which would disqualify any other candidate. Just this week, he declined yet again to release his tax returns, lied about getting a letter from the NFL agreeing with him that the debates shouldn’t clash with football games, called Angela Merkel a moron, implied that Brazil brought the Zika Virus on themselves, and encouraged a foreign powers hack of his political rival. Now, two of those didn’t happen. But you’re not sure which two. And that’s kind of the point, isn’t it? Because Trump hasn’t said one crazy thing. He’s said thousands of crazy things, each of which blunts the effect of the others. It’s the bed of nails principle. If you step on one nail, it hurts you. If you step on a thousand nails, no single one stands out, and you’re fine. That is how Donald Trump has managed to say pretty much anything in this campaign, seemingly without consequences. – John Oliver
He has that manoeuvre with his hand when he is speaking, as if he has spent his entire life from the age of 4 pulling the legs off spiders. – Andy Zaltzman
He is satire proof. You can’t keep up with him. Usually a politician does one stupid thing and then us comedians eat out on that for a year. Every day there’s a new type of stupid. It turns out he gropes women, so you go away and write jokes about that. Next morning you wake up, he’s kicked a midget. – Andrew Maxwell
He lies more than anybody we’ve ever seen. He just says whatever comes into his head. I think it’s the media’s job to point that out. I know he’s going to stammer and yell, and he does. I saw it at the last debate. He is like a five-year-old. He kept saying to the moderator “She got more time!” This is what my sister and I used to do when we were literally toddlers. “She can do anything she wants and I can’t watch any of my shows!” The idea that this is somebody who they were seriously considering electing. Even if he loses, that is a depressing thought. – Bill Maher
He owns the worst thesaurus in the world. – Seth MacFarlane
He said that all Muslims should be banned, but he announced it in the third person, which is a sure sign of a lunatic. – Ian Hislop
He says all these things that aren’t true. But loads of his followers don’t trust the media, so they believe whatever he says, so he can basically create his own mental reality and have thousands of people blindly agree with him. Actually, saying it out loud makes him sound sort of terrifying, but luckily he’s also got silly hair you can laugh at. I mean, there’s no way Hitler would have risen to power if he had some weird physical thing that made him look silly, you know like a stupid haircut or a little mousta…Oh, fucking hell! – Charlie Brooker, from his show Charlie Brooker’s 2015 Wipe
He’s such an unprecedented person to have in a position of such power. There’s no way to know what he’s going to do. But who knows? Maybe beneath the external lunatic there’s a more moderate, even-minded lunatic that we just haven’t seen yet. – Andy Zaltzman
Hillary as president would send a very powerful message to the rest of the world that the most powerful man on the planet can be a woman. – Annalisa Piras
Hillary Clinton is everything Donald Trump hates…a woman his own age. – Miles Jupp
Hillary Clinton was a very particular type of feminist. She didn’t believe in female genital mutilation, unless it was performed by an American drone. – Frankie Boyle
Hillary didn’t have an issue. She ran on nothing. But meanwhile Donald Trump had a clear message: “I have a hat. Won’t you join me and my hat? It’s a red hat. For God’s sake, it’s a red hat!” – Triumph the Insult Comic Dog
His New York penthouse is like being deep in King Midas’s rectum. – Trevor Noah
How can a man control a country when he can’t even control his hair? – Rich Hall
How Giuliani isn’t Trump’s running mate, no one will ever understand. Theirs is the most passionate television love story since Beavis and Butthead. Every time Trump says something nuts, Giuliani either co-signs it or outdoes him. They will probably spend the years after the election doing prostate-medicine commercials together. – Matt Taibbi
How long is it going to take to build that wall? How much is it going to cost? How many times are you going to go to Home Depot? How big is this thing going to be? Look how long it took to build the Freedom Tower, and we wanted that. That took 15 years. By the time they build that thing we’re gonna be the ones going over it. – Bill Burr
I am not surprised Donald Trump is happening to America because I watch movies, I do. And every time there’s a black president, something always comes to destroy the earth. Always. It’s true. – Larry Wilmore
I can’t understand why everybody treats Trump with kid gloves, and then I realised they’re the only gloves that would fit his stupid little baby hands. – Larry Wilmore
I do have some empathy for Trump, and I know it is a little unfair to have empathy for a person for whom that’s literally the one trait they lack. – David Cross
I don’t mean to trivialise the issue, but isn’t it great, don’t you think it’s just wonderful that the US finally has a despotic tyrant in charge. You know, of the type it’s been propping up in the middle east and south America for decades. What goes around comes around, my trans-Atlantic cousins. – Tez Ilyas
I feel sorry for Hillary Clinton…we have to watch her try to prove herself against the executive producer of Celebrity Apprentice. Watching her debate Donald Trump is like watching LeBron James trying to prove to America that he’s a great basketball player by playing one-on-one against Peter Griffin from Family Guy. It’s not even remotely a fair match up, but for whatever reason America has made it that and I don’t understand why. – Lenard McKelvey, aka Charlamagne Tha God
I have always felt a huge amount of kinship with Trump. We have a lot in common. We both have big hair, we have both been on television, and neither of us should, under any circumstances, become president of the United States. – Nish Kumar
I have my sister living in the United States. So she’s a Saudi woman who moved to America for opportunity. Now, in Saudi Arabia she can’t drive or whatever, but in America she can potentially be the first Muslim woman assigned to an internment camp. And that’s just inspiring. – Hisham Fageeh, comedian and Saudi citizen
I have never seen an election quite like this. On one side a hysterical woman and on the other side Hillary Clinton. – Bill Maher
I have pulled stuff out of my shower drain that would be a better president than Trump, and would look better. – Ed Burns
I have seen this guy change his position from the beginning to the end of a sentence, with no punctuation. – Bill Maher
I like imagining what certain Trump supporters would say if Hillary Clinton accepted the Dem nomination with her 5 kids by 3 different men. – John Fugelsang
I love the Chinese. I love chopsticks, I really really do. You have a lot to admire about the Chinese. Where do you think we got the idea for the wall? Some people say that the wall won’t work. Let me ask them this question. China’s got a wall. Do you see any illegal Mexicans in China? – Trump, as impersonated by Triumph the Insult Comic Dog
I really think Donald Trump never wanted to be president in the first place. Nobody’s judging a swimsuit contest with Dennis Rodman while also wanting to bring back jobs to Pennsylvania. I think he just wanted to win the election because everybody said he couldn’t. It’s like dating, chasing someone that is hard to get is always more fun than the actual relationship. He just liked the chase. He just enjoyed wooing America for 18 months. He loved making crazy promises. Even when the media was saying he was crazy, he was like “Baby, stop listening to your dumb fat friends. They’re just jealous.” And it worked somehow. America said yes. But now the chase is over and the relationship starts, and it’s not fun anymore. He’s getting texts from Dennis Rodman in the middle of the night, “Bro, let’s go hit up a beauty pageant.” He’s like “I can’t man, she’s making me put together a cabinet. I promised her a wall. I gotta have dinner with China. I don’t like this.” Clearly he’s not ready for this commitment. That’s why every time America brings up moving to DC he’s like “Yeah, babe, I’m gonna keep my place in New York.” Donald Trump is considering splitting his time between the White House and his Manhattan residence which would cost taxpayers tens of millions of dollars, but it’s all worth it to help a billionaire go night night in his big boy bed. – Michael Che
I wish I could tell you how many women are making accusations against Trump, but I haven’t refreshed my server in 10 minutes. – Bill Maher
I’ll give him credit for making some very good points about the economy during the first few minutes of the debate, but he couldn’t hang on for long. As the heat was turned up, he dissolved into a pool of his own inadequacy. – Susan Wright, referring to the second presidential debate
I’m just horrified by Donald Trump. He’s sort of like a pumpkin having a nervous breakdown. He’s like a sort of corrupt tele-evangelist that Columbo would have as a baddie or something. But he’s really dangerous, I mean he’s like proto-fascist, almost. And Hillary Clinton isn’t much better. I mean, she’s like the establishment candidate. But if you’re in one of the countries that America is destroying around the world, that election must look like, you know, someone is driving a combine harvester towards you and there’s a chance that the wheel might be grabbed by a chimpanzee. There’s not really a good option in there. – Frankie Boyle
I’d like to apologise for Mr Trump…that’s what I say when I’ve just farted in bed. – Andy Parsons
If making Trump president was the answer, I don’t think I’ll ever understand exactly what the question was. – Andy Zaltzman
If the USA was another country and they elected a man like Donald Trump, people would be calling for foreign military intervention. They would be discussing what is the best way to invade America. And it’s the northern border. It’s definitely the northern border. – Hari Kondabolu
If this is the problem then Trump is a fucking weird solution. It’s basically voting for the very embodiment of the thing people are protesting about. To be honest, I’m not sure there is any problem to which making Donald Trump president is the solution. – Andy Zaltzman
If you need me, I’ll be taking a shower for the next 4 years. – Ben Schwartz
If you re-arrange the letters in the name ‘Donald Trump’ you get ‘tan dump lord’. – Stephen Colbert
I’m not saying this is the end, but it might be a good idea to start gathering two of every animal. – Nick Doody
I’m puzzled by the people who hate Hillary, hate her SO much. I feel as if I have missed the first reel of the film where she burned down the orphanage or something, and the whole audience are very angry. And I just don’t know. But she seems fine to me. So it’s obviously a thing I’m not getting. – Hugh Laurie
Insiders say the meeting between Trump and Obama was “the most awkward we’ve seen since the last time Donald met a black person.” – Tweet from HaveIGotNewsForYou
Is it possible that we’ve all been groped by Trump but just didn’t feel it because of his tiny baby hands? – Stephen Colbert
It sounds like Trump’s voters are actually very progressive. They’ve elected the first openly crazy man to the most powerful office in the world, which is a step forward as they’ve broken the rubber padded ceiling. – from Have I Got News For You
It turns out only Donald Trump was in touch with the American people, though most of them against their will. – Triumph the Insult Comic Dog
It’s funny, comedians tell a joke and they get in trouble; Donald Trump says a terrible thing and means it, and he gets elected. I get it, though, Trump hit a vein. He hit the peak of political correctness, and he’s an antidote to all that. People are tired of being told they can’t say things, so he’s suddenly this poster boy for saying what’s on your mind, however terrible it is. And it’s going to go the other way. Trump’s going to get in, and suddenly there’s going to be 32 Jon Stewarts. It’s cyclical; people build their different armies. It was only recently that I realized that Trump actually could become president. I should have realized sooner. Think about it: We live a world where there are warnings on bottles of bleach — we have to tell people not to drink bleach. In that world, Trump can be president. And in a sense, you get what you deserve. That’s democracy, baby! It’s just a really odd thing to have this man who’s meant to be the most powerful man in the world act like a Twitter troll. – Ricky Gervais
It’s pronounced ‘huge’ not ‘uge.’ And here’s another one, it’s pronounced ‘I am fucking delusional’ not ‘I am running for president.’ – Seth MacFarlane
It’s very shrewd of Hillary to get a disease that Trump supporters can’t spell. – Angela Barnes, referring to when Hillary got pneumonia
It’s not gone unnoticed by various commentators in Remembrance week that all three leading powers that won the second world war are now controlled by right wing nationalists, while the nation that lost is now the beacon of liberal democracy. – Steve Punt
It’s not just that he’s the worst person for the job, he might be the worst mammal. – Frankie Boyle
It’s pretty clear who ruined America: white people. I guess ruining Brooklyn was just a dry run. The caucasian nation showed up in droves to vote for Trump, so I don’t want to hear a God-damn word about black voter turnout. How many times do we expect black people to build our country for us, white people? This is the worst thing we’ve ever…no, I’m sorry, that’s a very high bar. But holy shit! And don’t try to distance yourself from the bad apples and say “It’s not my fault, I didn’t vote for him! Hashtag not all white people…” Shush! Shush! SHUSH! If Muslims have to take responsibility for every member of THEIR community, so do we. – Samantha Bee
It’s so interesting to me how faux mystified everybody is at Donald Trump’s rise, his ascension, and it’s no mystery to me. There’s no mystery at all. At least twenty-five percent of this country has always been ignorant, racist, xenophobes, who are easily appealed to on an emotional level. That’s it. That’s always been the case. They didn’t just pop up once Obama was elected. All this bullshit American exceptionalism. It just didn’t turn sour…It’s great to watch, entertaining to, to watch the Republican Party and the right wing media try to retro actively undo what they themselves have been creating for the last 35 years. But it’s too late, it’s too late, that’s America’s id, it is out of the bottle, they are desperately trying to tap it back in, like “Get that thing back in…” But it’s out there and it’s fucking rampaging all over America. And you can’t spend every single day for seven and a half fucking years telling these people that you’re president is a communist Muslim from Kenya who hates America and wants to destroy it, and not expect this to be the result. What the fuck? Of course, of course people are pissed off. – David Cross
Keeping up with Trump revelations is exhausting. By late October, he’ll be caught whacking it outside a nunnery. There are not many places left for this thing to go that don’t involve kids or cannibalism. We wait, miserably, for the dong shot. – Matt Taibbi
Let me just say Mr President the Office has taken its toll on you. You look terrible Mr President. No, you do man. I mean, look at you. Your hair is so white it tried to punch me at a Trump rally. – Larry Wilmore, speaking to President Obama at a dinner event
Like everyone else I am horrified that people believed these bumper sticker slogans filled with hate he spewed…You say lock her up and you know something about the word email but what was in the emails? You have no clue. Well I’ll tell you if you were able to read this far through the holes in your sheet. They said nothing incriminating. Nothing…I cry for you people who fell for shiny hats and reality catch phrases. – Amy Schumer
Maybe Trump saw the start of ‘Gone With The Wind’ (1939) and pined for the good old days. Heck, maybe even ‘Birth Of A Nation’ (1915). Ahh, the good old days. – Mr Fish
Meanwhile, establishment figures get away with not paying taxes, and who caused that? Muslims did, by calling out tax avoidance schemes from mosques. We think they’re singing “Come to prayers and praise Allah” but they’re actually wailing “Form a subsidiary company and place its assets in Belize where there’s only a tax rate of two cents” in Arabic. – Mark Steel
Mike Pence is uniting the Republicans. Now Republicans who are afraid of Mexicans can unite with Republicans who are afraid of gay people. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog, at the RNC Convention, Aug 2016
Most people see being president as the end goal. Trump is like, “Now that I am president, I can finally be a successful business man.” – Trevor Noah
Never take business advice from a man who cannot sell vodka or steaks. – Stephen Colbert
Never tell Americans “You can’t be that stupid” because Americans will say “Don’t tell me how stupid I can be.” – Bill Maher
Normally a candidate is finished if he’s caught avoiding a parking fine, but Trump could be filmed trafficking children and he’d say, “That’s smart business. Hey, we’re teaching these kids the value of honest work.” Then he’d go up two points in the polls. He could admit his favourite way to relax was spending all Sunday walloping dwarves with a shovel, and be recorded heating up heroin on a naked Vladimir Putin’s arse, and his rallies would be even bigger, with crowds holding placards saying: “We all back the man who takes smack from a Russian crack”. The opinion of tens of millions of Americans appears to be: “He may be a sociopathic misogynist who would delight in destroying the planet, but he sends his emails from the right account so that’s the main thing.” – Mark Steel
On Aleppo he sounds like a fifth grader giving a book report on a book he never read. – Harlan Coben, referring to Trump’s response during one of the debates
On hearing about Trump being President, I’m being told that the Grand Canyon has committed suicide. It jumped into itself. – Stephen Colbert
One small step for a megalomaniac tycoon, one giant lurch to the right for mankind. – Andy Zaltzman
People are blaming the election on voters being stupid, which I think is very unfair to the racists. – Triumph the Insult Comic Dog
People look at the Statue of Liberty and see a proud symbol of our history as a nation of immigrants, a beacon of hope for people around the world. Donald looks at the Statue of Liberty and sees a 4, maybe a 5 if she loses the torch and tablet and changes her hair. – Hillary Clinton
People say “Hillary has a cough. Let’s elect a racist instead.” – Ed Burns, referring to Hillary getting pneumonia
People who voted from Trump said they wanted someone who would run America like a business. More and more though, it seems like voters got someone who is running America for his business. – Trevor Noah
Roger Ailes: will sexually harass for food. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog (Ailes was former head of Fox News)
Should we be giving Trump the nuclear code? Or should we just lie to him and tell him it’s 1234? – Rich Hall
Some people will vote for Trump because then they won’t have to worry about voting ever again. – Trevor Noah
That image [of Trump hugging an American flag] pretty much sums up the state of the Trump campaign. Clumsy, fake patriotism, and unwanted physical contact. – Seth Meyers
That’s a problem for a lot of Americans: They just don’t love the two choices. I mean, do you pick someone who’s under federal investigation for using a private email server? Or do you pick someone who called Mexicans rapists, claimed the president was born in Kenya, proposed banning an entire religion from entering the US, mocked a disabled reporter, said John McCain wasn’t a war hero because he was captured, attacked the parents of a fallen soldier, bragged about committing sexual assault, was accused by 12 women of committing sexual assault, said some of those women weren’t attractive for him to sexually assault, said more countries should get nukes, said that he would force the military to commit war crimes, said a judge was biased because his parents were Mexicans, said women should be punished for having abortions, incited violence at his rallies, called global warming a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese, called for his opponent to be jailed, declared bankruptcy six times, bragged about not paying income taxes, stiffed his contractors and employees, lost a billion dollars in one year, scammed customers at his fake university, bought a six-foot-tall painting of himself with money from his fake foundation, has a trial for fraud coming up in November, insulted an opponent’s looks, insulted an opponent’s wife’s looks, and bragged about grabbing women by the pussy? How do you choose? It’s so even. It’s so even. – Seth Meyers
The Christmas holidays are right around the corner and because Donald Trump is going to be president Santa can’t come to America anymore because he is a flying immigrant with a beard. – Trevor Noah
The Donald and I have a lot in common: We both live in New York, we both play golf, we both fantasize about his daughter. – Jeff Ross
The old sense of “presidential” meant magnanimous, patient and generous. The modern sense of presidential means being a corrupt, pussy-grabbing racist. – Stewart Lee
The only thing Donald Trump has done to liberate women is divorce them. – Hari Kondabolu
The person I feel sorry for in the last year is Silvio Berlusconi. Silvio Berlusconi must look at Donald Trump with the same amount of awe and raw envy that Ray Charles felt when Stevie Wonder came along. “He’s doing the same as me, only slightly better.” – Andrew Maxwell
The world has gone weird. It’s really difficult to know what to believe at the moment. The actual news reads like a spoof, while the spoof news is taken as real. It’s got to the point where people will believe stories from sources that are clearly absurd parodies of proper news, like the Onion, Click Hole, or the Daily Express…The real news is so surreally crazy that it’s hard to tell the difference any more. We have a reality show host as US president elect. Politics and entertainment finally seem to have combined into one terrifying mutant form. – from BBC Radio 4’s The Now Show
There have been Trump board games and phone contracts, credit cards, mattresses, deodorants, chocolate bars that look like gold bars, cologne sold only by Macy’s (‘Success by Trump’). He made $200 million over 14 seasons by being the star of The Apprentice, playing ‘Donald Trump’, the richest, tycooniest man in the world. Between 2005 and 2010, Trump made more than $40 million from thousands of students who enrolled in entrepreneurship classes at ‘Trump University’. Some say it was a scam. – Deborah Friedell
There’s a lot of things people don’t like about Hillary Clinton, but when she rubs you the wrong way, it’s just an expression. – Bill Maher
There’s two strands to propaganda…there’s this side of it that’s the ideology, that’s “We’re Americans, we’re exceptional.” I think the particular type of American exceptionalism is “We’re allowed to use force.” That’s the message you see in a lot of their entertainment. But there’s also distraction. So what you’re saying is there’s all this distraction so it’s okay. Michael Jackson had a lot of brilliant fun fair rides and petting zoos and stuff in the grounds of Neverland. That was the distraction. But there was something else more sinister going on. And with America we have the same thing, we have this “Yeah you can look over here, there’s some great movies from Pixar.” But at the same time, when it comes down to it, when we depict the military, or even just in our news, we are presenting an ideology that says “We’re exceptional and we’re allowed to do what we like.” – Frankie Boyle
They say ‘once you go black you never go back’. But they also say ‘orange is the new black’. If we go orange only time will tell if there is any going back, or anything to go back to. – Anon
This has been the biggest decision of maybe the last 50 years, maybe since the Second World War. I don’t know about you but anytime I hear that there is a big decision to be taken, I often think to myself I hope no Americans are involved in taking that decision. I hope no one from a country that made seven Fast And The Furious movies has any say in this. – Frankie Boyle
This is about the preservation of white supremacy. That’s what this is about. This is about white supremacy, that’s what got Donald Trump elected. And when I say white supremacy, I’m not talking about the KKK, because that’s not white supremacy, that’s white supremacy cos-play. Those are the comic book nerds of white supremacy…I’m talking about the white supremacy this country was founded on, because that’s what this country was built on. White supremacy and America go hand in hand. – Wyatt Cenac
This is the world we live in folks. We live in a world where a guy named Anthony Weiner can take a picture of his fundament and undermine democracy. It’s that simple to do. – Rich Hall
This is yet another attack from the liberal media on Donald Trump. How can he be a sexual predator? For a start, he’s not even Mexican…This is locker room stuff, guys. You know when you’ve been at the gym, and you’ve done a really hard work out, right…I mean, you don’t get a body like Donald Trump’s without working out. – Sarah Kendall
This must be bad. I’m a rich, white, straight, Anglo-Saxon male. And even I don’t feel safe. – Stephen Merchant
To be fair, Donald Trump doesn’t hate all women. It’s just the fat ones, the Mexican ones, the ones with unplanned pregnancies, the ones who don’t stick to the rules of beauty competitions, the ones who accuse him of sexual assault, and the ones who were married to Bill Clinton. – Frankie Boyle
Tonight we honor a self-made millionaire. He started with nothing, worked hard, and made a fortune…That man is Fred Trump, Donald’s dad. That’s right, for all his self-starter bullshit, he’s basically Jaden Smith with a comb-over. – Seth MacFarlane, from The Roast Of Donald Trump
Trump and Putin are such close friends that they finish each other’s elections. – Stephen Colbert
TRUMP BORED NOW…Donald Trump is bored of politics and wants to do something else now. The 70-year-old president-elect spent almost 20 minutes pretending to listen to a security briefing from the CIA, before telling the US Army to build a golf course on the moon. He said: “I get it, I’m the boss. Sure, Congress, whatever. But when do I get an eagle to perch on my arm? Anyway, I want to create the most beautiful golf course the moon has ever seen. Beautiful, just beautiful. You won’t believe it.” Drumming his fingers on his desk, he added: “Okay, what else? Can I pass a law today? Maybe annex some territory? Hey, imagine how impressed Putin would be if I defeated Isis this afternoon. Let’s do that. Yeah, we’re going to do that. We are going to do that.” – from The Daily Mash, 09 Nov 2016
Trump claims the elections are rigged. Yeah, I imagine a guy who runs beauty contests would know a thing or two about rigging elections. How come the winner of the Miss Universe contest is always from earth? – Rich Hall
Trump doesn’t make sense as a presidential candidate. He doesn’t even make sense as a human being. That’s because Donald Trump is not a person. Donald Trump is a feeling. It’s a thing that you feel. You just feel Trump. It just hits you. Like sometimes you’re mad and you’re upset and you want to curse somebody out. But sometimes you’re Trump and you’re just like “Fuck China”…He’s not a man. He’s a mood. – Ramy Youssef
Trump has launched an investigation into Bruce Springsteen’s background. He wants Springsteen to show proof that he was born in the USA. – Rich Hall
Trump has probably read the Bible only once but he’s had to swear on it about 40 times. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog
Trump is a smart business man. When kids rang his bell and yelled “trick or treat” Trump yelled “trick” and before they could grab any candy he declared bankruptcy. – Jay Leno
Trump is a very successful author. He’s written 15 books. They all start on chapter 11. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog
Trump is no intellectual. He’s not bringing Middlemarch to the toilet. If he had to jail with Stephen Hawking for a year, he wouldn’t learn a thing about physics. Hawking would come out on Day 365 talking about models and football. – Matt Taibbi
Trump is outraged that women have come forward making accusations. “How dare you claim I did the things I claim I do!” – Bill Maher
Trump is president. If you need me I’ll be on the moon, watching the world destroy itself. – Alex Adam
Trump represents so much of what we in Britain find worthy of satire about American culture: excessive wealth, deluded self-importance, bizarre cosmetic taste and the ability to talk for extended periods without actually saying anything at all. – Bob Moran
Trump sandwich…white bread…full of baloney…with Russian dressing and a small pickle and white American cheese…served by a Mexican. – restaurant sign
Trump told Africa to go back to Africa. – Trevor Noah
Trump Tower, also known as Chump Tower, is a tacky shit hole. It looks like something the Real Housewives Of New Jersey would pray towards. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog
Trump will be the first US president to have never held any elected office or served in any branch of the military. In fact, Donald Trump is so privileged that the first job he ever had to apply for was president of the United States. – Stephen Colbert
Trump: “How’s that Mexican mall going?” / “Mall? We thought you said wall.” / Trump: “No way, that’s harsh. Also how’s that Muslim band looking?” – from r/Jokes chwder21
Trump’s face is so bloated with a hairpiece, I’m surprised he’s not married to Kelly Preston pretending he’s not gay. – Whitney Cummings
Trump’s main business experience is getting idiots to do pointless tasks on a bullshit reality TV show. – from The Daily Mash
Trump’s party looks like America, if you only hang out in gun shops. – Jonathan Chait
Tweets: “Donald Trump couldn’t milk a cockroach.” Trump: “I am one of the greatest cockroach milkers of all time.” – Sarah Churchwell
We are used to candidates saying “the stakes are great” but not like this. – David Axelrod, referring to Trump Steaks
We finally get to see Trump’s plan to destroy ISIS, which I assume is to buy it and run it like one of his casinos. – Triumph the Insult Comic Dog
We need a president who can get high, knows how to relax and chill. The only time Trump gets stoned is in the fantasies of every Muslim. – Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, speaking to Gary Johnson, who wants to legalise smoking weed
Well! How times change. Thirteen years on from ousting Saddam Hussain, now it’s America being run by a man in a gold palace whose ministers are mostly his family. – Steve Punt
What America has essentially done is vote for a Halloween pumpkin. Orange, scary, hollow on the inside. Actually that’s a bit unfair on the pumpkin. Halloween pumpkins do often have at least a flicker of light. – Andy Zaltzman
What did shock me about the US election was the number of people who thought Hillary Clinton wasn’t fit to be president, only because she was a woman. A lot of women even thought this. How ridiculous is that? Such a view point is outdated, it’s offensive, and it’s just plain wrong. Because sisters, correct me if I’m wrong, given a chance, given an opportunity, Hillary Rodham Clinton, she could have bombed brown children just as well as any man president. – Tez Ilyas
What is he doing with that baseball cap on his head? Trump looks less like a candidate and more like he’s going into the world series of poker. What the hell is he doing? You can’t see his face. You know how in movies you can always tell the evil guy because his face is shrouded in a shadow. And every time we watch the movie we’re going “It’s obviously him! It’s obviously him!” And right now aliens are watching us and going “It’s obviously him! It’s obviously him!” – Trevor Noah
What was obvious early on was that Clinton’s plan was to get under Donald Trump’s skin, and I’ve got to say, she brought the orange peeler, because she got in there man. – Stephen Colbert, talking about the first presidential debate
What’s the difference between Trump and Islamic State? It’s a beard. – Frankie Boyle
Who elects Lex Luthor as president? Who thought that was a good idea? Who was watching Superman and thought Superman was the villain? – Hari Kondabolu
Who gets in a fight with a musical? How is it possible that Donald Trump can get along with Putin but not Hamilton? – Jimmy Kimmel
Who knew that going bankrupt in Atlantic City was a stepping stone to the Whitehouse? – Bill Maher
Why do Donald Trump’s suits fit so poorly? He talks about all his clothes are made in China. I don’t understand why they fit like this. They’re made for you and by you. Why would they fit so badly? I wouldn’t be shocked if his suits fit like that because he exaggerates his measurements to his tailors. “No! My arm is this long! It’s this long!” It doesn’t make sense. – Trevor Noah
With regards to Trump and immigration, the irony is that immigrants don’t enter America nearly as often as Trump enters immigrants. – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog
You really want Trump to be president, don’t you? Let me ask you something, when you watched the movie Philadelphia, did you cheer for the aids? – Triumph The Insult Comic Dog, speaking to a Trump supporter
Zombies Delay Apocalypse, View Trump Victory As Proof Americans Don’t Have Brains To Eat. – future headline from Bill Maher
Michael Che: I like Donald Trump. I think he’s a hilarious dude. He doesn’t want to be president. He wanted to win. He ran that campaign like “I’m not gonna let this nerd beat me.” He just…He didn’t want to lose to Nerd Lady. That’s it. That’s it. He doesn’t want to be president. You think he really wants to be president? You think he wants to have dinner with Mitt Romney? Think he wants to sit across from people that he doesn’t even know how to pronounce their country or name? He doesn’t want to do that. That’s why he’s on tour. He goes on tour immediately. As soon as he won, he’s like “Eh, let’s go back on the campaign trail. That stuff was fun. I liked that.”
Trevor Noah: You know what’s funny is that that was like where I was like “This guy’s a stand-up.”
Michael Che: Yeah. The crowd is addictive. He’s loyal to the crowd. When he goes into Washington and he goes in the White House, he’s the dumbest guy in the room. When he goes to Bathwater, Pennsylvania, he’s a genius! They love him. – Michael Che, interviewed by Trevor Noah
What better way to start 2017 than with 20 quotes from my favourite Muslim scholar Shaykh Hamza Yusuf.
Unfortunately Shaykh Hamza Yusuf is currently having a bit of a difficult time. He has become embroiled in a white-privilege-racist-type argument due to some comments he made recently related to police shootings in America. I am not really going to go into detail on this matter, suffice to say things may have been taken out of context, people may (I repeat, may) be overly sensitive regarding certain matters, and less sensitive regarding others. For more details please see here, here and here. Shaykh Hamza has since sincerely apologised. May Allah accept his apology, may Allah make this situation easy for him, and may Allah remind all of us that none of us is perfect.
Anyway, I thought it best to present another collection of his quotes to remind us all just what I think he really is all about, and that is to get us to think about Islam in ways perhaps we would never have done were it not for him. Controversy aside, please enjoy!
A Yemeni scholar said…if you want to call people in America to Islam then it is based upon a condition, that whoever you talk to, you see them as better than you…Instead of looking at people with contempt, you actually look at them with compassion. Instead of seeing them as your enemies, you see them as your potential friends and brothers. And that is what the Qur’an says…‘Perhaps God will put between those that you now feel animosity or enmity towards, put between you and them love, and Allah is all powerful, and Allah is forgiving and merciful’…They forget that the sahabah were all converts. The sahabah were all converts. They converted to Islam. They weren’t born in Islam, they were born in jahiliya. But the Prophet (S) had the patience, the love, the care, the concern, and the forbearance to put up with all their arrogance, with all their jahiliya, for 23 years until the entire Arabian peninsula was in a state of Islam. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf (the Qur’anic verse referred to is 60:7)
They don’t know that there are people out there waiting to hear the message of Islam. And if you don’t have mercy with them, how can you tell them? If you’re not compassionate with them, how do you know them? – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
Everybody wants justice. Good luck on the Day of Judgement. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
For Muslims the key to a truly good life is a contemplative life. There has to be meditation on reality and that meditation on reality by nature is going to engender good deeds. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, from A Conversation With Miroslav Volf And Hamza Yusuf
I would want that the rulers of the Muslim World, especially if you have very large populations of Muslims, that they recognize the authority of Islam in the state, especially for those things that directly affect people. The single most important aspect of the sharia after personal law of marriage and things like that are the commercial laws. If you look at all Islamic books on Islamic law, the vast majority of them relate to commercial law. And those commercial laws, if they were implemented today, we would have far more just societies, because much of it is the prohibition of these commercial transactions that exploit people. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, from an interview in The Cairo Review, Fall 2015
In order to realize a dream you need to wake up and work. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
Love is a seed that’s nurtured and it is nurtured with knowledge of the beloved, the more you know about the beloved the more you love the beloved. – Shayk Hamza Yusuf
Nobody will enter paradise unless you come with a sound heart. And what is a sound heart? It’s not having animosity or hatred towards other people. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, from a lecture entitled Be Grateful For Ramadan
One of the things Fakhr al-Din al-Razi says that one of the ways that Shaytaan destroys people is he inspires their poets to say foul things. And then the young people grow up memorizing a lot of foul things. And he said this in the 13th century. So their young people grow up memorizing a lot of foul things and so their minds are polluted from a very early age right. They lose their purity. – Shayk Hamza Yusuf
Some rabbis passed by Jesus and they cursed him, and he replied ‘Peace be upon you.’ And somebody said to him ‘They curse you and you greet them?’ And Jesus replied ‘Vessels can only pour forth what they contain.’ – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
Somebody said to me in Morocco “How strange it is to see an American become a Muslim.” And I said “That’s not strange at all. What’s strange is the whole world doesn’t become Muslim. That’s what strange to me. Not that an American can become Muslim, there’s nothing strange about that all. What’s strange is the world has yet to recognise who this man was, sal-lal-la-hu-alay-he-wa-salam, and what he offers humanity. That is truly ghareeb.” – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
The good opinion of Allah and the good opinion of the servants of Allah…this is something we have lost in our community…we often assume the worst about people…if someone is late, the assumption is they couldn’t care less about the appointment…the Prophet (S) said that one of the hallmarks of believers is that they look for excuses for people, and the munafiq is always looking to find faults in people…so it is something central to belief that people who believe have a good opinion of other people. – adapted from a speech by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
The Qur’an is constantly repeating the reminder in different ways…it is diversifying the ways in which Allah is speaking to His creation. If you actually look at the Qur’an, the message is not complicated, the message is the same message, it keeps coming: taqwa, ‘ubudu-rabbak, aqeemus-salaah. It is basic things that Allah is reminding you and then giving you stories of how to get into that state of remembrance with Allah sub-haana-wata-aala. That is what the Qur’an is doing, it is reminding human beings to come back to their Lord. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, from a lecture called Miracles Of The Quran (taqwa is developing God consciousness, ‘ubudu-rabbak is worshipping your Lord, and aqeemus-salaah is establishing your regular prayers)
The real catalyst was a car accident when I was 17, which was a head-on collision. That forced me to confront mortality in a way that I hadn’t done before that. Everybody will confront mortality at a certain point in their life but sometimes it takes much longer than others. It happened to me very early on. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, from an interview in The Cairo Review, Fall 2015
The soul can only be brought back to life by recognising why it was created, for what it was created, and then setting out and striving to achieve that goal. – Sheikh Hamza Yusuf
We are people who are supposed to be moral people. We are not people who are supposed to simply talk Islam. Instead we should live Islam, talk Islam, eat Islam, drink Islam, sleep Islam, and die Islam. And that’s all there is. And there is nothing else in this world, for this world is a place of submission to Allah. – Sheikh Hamza Yusuf
We as Muslims have failed to convey anything of his character. Do you think non-Muslims can see the miracle of Qur’an? You say Qur’an is a miracle. How do you know? Most of you don’t know. The majority of you don’t know. Even the Arabs today don’t know…You can write something and make it sound like the Qur’an and recite it and he’ll think it’s from the Qur’an. Because they don’t know. So the Arabs themselves don’t know. So how do we know? ‘By their fruits ye shall know them.’ This is what Jesus said…’By their fruits ye shall know them.’ And this is when Islam becomes real, when people are willing to actually live Islam, when people are willing to live the character of the Messenger of Allah (S), when they are willing to take on the akhlaaq that the Prophet (S) said…’I was only sent to perfect noble character.’…That is why we have to re-instill the centrality of the Messenger of Allah in our lives, because this is what is missing in the ummah. We shout and we scream and yet he never shouted and screamed. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
We don’t doubt Islam, but we should doubt our understanding of Islam. Because to have certainty about your understanding is to arrogate to yourself some divine knowledge you don’t have. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
With all respect to our Christian brethren, we believe this is our faith, that Islam is the fulfilment of Christian tradition. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
You cannot be blinded by hatred. We are not people of hatred. We are people that look with the eye of compassion, because when we see people who are lost we want to see them guided. – Shaykh Hamza Yusuf