Friday, July 10, 2015

'Scuse me while I bury Paul

Stop press! Everything we hold dear is under attack from an unexpected quarter, according to the morning's No. 4 story at the Fair 'n' Balanced Network:

Either this is a brilliant marketing campaign or McDonald's has egg on its face.

Or, when in doubt, bet the null: (c), neither of the above.

Customers have complained that a talking minions toy included in recent Happy Meals uses curse words.

Some news organizations really shouldn't play those friendly games of chance by themselves. On the bright side, the minion doesn't seem to be saying "Islam is the light" this time. But what is it up to?

Concerned Parent said her 5-year-old daughter, Daughter, opened up the minion toy from her McDonald's Happy Meal while she was sitting in the back seat of their car  and what they heard immediately got their attention.

Parent said she heard, "What the F-," (expletive) followed by "All be damned." The little girl's grandmother thought Daughter said it at first. "She said, 'no that wasn't me, that's the minion, that's the toy,'" Parent told FOX 13.

Language learning is a wonderful thing. Could we hypothesize that a standard-issue 5-year-old who has learned how to say "What the fuck?" has probably also learned how to blame it on Barbie, her little brother or Muggles the kitten? You can enjoy the video clip for yourself, but I wouldn't call the audible part of that any closer to "All be damned" (whatever that means) than to "yabba-dabba-doo."

People see what they want to see and hear what they want to hear. Journalism won't fix that by telling people that they didn't really see their preferred deity on a tortilla chip, or that their kids will stumble into sex and drugs perfectly well without the help of coded messages from the entertainment industry. But we can -- you know, thank the caller politely and hang up, thus saving space and time for things that really did happen.

There's actually some free advice for Fox News in general here. If you really want those BENGHAZI!!!!! exclusives to drive your election coverage, you should think about cultivating an aura of enlightened skepticism. If your fondness for made-up stories starts to form a pattern, readers might notice.

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