Facebook has reduced the entire range of human emotion to five emoticons: Love, laughter, sorrow, anger, and wonder (wow!). That may be a good thing, if it helps us spend less time wallowing in our feelings. Or it may be a bad thing, further diluting the vibrancy of personal experience.
In any event, here is a sample from this week’s headlines in emoji:
Wow: A British man legally changed his name to Bacon Double Cheeseburger. “I have no regrets at all,” he said, despite the elevated blood-alcohol level that contributed to his decision. The sun, it seems, continues to set on the British Empire.
HaHa: In the most recent Republican debate, Donald Trump declared, “I don’t repeat myself. I don’t repeat myself,” securing his reputation as a straight talker among supporters unfamiliar with the word irony. CNN counted at least 20 times the billionaire reality TV star turned presidential frontrunner repeated himself before the evening was over. But they’re Democrats and not to be trusted.
Love: Melissa Click, the Mizzou professor who tried to suppress the First Amendment while creating a “safe-zone” for students last year, has been fired. Maybe there is hope for the future of education after all.
Angry: Apple explained its refusal to comply with a court order to break the encryption on a terrorist phone as absolutely necessary in order to protect us from terrorism. It would be more comforting if FBI were directing its efforts against ISIS and not against Apple.
Sad: Attempting to mock the Motion Picture Academy for marginalizing blacks, Chris Rock managed to insult Asians. Anyone remember the old SNL skit when Dan Aykroyd took the Oscar mic as Jimmy Carter to rebuke the film industry for using the Academy Awards as a forum to honor achievement in motion pictures?