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From the Onion to the Times of London… And Back Again to be added soon

Jô Soares, a well known Comedian turned political commentator (think Al Franken but not in the Senate) in Brazil, used to do a recurring skit about a former general who woke up from a coma. The rib was, the general had gone into the coma while the country was still ruled by a military junta. Anyway, the general would see stories in the news about former political prisoners turned into leading politicians, or former military personnel on trial, etc., and he’d demand to have his feeding tubes removed. To get the jokes, of course, you not only have to understand Portuguese but also have some understanding of Brazilian politics from about 1970 to the mid-1980s.

I believe this clip showed the first appearance of the character. (Sorry – I can’t find it in English.)

I am not sure whether to provide a trigger warning or not. The title of Soares’ show, at the time, translates as “Hurray for the Fat Guy.”

Anyway, for a moment I felt like Soares’ general. That moment came when I read this article in the Times of London, which of course is widely viewed as having a center-right orientation:

Edinburgh University is investigating a law student over claims that he mocked Islamic State on social media and put “minority students at risk and in a state of panic and fear”.

An official at the university who conducted a preliminary investigation allegedly accused the third-year law student of having committed a “hate crime” even though there has been no criminal investigation by the police.

The law student says that the complaint against him came in retaliation after he highlighted that a former leader of an ethnic minority student group at the university had referred to black men as “trash”.

Robbie Travers, 21, acknowledged that his social media comments were highly opinionated but he denied that they were racist or in any way incited violence.

The article continues:

One of his Facebook postings came after the US air force dropped a “massive ordnance air bomb” on an Isis stronghold in Afghanistan in April.

Mr Travers wrote: “Excellent news that the US administration and Trump ordered an accurate strike on an IS network of tunnels in Afghanistan.

“I’m glad we could bring these barbarians a step closer to collecting their 72 virgins.”

Esme Allman, a second-year history student and the former black and ethnic minority convenor of the university’s students’ association, filed a complaint to the university, saying: “Not only do I believe this behaviour to be in breach of the student code of conduct, but his decision to target the BME Liberation Group at the University of Edinburgh, and how he has chosen to do so, puts minority students at risk and in a state of panic and fear while attending the University of Edinburgh.”

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