#ThoughtsAndPrayers, From Sincere Condolence to Cynical Meme

“My hashtag #ThoughtsAndPrayers go out to the victims of [insert tragedy here]”.


This is a common statement that’s gone from genuine condolence to a cynical meme that’s funny, but not in a “ha-ha” kinda way. The phrase ‘thoughts and prayers’ has transformed into acerbic, critical political commentary. This can especially be seen in light of the two recent mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio over this past weekend, where the hashtag quickly became a worldwide trending topic. Dr. Nasya Bahfen, Coordinator for Masters in Communication (Journalism Innovation) at La Trobe University is on the line to speak on how the expression has taken a sarcastic turn for reflexive inaction.

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