Real Wisconsin News has made it official policy to extend our thoughts and prayers to you at this difficult time. We know you are suffering, and we realize that a real discussion might help you to cope with how you feel, but we would rather offer thoughts and prayers. The thoughts have now moved on to a top ten list of amazing photos we never knew existed. The prayers were more of a metaphor from the start. Both were offered because that is what will make you believe you are special to us, so please allow us to reiterate our desire to submit our thoughts and prayers to you and your loved ones.
Bob Costas may or may not have coined the use of thoughts and prayers to express his deepest sympathy after the 1989 San Francisco earthquake. However, by the mid 1990s, thoughts and prayers were being sent out by all local and national media, as well as nearly 9 in 10 politicians. Bill Clinton, after realizing that saying he felt others' pain was seen as disingenuous, began offering thoughts and prayers. By 2001, the United States was so entrenched in offering thoughts and prayers that no other form of sympathy would be offered until a little known newscaster a decade later said that he knew his thoughts and prayers were not enough to offer in the wake of yet another school shooting. The media was briefly thrown into turmoil as it looked for something more appropriate following monthly disasters requiring thoughts and prayers. However, no replacement has been articulated since the initial shockwave and indictment.
Donald Trump will, no doubt, be expected to grieve with Americans when people are maimed or killed. As a candidate who won based on negating political correctness, many have asked whether he will continue using thoughts and prayers to empathize with his fellow Americans. There is a movement in the NBA, where names are often shortened, to abbreviate thoughts and prayers to TnP, as in, "Hey, man, I heard your cousin died. TnP, DJ." With Trump's preference for Twitter over press conferences, it's possible Americans will see something like this:
School shooting was a horrible disaster. Teachers need guns. #TnP to all. I'm having steak for dinner #Trumprules
Until Trump does shake up how we offer condolences, Real Wisconsin News would like to offer our continuous thoughts and prayers for the following situations affecting your lives:
Natural disasters, cancer or disease, financial troubles, death of a loved one, getting shot, being bullied, erectile dysfunction, deployed soldiers, accidents, general pain, divorce, and your choice of any other heartbreaking situation for which we sincerely offer our thoughts and prayers.
We, by rule, do not offer thoughts or prayers to those who are foreigners (unless attacked by terrorists or natural disaster), those who are incarcerated, or those who cause the situation for which we are offering said thoughts and prayers.