Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux

Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux is a writing fellow at the Prospect. Her email is ameliatd@prospect.org

Recent Articles

Daily Meme: Who's Afraid of Stephen Colbert?

Yesterday, CBS announced that Stephen Colbert , the flag-waving, eagle-loving faux-conservative comedian, will replace David Letterman as the next host of the Late Show . Although Colbert made his name on Comedy Central by impersonating a right-wing pundit, he'll play it straight when he gets to the big time. Some people are questioning whether plain ol' Stephen Colbert will be as funny as his Republican alter ego. ( Others wondered why Colbert would take such a big risk, when he's got a good thing going already.) But as The New York Times notes, he has strayed from political comedy before— sort of . Colbert's ascension to the vaunted late-night seat riled up a lot of people. Rush Limbaugh, in particular, did not hold back , decreeing that CBS was "declaring war on the heartland of America" by hiring Colbert. Another right-wing writer compared Colbert's Republican persona to actual blackface , what he calls "Conservativeface." "His show is about pure hatred for conservatives in the...

Daily Meme: Yep, He's Toast

There's nothing so satisfying as a good dose of political schadenfreude, which is being served up on a platter this week by Louisiana Representative Vance McAllister. Grainy images of McAllister locked in a passionate embrace with Melissa Hixon Peacock, a married aide, last December are making the rounds online. Peacock's husband, Heath, is fueling the tabloid-esque furor by making the rounds on cable TV. “I’m just freaking devastated by the whole deal, man. I loved my wife so much. I cannot believe this. I cannot freaking believe it. I feel like I’m going to wake up here in a minute and this is all going to be a bad nightmare,” he told CNN Tuesday . He says that he and his wife, who have a six-year-old son, are getting a divorce. It certainly doesn't help that McAllister, a married father of five who joined Congress last November in a special election, campaigned as a staunch Christian conservative who promised to bring his values to Washington. He made his mark early, by inviting...

Fetal Abnormalities: The Next Minefield in the Abortion Wars?

AP Images/Steve Helber
I n January, two legislators in Virginia’s House of Delegates introduced a bill that should have been uncontroversial. The bulk of HB 612 created new rules for genetic counselors practicing in the state, who had been unregulated and unlicensed. The roughly 95 genetic counselors already working in the state, screening pregnant women and adults for serious inheritable conditions, favored the law, which they saw as an extra layer of patient protection. The bill was so innocuous that by the time it passed in the House in late February, no one seemed to have noticed that it contained a conscience clause so sweeping that could allow counselors to refuse to provide fetal test results for conditions like Down Syndrome or Tay-Sachs Disease—the information patients came to them for in the first place—if they believed it could cause a woman to terminate her pregnancy. Originally, the bill had only created a loophole for genetic counselors who want to refrain from offering information about...

Daily Meme: The Obamacare Victory Dance Begins

In a triumphant ceremony in the Rose Garden yesterday afternoon , President Obama announced that the White House's last-minute push to enroll seven million people in private health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act was successful. Sign-ups even slightly exceeded the administration's goal, coming in at 7.1 million newly insured Americans. This was despite the fact that the beleaguered Obamacare website crashed again on Monday , causing much consternation for health insurance procrastinators. White House officials called the rollercoaster ride of the past few days "shit-tastic," a term which Politico helpfully dissects here . Who's responsible for this unlikely victory? Hollywood actors, of course! Back in February, Bradley Cooper met with Obama aide Valerie Jarrett to figure out how to get more people to sign up. Less than a month later, Obama appeared on Between Two Ferns with Cooper's buddy and Hangover co-star, Zack Galafinakis. Regardless of who's responsible, it's...

Why "Noah" Shouldn’t Get a Happy Ending

O ver the past month, faced with a torrent of criticism from Christians in the U.S. and Muslims abroad who say his interpretation of the Bible as blasphemous, the director Darren Aronofsky has taken to calling his new movie, Noah , a midrash, after the stories that ancient Jewish sages told to bulk up sparse passages in the Hebrew Bible. It’s an apt descriptor for a film that turns a few hundred lines of scripture where the protagonist never speaks into a 140-minute meditation on the folly of humankind. In keeping with the Jewish tradition of layering commentary upon commentary, Aronofsky and his co-writer, Ari Handel, scoured Jewish apocryphal texts and rabbinic midrashim for detail about Noah’s world. Often, these interpretations give snippets of backstory, making the Biblical patriarchs less mysterious and more human. One famous midrash explains why Moses—who tells God he is “slow of speech and of tongue”—was such a clumsy talker. (The answer: As part of an elaborate test from...

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