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Trump, with his plans to build a Mexican border wall and ban travel from particular majority-Muslim countries, has been very vociferous about keeping out what some Americans might call “aliens.” These facts were not lost on any of the jokesters who wanted to comment on the TRAPPIST news.
Trump just signed an executive order to build a wall along the Kuiper Belt blocking illegal Trappist-1 aliens from entering our solar system
— Joe Faraci (@jofar) February 22, 2017
BREAKING NEWS: President Trump signs executive order barring aliens from TRAPPIST-1 from entering earth’s atmosphere for ten parsecs.
— Speaker_Oak (@scott_duchesne) February 22, 2017
BREAKING NEWS: Trump signs Executive Order banning aliens from these 7 planets from entering US:
TRAPPIST-1b – 1h
— Rick Kempinski (@rickkemp202) February 22, 2017
Trump proposes border wall around Trappist-1. To keep out aliens.
— Joseph Palmer (@Joseph_Palmer) February 22, 2017
Trump is going to sign a ban against TRAPPIST-1 claiming it inhabits “dangerous, unknown aliens.” https://t.co/iUSACtyWMV
— Jacob Loser (@jacobjloser) February 22, 2017
There are literally hundreds of tweets making the same crack about how Trump wants to keep foreigners, probably even space foreigners, out of the U.S. And there are dozens more on the flip side of that: New habitable planets present the possibility of leaving Earth to escape Trump and the consequences of his presidency.
OK, no they don’t. It’s a virtual certainty that Trump—and maybe all of us?—will be dead before we figure out how to get there. But the TRAPPIST-1 planets at least provide the possibility of joking about escape.
Maybe I can move to Trappist-1e if trump doesn’t get impeached 😟
— jamal (@Jayymalx) February 22, 2017
Of all the things I’ve ever done
The best is move to Trappist 1
Or rather to the planets there
Where Trump has not yet fouled the air
— Kit Winter (@KitWinter) February 22, 2017
Incredible how close we are to discovering life on other planets. Can I move to Trappist-1? Pretty sure there’s no Trump there
— casper (@benoitbomb) February 22, 2017
TRAPPIST-1 contains fantastic possibilities for novel scientific discovery. Novel jokes, though, seem to be altogether lacking.
Jay Hathaway is a former senior writer who specialized in internet memes and weird online culture. He previously served as the Daily Dot’s news editor, was a staff writer at Gawker, and edited the classic websites Urlesque and Download Squad. His work has also appeared on nymag.com, suicidegirls.com, and the Morning News.