Jokes aside, here are the 6 Michelle Wolf quotes from the WHCD we should be talking about.

Comedian, screenwriter, and activist Michelle Wolf hosted the 2018 White House Correspondents' Association dinner. And, well, she didn't hold back.

Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for Netflix.

The dinner hosts journalists, comedians, and politicians from around the nation. The president is usually in the audience, but Donald Trump opted not to attend for the second year in a row.


The impressive, raunchy, and downright unapologetic Wolf used the momentous opportunity to mesh comedy and reality to shed a light on the serious, problematic situations happening in America right now. Many pundits have referred to her performance as "controversial," and it's become the talk of American media.

Some people were genuinely amused.

Others — not so much.

Many pointed out the hypocrisy of the controversy.

And Wolf? Well, she took it all in stride.

Whether your liked Wolf's jokes or not, there's no doubt that she spoke a lot of truth and sparked some deep thoughts about very real things taking place right now. Here were some of the most poignant issues she pointed out:

1. Congress can take forever to accomplish things.

"Just a reminder to everyone. I'm here to make jokes. I have no agenda. I'm not trying to get anything accomplished, so everyone that's here from Congress, you should feel right at home."

American government, particularly Congress, has long been criticized for failure to pass commonsense laws, move away from corruption and greed in the system, and foster a bipartisan government that functions successfully. In the past few months, those struggles have largely been amplified as Americans continue to grow weary with their congresspeople.

Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for Netflix.

2. White male privilege is a real thing when it comes to sexual assault.

"I would drag him here myself, but it turns out the president of the United States is the one pussy you're not allowed to grab."

When a recording of Trump boasting about grabbing women by their vaginas went viral, most assumed he was no longer a viable candidate.

But, alas, "locker room talk" seemed to not matter to a large number of voters. Even as disturbing allegations continue to emerge about Trump's sexual misconduct, he has remained relatively unscathed. He still sits in the most powerful office with no signs of being removed for his actions.

3. The media's role in putting Trump where he is — and keeping him there.

"He has helped you sell your papers and your books and your TV. You helped create this monster, and now you are profiting from him."

The media — from both sides of the political spectrum — played a huge role in letting Trump and his accompanying racist, misogynistic behavior get this far. Though complicated, media and the organizations that help circulate media directly and indirectly played large roles in the outcome of the 2016 election and the current state of affairs. Journalists have a responsibility to deliver credible, valuable information, and Wolf's dig was a poignant reminder of that.

Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for Netflix.

4. Roy Moore's underage (and non-criminalized) sexual crimes exist.

"I’m 32, which is a weird age — 10 years too young to host this event and 20 years too old for Roy Moore."

Roy Moore served as a chief justice of the Supreme Court of Alabama. He was also the Republican nominee in the 2017 special election in Alabama to fill Jeff Sessions' vacated seat, a race he lost to candidate Doug Jones after allegations surfaced of sexual assault against underage women. Still supported by a vast majority of the GOP, Moore managed to be a contending candidate and only lost by a small margin — a confusing fact considering some of his constituents' avowed dedication to "family values."

Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for Netflix.

5. The absurd argument to arm teachers instead of giving them the actual teaching tools they need.

"He wants to give teachers guns, and I support that because then they can sell them for things they need like supplies."

Teachers have been protesting for weeks all across the United States. Decades-old books, desks that are falling apart, and the inability to afford school supplies for hundreds of students are just some of the issues that underpaid teachers face across the country. Instead of working to create additional funding to address these issues, the Trump administration used the Parkland school shooting as a call for arming teachers with guns. It's ludicrous, it's frustrating, and it flies in the face of the legitimate concerns teachers have been voicing for years.

6. The water crisis in Flint, Michigan, is still happening.

"Flint still doesn't have clean water."

In a mic-dropping moment, Wolf wrapped up her remarks declaring that Flint still doesn't have clean water. A city filled predominantly with people of color, Flint continues to struggle with a water crisis. Lead contamination in the water there began four years ago, but the corroded pipes won't be fully replaced until at least 2020 — and the government has ceased the bottled water program that many people there were relying on.

Wolf's remarks were bold, wild, and shockingly on-point. Regardless of what you think of her delivery, she spoke candidly about things we should all think a bit more about.

Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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Simon & Garfunkel's song "Bridge Over Troubled Water" has been covered by more than 50 different musical artists, from Aretha Franklin to Elvis Presley to Willie Nelson. It's a timeless classic that taps into the universal struggle of feeling down and the comfort of having someone to lift us up. It's beloved for its soothing melody and cathartic lyrics, and after a year of pandemic challenges, it's perhaps more poignant now than ever.

A few years a go, American singer-songwriter Yebba Smith shared a solo a capella version of a part of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," in which she just casually sits and sings it on a bed. It's an impressive rendition on its own, highlighting Yebba's soulful, effortless voice.

But British singer Jacob Collier recently added his own layered harmony tracks to it, taking the performance to a whole other level.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less