Palmer Haasch


Haasch: Turning to TikTok for memes is an inevitability

TikTok is a Vine-adjacent video platform that allows users to film themselves lip-syncing to songs in short, 15-second clips, which can be shared with other users. Although the app launched in 2016, it only came into its heyday after TikTok’s parent company, the Beijing-based Bytedance, acquired, another app that allowed users to share lip-sync videos. However, along with the merger came’s largely female, U.S.-based teenage user base. 

Haasch: Despite attacks on their civil rights, transgender and intersex people still exist

Last week, The New York Times broke news of a memo from the Department of Health and Human Services. In the memo, the department argued in favor of a unilateral definition of gender determined “on a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable.” The department furthered in the memo that individuals would be defined as strictly male or female, gender would be determined by “immutable biological traits” (i.e., genitalia and other sex characteristics), and gender was unchangeable unless proven otherwise by genetic evidence. 

Haasch: Transphobia on painted bridge panel mocks real social issues

The University of Minnesota College Republican’s bridge panel was vandalized this past Friday night or Saturday morning for the third year in a row. As a seasoned paint the bridge veteran and senior at the University, I am exactly the opposite of surprised. In the past three years — from basically the 2016 elections that made President Donald Trump the head of state onward — UMNCR has filled its panels with generally incendiary rhetoric. 

Haasch: Film, literature, anime bros — please, god, stop

He comes in many forms and across a range of disciplines, bearing unsolicited recommendations and explanations. He loves to talk to you about authors you’ve heard of too many times. He loves to pick your brain only to posit an opinion that clearly demonstrates that he was just waiting for his turn to speak. He probably loves Quentin Tarantino and David Foster Wallace and wants to talk with you about "Attack on Titan." 

Haasch: Cartoons are great and merit your indulgence

Last Friday, I stayed up until 6 a.m. to be one of the first to watch the first nine episodes of "The Dragon Prince," a new Netflix original cartoon. This is about as on-brand as it gets for me. I’ve spent the vast majority of my life immersed in cartoons like the timeless "Avatar: The Last Airbender" and "The Legend of Korra." 

Haasch: We have no choice but to embrace surreal internet humor

Last week, my Twitter feed was a hellscape of animations of the horrifying, banal nursery rhyme, "Johny Johny Yes Papa." The song — and its seemingly endless set of iterations — follows Johny, a sneaky kid who eats sugar, lies to his parents and gets away with it every time.