This video is a spoof commercial for the non-existent “Thoughts and Prayers App”. It’s clearly making fun of people who send their “thoughts and prayers” when something bad happens, rather than doing something that might actually help people. This spoof is awesome.
Fortunately, I don’t know many people who would publicly post banal “thoughts and prayers” messages on social media. I like to think that they all know how silly and empty it is, but it’s also true that there’s been a lot of public mockery of people who do “send thoughts and prayers”.
If people want to do something to actually help—donate money, food, clothes, blood, or whatever else is actually needed—and THEN “send thoughts and prayers”, that’s one thing. But far too many people “send thoughts and prayers” precisely so they don’t have to do anything.
The spoof’s talk about overseas events is sharply on point, too: There are mass killings and natural disasters overseas all the time, but on social media people mainly “send thoughts and prayers” to people in Europe or the USA.
The video was apparently shared early on Reddit (where some of the folks use salty language…), where one user posted:
This app sounds great and all, but one major thing is lacking. If it's a country that I have been to, I would really want the TP app to automatically pull this information from my previous FB posts so that I can simultaneously remind people that I have been to said country. That way people can know that I am sophisticated in addition to being a good person. Something like: "I can't believe I was just in Paris only a year ago. Such a lovely city with beautiful people. My thoughts and prayers go out to all affected by this tragedy. #vivelafrance #bestcroissants #worldtraveler"This led other uses to chime in with similar ways people can insert themselves into tragedies. This was my favourite: "My thoughts and prayers are with Paris, especially since I visited the Eiffel Tower once and ate a crepe."
“Is there a religion filter?” another user asked. “Can TP alert my friends and family when I believe a mass tragedy is the work of God's vengeance?”
All of these sarcastic comments and the spoof itself are a welcome glow of sunshine and breeze of oxygen. There’s so much people can do to make the world a better place, and also to ease the suffering of others when tragedy strikes. But posting banal comments on social media does neither. Maybe this mockery will help them realise that.
But the way the world is, if this App really existed, I bet it would be top of the charts, and the “TP Premium” would make millions. We’re all lucky it doesn’t really exist.