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Though the segment blew up on Twitter because The Atlantic’s David Frum described President Trump as so “physically capable” that he couldn’t “pick up a ball,” the arguably more ridiculous part of that Sunday’s so-called “Reliable Sources” segment was when fill-in host John Avlon led the panel in a mini-freak-out about memes. Together, they claimed memes were responsible for voter suppression and were all part of a Russia election interference scheme.
In praising his New York Times guest, Taylor Lorenz for her work writing about the “Meme Wars,” Avlon made his outlandish claim. “And this, for folks who don’t know, is the new, new thing that's going to be really driving a lot of narratives and conversation and voter suppression efforts to some extent in this upcoming election,” he proclaimed without evidence.
After having to explain what a meme was to the audience, Lorenz moved on the denouncing them a particularly subversive form of evil spawned by Russia. “Well, memes use humor to introduce new ideas and often these ideas can be very insidious and problematic. Memes in 2016 were used throughout Facebook to spread misinformation. So, you know, basically Russian interference,” she declared.