The Onion Has a Blistering Take on Congress' Idea of a Social Safety Net

The latest foray by The Onion into the world of planning satirizes the American tendency to prioritize highway spending over housing and the homeless.

1 minute read

July 17, 2020, 8:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Freeway Underpass Encampment

Joshua Rainey Photography / Shutterstock

The Onion's satire takes aim at a painful subject that's all-too real for millions of Americans struggling to pay rent and facing the prospect of eviction during a public health crisis, as Congress seems mostly content with inaction and the status quo. 

In an effort to help ease the economic burden of the coronavirus pandemic, Congress passed a new bill Wednesday that approved $3 trillion in funding for a 35-mile overpass capable of housing millions of recently evicted U.S. citizens.

In the United States, the status quo is cars, clearly. So, really, the joke here isn't about what Congress might do or do notsomething like Nero fiddling seems most apt most days. This joke satire depends on what Congress has already done—and what we as Americans and planners have already done. This is gallows humor in its purest form and at its largest scale.


Thursday, July 16, 2020 in The Onion

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