It’s not often that a government agency makes a move that both sides of the political spectrum can appreciate, but one federal department just rolled out a major change that pretty much everyone can get behind: The USDA has announced that tumbleweed should no longer be used as a symbol of rural desolation and should instead be thought of as a cool ball created by nature that people can have a blast with.
Huh. When you think about it, that actually makes a lot of sense!
In a move that could completely upend the way bleak, barren landscapes are depicted in media, the USDA released a statement earlier today declaring that it just doesn’t make sense to use tumbleweed as the go-to imagery for ghost towns and wastelands anymore considering that tumbleweed is actually incredibly neat and fun. Unlike most plants, which just sit there doing nothing like idiots, tumbleweed is a naturally occurring beach ball that’s basically begging to be played with, constantly just rolling about every which way and looking like it’s having a blast.
“It makes absolutely zero sense why cartoons and movies have for so long used tumbleweed as a symbol of desolation considering it’s pretty much the only plant that zooms around on its own and provides toy-like functionality,” said the USDA in its statement. “It’s honestly kind of a miracle. The wind fashions a perfectly functional ball out of sticks and stuff and offers it up for the taking. Where else do you see something like that? Flowers don’t do that. Trees don’t do that. No other plant offers a self-contained party like tumbleweed does. People should be going apeshit for it.”
The USDA also announced the launch of a multi-million-dollar campaign to change public perception of tumbleweed, part of which includes offering tax credits to film and TV production companies that depict tumbleweed in a fun and exciting manner rather than just as a depressing set piece. Additionally, the campaign aims to rebrand corn as the plant kingdom’s main symbol of boredom, painting the vegetable in a negative light through TV commercials with the tagline, “Unlike tumbleweed, you can’t hit a stalk of corn back and forth like a volleyball with your buddies, and that’s because corn is the most boring plant in the world.”
Wow—what a powerful message!
While it remains to be seen whether the public will embrace tumbleweed as a symbol of fun, the USDA is hoping it won’t be long before we see a change of heart towards tumbleweed in TV and movies, and people start seeing tumbleweed as the endless source of fun and games that it truly is.