In the second episode of What’s Trending, a new Web series from CBS News, George Takei joined Chris Hardwick (Ministry of Laughs, Web Soup) and host Shira Lazar in a discussion on trending news stories for the week.
Topics of discussion included Lady Gaga, the rapture that didn’t happen, the tornado in Joplin, Missouri, planking, the zombie apocalypse and the “don’t say gay” Tennessee bill.
Seventeen-year-old social activist Devon Hicks appeared live on What’s Trending to discuss why he started the #itsokaytosaygay hashtag. Hicks is not gay himself, but found it disturbing to see how gays in his school were treated, and he was also appalled by the Tennessee “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Takei explained his “It’s OK to be Takei” campaign. “The way you fight it [bigotry] is with humor,” he said. “That’s a powerful weapon. And since my surname Takei rhymes with gay, I’ve suggested that we replace the use of the word gay…with Takei, as in Takei marriage.”
Another trending story concerned planking, the newest craze where a person lies face down, with arms close to the body, in unusual public spaces and has the deed photographed. The term planking was coined in Australia, and the fad is now world-wide.
Hardwick discussed the recent case where planker Acton Beale fell to his death while trying to plank on a seventh floor balcony in Australia. He then proceeded to show George Takei what planking was, climbing up on the couch behind Takei to demonstrate how to properly plank.