Since Wednesday I’ve been in my own little world of stage and screen magic, participating in the William Inge Theatre Festival in Independence, Kansas. Every so often I’ve been able to poke my head out and see what’s going on:
Rush Limbaugh worked out a plea deal for his drug-buying and doctor-shopping: if he’s a good boy and keeps up his rehab he won’t end up in the joint. Gee, isn’t it nice that the man who advocates jail time for drug dealers gets to basically walk — the $30,000 fine plus costs is pocket change — and he gets to wave his hypocrisy in front of the whole world. If he was just a regular pill-popping dope dealer on the street in Palm Beach, he’d be doing hard time in the Florida pen. But it’s okay if you’re a Republican big shot. I don’t know if President Bush can sing — I really don’t want to find out, either — but I can imagine that the musical metaphors are flying now that he’s come out against a Spanish-language version of The Star-Spangled Banner. That was, as they say in Spanish, una tonteria tremenda, and he probably did it just to satisfy the anti-immgration know-nothings on the right and the Minutemen who probably think that the last two words of the national anthem are “Play Ball!” (By the way, is the song as hard to sing in Spanish as it is in English?) If the president thought that he was going to win over the Hispanic vote for the Republicans this fall, pienso que él es muy erróneo. Not to mention estupido. It turns out that Randy “Duke” Cunningham wasn’t just scoring on land deals. Wow, and I thought the only politicians that had sex scandals were Democrats. Well, I guess he didn’t get the clarifying memo that said when the Republicans wanted to take over the House, he thought they meant some other kind of house…[rimshot]
So here I am in a small town in Kansas immersed in the fantasy world of theatre and learning all about how playwrights must learn to confront the audience with ideas that will change their view of the world and themselves, sometimes push the envelope hard with hard choices and deal with taboo subjects. But when you take a look around at what’s really going on out there in the real world, we playwrights and theatre types got nothin’ on the hypocrites, the foolish, the xenophobes, and the sleazy everyday spoogemongers on the front page of the paper.