Sunday, March 4, 2007

Life and Politics as a form of entertainment

I lived in Hawaii for five years. At the time, Hawaii was the only state that had "politics as a form of entertainment". We had stuff like:
  • the Chief of Police being indicted for ticket fixing (in a place where the majority of the state's 4M population lives on one side of one island, where there's only one road on the entire island where the speed limit is greater than 35, parking tickets are serious business)
  • the Honolulu mayor arrested for instigating a fight onboard a flight from the mainland
  • Emelda Marcos displaying her dead husband and saying "Living in America is like living in jail" (which would cause the local shock jocks to organize drive-by shoeings)
  • the Oral Majority (in response to the Moral Majority)
Nowadays, it's everywhere:
  • the SCO trial
  • Julie Amera (this is getting out of hand)(I'm still predicting that the Amero's sue the school system. Maybe after sentencing/appeals)
  • PETA's Holocaust Your Plate tour (the World Headquarters is here in Va. Beach) (not to forget their freezer or the euthenasia
  • The Edgar Cayce Foundation offering to improve your spiritual love life (their headquartered here also)
  • Pat Robertson threatening people or telling Floridians that they brought it on themselves or just talking directly to God (yeah, CBN is here too)
  • a local vice mayor periodically at odds with local government and with police (he once threatened the entire department).
  • some interesting attempts at emminent domain
  • the Malvo sniper trials (one in Chesapeake, one in Va Beach)
  • Missy Elliot's spat with the homeowner's association, and her revenge (the house across the street)
  • the Beach's Friendship Patrol (we don't like the t-shirt you're wearing and stop cussing!)
  • Misc. Bike Week antics
  • Gay Pride protests at the Founders Inn
  • ... and other assorted silliness

Yeah, some of that was on the national level but a lot of that was local. You've probably got some pretty good examples yourself. Me? The only way I can watch it is to think of it as entertainment. It's the only way to stay sane in a world where you run the risk of getting ticketed for distracted walking.