Sunday, June 15, 2008

Out of Iowa Blog

Dampness Abounds
I got an email from Steve Baker, Duck’s Breath Mystery Theatre’s manager, reminding those of us in the Ducks that we had scheduled a reunion performance in Iowa City (where we first got together in 1975) last Saturday. We canceled it, thinking that we’d probably do better staging a show there in the fall.

Well, good thing for us. We would have been doing our show in scuba gear. Man alive. My heart goes out to Iowa Citizens. I hope you are starting to dry out. When we swing by this fall, maybe we’ll donate some sandbags.

Meanwhile, back in California…
Kern County has decided to stop performing marriages altogether, the logic being (I guess) that if same sex couples want to get married, by golly, NOBODY’s going to get married.

And on the op-ed page of the San Francisco Chronicle…
One of the oddest editorials I have ever read, by Douglas W. Kmiec, who is chairman and professor of constitutional law at Pepperdine University. He wants California to make an amendment to its constitution, defining marriage as a union between a man and woman. His reasoning?

Man/woman marriage “… promotes the orderly continuation of the species; 2) avoids the uncertainties of single-gender effects on children…; and 3) takes respectful account of the difficulties of accommodating religious freedom that arise subsequent to the legal acceptance of same-sex marriage.”

Well. 1) Many married people are childless. Are they therefore not really married? 2) What uncertainties of single-gender effects on children is he talking about? Are they any different or more numerous than uncertainties generated by single parents, abusive parents, negligent parents, or non-existent parents? 3) How does same-sex marriage affect religious freedom, beyond the fact that certain religious people don’t approve of it?

But okay, the professor is marshalling his oh-so reasonable arguments to move forward to his conclusion, which is “…giving state approval to non-procreative marriage cannot be denied as a contributing cause to the decline of families with natural children.” Can’t argue with that. If you don’t bear children, then you don’t bear children. Q.E.D.

Then: “The push for artificial wombs and the genetic manipulation of intelligence already peppers scientific literature – a push that would no doubt grow….” He claims that this trend is “…of interest for 20-30 per cent of same-sex couples.”

And: “When carefully assessed, the acquisition of unnatural reproductive means often advances the interests of the very affluent through a libertarian exercise that would threaten all hope of democratic equality.”

Those elitist gays are going to destroy democracy with a bombardment of unnatural babies.

Finally: “…[T]he claim that there is a universal right to marry regardless of gender becomes a frightening ally of a claimed universal right to access to genetically engineered children.”

If they are not stopped, in other words, single-gender marriages will give rise to a whole new master race of cloned mutant children. And if you’re losing sleep over that prospect, well, I guess I’m glad you don’t have anything important to worry about – like sandbag shortages.

This weekend…
Friday night I emceed the Evening of Song, an occasional event which Joshua Brody (my musical collaborator, and prince among men) puts together. It consists of 20 to 30 people each singing a song, generally around a theme (this time it was “Memory”). It’s loads of fun, and it was an embarrassment of riches this time.

We had close to forty singers, which was great (including the Child Bride, who acquitted hersefl wonderfully with a Tom Lehrer tune). NOBODY dropped out. It led to the program being very long, however. And it took place at venue (a church) which has agreed not to have events run later than 11 p.m. The poor fellow who books these events was hovering around my shoulder as the clock went to 11, and there were still eight singers to go.

Luckily, they all got their moment, no fire marshals came, no neighbors called the cops complaining about the noise, a good time was had by all, and the event provided at least anecdotal evidence that maybe people are ready to sing again.

President Bush
Met with the Pope. He told the Pope, “You’re looking good.” The Pope replied, "Back at you." Don't I wish!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, I'm not worrying so much about the cloned mutant children as about Pepperdine University, now!

Comic caption: "Dear, let's stop trying to "keep up with the Joneses", and just settle for being "approved by the State"

1:50 PM  

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