Flashing #53: Post-911 Fiction

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I always loved how people in small towns, who's lives where in no real danger from terrorism EVER, and who hated New Yorkers with a PASSION, where always the first ones to point to 9-11 as a rallying cry for neoconservatism. So I drafted this little play up, hope you dig it.

More Flashing at the main page.

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Small-Town Con

Shep: …and I known Bobby all my life. He’s a good man and he’s a good dentist. Hell, he fixed up my root canal just right about two weeks ago. There wasn’t a bit of pain. But I’ve been mayor of this town for the past twenty years and we’ve been doing all right. Hell, we’ve been doing better and better every year. If we were in a hole, I’d vote for Bobby. But we ain’t, we’re all doing good, and if it ain’t broke, why bother trying to fix it?

Phil: Thanks, Shep. Bobby – your opening remarks.

Bobby: Thanks. I…I find it funny that my opponent is standing in front of you all and saying “nothing’s broken.” Think about that. Nothing. Is. Broken. I can think of a couple of things that are broken, Shep. How’s about…oh…I don’t know…the Twin Towers. They seem pretty broken to me. And how about the Pentagon, Shep? Is the Pentagon “not broken?” How about Iraq? And Iran? And North Korea and Syria and Afghanistan? Are they “not broken” as well, Shep?

Shep: Uh…Bobby…we usually don’t…

Bobby: I know what you usually do and don’t do, Shep. What you usually do is ignore the threats all around us. The people who are trying to murder our children and rape our wives and convert us to Muslim and take away our freedoms.

Shep: It’s Islam, Bobby.

Bobby: What is?

Shep: Islam – “convert us to Islam” – you can’t convert someone to Muslim.

Bobby: And how would you know that, Shep?

Phil: Bobby! You are out off line. This is a small town election here and there’s nothing…

Bobby: Small towns. The backbone of America. The people who bleed red. And white. And blue. The people who Al Qaeda would simply love to cripple and maim and convert to Muslim. You don’t think they’re planning it? You don’t think some Mohammed is loading up trucks with ANFO and C4, planning to drive them right into churches on Christmas Eve all across the American heartland? Think again, my friends. He is our enemy, and he wants every single one of us dead.

Shep: Phil?

Phil: I think this debate’s a bit out of order…

Bobby: The world is out of order and Shep would rather put his head in the sand than deal with it.

Audience Member #1: Bobby – I don’t think you’re making much sense. I mean, my neighbor Jimmy is a Muslim and I don’t think…

Bobby: Ah, yes. And where is Jimmy tonight? Why wouldn’t Jimmy want to take part in this debate – this staple of American Democracy. Is it because Jimmy hates democracy?

Shep: Now, Bobby, if you’re suggesting…

Bobby: I’m not suggesting anything. I’m just presenting the facts. Fact number 1: Jimmy is not taking part in this sacred right of democracy. Fact number 2: Terrorists hate democracy. Fact number 3: People who hate democracy want to kill Americans. Fact number 4: Al Qaeda wants to kill Americans. Fact number 5: Muslims are in Al Qaeda. Fact number 6: Jimmy is a Muslim. Those are the facts.

Shep: And what about fact number 7: Jimmy has been our friend and neighbor for the past forty years?

Bobby: Every heard of sleeper agents, Shep? Guess not – you just care about pig races and keeping bugs off the crops. You’re living in September 10th, Shep – that must be a wonderful place.

Shep: Now hold on a minute, I fought in Vietnam for Christ’s sake, Bobby, and you can’t tell me nothing about fighting or war or…

Audience Member #2: Weren’t you a cook, Shep?

Audience Member #3: Yeah, I don’t know what a cook would know about fighting terrorists.

Shep: Need I remind you that Bobby is a dentist.

Bobby: And you’re saying being a mayor is better than being a dentist? That’s a pretty New York-elitist statement.

Audience Member #4: Yeah! Do you think you’re better than me because I’m a farmer?

Audience Member #5: Hell, I’m on disability – I must be real trash to you, Shep.

Shep: What? I don’t know…

Audience Member #6: How’re you gonna keep us safe from Muslims, Bobby?

Phil: I’d like to hear that one, myself.

Shep: Me too.

Bobby: Answer to that one’s pretty easy, folks: by supporting our troops and supporting our president.

Shep: That’s ridiculous!

Bobby: Supporting our troops is ridiculous, Shep?

Shep: What? No, that’s not what I meant and you…

Bobby: Hmph. Looks like we got a traitor amongst our own government. You’re probably Muslim yourself, ain’t ya?

Shep: I don’t know what…

Phil: Come to think of it, Shep, you weren’t at Church this week.

Shep: I had a stomach virus!

Bobby: Or you were activated.

Audience Member #7: I saw him talking to Jimmy yesterday!

Bobby: Well, well – talking to the only Muslim in town. On the week you missed church. Ain’t that suspicious?

Shep: Jimmy was fixing my boiler!

Bobby: Uh huh.

Shep: This is ridiculous! Are you people crazy? How could you actually be buying into this?

Phil: Shep, in all due respect, I think we need to call an end to this debate and open up an investigation. I think I speak for the town when I say some of your acquaintances and some of the things you said here today have been mighty suspect.

Audience Member #8: Hey! I heard on the news that Bin Laden might be hiding in some small American town!

Bobby: Hmph. Don’t say?

Shep: Are you honestly…

Phil: This meeting is adjourned! Sheriff – will you please arrest Shep until we get some more information about what he may or may not know involving the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden.

Shep: Phil, come on now…

Audience Member #8: And don’t forget Jimmy!

Phil: That’s right…sheriff, when you’re done with Shep can you please go find Jimmy and bring him in for questioning.

Sheriff: No problem, Phil. I can’t wait to get my hands on that scumbag to be honest with you.

Phil: I understand your anger, sheriff. You think you know a guy…

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