Monday, January 19, 2009

A Modest Proposal:

John Aravoisis and La Figa and others are reporting that Bishop Robinson's invocation was cut from the HBO special--he apparently gave it ten minutes before the Obamas and the invited guests were seated. That is bizarre and, to my mind, indicates that it was planned that way because you never give the invocation before all the guests are there, do you? You have been called in to bless the proceedings, not perform the *&^% sound check. When you remember that the entire programme went like clockwork and had been organized down to the last moment its clear that Obama's handlers, the producers, and the HBO staff had decided to eliminate controversy (which, mercifully, was reinstated by Bono mentioning "Palestininian Dreams" and Pete (g-d bless him) Seeger singing against private property and mentioning the Relief Office.) by simply dropping the Bishop in before the cameras were officially rolling.

Much as I loved the inaugural concert I was a bit stunned to discover that there are only two races in this country. My limited grasp of American history would definitely have inclined me to think that Native Americans, Chinese Americans, Indian Americans (ok, I'll give you Kal Pen), Muslim Americans and a lot of other hyphenated Americans were also part of America's conflicted racial past and her post racial future. Still, I'm down with the Ebony and Ivory theme they chose for this Inaugural. However, on the question of gay and straight they really muffed it. My very modest proposal is that the Obama transition and Inaugural team make up for it by offering us a similar "let two or three flowers bloom" moment at the actual Inaugural. Bishop Robinson and Pastor Warren can be given dueling microphones and asked to perform cheek to cheek. And the one that refuses to share the stage with the other? Goes home the sorehead we know he is.


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