Friday, April 28, 2006

Al Franken came to town

It was worth arranging for day care, rescheduling my class and getting in line an hour early. Al Franken came to do his Air America radio show live from the local Latchis Theater and Lois got us tickets (free). A quick google search of Al is a perfect way to understand just why I like him so much. You'll find endless conservative rants and abusive comments about how he is "what's wrong with America". You won't find a single reasoned argument for why this would be so. Al Franken drives conservatives crazy by taking them seriously but inquiring into their thinking (what there is of it). Unlike drug-addled Rush and Sponge-fantasy O'Reilly, Franken doesn't rant so much as ask questions and (as in the title of his book) highlight the lies that we're being fed daily, all in a low key sort of grumbly way. We love him.

The theater was filled to capacity. When guest Bernie Sanders (Vermont's single congressman who is currently running to fill one of our two Senate seats) entered the theater he got a standing ovation. Vermont LOVES Bernie -- an outspoken, direct and funny politician. One of the few non-millionaire members of Congress. After sitting through three hours of the show I felt, for the first time in ages, a sense of hope about the direction of our country. There are people out there who realize just how dangerously far down a foolish path we've been led. It was worth spending a gloriously sunny warm Friday afternoon inside a theater to get that sense of hope and to sit with 750 people (of our town of 12,000) cheering the idea that goverment should be competent, open, honest and work to the good of the people rather than the corporations. From inside an old theater we got a much needed breath of fresh air.


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