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Yes, Virginia

Note: If you’d like to produce this play, on stage or in a class — please email me and ask permission. It will be granted, but I’d really like to know about it.

Copyright 2004, by Samuel M. Post. Note: If you’d like to produce this play, on stage or in a class — please email me and ask permission. It will be granted, but I’d really like to know about it.

Characters
Virginia, an eight year old girl
Fox News TV Anchor

SCENE 1

An eight year old girl sits at a desk, writing.
GIRL: Dear Fox News. I am eight years old. Some of my little friends say the President is retarded. Papa says, if you see it on Fox news, it’s so. Please tell me the truth. Is President Bush retarded? Signed…Virginia.

SCENE 2

A TV ANCHOR warmly addresses the camera. He reads the reply gently, speaking to the little girl.

ANCHOR: Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by skepticism. They believe only what they see.

Yes, Virginia, the President does seem retarded. He speaks in a slow, strange way and repeats himself. His endearing ignorance exists as certainly as Florida voters and Iraqi military might. Alas! how dreary would be our President if there were no ignorance to laugh at! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike phrases, no redundancy, no proud, baffled smirks to make tolerable our existence. We should have no enjoyment except in boring intellect and curiosity. The eternal goofiness which fills the President of the United States would be extinguished.

The President retarded! You might as well not believe in television. You might get your papa to hire men to check his grades in school. But even if you found low grades, dyslexia, and cheating, what would that prove? Nobody sees the President think, but that is no sign he doesn’t do it. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor adults can see. Did you ever see his smart ass remarks dancing along the cable in route to your television set? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders that are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You can tear away his memorized remarks and his teleprompter machine, and you’ll find a clever, intelligent man. Not even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived could tear his smarts away. When you push aside the staff that tells him what to say, you’ll view not a retard but a man who loves not knowing. Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else more fun to watch on TV than a smart President who acts like an imbecile.

The President retarded! No way! He’s ignorant — on purpose — because it’s cool! A hundred years from now, Virginia –nay, 10 times a hundred years from now, he will continue to make glad the hearts of our viewers.

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