Panen Et Circenses

After the first day of the confirmation hearings on Brett Kavanaugh to be on the Supreme Court, I imagine this might be how the conversation around the Kavanaugh’s dinner table goes.

Dad (Brett):  Well girls, you got to attend daddy’s confirmation hearing this morning. What did you think?

Liza:  I hated it. There were all those rude people jumping up and down hollering.

Dad:  Those were just the Democrats on the committee play acting for the TV cameras.

Liza:  No, I mean those people in the back of the room.

Dad:  Honey, they were sad, sad people who think my being on the Supreme Court is the end of the world.

Liza: But Dad, you’ve been a judge for years and the world hasn’t ended.

Margaret:  I think they are just losers!

Mom (Ashley):  Honey, you know we don’t speak about people that way. If we thought about people like that do you think your Dad and I would volunteer to feed the homeless at the soup kitchen?

Margaret:  Noooo. But who let them in?

Dad:  Everyone in the audience had a ticket which they got from the Senators on the Judiciary Committee.

Margaret:  Didn’t the Senators know they were going to act up?

Dad:  Of course they did, sweetie. They wanted them to act up so it would play on TV news.

Liza:  What about that bald guy with glasses who charged at you with his hand out?

Dad:  I found out he was Mr. Guttenberg. He wanted a photo op.

Liza:  The guy who did the Bible?

Dad:  No, Liza. This Mr. Guttenberg lost his daughter when that deranged boy went on the killing spree down in that Florida high school. He blames the gun and not the people who ignored the boy’s threats and cries for help. People like the FBI and the school system.

Liza:  That’s crazy.

Dad:  I agree that it seems crazy. However, you have to understand that sometimes when people lose a child they have a hard time dealing with their grief. Some people channel that grief and put it towards a solution so it never happens again and some like Mr. Guttenberg just want to blame an object.

Margaret:  Dad, what I don’t understand is why the Democrat Senators were acting up and also why they wanted those crazy people to yell at you?

Dad:  You’ve started to read about the Romans in your history class, haven’t you?

Margaret:  Yeah.

Dad:  The Roman emperors used to put on pageants called circuses where they had lions and gladiators and Christians. It wasn’t pretty. They’d set the lions on the Christians and the gladiators were trained to kill one another. It got pretty gory.

Liza/Margaret (simultaneously):  Ewwww.


Dad:  I agree. These Roman emperors thought these circuses would entertain “the people”. In exchange, so long as they were entertained and also got fed the emperor stayed in power. It is called bread and circuses. Politicians nowadays don’t actually set lions on Christians but they do promise them everything but the moon and hold hearings like my confirmation hearing. They do it to placate their supporters who they think are stupid enough to believe it.

Margaret:  Nobody’s that stupid!

Dad:  Unfortunately, honey there are some people that are.

Liza:  Do you have to go back tomorrow?

Dad:  Yes and then two more days after that.

Liza:  Yuck.

Mom:  I agree, yuck, and now with that I’m changing the subject (mumbling – even though Cory Booker and Kamala Harris need a good west Texas horse whipping)

Liza/Margaret:  Mom!

Dad:  Yes, dear.


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