January 25, 2005

Inaugural Gall

[Editors’ note: The Vermilion sent an embedded reporter along with top SGA members to witness the 2005 Inaugural Ceremony firsthand. The following is a transcript of a live exchange between on-the-scene reporter Ian McGibboney and Vermilion Editor-In-Chief Dan Murphy on Jan. 20.]

“This is Ian McGibboney reporting live from the 55th Presidential Inauguration. Dan, the pomp and circumstance here are unbelievable. They spared no expense. This is a ceremony fit for a king!”

“What are some of the perks of this year’s inauguration, Ian?”

“The festivities have been raging all week. Notable highlights included the youth concert organized by Jenna and Barbara Bush, featuring Hilary Duff and JoJo. Their sugary and inoffensive sets went over well with this crowd. And today’s swearing-in ceremony was a huge deal, though they renamed it the ‘oathing-in’ ceremony because they don’t like to use the word ‘swear’ around the children. Lots of activities filled the spaces in between, but they were open only to those with specific credentials.”

“Like what?”

“Oil lobbyists, for example, got to participate in the sack race and peasant-shooting competition. There were events of this magnitude all week. At a cost of $40 million, this ceremony is easily the most expensive of its kind in American history.”

“What did Bush speak about in his address, Ian?”

“The importance of making sure we have enough funding for our troops and for Homeland Security.”

“Indeed, his inauguration has been in the headlines for its strict security and its lack of tolerance for protesters.”

“Absolutely, Dan. Event organizers have taken every possible measure to ensure the utmost protection for the president, his staff, members of Congress and visiting dignitaries.”

“What kind of protection does that entail?”

“I can’t really tell. From here, it’s pretty tough to see anything.”

“Where are you right now, Ian?”

“Fairfax, Virginia.”

“Fairfax? Shouldn’t you be somewhere closer to D.C.?”

“This is the designated ‘free-speech zone.’ The people here are those who have been determined by the Secret Service to be a threat of disturbance to the conduction of the festivities. I have one here beside me at this moment, Jennifer Sanders. Jennifer, how do you feel about watching the inauguration from this far away?”

“It’s kind of sad, really. I’m just glad they put a TV out here with a live Fox News feed so that we can watch the whole thing! I really dig that Dubya.”

“Wait a minute…you LIKE him? So how come they herded you way out here?”

“I think it was because I publicly questioned his tax cuts to the rich. I thought he should have given them even more. So they deemed me a threat and placed me out here.”

“They really jump on administration critics, don’t they?”

“Well, it’s all for the best. I feel so much safer after everything that’s happened in the past four years!”

“Ian, if I may cut in, where are the liberals? Surely they would turn out in force today.”

“They’re all in Massachusetts, Dan. On order of the Democratic Party.”

“Massachusetts? Why would the Democrats agree to such a spineless arrangement?”

“Actually, it was a compassionate deal brokered by the Republicans. The Democrats had offered to stand in California, as penance for losing in 2004.”

“So Ian, what is the Democrats’ plan for the next four years?”

“No official word yet, Dan. But I would speculate that the fetal position is heavily involved.”

“That’s all the time we have for today. Thanks, Ian.”

“God bless you, Dan. It’s the law!”

This report has been cleared for release by the Committee for Republican Accuracy and Partisanship, Jan. 26, 2005.


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