Item 14 of today’s meeting of the Irvine Valley College Academic Senate is:
Resolution in Support of the US Constitution and Academic FreedomWhat’s that all about?
Yesterday, I learned that this resolution concerns
Well, that’s a stupid name. Whatever.
Evidently, some have concerns re the “general guidelines” for the event. Here are the 8 guidelines. Please note guidelines 4 and 5 [the entire document appears at the end of this post]:
1. Performers MUST attend the auditions and any scheduled rehearsals
2. Acts must have at least one IVC student present
3. Must adhere to the time limit of 3 minutes (maximum)
4. No knives, fire, guns or other dangerous or inappropriate performances (i.e., nudity, vulgar lyrics…etc)
5. No lip-syncing
6. Acts must provide their own recorded music in C.D. format only
7. You can audition for a maximum of two acts
8. Must sign emergency information form to participate
Nevertheless, yesterday, as one of the Senators for my School, I dutifully informed my colleagues of this issue.
That opened the flood gates of snidery and snarkery, Humanities style.
Here are some of their remarks:
I am very concerned with how this will affect my plan to lip-sink a performance of the Vagina Monologues wearing nothing but my two shoulder holsters and guns. Darn. I guess my fire-eating routine is also out.
And what about my act? – lip-syncing to Allen Ginsberg’s recording of his “vulgar” poem “Howl” whilst covering myself in free-trade dark chocolate?And then there’s this doozy:
I had planned to demonstrate my dog’s amazing facility with profanity, demonstrated by her instantaneous disappearance at the utterance of any curse word, even in the mildest tones, as shown just a few minutes ago when I dropped a twelve-ounce T-bone on the kitchen floor. (The other dogs, of course, rushed to see what food item had just become available.)
If that didn’t work out, I planned to recite Chaucer’s “The Miller’s Tale” in its original middle English (then the “vulgar tongue”), while firing flaming arrows at a blindfolded audience volunteer. I guess I will now have to leave out the flaming arrows (anyone who has seen me practice archery will know that I am no danger to anyone but myself), and read Chaucer in translation.
Thus ever must art suffer at the hands of a bourgeois audience.Stay tuned.
UPDATE [7:00 p.m.]: at today's senate meeting, senate leadership explained that the resolution originated in concerns that certain recent actions/decisions at the college look worrisomely like the beginning of slippage down a slippery slope toward serious threats to free speech and Academic Freedom. In the end, the group strongly supported the resolution, though there were two or three who voted against it, in one instance because the resolution referred too broadly to the U.S. Constitution.