Democracy Burlesque has been performing as a political satire group for over 3 years now. This blog is here for members of Democracy Burlesque to talk about their experiences, for guests of the group to visit and share thoughts, and for the general public to learn about and get a taste of some of the funniest political satire happening in the Midwest - - or anywhere.
Learning to Laugh? Laugh about Learning at our new show: Hot for Teacher! Its an edgy sketch comedy show about Education, Mis-education and Re-Education. Its a great new season of laughs in a great new location at Mary's Attic in the heart of Andersonville. Proceeds benefit Open Books Ltd. promoting literacy in Chicago and Beyond!
The show begins at 7:30PM $15 General Admission (includes one drink of your choice from the bar) $10 Students and Designated Drivers
You may be aware of chain e-mails out there that espouse fear and spread misinformation. The Radical Moderate has posted a response to such things with a chain e-mail intended to speak to anyone who sees him/herself as a reasonable and rational person and hopefully cause people to not take everything in their inbox at face value.
While its not riotously funny, we at Democracy Burlesque feel we should help encourage rational discourse through every means we have available to us.
If you like what The Radical Moderate has to say, simply cut and paste the text below into an e-mail and send it off to everyone you know who cares about America's political future.
A letter to the people of the United States from The Radical Moderate:
The times we live in are rife with uncertainty, fear and anger. We are polarized in ways never seen before in our nation’s history and many of us wish to act but are stifled by the noise of others who do not have our best interests in mind or we find ourselves mislead and misdirected in ways which add to the cacophony.
There are few simple answers to the problems we face and complex issues will always be a part of our lives. But there are some simple suggestions I’d like for people to keep in mind while coping with the trails of living in the modern age:
It’s a medical fact that you need oxygen going to the brain in order to think clearly. So whenever you find yourself confronted with difficulties, take a moment to breathe deeply before you begin deciding what to do.
2.)Believe in the inherent goodwill of your fellow Americans –
Remember that despite the fact that we often find ourselves in disagreement, generally if someone is taking the time to argue with you, then it is likely they care about our future as much as you do. Give those you disagree with the respect you think you deserve and refrain from speaking out/yelling/shouting in blind anger or frustration. The Golden rule applies as does “Love your enemy” (Matt 5:43-48).
3.)Know that Love lifts us up where we belong-
Joe Cocker’s song may be cheesy, but it’s a nice and arguably true sentiment.From love comes all those qualities in people we hold dear and it is only when we rise above the muck and the mire of the conflicts we wish to cope with that we can find successful resolutions. If we come to a discussion from a place of love and respect for ourselves and our neighbors we will create a constructive environment wherein progress can be made.
4.)Remember: the information age is also the misinformation age –
Just about everyone agrees that the modern media has biases. These biases are based on making money/staying in business and as such, they tend to report in ways which sell papers, magazines, ad-space, air-time etc.Our populace is politically polarized right now so its understandable that the media would be as well. So, take everything you hear from any ‘news source’ with a grain of salt (especially e-mail forwards like this one). If you hear something outrageous or inflammatory… its possible you are hearing a partial story, a half-truth or in some cases an outright piece of misinformation.
Despite the ease with which news travels, we must be more mindful to do more research on our own and work harder to ensure we get the whole story on important issues.This is especially important when hearing ‘exciting’/inflammatory news which you agree with (remember that preaching to the choir pays the news purveyors’ bills). If you believe strongly about an issue, make sure you have your facts straight so you can discuss it rather than just rant. Generally its good to check news sites/blogs with opposing viewpoints and see where they overlap in their coverage to find the facts in the matter.
Here are a few fact checking sites that may help as well
5.)Disregard statements intended to induce fear and anger –
Frank Herbert’s take on fear is rather accurate and eloquent and his advice valuable.
I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
Anger is not wholly bad when it is arises as controlled righteous indignation but when it is reactionary in nature and uncontrolled, it becomes damaging and harmful to everyone within its influence. So, be wary of messages which call upon you to be angry since anger can cloud your judgment and lead you to believe false or inaccurate statements.
6.)Remember: Not every voice you hear has your best interests in mind-
Just because you are presented with a seemingly reasonable point of view doesn’t mean your best interests are in the minds of those presenting that viewpoint. In a democracy such as ours, policy is made by attempting to meet the needs of the voters as identified by those voters.The only way an organization of any kind can hold sway over public policy is to get voters to support or allow their point of view to affect lawmakers. Lobbyists can only do so much when the electorate is paying attention. Too often… voters find themselves voting for policy which goes against their own best interests because they listen to organizations who have their own interests in mind. So, before you support any organization’s assertions on public policy, consider what is required for you and your family to benefit from the policies they are asking you to support. Will the policies they espouse help you and those you care about as you are?Or do you need to meet certain requirements or make certain sacrifices to benefit from these policies and are those requirements/sacrifices possible to meet or worth it to you and those you love?
7.)Remember that with Diversity comes strength–
Mother nature shows us time and time again that the more diverse an ecosystem is, the more stable it is and the more likely it is to survive calamity.America is the great ‘melting pot’ or as Edward James Olmos has famously described it, a salad bowl where each ingredient maintains its identity while adding to the flavor of the whole. The diversity of cultures and ideas in our country is unparalleled. While this can lead to conflict, it also is a great source of strength to us. So it behooves us to make an effort to appreciate the varying perspectives available to us if we wish to make use of that strength and not fall victim to calamity due to shortsightedness.
8.)Get the facts straight before you enter a debate-
I was recently reminded by a friend that a key part of a debate is searching for arguments that support a particular viewpoint. That means if your goal is simply to enter a debate on aparticular side, your research into the issue at hand will be faulty and your ‘facts’ will be one sided and possibly inaccurate. It would be best for all of us if we all took a scientific approach to issues before entering into debate about them – Meaning we would all start with an unbiased search for answers and examine the facts surrounding an issue before deciding which course of action to support. If everyone did this we’d have fewer and more meaningful debates.
9.)Moderation is hard but worth it-
Whether it comes to a healthy diet, work or play, moderation is key to maintaining one’s overall health, happiness and sanity.
Plato describes Moderation as the ability to control desires and to be the master of one’s self.
If that is true then a Moderate is a truly independent person, able to balance their passions with reason, honesty, factual information and self control.It has nothing to do with compromising for the sake of satisfying others or “seeking the middle.” Quite the opposite, it means choosing to take the hard road of unbiased consideration of thefacts and multiple points of view, weighing the varying outcomes before choosing the best approach to each individual issue rather than making decisions based on a preconceived viewpoint, platform or pure idealism.
Being a Radical Moderate boils down to choosing what is the best and most effective course of action and having the courage to advocate it strongly regardless of the source of the proposal and who agrees or disagrees with it… which often means making enemies of ideologues.
10.)Its up to you what happens next–
If you agree with what I’ve said here and find it valuable, then I encourage you to pass it on. If you disagree, then don’t pass it along. No curse or judgment will be upon you.
In the event you do forward this text to anyone, I will ask that you allow for any mistakes or mis-speech to remain with the author and not cut or alter this text in any way leaving it whole and unadulterated.
If you take issue with any particular point made herein or wish to add your own comments (which I encourage), I simply request that for the sake of honesty and clarity that you differentiate your statements from those above.
Lastly, do everyone a favor and take responsibility for what you forward by removing excess copies of text and comments made by previous forwarders that don’t add anything to the conversation when viewed by the people you are mailing it to, this is a long enough read as it is…. And oh yeah, Use BCC please, no need to share all your contacts’ e-mail addresses with one another.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and may you find stability, happiness and most importantly love for yourself, those close to you and your fellow Americans.
Be a Cause Celebre Democracy Burlesque plays host to Chicago area charities, raising money and collecting supplies on their behalf. If you are a part of a cause that could use some money or an influx of material donations and spread the word about what you do, contact us!
Join the Mayhem! We are always looking for contributors to the show. Writers, Graphic Artists, Political Junkies and Performers of all sorts are encouraged to contact us about contributing to Democracy Burlesque and Democracyburlesque.com
We Need More Bloggers! If you have the gift of gab and political discourse and enjoy making people laugh... Let Us Know! We are looking for People to be regular contributors to the blog and there is room for additional moderators. Drop us a LINE!
Thank you for your interest and we will be looking forward to some excellent conversations.
Show Begins at 7:30 $15 General Admission (includes 1 drink)
$10 Students and Designated Drivers
Democracy Burlesque has been performing political theatre for the politically active since 2006. We produce a quarterly variety show featuring top-notch original political satire from the Actors of Evil and play host to some of the best performing artists and musical acts in Chicago. Uniting audiences through comedy and commentary, a portion of every ticket goes to a nonprofit grassroots organization and provides them a platform for reaching out to new friends and supporters. We aim to provide a gathering place for those trying to change the world a little bit at a time, raising awareness, supplies and money for worthy causes.
Democracy Burlesque exists in large part to raise money for our "Causes Celebre" At every show, we play host to Chicago area grassroots nonprofit groups working to help our community. A portion of every ticket goes to one group while we accept material donations for another and both groups are given some stage time to talk to our audiences about their mission.
If you know of a Cause that deserves Celebre-ation at an upcoming Democracy Burlesque show, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 773-275-4259, to set it up. We're always looking for Causes to help!
Democracy Burlesque features Music, Poetry, Dance, Stand-Up, and Performance Art from some of the best artists and groups in the city.
If you are interested in performing with us as a guest Act, please contact us!
Some of the performers featured in previous, current, and upcoming shows include, in no particular order:
Meredith Miller Don Washington Nathaniel Matthew & the Hepsounds Tracer Bullet Pearls Mahone Greg Reed The Beast Women Big News Regina Buccola Chicago Dramatists The i.O. Theater (formerly the ImprovOlympic) Matthew Owens 3rd Sunday String Band Elyne Handler Billionaires for Bush Ground Up Theatre Prop Theater The Green Brothers Sheela Na Gig Lin Shook and Perceptual Motion The Tomgirls Aaron Philips The Radio Hour