An ArmchairMayor editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
SOME WEEKENDS are more interesting than others; this one finished up with quite the grand finale.
The Academy Awards mess wasn’t the only thing that stood out but it helped take our minds off more serious matters. And yet, like so much of our lives lately, it seemed to emanate from the Donald Trump presidency.
The Oscars on Sunday (Feb. 26, 2017) night were almost as much about politics as they were about the movie industry. Speech after speech alluded to dissatisfaction with Trump, and many actors wore blue ribbons in support of the American Civil Liberties Union, which has been battling Trump over his travel ban.
Politics was temporarily overshadowed, however, by the biggest screw-up in Academy Awards history. If you weren’t watching it live, you missed something special. At the end of the show (which, of course, ran overtime), Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway stepped up to the microphone to announce the Best Picture award. Beatty opened the envelope, looked perplexed (which got a laugh from the audience), and handed it to Dunaway, who announce La La Land as the Oscar winner.
Nobody was surprised, since the movie has won so many other awards and was expected to win this one, too. But part way through the acceptance speeches by the La La Land producers, it was announced there had been a mistake — Moonlight was the actual winner.
Beatty had been handed a wrong envelope. In Hollywood today, someone’s career in handing out envelopes has been cut drastically short. The whole thing was painful, proving that the White House isn’t the only place with a failure to communicate.
But then, of course, there are the sad scenes of asylum seekers being taken into custody as they cross the border from Washington state into B.C. They do it because of Donald Trump and their fear of his focus on deportations.
What will Canada do with this surge? We can’t turn them away, and yet they may start to tax our services if they become too many. Our patience and our values of inclusiveness may be challenged next.
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump ramped up his war with the media by deciding not to attend the annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner. The move came on the heels of a White House decision to ban several major news outlets from a press briefing, and his relentless tweeting and speeches bashing the media as the enemy.
Trump’s boycott of the dinner is perplexing. It would have been a perfect opportunity to stand up in front of a room full of media and ridicule them. Instead, he decided to sulk. It’s just another kind of theatre.
Do you ever get the feeling we’ve all just opened the wrong envelope?