Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Statement to Mike Pence from Alexander Hamilton?

 

I love the Broadway hit Hamilton. I think the music is amazing. My husband surprised me with tickets last summer for our anniversary, and it was worth every ridiculous penny he paid for them.

You see, I teach US History. I owned the Ron Chernow biography that inspired Lin-Manuel Miranda to write his ode to Alexander long before he performed that first rap at the White House that was really the first step in birthing his wildly wonderful production.

If having the Founding Fathers represented by an array of minorities allows more kids to access the past, I’m okay with that, too. I understand how the country’s complexion has changed, and it was never been about complexion anyway. It’s always been about the ideas, which kids hear somehow when spun out in rap.

Furthermore, I was horrified when the Treasury wished to remove their first secretary off his rightful place on the $10 bill, and I believe it is only because of this musical that Hamilton was transformed in the public mind from another “dead white man” who deserves to be forgotten in a brave new world into someone to be honored for his incredible contributions to our country.

I mean, though I hate the “dead white man” trope, it exists. This is a way to kneecap it completely.

For all of this very real good that I see in Hamilton, I was bothered when a friend sent me a text last night that said Pence was being booed by the audience in New York.

First, I know how much those seats cost. There is not a person in that group who is not part of an elite of some sort. They are the least oppressed people on the planet. Seriously. Least oppressed.

Second, I can’t imagine that even in New York, there are not Trump voters in that audience who paid their money, too, and just wanted to see the show without feeling as if their own political choices were being assaulted.

Third, it’s just rude to boo someone in a theatre. Seriously rude.

Anyway, after the show, during the curtain call, the cast decided to send out another message.

The man currently playing Hamilton read a note to Pence. It started out well enough.

He said the vice president was welcome at the show… (like, you know, anyone who can afford to spend as much on two hours of entertainment as most people pay for rent.)

However… (here’s where it goes wonky)… he hoped that Pence would understand the diverse group of actors were frightened by the Trump administration. (Frightened? Of what exactly?) 

American values are for everyone, he said, and Pence should honor them.

The audience went as wild as people at a football game.

I’m sure this actor felt he was being courageous in some way, but this was not courage. He gave a lecture to a mild mannered guy from the Midwest who just won the support of more than 60 million other Americans… not Hitler. This was also in a room with an audience completely on his side.

Most tragic of all, this was an opportunity lost.

Though the real Alexander Hamilton could sometimes let his emotions push his actions, he was at heart a politician who understood power, and I think he would have placed his words with more care.

It would have been a million times better if the cast had rebuked the audience for their classless behavior… not Pence. It would have been amazing if they had said they were glad that he was there, and they understood our great country has a diversity of opinions… ideas. They knew from their own script that politics was a bruising endeavor, but they hoped for a united America moving forward.

Instead, they really did make it about complexion alone. And grandstanding. Which is a shame.

I’ll hold my applause this time.

 

There are 204 comments.

  1. Herbert defender of the Realm,… Inactive

    Lois Lane:It would have been a million times better if the cast had rebuked the audience for their classless behavior… not Pence. It would have been amazing if they had said they were glad that he was there, and they understood our great country has a diversity of opinions… ideas. They knew from their own script that politics was a bruising endeavor, but they hoped for a united America moving forward.

    Instead, they really did make it about complexion alone. And grandstanding. Which is a shame.

    Did you see a video of what transpired?

    Brandon Dixon did exactly what you suggested he do…. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3951786/Mike-Pence-booed-enters-New-York-theater-watch-Hamilton.html

    • #1
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:13 AM PST
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  2. Paula Lynn Johnson Inactive

    I think the booing and the speech were directed more particularly at Pence’s stance on gay marriage/homosexuality. Many in the cast are gay and the current Hamilton is HIV positive. And of course, the audience for any Broadway musical is full of gays.

    That being said, it’s just what you said — “grandstanding”. If you’re really concerned about how a Trump/Pence administration is going to treat gays, and if you really think it’s imperative to speak up, invite Pence to meet and greet the cast backstage after the show. Have a conversation. Don’t blindside the guy as he’s getting up from his seat.

    • #2
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:15 AM PST
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  3. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane

    Herbert: Did you see a video of what transpired?

    Yes. I did. I do not think that he did what I am suggesting he do. He started out wonderfully. But it came across as a lecture. The arrow was going in the right direction, but then it veered, and I think that he missed his mark by quite a bit.

    I do not know why they are alarmed. The problem is with how it was all phrased… something that the early republic Alexander Hamilton would have understood. It’s not easy to do…. get the right tone in such a situation…. choose the exact right words.

    • #3
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:18 AM PST
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  4. Steve C. Member

    Cheap grace. It’s the old leftist Alinsky “speaking truth to power” game. You know what’s great about our country, any ordinary actor on Broadway, in the liberal heartland, is free to call out a politician in front of an audience that spent $1,000 per ticket. Makes those Solidarity protesters who were gunned down in Gdansk look like fools.

    An American and a Russian met in an airport bar in 1985. They got into a heated discussion about whose citizens enjoyed more freedoms. The Amercan said, “I can stand in front of the White House and yell at the top of my lungs, Reagan is a fink. Can you do that in the USSR?” The Russian said, “Yes, comrade, we have the free speech rights also. As a free citizen of the Soviet Union, I can stand in front of the Kremlin and yell, Reagan is a fink.”

    • #4
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:19 AM PST
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  5. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane

    Steve C.: The American said, “I can stand in front of the White House and yell at the top of my lungs, Reagan is a fink. Can you do that in the USSR?” The Russian said, “Yes, comrade, we have the free speech rights also. As a free citizen of the Soviet Union, I can stand in front of the Kremlin and yell, Reagan is a fink.”

    That’s hilarious. I’ve never heard that one before.

    • #5
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:21 AM PST
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  6. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane

    Paula Lynn Johnson: If you’re really concerned about how a Trump/Pence administration is going to treat gays, and if you really think it’s imperative to speak up, invite Pence to meet and greet the cast backstage after the show. Have a conversation. Don’t blindside the guy as he’s getting up from his seat.

    Yes, yes, YESSSSS. The cast has people backstage all the time!!! That invitation could have been made and probably accepted.

    We don’t know. Maybe it was, but I don’t get that impression.

    Also, Trump has a good LGBTQ record. I definitely don’t understand the fears from that community… despite Pence and conversion therapy.

    • #6
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:24 AM PST
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  7. Herbert defender of the Realm,… Inactive

    Lois Lane:

    Paula Lynn Johnson: If you’re really concerned about how a Trump/Pence administration is going to treat gays, and if you really think it’s imperative to speak up, invite Pence to meet and greet the cast backstage after the show. Have a conversation. Don’t blindside the guy as he’s getting up from his seat.

    Yes, yes, YESSSSS. The cast has people backstage all the time!!! That invitation could have been made and probably accepted.

    We don’t know. Maybe it was, but I don’t get that impression.

    Also, Trump has a good LGBTQ record. I definitely don’t understand the fears from that community… despite Pence and conversion therapy.

    right… but a backstage meeting wouldn’t generate the publicity that this route was sure to create. It’s a page out of Donald Trumps book…. use the media to put your message out…

    • #7
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:31 AM PST
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  8. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge

    I expect this to get worse. The Trump administration is going to have to get a bunker mentality and may have to step down for the good of the nation.

    • #8
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:34 AM PST
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  9. Nerina Bellinger Member

    Well, they may feel good about their sanctimony, but it’s just more evidence of why 60 million people rejected the liberal/progressive ideology on election day. The celebrity elite keeping asking, “how did Trump win?”. I give you exhibit A – a lecture from a Hamilton cast member.

    • #9
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:51 AM PST
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  10. Retail Lawyer Member

    How did the actor know Pence was in the audience? Or do actors just keep speeches in their pants these days, just in case they spot a Trump voter?

    • #10
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:51 AM PST
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  11. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Okay, people who voted against Trump have concerns.

    Who cares?

    Plenty of us had concerns about Obama in 2008. We didn’t run around publicly lecturing morally preening ourselves in front of members of his administration after we lost.

    • #11
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:55 AM PST
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  12. Gaze of the Abyss Member

    “Rudeness is the weak man’s imitation of strength.”
    — Eric Hoffer

    Hamilton [the musical] has Obama’s America written all over it”
    — Ron Chernow

    Yup.

    • #12
    • November 19, 2016, at 7:58 AM PST
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  13. Umbra Fractus, cum Insigne Lincoln
    Umbra Fractus, cum Insigne Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    @danagould

    You want to know why the right is so angry? Read this.

    • #13
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:01 AM PST
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  14. Randy Weivoda Moderator
    Randy Weivoda Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    If I were at a show that was interrupted several times because the audience was booing another audience member – even if I also disliked that particular audience member – I would be angry that my enjoyment of the show was being ruined by the interruptions. Several times I’ve heard people say that New Yorkers are not rude, they just seem that way to outsiders who don’t understand them. Count me as someone who doesn’t understand.

    • #14
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:02 AM PST
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  15. Calvin Dodge Member
    Calvin Dodge Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Meanwhile, Claire called Trump a “thug” for tweeting that Pence was owed an apology.

    • #15
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:06 AM PST
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  16. Calvin Dodge Member
    Calvin Dodge Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Retail Lawyer:How did the actor know Pence was in the audience? Or do actors just keep speeches in their pants these days, just in case they spot a Trump voter?

    I’m pretty sure the cast is made aware when a Secret-Service-protected person is going to be in the audience.

    • #16
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:08 AM PST
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  17. Biggles Member

    Lois Lane:

    Steve C.: The American said, “I can stand in front of the White House and yell at the top of my lungs, Reagan is a fink. Can you do that in the USSR?” The Russian said, “Yes, comrade, we have the free speech rights also. As a free citizen of the Soviet Union, I can stand in front of the Kremlin and yell, Reagan is a fink.”

    That’s hilarious. I’ve never heard that one before.

    Ronald Reagan told a version of this joke 30 years ago!

    Its still a good joke….

    • #17
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:09 AM PST
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  18. WI Con Member
    WI Con Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    The Left is just making it worse for themselves. They’ll look even more foolish when the homosexual, Muslim & Mexican round-ups don’t happen.

    Another Trump secret weapon is the gorgeous Ivanka – she’ll be getting interviewed and can run interference in a multitude of women’s magazines & shows. I wonder what she thinks being raised as a conventional liberal her whole life in New York, to watch people she personally knows maligned this way and contrast the loyalty of the Progressive Set, who she’s socialized her whole life, with the reception she’s received from Flyover America. Some of the scales may fall from her social group’s eyes as well.

    • #18
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:11 AM PST
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  19. MisterSirius Member

    Miffed White Male:Plenty of us had concerns about Obama in 2008. We didn’t run around publicly lecturing morally preening ourselves in front of members of his administration after we lost.

    I agree with you. Unfortunately, with the other side, our silence was like a tree falling in the forest.

    Even if nearly half of the trees in “the forest” fall at once, still there is this “silence.” And I suspect that for the other side, silence in the political sense means “approval.”

    Then again, this hypothetical sense of 100% approval would then add to the Lefty shock when elections do not go their way. As in the recent case.

    It is the difficulty of different signalling, with two different groups being as far apart as cats and dogs, say.

    • #19
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:14 AM PST
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  20. Biggles Member

    For your entertainment.

    Reagan at his funniest….

    • #20
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:17 AM PST
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  21. Herbert defender of the Realm,… Inactive

    Miffed White Male:Okay, people who voted against Trump have concerns.

    Who cares?

    Plenty of us had concerns about Obama in 2008. We didn’t run around publicly lecturing morally preening ourselves in front of members of his administration after we lost.

    Miffed White Male: The Left is just making it worse for themselves. They’ll look even more foolish when the homosexual, Muslim & Mexican round-ups do

    well there was the birther thing….

    • #21
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:20 AM PST
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  22. michael johnson Inactive

    Hey Lois, this completely off topic but as a US History teacher you may appreciate it. Back a decade or more when Steven Ambrose was doing his PBS thing about Lewis and Clarke, I went around town asking people under 30 is they’d ever heard of Lewis and Clarke. “Sure!” one of the young ladies replied….”but you’ve got it wrong….It’s Lois and Clarke.”

    • #22
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:21 AM PST
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  23. MLH Inactive
    MLH

    Gaze of the Abyss:“Rudeness is the weak man’s imitation of strength.”
    — Eric Hoffer

    Hamilton [the musical] has Obama’s America written all over it”
    — Ron Chernow

    Yup.

    Is Chernow praising or criticizing? Maybe I’m a bit dense. . .

    • #23
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:25 AM PST
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  24. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane

    Herbert: but a backstage meeting wouldn’t generate the publicity that this route was sure to create.

    True, but the publicity is counter-productive. I mean, the people who hate Trump are clapping. Then there are all those people who voted for Trump.

    I mean… Geez. I was part of Never Trump, and I understand the concerns. But here we are in a place where doing things that are productive  are more important than loud, and the backstage meeting could have been publicized as well. It’s not as if the New York Times wouldn’t have written about that, too.

    • #24
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:25 AM PST
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  25. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Herbert:

    Miffed White Male: The Left is just making it worse for themselves. They’ll look even more foolish when the homosexual, Muslim & Mexican round-ups do

    well there was the birther thing….

    Not sure why name is on this. That was WI CON in #18.

    • #25
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:26 AM PST
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  26. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane

    Calvin Dodge: Meanwhile, Claire called Trump a “thug” for tweeting that Pence was owed an apology.

    I didn’t hear that. That’s also unfortunate.

    • #26
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:29 AM PST
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  27. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane

    WI Con: I wonder what she thinks being raised as a conventional liberal her whole life in New York, to watch people she personally knows maligned this way and contrast the loyalty of the Progressive Set, who she’s socialized her whole life, with the reception she’s received from Flyover America.

    That is an interesting question…. how she feels/reacts to all of this. Who can know? That would be an interesting case study if someone could ever get honest reactions when the history is written in the future.

    • #27
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:31 AM PST
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  28. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane

    Biggles: Reagan at his funniest….

    Love it. Thank you!

    • #28
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:33 AM PST
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  29. WI Con Member
    WI Con Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Herbert:

    Miffed White Male:Okay, people who voted against Trump have concerns.

    Who cares?

    Plenty of us had concerns about Obama in 2008. We didn’t run around publicly lecturing morally preening ourselves in front of members of his administration after we lost.

    Miffed White Male: The Left is just making it worse for themselves. They’ll look even more foolish when the homosexual, Muslim & Mexican round-ups do

    well there was the birther thing….

    Guess the author of two autobiographies should have proof-read the the jacket of his own book and his publicist’s materials where it stated born in Kenya and followed that up with actually releasing his BC. Also, his relationships with Jeremiah Wright, Bill Ayers, Frank Marshall Davis are much more established than ANY supposed relationship that Trump, Bannon or Pence are alleged to have with white supremacists or anti-Semites.

    • #29
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:38 AM PST
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  30. She Thatcher
    She Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    So brave.

    All that needs to happen is for those Americans who visit New York, and who spend hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to go, in droves, to Broadway shows, to stop doing so because they are sick of having their personal beliefs attacked, either covertly, or overtly, through what should be their most innocuous forms of amusement.

    Even the Left, little Socialists that most of them are, will get the message, when their revenues drop precipitously.

    And it doesn’t seem as though missing most of these shows will be all that much of a sacrifice, based on what I keep reading.

    • #30
    • November 19, 2016, at 8:40 AM PST
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