Calling all Lewis Carroll fans!
Last spring, the Idaho legislature made the news when several anti-mask lawmakers did away with all mask mandates, got COVID, then decided to recess for three weeks and return to their hometowns, bringing their COVID cooties with them.
I channeled my rage into satire as I always do, and wrote this ridiculous press release as nonsensical as the legislation itself. It was initially rejected by McSweeney’s, but Rejected Writers reached out and asked if they could publish it today. It’s not timely anymore, but still relevant.
Thanks for reading!
Fear Not the Jabberwocky that Hast Ran Rampant Throughout the Capitol Building and Is Likely Coming to Your Small Town
A COVID-19 outbreak in the Idaho Legislature has sidelined lawmakers for more than two weeks as they try to get infections under control… Top Republicans have repeatedly declined to implement basic public health measures such as a mask mandate or the requirement that members physically distance themselves from others.
–NPR, March 19, 2021
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Boise, Idaho —
Callooh! Callay! Rejoice, o’ citizens of Idaho! With vorpal swords in hand, your lawmakers snicker-snacked all mandates requiring face coverings! Free your faces, o’ beamish citizens! Be oppressed no more with mimsy rules that only serve to gyre and gimble in the wabe!
We freed our state’s Capitol from frumious face coverings—and by association, head leashes, burlap bags, and cages—although we may have burbled our best defense against the bastions of wild Jabberwockies now running rampant through our halls. We did not foresee that our eliminating mask mandates would make it difficult to capture and contain the wild beasts.
We’re also not sure how the infestation of Jubjub birds appeared. Or how by flaunting their frumious tail feathers they ended up breeding with the Jabberwocks, creating an even stronger, wilder, and hornier species of Jabberwocky. Fear not! We are sure that this problem we created will solve itself, as free markets solve all problems.
Your lawmakers voted to recess for several weeks, which will allow for them to relocate the Jabberwocks before the creatures’ eyes of flame set the Capitol’s drapes on fire. The beasts with the claws that catch will be immediately transported to smaller towns with less medical infrastructure.
Remember to thank your manxome legislator for eliminating the mask requirement when they come galumphing through your town, Jabberwock in tow. You will recognize these slithy toves by their animals who are setting fire to everything. The horny beasts with the jaws that bite will likely not be wearing a leash, as Jabberwocks are creatures of God, and all beasts born on American soil are, by nature, free, equal, and beamish. Remember, it is this freedom that makes this country so frabjous.
Some mimsy Democratic leaders will say “beware of the Jabberwock”. Rubbish! Outgrabe! So what if it likes to reproduce and multiply quickly? Deaths from Jabberwockies have dropped in the past month, which clearly indicates that it is no longer necessary to keep them on a leash.
A balanced government with brillig boundaries does not force its citizens to cover their faces against their will. It does not stick its uffish necks in places it does not belong, like community safety.
Oh slithy liberals, whiffling like such Borogoves! Do they not tire of their constant gyre and gimble?
Our manxome lawmakers now have several weeks to go home, sit at their favorite Tumtum tree, and think about what to do with these freerange Jabberwocks. In the meantime, of course, they will be paid per diem rates to cover their normal session-related living expenses, and our press secretary will issue public statements as nonsensical as our legislation.
Let us rejoice today! Let us galumph! Callooh! Callay!