As the old cliché goes “It’s not what you know but who likes you”? Sure plenty of us know of Oprah Winfrey and certainly she knows quite a few people but as evidence shows, the people she’s helped to advance their business or cause were the people that appealed in a favored light. As most of us have witnessed it’s rarely the person who has the most in depth knowledge that captures the spotlight but more so the character that can draw the most attention. Well, Stephen Colbert is certainly not the exception here.
Colbert known for his quick wit and cynical sense of humor brought his stage act to a Congressional hearing today. Apparently, Colbert spent the day as migrant worker to see first hand how immigrants, some illegal, live and survive in America as farm workers. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out this is grueling work hence why few Americans want to do it for the small wages. This story has been told before but never quite with the sense of humor that Colbert brings to the stage.
Colbert wisely chose to provide the congressional panel with a script of his findings and almost missed out on an opportunity to address the hearing directly when a congressman asked Colbert to submit his documentation and then to excuse himself. Colbert appealed to the congresswoman that invited him getting permission to stay and deliver his verbal comments. What the panel wasn’t expecting was for Colbert to ad lib going off his prepared statements into a skit that will certainly get more airplay from the media outlets than just a boring fact-finding lecture. Of course some of the congressmen weren’t amused… LOL well who cares! I say Bravo!
Why do congressional panels need to “pre-approve” a speakers statements ahead of time. I’m sure the senators don’t give the witnesses preparation for the questions they’re going to ask or how they’re going to respond. I think it was clever for Colbert to catch them off guard, draw a few laughs and still make a point about the hypocrisy of some of our American laws. I think Colbert’s people skills and humor have already taken him far with the success of his Comedy Central Show. Also, as recently revealed, he and John Stewart are getting a little more directly involved with shall we say “political” movements as witnessed by their upcoming rallies in Washington, D.C. Stewart has the “Rally to Restore Sanity” while his arch nemesis Colbert has the“Keep Fear Alive” protest.
Even though both celebrities have been getting significant attention, press and facebook sign-ups, it still remains to be seen if their supporter would be willing to go farther in support. After all it is difficult to maintain a balance of “keeping things light” while addressing serious issues of the day. Likewise, do people really know when you’ve made a serious point if they were laughing too hard to even hear it? Time will tell just what sort of impact Colbert can truly make but since he’s already used to wearing a jacket and tie perhaps the background setting of the Oval office just might “suit” him. (pun intended)! What is your take on the charade?