Since the dawn of time, man has yearned to hold a Writers Guild of America, East event at Washington, D.C.'s Newseum examining the relationship between politics, the media, and comedy. This Friday, May 8th, that millennia-old dream will finally be fulfilled, freeing humanity to move forward on achieving the next item on its checklist: world peace.
But why has this particular collection of concepts (politics, media, and comedy) beguiled us for so long? To answer that, let's return to the very birth of the universe. The big bang's invention of "things" caused primitive man to feel desire and avarice. What man saw, man wanted, and man saw quite a bit because God had designed eyeballs for us far too complicated to come about through random evolution. To make obtaining items possible, a system of social rules was invented in which every caveman worked as hard as possible so that one specific caveman could have whatever he wanted.
They called it politics. And yes it was flawed, what with the vast majority of people living their lives in toil and want. But hey, they were cavemen. It was the best they could do.
To make life palatable, man invented humor, which allowed him to laugh at the things that were killing him. Since caveman jokes get old pretty quickly, they then invented new forms of communication so that humor could be exchanged over great distances. Thus, media was born.
Eventually, ideas and philosophies were shared between alien cultures. This led mostly to violence, but occasionally it brought forth new things that man could be proud of, things anyone could have, not just the man at the top. Democracy. Liberty. Hilariously mistranslated Japanese product packaging. Thanks to politics, comedy, and media, civilization reached a higher plane of freedom. And if you don't tune in on May 8th, I can only assume you liked it better when we were cavemen.
Elliott Kalan is a writer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. He also contributes a weekly column to the free newspaper Metro and co-hosts the film-themed podcast The Flophouse. See the show "Writers Speak! A Potentially Regrettable Evening with WGA Comedy Writers," this Friday May 8th, 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm at Washington DC's Newseum. More WGA blogs about the event available here.