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"Leave it to Beaver: 2001"

June 16, 2001

Satire by
Lauren Weinstein


"Ward, I know you don't like me calling you at the office, but there's a problem with the Beaver."

"Another one? That little devil. What's he gotten himself into this time?"

"Well, I'm down at the county jail, and they're holding Beaver on four charges of 'making terrorist threats' by pointing his finger at another student during a cowboys and indians game and saying 'bang bang' ..."

"That does sound serious. A seven-year-old should know better. I don't see how this could happen, especially with all the money we spend on lithium for him."

"This would be his third strike under the zero-tolerance laws, Ward. Mandatory 25 years to life if he's convicted. And the school surveillance tapes have it all recorded in full color."

"Well, it does look bad for him this time. A shame about his other strikes. But you know honey, I didn't tell him to get caught with that fingernail clipper or to share a lemon drop with a classmate."

"But Ward, isn't this zero-tolerance thing going a bit too far? It seems to have gotten completely senseless, ridiculous, and unfair."

"Dear, you have to show these kids tough love. I for one am proud to be living in one of the few countries that will execute children and the mentally retarded. The Beaver should be thankful that he's not charged with a capital crime."

"My, things have certainly changed since we were young. I remember back when we were dating, you always carried a switchblade and a zip gun."

"Ya, we were a real 'West Side Story' sort of fun-loving gang, weren't we? But that was then and this is now, and the Beaver will simply have to pay for his crimes. Anyway, those toy handcuffs we bought him gave the little tyke plenty of practice with living in restraints."

"And actually Ward, he does look good in orange ..."

"See? There's a bright side to everything. And Wally should be thrilled. With his brother permanently up the river, Wally will finally get his own room."

"That's right! Dear, you've been wonderful -- I feel so much better. They're taking the Beaver down to isolation now, so I have to go. You can get back to work!"

"Chicken-fried steak and Space Food Sticks for dinner tonight?"

"Of course!"

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Lauren Weinstein

For information about the author, please see: http://www.vortex.com/lauren

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