Tape Rage: The cheatening of an American song

Thanks to a lot of parades, oath reciting and intensely scrutinized outfit changes by the First Lady, President Obama is still President Obama.

Had things gone differently in November I suppose by now he would have been relegated to Saturday Night Live host ex-President Obama, but thankfully our country will never have to sit through watching President Obama takes Debbie Downer to the United Nations.

But as the wall to wall coverage from CNN, FOX, NBC, MSNBC, ABC and CBS explained to us, President Obama was getting sworn in for a second term.

I think the CW mentioned the inauguration on a text-crawl during a rerun of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”

And what came of the great pageantry of watching a man reclaim the job he has already been doing for four years?

Was the country thrilled by the high minded rhetoric of a speech that reruns of “The West Wing” has taught me was written entirely while walking down labyrinthian hallways?

Was it watching the Poet Laureate emerge from the National Coffee House to make his annual appearance?

Was it watching Beyonce lip sync to her own voice and then getting inexplicably mad about it?

Yeah, it’s the one about Beyonce.

Apparently Mrs. Z decided that it was really cold and didn’t want to mess up the Star Spangled Banner so she recorded her performance a couple days before the inauguration, then lip synched to her own voice on game day.

So, you know, this is tantamount to treason.

At least it would be, judging from the reaction from the great devourer of reason and context, Polycephalic Pundit Monster.

Polycephalic Pundit Monster (PPM), has been in a rage the last week, attempting to determine just WHEN did Beyonce chose to use the tape, who knew about the tape and who was asked to cover up her lip synching to her own voice.

Quick note: Two wars, massive debt, overflowing jails and another economic depression just around the corner. All still happening.

So PPM seems to think that Beyonce’s tape is the most important piece of Presidential-related audio recording since Nixon and has vowed to not stop talking about the tape, unless PPM is talking about First Lady Obama’s hairdo.

I have to wonder: Does PPM really think this story is actually that important or is the coverage level indicative of the overwhelming lack of respect PPM has for its viewers?

I really hope its the latter, the former is far too frightening.

She’s a singer! She recorded her voice earlier because she was afraid she would mess up an important song on an important day which would, you know, distract attention from the historical events of that day.

Kinda backfired, didn’t it Beyonce? (I often blindly address statements to Mz. Knowles, although rarely in print and often to the chagrin of the other players on XBox Live.)

I could understand being upset about it if she didn’t sing the song the first time, then we would be dealing with a full-on Milli Vanilli scenario and all the outrage in the nation would be justified if not lacking.

Ashlee Simpson had something similar happen on Saturday Night Live when she famously tried to cover up a skipping tape during her performance with an impromptu hoedown dance. But that didn’t happen to Beyonce as the presidential tape players are much more reliable then SNL’s; but I would pay good money to watch Beyonce do an impromptu hoedown dance.

With the beginning of the second term of our country’s first black president, sworn in against the backdrop of two wars abroad and political strife at home, with the middle class disappearing and underhanded tactics curtailing voter participation throughout the country we’re really going to care that the nice lady that sang the Star Spangled Banner sang it a few days ago and was just lip synching it? That’s what we’re taking away from this inauguration?

Terrible. We should be focused on the truly important event of that day; that picture of Bill Clinton blatantly checking out Kelly Clarkson. I mean BLATANTLY. If you haven’t seen it, look it up. Hilarious.

Copy Editor Wes Burns is a Sunday columnist. The views expressed in this column are personal views of the writer and don’t necessarily reflect the views of the T-R. Contact Wes Burns at 641-753-6611 or wburns@timesrepublican.com.