Several hundred Dems turned out Friday evening for political dinner
Political dinners follow a predictable course. Whether served in the Ritz Carleton or a barbecue on the river, programming has attained the status of sacred ritual.
First, following check in (getting tickets and printing nametags), guests find their seats. Next, candidates circulate among the faithful, renewing acquaintances, chitchatting, projecting their images as “just folks”.
As close to the appointed dinner hour as possible, an emcee, unerringly a well known not elected male, leads the pre-dinner activities-introductions of dignitaries and special guest, then announcing the group activities. All stand for the Pledge of Allegiance and the singing of the National Anthem and state theme song.
Dinner is then served.
After dinner, speakers are introduced in order of importance –least to most. They each take to the podium to exhort their followers to greater efforts to defeat the enemy in the form of the opposing party’s candidates. When the last, the keynote speaker, has shouted his or her last shout, the event is nearly officially over. The emcee takes back the stage for the closing duties – awards, announcements, door prizes and dismissal.
The order of ceremony is so set that one could stumble into an unlabeled event and be unable to tell whether the party celebrating is Whig, No Nothing, Democrat, Libertarian or Grand Old Party. There are rumors, unconfirmed, that the Egyptians perfected the dinner as a precursor to mummification.
Having attended more than our share of events held in gymnasiums, school lunchrooms, state parks, public restaurants and private homes, the 2011 Purchase Area Jefferson Jackson Dinner in Murray Friday evening offered few surprises.
If we had to vote for best speech of the evening, we would have to go with from the heart remarks made by Z.C. Enix Democrat of the Year award winner Rob Ed Parrish. He urged the crowd to work for Democratic candidates and pass the commitment down to children and grandchildren.