Friday, March 4, 2011

Thomas Jefferson for Dummies: The Charlie Sheen Edition

Editor's Note: Look, if everybody else can write about Charlie Sheen, so can I!

As the momentous month of February ground to a close, the CBS television network announced that it was suspending production of its hit situation comedy "Two and a Half Men".

The stated reason was the personal problems of its star Charlie Sheen, who was known to be struggling with the after effects drugs, alcohol and porn stars.

Under normal circumstances, CBS' decision was a wise one. After all, how could their show go on if their star was not fit to perform? Thus, halting production and allowing Sheen to straighten himself out seemed like a logical course of action.

But when dealing with an individual as temperamental as Charlie Sheen, logic often flies out the window.

No sooner had CBS made its decision than a furious Sheen began giving a series of rambling, round-the-clock radio and TV interviews and/or rants where he attacked CBS, his producers, his ex-wives, AA, "party girls" and Thomas Jefferson.

Thomas Jefferson?!

Yes, THE Thomas Jefferson who Sheen ungracious called "a pussy".

Whether Sheen has a legitimate gripe against CBS (which pays him a handsome salary, by the way), I can't say. By the same token, I can't comment on Sheen's on-going disagreements with his collection of ex-wives (he has 3) and the assorted "party girl" companions he chooses to hang out with.

But attacking Thomas Jefferson was simply uncalled for.

Charlie likes to brag that he's "special", that he's blessed with "Adonis DNA" and that he has "tiger's blood" coursing through his veins. That may be so. But despite the very high opinion Sheen holds of himself, he is not and never will be the equal to or superior of Thomas Jefferson.

Jefferson was many things to many people, but he was never, ever "a pussy".

Of course, you don't have to take my word for it. A quick comparison and contrast of the historical record will prove that the star of "Major League" and "Terminal Velocity" has no business casting aspersions on one of the country's most influential Founding Fathers.

Thomas Jefferson and Charlie Sheen: A Historical Comparison

Thomas Jefferson: principal author of the Declaration of Independence, former governor of Virginia, former vice president, former secretary of state and former president of the US of A.

Charlie Sheen: starred in "Two and a Half Men".

Thomas Jefferson: negotiated the Louisiana Purchase, organized Lewis and Clark's expedition and wrote Virginia's Statute of Religious Freedom.

Charlie Sheen: starred in "Navy Seals" and "Hot Shots", among other artistic milestones.

Thomas Jefferson: a vigorous supporter of the separation of church and state, Jefferson also practiced law, was an architect, an inventor and served as our first minister to France.

Charlie Sheen: is a vigorous supporter of hookers, porn stars and "party girls".

Thomas Jefferson: founded the University of Virginia (the first institution of higher learning centered around a library and not a church) and his personal book collection (he was an avid reader) served as the foundation for the creation of the Library of Congress.

Charlie Sheen: probably not much of reader, but I bet he has an extensive collection of past editions of "High Times" magazine.

Thomas Jefferson: is honored with the Jefferson Memorial and his face graces the two dollar bill. Jefferson also was an accomplished musician, loved to sing, started the tradition of shaking hands with dignitaries instead of bowing and popularized the eating of tomatoes (they were previously thought to be poisonous).

Charlie Sheen: stars in a sitcom that relies on an over abundance of toilet humor, gross out gags and immature sexual innuendo to milk cheap laughs. Unlike tomatoes, "Two and a Half Men" is poisonous.

Thomas Jefferson: built Monicello.

Charlie Sheen: lays about "Sober Valley Lodge" in the presence of his two "goddess" companions (a porn actress and a marijuana magazine cover model, respectively).

Even in their public utterances, Jefferson towers over Sheen.

"A coward is much more exposed to quarrels than a man of spirit."--Thomas Jefferson.

"I'm (a) total bitchin' rock star from Mars."--Charlie Sheen

"All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent."--Thomas Jefferson

"AA is for pussies!"--Charlie Sheen

"Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom."--Thomas Jefferson

"You're a stupid pussy punk picking a fight with a warlock!"--Charlie Sheen.

A complex individual, Jefferson was not without his flaws. He was a bad dresser, for example. He was not a good public speaker. He broke his wrist foolishly trying to impress a gal with his violin playing. And, yes, Jefferson was a slave owner.

But was Jefferson a pussy? Absolutely not.

If Sheen wanted to single out a historical figure as "a pussy", he could have chosen any number of individuals who fit that description far better than Thomas Jefferson: Stalin, Idi Amin (who once offered to marry Princess Anne if it would improve Britain's relations with Uganda), Papa and Baby Doc Duvalier, Vlad the Impaler, Brezhnev, Khrushchev, Nero, Caligula, Pol Pot, Boss Tweed, Ivan the Terrible, Rasputin, Benedict Arnold, Hitler, General Franco, Castro, J. Edgar Hoover, Richard III, George IV, Jack the Ripper and Gadhafi just for starters.

Sorry, Charlie, but history has the final word. Thomas Jefferson was a decidedly gifted individual who's talents extended into politics, fine arts, sciences, farming, diplomacy, education and nation building. Our country owes him a debt of gratitude for his role in guiding our republic.

You, on the other hand, well, you're just a pussy.

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