Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Welcome to Washington, D.C., Boys and Girls!

As a longtime resident of Washington, D.C., I would like to welcome all of you who have come from far and near to visit your Nation's Capital. I hope you enjoy your stay here and, remember: don't pick the flowers. Betcha didn't know that half a million people actually live in Washington, D.C.. That's right! We live in houses and apartments as many of you do, only we're in a special city. As you tour, you may encounter our famous traffic jams. This is due to the fact that there are too many cars on our region's roads. You're wise, though you came in tour buses -- that park and idle day and night, spewing big, black, smelly clouds of exhaust beneath our windows. Oh, but I digress! Another reason for pesky traffic troubles is caused by your president, himself. Yes, indeedy! Whenever he decides to go for a bike ride, or out to, well, wherever he goes, he never goes alone and traffic stops just for him! Here's how his entourage breaks down: Two Metropolitan Police Department helicopters circle very low for a while to check rooftops for danger and to frighten our pets and shake the pictures on our walls. Then come: - 8 MPD motorcycle cops, - 4 MPD squad cars, - two armored limos (he's in one of them!), - three or four black Secret Service vans, usually with guys in suits hanging out the windows, - two D.C. ambulances, - another MPD squad car or two or three. Even more police officers close every intersection through which your president's procession will pass well before he comes through. All these city employees may be taken away from their usual duties like saving lives and preventing crime, but the Secret Service insists on their participation to make sure that your president safely gets to his bike trail. You may be wondering why I refer to him as your president. Well, it's because he doesn't believe citizens living in our fair city deserve the same rights as citizens everywhere else in this country. Can you imagine that?! Just like your parents do, we pay our taxes each year. Unlike your parents, we have no say in how the government spends them. Doesn't that seem odd? It does to us, too and we have tried and tried to change it. Your president, however believes that giving District of Columbia residents a voting representative in Congress would be unconstitutional. Yup, but don't ask me why. Well, boys and girls, enjoy your visit. Remember to keep your hands visible when you are near a procession as described above and no one will get hurt. Toodle-oo for now, kids.

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