Wednesday, August 13, 2003

The King of Satire?

Elvis Busted?

Presentation of HOUND DOG AWARD nixed by City's Court Proceedings

For immediate release, Wednesday, August 13, 2003 Hamilton Ont. - A pro-Red Hill Valley/Elvis fan-club protest group is "all shook up" over the cancellation of their proposed presentation of a "Hound Dog Award" to Hamilton City Council.
Hamilton City Council was chosen to receive the award for their efforts to keep alive a bad 1950s idea despite advances in education, science and culture: namely, the Red Hill Creek Expressway.
The Mayor of Hamilton's office refused to entertain the award which was to be presented at Wednesday's (August 13) council meeting, The award was timed to coincide with Elvis Week (Saturday, August 9 - Sunday, August 17)

An e-mail from the Mayor's office sent Monday pooh-poohed the ceremony: "Your request for an opportunity to present Council with a satirical award related to the Red Hill Creek denied as the matter of the Red Hill Creek Expressway is now before the Court in legal proceedings and it is therefore inappropriate for Council or staff to accept and/or make delegations, presentations, comments on the matter."

The group proposing the award, calling themselves the 50 WABIs (The 50's were a bad idea* and so is this road) intended to present council with a life-size gold and silver plastic Elvis bust ($29.99 at select corner stores) accompanied by a short speech.
"50 years ago, in the age before civil rights and women's rights; when TV was new and black and white; when people pondered where to build the family bomb shelter and kids learned to 'duck and cover' in case of nuclear war; when women wore gloves and men wore hats; in this context, in 1956, two-years before the hoola-hoop, the Red Hill Valley expressway is first proposed.
"Even 50's icon Elvis Presley changed from his hip-shaking, black-leather clad rebel, to morph into his 70's rhinestone-studded Vegas Elvis; yet, while Elvis changed (some say for the worse) and we've moved past most of the bad old 50's ideas, a few folks still cling to the outdated urban Expressway as a panacea for what ails the city.
"Sadly, tragically, Elvis never dealt with his terrible drug addiction, and as a result he got pretty bloated, sick and (some say) died at home at Graceland, August 16, 1977. We hope a similar fate will not befall the city of Hamilton due to the current addiction to building a $220-million expressway in a natural river valley, and spending money we haven't got."
The city of Hamilton is currently seeking an injunction to end a week of protests that have so far prevented the destruction of the valley. The City will make their motion for an injunction FRIDAY AUGUST 15, 10:00 AM at HAMILTON COURT HOUSE (45 Main Street East). 
Protesters have already received letters from the city threatening, along with criminal charges, civil actions to seize their assets- including their homes- to cover any costs incurred by delays.
"Not content to just make a threatened species of flying squirrel homeless, the city is going after peoples' homes for defending the valley and its inhabitants," says Randy "Don't Be Cruel" Kay. "If the city gets their way we'll all be singing "Jailhouse Rock" for exercising our constitutionally protected rights."
According to Kay, the relationship between the city and its citizens is definitely at a low point: "As Elvis would say, "we cant go on together, with suspicious minds."

*not all ideas of the 1950's were bad.

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