In just one day, comedy site Funny or Die's star-studded "Prop 8 - The Musical" has been seen about 1.3 million times.In case you are the one slacking office/info-worker in Los Angeles who hasn't been forwarded the video, here it is:
As this New York Times interview with the video's creator Marc Shaiman reveals, though, the spoof grew out of two deadly serious and intertwined post-Prop 8 stories. Campaign finance laws require that donations to political and campaign organizations be made public, and in the age of Google that means the list of donors to presidential campaigns and ballot propositions are just a click away. (Here is the San Francisco Chronicle's searchable database of Prop 8 donations.) Information about previously private (or at least hard-to-determine) contributions has roiled both Shaiman's theater community and California in general, as businesses and individuals who supported the measure have been "outed" and targeted for boycotts. From the Times:
[Prop 8 - The Musical] is the result of a process that began when Mr. Shaiman, who splits his time between New York and Los Angeles, alerted his friends and colleagues that Scott Eckern, the musical director of Sacramento's California Musical Theater, had donated money to a Yes-on-Prop 8 campaign. [...] Mr. Eckern has since resigned.
Here are some other highlights from the Times QA:
How did you react to the news that Mr. Eckern had resigned from the theater?
There's certainly nothing joyous about being partially responsible for a man resigning from his job. I mean, I did not ask for his resignation, nor would it be my place to ask for someone's resignation. He resigned, though, and I was part of that, and that is a very heavy weight, and I don't take it lightly. But it has certainly opened up our eyes, and made me get off the couch and out on the street with a picket sign, for the first time in my life. And it felt fantastic.
So this experience has made you more of an activist?
Yeah, I was marching in New York, and that was just the greatest experience. And of course this video is just a viral picket sign. And hopefully funny. I hope that doesn't get lost. I hope that's what most people get out of it.
So two questions: Is the video funny? And what do you think of the practice of targeting supporters of Prop 8?
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