Banning Books in Miami: It's no Laughing Matter


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Some people never learn.

On August 16th, in the's entry “Hey, I was only kidding!: Crossing the Line in Miami, " it was reported how a stand-up comic made a dangerous mistake joking about the Cuban exile community's short fuse when it comes to questioning their interepretation of the “American Way. " The response that night was nothing compared to what happened last night.

Last night at the MiamiVision Comedy Club, he was attacked by an angry mob who didn't find him very funny at all. What began as a luke warm reception to some well-worn jokes in the sparsly filled club on the outskirts of Little Havana, quickly turned into a mob scene when the comic tried to get topical. Hours earlier the news reported that the Dade County School Board voted to challenge a Federal Judge's order to stop them from banning the book "Vamos a Cuba. " The book, part of a series depicting different countries for 5 to 7-year-old kids, was deemed by the 4th largest school district in the U. S. to be unsuitable for children because it painted a false picture of life in Cuba. The kids in the book actually seemed to be enjoying their lives and, according to the large and very vocal Cuban exile community, that ain't so and it's a lie and a danger to kids living in Dade County to tell them otherwise.

Well, wouldn't you know it, after joking about how much it will cost the school board to defend their action in court- estimates of at least a quarter-of-a-million-dollars- with predictions by legal experts that they will lose, he went into a riff about how Cuban's are more like Castro then they care to admit.

"The next thing I know, " the once standing-up comic recalls from his hospital bed while nursing a black eye and a couple of broken ribs, “someone threw a mojito in my face and started cussing me out in spanish. When they rushed the stage, I thought I was going to die. I had a flashback to that old ‘Frankenstein’ movie when the villagers are chasing Boris Karloff through the night with torches. Well, one guy was flicking his Bic at me, that's pretty close to being a torch, I guess. Anyway, the last time I got into trouble down here, I discovered if I yelled ‘I just heard Castro died!’ it'd save your ass. This time it didn't. "

Mercy Hospital expects the MiamiVision Comic to be released tomorrow pending further tests.

D. C. Copeland is a writer and award-winning artist. When visiting Copeland's personal website and blog , you will discover that Wayne Cochran is the Patron Saint and that many people consider it to be “The Rodney Dangerfield of Blogs. "


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