Print this page
Sunday, 01 December 2019 20:38

Born Yesterday

Written by  Bob Serody

Thanks to Netflix, I saw the movie, Born Yesterday, for the third time. The timing was perfect. In watching the characters, I realized that the power plays in Washington were just as relevant when the film was released in 1950 as they are today. The actors’ lines could never be changed or improved to match the situation in the era of Trump. This movie is classified as a romantic comedy, but the laughter never overshadows how eroded our democracy has become. The founding fathers realized that our government had to be formed with equal separation of powers. We have seen throughout our history that this is not enough. Democracy still depends on maintaining a high level of public education with stress on individual freedoms and economic opportunity. Finally, it must be accompanied by the willingness and desire of the people to hold their elected officials responsible for their actions at the voting booth. Otherwise, the words in the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and the U.S. Constitution become meaningless.

The theme involves a boorish business tycoon Harry Brock (Broderick Crawford), who comes to Washington to lean on a Congressman to amend legislation to increase his personal wealth, and his uneducated longtime fiancee Billy Dawn (Judy Holliday), whom he feels needs a major improvement in diction and speech to reduce the possibility of public embarrassment when she opens her mouth. So he hires a reporter, Paul Verrall (William Holden), to teach her the ropes. Trips to the national monuments and the National Museum along with plenty of reading material result in Brock getting more than he bargained for.

The casting, acting, lines, cinematography, etc. (and of course the subject matter) makes this one of the greatest movies I’ve seen. In comparison with today’s politics, what Brock and Trump have in common is that they are both thugs and their actions are totally self-centered. Today, the GOP has been reduced to a bunch of lemmings who are willing to run off the cliff to do the master’s bidding in order to guarantee their reelection. Fortunately, Adam Schiff controls the events in the impeachment proceedings, and the witnesses are creditable. Trump's actions in the form of tweets during these proceedings show that none of the White House staff have any control over his impetuous behavior. Cracks in the united front of the GOP Congressmen will take place before the impeachment and subsequent trial are over, but will these cracks be enough? In any case, we live in interesting times.

Our founding fathers are probably turning over in their graves. Maybe it’s time to make another movie.


 Bob Serody is a member of Space Coast Progressive Alliance.

*ED. NOTE: The views expressed here are solely those of the author. SCPA does not endorse candidates and welcomes commentary on a wide range of issues, including political campaigns, local, regional and national. If interested in contributing commentary, please contact SCPA

Last modified on Tuesday, 10 March 2020 19:17
Login to post comments