Dancing With the Devil

Dancing With the Devil

We are living in a dystopian satire. Everything is either laugh-out-loud absurd or truly, deeply horrifying. I don’t know about you, but I have news whiplash.

Here’s a bit of the absurd: Sean Spicer, the disgraced former press secretary best known for repeatedly lying to the press and to the American people, will be on the next season of Dancing with the Stars. Look, I don’t watch DWTS and I don’t care much about their casting choices, but Spicer doesn’t deserve to be rebranded as just another hapless white man who can’t dance. And he’s certainly no “star.”

Before Spicer learns to bumble his way through some cha-chas, the producers of DWTS should be required to remind the audience that this is a man who once said:

“You had someone who is despicable as Hitler who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons.”

Sean Spicer, former press secretary to President Trump

This is the same man who referred to concentration camps as “Holocaust centers.”

This is the same man who doubled down on lies about everything from audience numbers to the weather.

This is the same man who once tried to hide in a row of bushes to escape the press.

Sean Spicer in a selfie with Mike Pence and Donald Trump.
Spicer, center, dancing with the ones that brung him.

Sean Spicer is an absolute coward of a man—a sniveling, indignant, morally bereft toad. There is zero reason for anyone to give him a platform for anything. He should not be asked to perform, to speak, to answer a question, to offer an opinion, or to read aloud a menu at a neighborhood restaurant. He has nothing of use to offer to the world.

Like I said, I don’t watch DWTS and I’m not going to start now. But if you are a fan of the show, I hope you’ll sit this season out. This programming choice is not benign. It signals to all the awful people out there that it’s okay to be horrible, because next year or next month you can scrub yourself clean with a quick spin through the reality television wash cycle.

The more we normalize liars and abusers, the more we invite lies and abuse into our lives. Frankly, one glance at today’s headlines tells me we’re full to spilling over with lies and abuse. Sean Spicer should not be able to dance his way out of the mess he helped to create.

And if the producers of DWTS have no qualms about casting disgraced members of an anti-semitic, misogynistic, and racist administration to glide across the dance floor, they should be prepared to rebrand. They are not Dancing with the Stars, they are Dancing with the Devil.

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Tiffany Quay Tyson

THE PAST IS NEVER is the winner of the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize, the Mississippi Arts and Letters Award for Fiction, and the Mississippi Author Award for Adult Fiction (selected by the Mississippi Library Association). The novel is shortlisted for the prestigious Willie Morris Award for Southern Fiction. This southern gothic novel steeped in local lore was selected as an "Okra Pick" by the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance. Tyson's debut novel THREE RIVERS was a finalist for both the Colorado Book Award for Literary Fiction and the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Award for Fiction. She was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi and now lives, writes, and teaches in Denver, Colorado.
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