Zounds! Pentagon gives #036;1M for play

Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 5, 2003

Just a few days ago, the National Endowment for the Arts announced that the Pentagon is contributing $1 million toward a touring production of Shakespeare’s &uot;Macbeth&uot; in U.S. military bases.

We’re all for the arts, but that strikes us as a tad wasteful. Considering that President George Bush asked for several billion dollars a couple months ago, wouldn’t you think that every penny counts? Could not have the Pentagon refrained from such largess until things had settled down a bit in Iraq and the U.S. economy had picked up? It would have been far less expensive – and just as instructive – for the Pentagon to order all military personnel to read the play.

Reportedly, &uot;Shakespeare in American Communities” will be a 15-month project, and considering the number of military installations in this region, it’s safe to say that Virginia will be a stopping point or two.

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At least an appropriate play for military personnel was chosen. Macbeth is the story of a Scottish general who takes over the country after murdering the king. He’s later overthrown after enjoying his ambition too briefly.

At least there’s a lesson for everyone to consider who’ll see the play.