SLOAN COLUMN: Don’t be chicken! Stand up to injustice
Covering municipal meetings is at the top of my least favorite things to do list. Generally speaking, they are boring and stale. Most last far longer than they should.
There are those rare occasions, however, when something occurs that breaks up the monotony. One of those rare occasions occurred recently in Lincoln, Ne.
Ander Christensen knew his three minutes addressing the city council would liven up an otherwise dreary evening of discussing business matters. What he didn’t know was that his satirical rant would go viral and be watched by millions.
The son of Lincoln, City Councilman Roy Christensen, the young Christensen took it upon himself to use his allotted time to inform the council of a horrific injustice which he believes needs to be corrected immediately.
Wearing a white dress shirt and a blue tie covered in tiny hamburgers, Christensen cleared his throat and began to address the council in a stern and serious tone.
“Lincoln has the opportunity to be a social leader in this country. We have been casually ignoring a problem that has gotten so out of control that our children are going around throwing around names and words without even understanding their true meaning, treating things as if they are normal.
“I go into nice family restaurants and there are people throwing this name around and pretending as if everything is just fine.”
At this point he looks up from his notes and stares directly at the seven council members.
“I’m talking about boneless chicken wings. I propose that we as a city remove …”
Cackling can be heard from a handful of attendees who simply cannot suppress their laughter. Christensen turns around to admonish those who had dared to chuckle.
“Excuse me, I’m trying to talk,” he says, appearing quite put off that his comments are not being taken seriously.
“I propose that we as a city remove the name boneless wings from our menus and from our hearts. These are some of the reasons why:
“Number one: Nothing about boneless chicken wings actually comes from the wings of a chicken. We would be disgusted if a butcher was mislabeling their cuts of meats, but then we go around pretending as if the breast of a chicken is its wing?
“Number two: Boneless chicken wings are just chicken tenders that are already boneless. I don’t go to order boneless tacos. I don’t go and order boneless club sandwiches. I don’t ask for boneless auto repair. It’s just what is expected.
“And then number three: We need to raise our children better. Our children are raised being afraid of having bones attached to their meat. That’s where meat comes from. It grows on bones. We need to teach them that the wing of a chicken is from a chicken and it’s delicious.
“I propose that we rename boneless wings in the city of Lincoln. We can call them buffalo style chicken tenders. We can call them wet tenders. We can call them saucy nugs, or we can call them trash.
“We can take these steps and show the country where we stand, and that we understand that we have been living a lie for far too long and we know it because we feel it in our bones.
“Thank you for your time.”
Christensen gathers his papers and makes his way back to his seat. A smattering of applause is followed by awkward silence. A few moments pass before the voice of one of the council members is heard.
“I would just like to comment,” states an apparently amused Roy Christensen. “For the record, that’s my son.”
A video of Christensen’s comments was posted on youtube.com, and in just a few days it was been seen by millions of people around the world.
I’m sure there are many who might take the young man to task for wasting the council’s time, but I’d be willing to bet one of them is not Lincoln Journal Star journalist Riley Johnson. Christensen and his “saucy nugs” spiced up an otherwise bland meeting.