Utne Blogs > Politics

Washing Away the Sins of Crooked Politicians

by Staff


Tags: dunking stool, dunk tank, corrupt politicians, public shame,

New Times coverSay your elected official is exposed for corruption. What’s a community to do? Demand repeated tearful apologies? Procure a tough conviction, only to see it quietly reduced to a negligible fee once the cameras are off? Even challenging a crooked pol in an election can be surprisingly difficult.

Simon Graves, a Miami pastor, has a more original idea: Require corrupt officials to take a seat on a dunking stool, and sell tickets to help replace the money their mischief cost the public. Reporting for the Miami New Times, Calvin Godfrey describes Graves’ plan: 

He has staked out a site for the stool and has constructed several (poor) prototypes in his living room. If Graves had his druthers, the device, a modified seesaw with a chair attached to one end, would have gone up in Bayfront Park this past January 1. 

Graves believes the stool will create a "terrifying scourge" for all "the nasty little devils on [crooked politicians'] shoulders." If he ruled the county, anyone looking to take office would agree to be dunked if he or she were caught violating the county's code of ethics.

Check out Graves’ website and MySpace page. There’s no evidence whatsoever that he’s kidding.

Steve Thorngate