Title of the Play: Wellington
Setting: The town of Wellington Washington (in reality a ghost town but in the play a yuppie Metropolis)
Time Period: Present day, with occasional flashes to the 1970’s
The Plot: The play will center on the life of a secretly gay action star named Ben Foster. Following a series of scathing blogs about him by an insane gossip blogger named Juan Henry threatening to reveal a dark secret about him (presumably his sexuality) Ben decides to leave Hollywood for the winter. In order to avoid the press, Ben decides to vacation at a sleepy town in Washington State called Wellington. When Ben arrives he finds that his winter getaway is not what he expects as Wellington has transformed into a Yuppie haven. While Ben attempts to relax and figure out what he wants from life he meets and falls for the delicious Chase Foley, the closeted son of powerful Anti-gay Pastor Rush Foley. As Ben and Chase grow closer they are drawn into a cultural battle that will have dire consequences for some and life saving revelations for others…
Main Cast of Characters
Ben Foster: The hero of the story, Ben is a wealthy action star who has reached the pinnicle of his career at only 33 yrs old. While he is gay and proud of it he remains closeted for fear that it will hurt his public persona.
Chase Foley: The youngest son of anti-gay Pastor Rush Foley, he bears the brunt of his father’s anger at the world and attempts to appease his parents by attending church. Unlike his father and older brother his is loving and calm. Chase is athletic, sensitive and afraid… He loves men and he is powerless to repent. Despite his father’s seeming distaste for him, Chase is often asked to lead bible study groups within the church and reach out to new members.
Pastor Rush Foley: A highly influential clergyman who runs the biggest church in Wellington. Despite his vocation he is very judgmental and highly sadistic towards those who do not share his views. Due to his elegant speaking skills, Rush effectively runs the town, people who disagree with his “values” tend to lose a lot more than their jobs.
Betty Blough: A vivacious old Drag Queen with a warm personality who looks after those in need and takes no prisoners. Betty runs Wellington’s only gay bar, a place called “Gossip”. Loud, feisty and warm, Betty is the defacto leader of the Queer community in Wellington and one of the few people strong enough to oppose Pastor Rush. Unsurprisingly her willingness to stand up to Pastor Rush makes her the one person he hates the most, but could there be more?
Grace: A beautiful and introverted transgender woman, who acts as Betty’s right hand gal. Mary tries very hard to help Betty protect those under their charge, but suffers from serious self confidence issues. Despite her quiet demeanor she has a lovely singing voice and is fiercely loyal to those she loves. She is the first Queer person Ben encounters after he helps her fight off a group of Pastor Rush’s younger followers who attempt to rape her. She invites him to Gossip and initiates him into Betty’s court.
Damien Love: Grace’s lover, a tough black man who frequently attends Gossip. Damien is an older man who was forced to watch as his close friends in Seattle and Los Angeles died of HIV/AIDS complications during the 1980’s. Though he is also dying of AIDS he refuses to let his condition destroy his life and is very protective of Mary.
Jason Foely: Pastor Rush’s older son, like Chase he has met great abuse at his father’s hands. But unlike Chase these experiences have served to make him desperate for his father’s love and a devout follower of Pastor Rush’s religious doctrine. Jason’s hatred for those who do not follow his father’s philosophy is so great that he is willing to go to violent extremes to punish them.
Juan Henry: An openly gay blogger who is self-righteous and mildly sociopathic. He has achieved fame by outing celebrities and politicians alike. After he outs a young actress named Nina Frost (which results in her suicide) he is fired from his blog and transformed into a Hollywood pariah. He serves as the first antagonist in the story as he sets his sights on Ben Foster, hoping that by revealing his secrets he will land back on top. After chasing Ben out of Hollywood he follows him to Wellington he finds more than he bargains for…
Prologue: The play opens with a very ant-gay sermon by Pastor Rush and a glimpse of a very disheartened Emily and Chase. We then get a glimpse of Ben who is listening to a message left by his lover Alex ending their relationship.
Part I: Deals primarily with Ben’s decision to leave Hollywood and relocate to Wellington. All of the main characters are introduced and the atmosphere is set. Part I ends with a kiss between Ben and Chase.
Part II: Juan Henry arrives in Wellington intent on uncovering all of Ben’s secrets. Though he finds what he is looking for in the form of pictures of Ben and Chase, (which he shares with the town) a snow storm places the town on lockdown. As Ben and Chase attempt to recover from Juan’s assault, the culture war between Betty and Pastor Rush escalates. Part II ends with the death of a main character and the beginning of the endgame.
Part III: Disgraced by his son’s sexuality and unhinged by what he sees as a betrayal of God, Pastor Rush and his son Jason decide to eliminate their enemies in a brutal manor. While Jason attacks Gossip, Ben and Pastor Rush go head to head in an all out battle to determine the fate of the town and most importantly of Chase…
Epilogue: The play ends with a look at the aftermath of the Pastor Rush/Ben battle and explores the lives of the survivors. The results of these events will definitely surprise you…
1.) The Queer Discovery Movement (1492-1774): The first Queer oriented movement in North America. Though it had no official leaders or stated goals, it was characterized by the discovery on the part of Europeans of new interpretations of gender identity and sexual orientation in Native American cultures. This unspoken movement also saw the rise of Queer European immigration to North America and the rise of Anti-Queer laws. This particular movement ended at the beginning of the American Revolution.
2.) The Homosocial Movement (1775-1890): Possibly the first form of Assimilationism among Queer people in the United States. The movement was headed by famous literary figures such as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walt Whitman. The primary goal of this movement was to give Queer people a safe means of expressing themselves in a progressively oppressive society. They attempted to achieve this through subtlty and the establishment of sexuality as a private matter. Their efforts proved highly successful in that highly homoerotic literature such as Whitman’s “Calamus” Poems were met with critical acclaim. Unfortunatly, with the medicalization of sexuality and the rise of openly Gay and Lesbian equality movements (such as Sexology and the Society of Human Rights in Germany) the Homosocial Movement soon became obsolete and phased out.
3.) The Homophile Movement (1924-1969): The most famous the the Pre-Stonewall Movements, this stage of Queer Civil Rights saw the formation of the first Queer Civil Rights Movements in the United States. This movement saw the steady elimination of sodomy laws in several states, the rise of Pro-Queer forces in American Psychology and the elimination of laws limiting Queer people’s ability to form clubs, meet in bars and sponsor publications such as “The One” Magazine and “The Ladder”. Unfortunatly, the percieved ineffectiveness of the Homophile Movement and several divisions among Queer Activists of the time (i.e. Reace, Gender Identity, Sexism ect.) led the the ovement’s destruction.
4.) The Gay and Lesbian Liberation Movement (1969-1990): Started with the Stonewall Rebellion of 1969 and characterized by both a refusal to hide Queer people from the public eye and a complete rejection of Assimilationist policy. This movement had a long string of political and cultural successes such as the declassification homosexuality as a mental disorder and the evolution of Queer people as a politically important group within the Democratic Party. The movement also helped to create a unified national identity among Queer people of all creeds in the United States. Unfortunatly, the Gay and Lesbian Liberation Movement eventually found itself decimated by the start HIV/AIDS epidemic of the 1980’s and internal conflicts within the movement in the form of increasingly vocal Transgender and Bi-sexual Movements.
5.) The Queer Civil Rights Movement (1990-Present): The current incarnation of Queer Activism. With the decline of the Gay and Lesbian Liberation Movement in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, The Queer Civil Rights Movement was formed to protect all identities within the Queer Community. Though there are many who have criticized its slightly more Assimilationsit tint, it has seen many great successes such as the abolition of sodomy laws in all 50 states.
1.) Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002: One of the toughest financial regulation laws of its time, it was passed in response to the Enron Scandal. A few highlights of this law:
a. Private Corporations are required to have a set of internal procedures designed to ensure accurate financial disclosure.
b. Private Corporations are also required to certify that they have responsible internal controls which are evaluated and certified by the CEO each year
c. Corporations are required to notify the SEC if there are any issues with their internal controls or face civil and criminal penalties.
d. Submit and certify an accurate off-balance sheet to the SEC each year
Though President Bush would gain a reputation as a champion of de-regulation, this act survived various legal challenges and paved the way for the Dodd-Frank Banking Act of 2010.
2.) The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) of 2002: also referred to as the McCain–Feingold Act, it reformed the financing of campaigns for Federal office by limiting the amount that corporations and individuals could contribute to campaigns. It was later struck down by the Supreme Court of the United States in the Citizens United case. (It is worth noting that this was the first campaign finance law passed since 1971 and the toughest election related law of its kind).
3.) The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003: It produced the largest overhaul of Medicare in the public health program’s 38-year history. Essentially the law created a benefit for prescription drugs (known as Medicare Part D) which allowed Medicare to pay for many of the drugs needed by Senior Citizens to survive. This law also allowed Medicare to cover a majority of the cost for other drugs needed by Senior Citizens that were less vital to their imminent survival. The only flaw of this law was that it was not adequately funded increasing the national debt.
4.) The Clear Skies Act of 2003: One of President Bush’s few eco-friendly policies, it increased cap-and trade (albeit in a free market based system) and added chemicals such as mercury to the list of air pollutants regulated by the Federal Government. It was not passed by the United States Congress but is noteworthy because it reignited the debate over Environmental Protection Programs and led to the dismantling of several attempts by the GOP to dismantle the EPA.
5.) Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004: one of the most complex pieces of legislation to emerge during the Bush Presidency. This act established both the position of Director of National Intelligence (DNI), the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), and the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board. It also broadened the responsibilities of the Department of Homeland Security and the TSA.
6.) The Appointment of Robert Gates: Motivated by the Congressional Midterm Elections of 2006 (in which the Dems took control of both houses of Congress). Robert Gates would go on to become one of the most competent Defense Secretaries in American History and instrumental in the Repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”.
7.) The Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006: This law creates a sex offender registry and organizes sex offenders into three tiers:
a. Tier 3 Offenders: (the most serious tier) update their whereabouts every three months with lifetime registration requirements.
b. Tier 2 Offenders: must update their whereabouts every six months with 25 years of registration,
c. Tier 1 Offenders: must update their whereabouts every year with 15 years of registration. Failure to register and update information is a felony under the law.
8.) The PEPFAR (President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief) Program: created a commitment of $15 billion over five years (2003–2008) to fight the global HIV/AIDS pandemic. The program initially aimed to provide antiretroviral treatment (ART) to 2 million HIV-infected people in resource-limited settings, to prevent 7 million new infections, and to support care for 10 million people (the “2–7–10 goals”) by 2010. PEPFAR increased the number of Africans receiving ART from 50,000 at the start of the initiative in 2004 to at least 1.2 million in early 2008. While President Bush was infamous for his antipathy towards GLBT people, this action ultimately served as a fierce blow to the HIV/AIDS epidemic worldwide.
9.) Trade Tariffs on Canada and Imported Steel: A very subtle attempt by the Bush Administration to end the North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA. Though President Bush’s efforts ultimately failed, his attempt to end the Clinton era policy (which was opposed by organized labor) caused a brief return to the debate about out sourcing and jobs in the United States.
10.) The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008: The final major legislative act of the Bush Presidency. It was passed and signed in response to the 2008 Financial Crisis and is largely credited with preventing the collapse of the United States Financial System. Its passage also paved the way for the Auto Bailout Program and TARP programs.