Editorial · From the Newsroom

The SCAllion Presents: Jaws from Legal

Today, The SCAllion is pleased to offer its readers an exclusive one-on-one interview with Jaws, our beloved Legal Department.

Q: Are you really a lawyer?
A: Yes.

Q: How does a shark go to law school?
A: 3 years and student loans, just like everyone else.

Q: Are there any aspects of being a shark that make you particularly suited to being a lawyer?
A. Cold-bloodedness. An insatiable prey drive. The fact that I may not actually sleep (depending on who you ask).

Q: Your answers are very short.
A: As Shakespeare said, “brevity is the soul of wit.” Hamlet, Act 2, scene ii

Q: It’s not often you find a shark who can quote Shakespeare.
A: I read a lot. Given that I may not sleep, I need to occupy my time with something other than eating, swimming, and terrorizing foolish tourists.

Q: What’s your favorite ocean?
A: The Pacific, although I occasionally visit sections of the Atlantic. New England beaches are so lovely in the summer, particularly around Amity Island. I visited New Jersey once many years ago, but I found the cuisine to be a little bland.

Q: Cuisine? What do lawyer sharks eat?
A: Fish, greens, the occasional opposing counsel, and the livers of people who don’t understand what satire is and why it matters.

Q: Speaking of satire, why work for The SCAllion?
A: I believe in their mission of satirizing the SCA. We’ve all had a hard few years on multiple levels. We need to laugh, especially when those in positions of power insist on behaving absurdly.

Q: Why does The SCAllion insist on keeping the identity of its authors/creators secret? Lots of people love their work and want to buy them adult beverages.
A: Because The SCAllion is satire. Satire improves public discourse by making it safe to talk about touchy issues. Thus, satire is necessary for a healthy society and a healthy Society.

However, by its very nature, satire attacks the foibles of entrenched systems and the behavior of people in positions of power. That makes people very touchy, often angry. Despite our individual efforts to live chivalrously, the SCA as an institution has a track record of treating those who speak truth to power very badly. I wish this weren’t true, but anyone who observes the Society with clear eyes has seen it, and probably more than once. Crowns banish people on whim for personal disagreements, people and their dependents are blackballed from awards or offices, or worse. Given the risks of social harms as well as real world harms like doxxing and personal threats, everyone involved in The SCAllion has wisely opted to protect their privacy. As their lawyer, I will defend their right and choice to do so.

For those making comparisons to The Onion, remember that The Onion staff has the freedom of satirizing the whole world. The Onion has money and resources to protect its people. The SCAllion is a tiny, rag-tag group of creators satirizing a small social group (yes, the SCA is small in comparison to the rest of the world) of which they are members. It’s not the same.

Q: What do you say to someone who feels attacked by certain articles in The SCAllion?
A: Well, I would invite that person over for a gentle chat over some nice Chianti. I think I have some fava beans around here somewhere. Barring that, I would ask that person to examine their feelings and their past interactions with people in the SCA and consider why they believe a general satire that names no real names is attacking them personally.

The SCAllion wouldn’t have so much to write about if there weren’t so much questionable and frequently awful behavior by people the SCA endows with prestige and influence. If an article makes just one person think about how they treat others and change their behavior to be better and kinder, well, then, I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished.

Q: Given you yourself are a member of the SCA, aren’t you sort of biting the hand that feeds you by working for The SCAllion?
A: Hello? Shark? Biting is my brand.

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