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Does Washington DC need some reputation management?

Kari Brownsberger

Last Thursday, the latest installment of “The Real Housewives” franchise debuted on Bravo, this time based in Washington DC.  If you didn’t catch the first episode, you didn’t miss much besides a pretty disheartening depiction of our nation’s capital.  First, the Show opens explaining that money doesn’t get you anywhere in DC, but power and who you know gets you everywhere.  Then we are introduced to the housewives themselves, an interesting cast of characters.  There’s Micheale Salahi, one half of the couple who allegedly attempted to crash a White House party last November.  There’s also, among others, a divorced mother who “consults her astrological chart daily, and couldn’t be bothered to get married again,” and a woman who manages to insult both President Obama and Tyra Banks all within the first episode.

Now I am just as guilty as anyone else of watching "The Real Housewives," mindless as it can be.  But I guess I expected the DC ladies to be a bit more respectable than their New York, Orange County, Atlanta, or New Jersey counterparts.  However, these ladies are just as dramatic, goofy, and mindless (albeit entertaining), as the rest.  I have no idea what life in DC is really like, but after watching the show I was left with the impression that it’s an east coast Hollywood where the celebrities are political leaders instead of movie stars.

The Housewives premiere is not the only negative impression I’ve been getting of DC as of late.  During this current campaign season, it’s been extremely popular for both Democratic and Republican candidates to distance themselves from Washington.  Sure, it’s common for candidates in virtually every election to claim they’re “different” from those in Washington, but it seems to be a particularly popular selling point for this election.  Why does everyone want to distance themselves from Washington?  If our own would-be political leaders don’t even respect our capital, how can the rest of the country, not to mention the world, respect it?

So what do you think?  Is our nation’s capital becoming a joke?  Does DC need some reputation management?