OK, the situation is officially dire, so here's what we do: Everybody who's capable of responding to this national emergency in a meaningful, nonviolent way will gather at a designated meeting place an hour or so before the demonstration. We just need to make sure we're all on the same page concerning the grave effect that such bald-faced manipulation has already had on our weary, wounded society. After we've strategized—and done a difficult bit of personal soul-searching, as well (aren't we all partially to blame for allowing this to go on as long as it has?)—we'll march hand in hand to the Church of Scientology Celebrity Centre in Los Angeles.
I think I should do the talking when we get there. I'm a public figure who wields huge media power, so the most inflammatory tirade couldn't begin to threaten me. Don't worry, though, I'll keep my cool on the bullhorn.
"Look," I'll begin, real casual. "We know Tom Cruise has been good for you guys, and we don't blame you for squeezing the little fella out of everything's he's worth. In fact, considering the time and money that some of us unwisely gave to Cocktail and Days of Thunder, I'd say the idea of Tom Cruise being bled dry is practically karmic. But y'all have pushed it past the breaking point. Now, even watching him dance in his BVDs in Risky Business has become soiled and kinda sad; it's like listening to an adolescent Michael Jackson crooning 'I Want You Back' and realizing you'll never hear that innocence again. You've had your sordid fun, people, and we demand you let go and move on!"
I'll be firm, yet open to a little give-and-take, working in some diversionary bargaining tactics.
"Hey, you know what?" I'll continue. "Give Ashton Kutcher the full L. Ron makeover. Hell, work your clam magic on that kid until he's calling himself Tania and robbing banks, we don't care. You won't hear anything but support from any of us. Get Ashton to focus and the sky's the limit! Good-looking, that one—and tall."
This may not sway them, given that the Centre is probably already on overtime trying to convince Jenna Elfman that a three-picture deal is just around the corner for her, so I'll have to bring out my ace. A heavy pause will indicate it's time for the rest of you to fall into a sort of silent resignation.
"Alright," I'll say, the little choke in my voice implying a forced capitulation from which none of us may ever recover. "You can keep Katie Holmes. She's an extraordinary woman. All of America loves Katie Holmes. And she absolutely digs Scientology. You got her fair and square, and, wow, is that score gonna pay off in dividends."
I'll look around, then, for support, at which point a lot of you should be nodding your heads and whistling in agreement, maybe interjecting the occasional "I'll say!" or "That's for sure!" as though you hadn't already caught her performance in Batman Begins.
If things still don't go our way, however, don't lose faith. It would be sad to have to give up Jerry Maguire to this war of the worlds.