Kent State crowns the New Emperor

David Soler

In 1859, Joshua Abraham Norton was self-proclaimed Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico. That same year he issued a decree dissolving the U.S. Congress, and 10 years later he abolished the Democratic and Republican parties. Maybe you’ve never heard of those outstanding resolutions because they were non-binding. Such a lunatic, you might think, but after all those non-binding decrees we are used to in our times, Emperor Norton I’s power has arguably equalized that of the U.S. Congress from time to time. Norton died in 1880 without a successor, but now we should be cheerful, because Norton I’s succession seems to be fulfilled. His persona has made it back to Earth, — exactly to Kent, Ohio — in the shape of Mar the Star, whose similarity to Howard Stern is truly remarkable. The new emperor now serenades us pro bono at the Risman Plaza every day. His flock is getting bigger and bigger as time goes by.

Think about it. If your impromptu discourses are already a magnet to disinterested bystanders, maybe you could make a living talking in the airwaves like your doppelganger already does.

Differing from Norton I though, Norton II’s reign seems to be more focused on vaginas than in political uprising, which subsequently keeps Kent State’s police dispatchers pretty busy with angry people complaining about him on a daily basis. The truth is, nobody seems to be able to keep up with Norton II’s intricate discourses. His ability to link seemingly disparate topics could rival the best of professional televangelists. His sudden argument twists have the ability to leave his public agape and completely flabbergasted. His mind, fast as a bolt, has the ability to characterize the music style of Duke Ellington, and, in a split-second, mock some bystander who refuses to shake his hand.

If you didn’t know, the first Emperor Norton issued some decrees with amazing insight back in the 19th century. He urged his fellow citizens, for example, to build a bridge and a tunnel across the San Francisco Bay. Sadly, a recent proposal to name the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge after him was rejected.

This leaves us with an intriguing question: What are Norton II’s plans for Kent? Will his decrees urge the Student Center food services to overhaul the boring, unwholesome food repertoire? Will he ask the Kent City Council to build a skyscraper taller than the grain silo to attract investors? Maybe he will just forbid the use of the word “frisco” as Norton I did in San Francisco.

Whatever the outcome, we should be ready to celebrate it and welcome the return of Norton as the Emperor of the United States.

David Soler is a biomedical sciences graduate and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].