After Public Policy Polling released a study in which Americans rated cockroaches above Congress, it really got us at The Gabbler thinking. Sure, Congress has its share of lies, lethargy and sex scandals, but who doesn’t? And are cockroaches really so bad after all? They do have eighteen knees. The discussion grew rather heated, and we decided it was time for another Point, Counterpoint, Ballpoint.



So now Americans hate Congress more than cockroaches? That shit is fucking crazy. Here’s the deal: I guarantee you that half of the respondents to that poll haven’t seen a cockroach in their entire miserable fucking lives. Because if they had faced the six legged demon and come out the other side they would NEVER claim to prefer cockroaches to fucking Congress.

I mean sure, I get it. Congress can’t do their jobs. They’re too busy bickering to avoid throwing America off the fiscal cliff. They’re going to destroy an already faltering economy and drive our government into default. We’re just so fucking scared for our country’s future. Boo fucking hoo. Do I need to call you a wahambulance?

Do you want to know real terror? Real terror isn’t some namby pamby fucking fiscal cliff. Real terror is waking up at 5AM to the sound of a rustling by your ear, turning on your bedside light and seeing a cockroach streaking up your wall, that twitchy little fucker heading for its hiding place in your closet. Real terror is knowing that you blew your one shot to kill the beast once and for all because that fucker is fast, man, and he is long gone. Real terror is sleeping with your light on so that he doesn’t come out of hiding and crawl into your mouth (Disclaimer: I have no scientific evidence to prove that cockroaches actually crawl into the mouths of sleeping humans, but once that idea’s in your head, trust me, it’s not going anywhere).

And then you look at the infighting in Congress and everyone is all disgusted. “Oh gross, look at them refusing to work together! What are they 12? Their behavior is so squalid and low brow!” As if immaturity is the be all and end all of disgust. I mean, what do you want? Professional adults who actually work for their pay? Have you MET your fellow countrymen?

But you want to know what’s really disgusting? Finding cockroach shit on your kitchen counters. That’s right folks, cockroaches shit on my counters, on my stovetops, in my cabinets, anywhere they find themselves crawling and need to let loose. I don’t see anyone from Congress shitting on my counters. In fact, some of the Republicans in Congress seem so uptight I bet they haven’t taken a good dump in years. Unlike the fucking cockroaches that live in my apartment.

And if shitting where I prepare my food weren’t enough to convince you, I’d like to share this little tidbit from Wikipedia:

“The odorous secretions of American cockroaches can alter the flavor of food.”

Just say this with me and try NOT to throw up: odorous secretions. In your fucking food.

The point is, I could write a fucking book about the fucking high jinks that cockroaches pull. At night. When you’re asleep and vulnerable. Because they’re nocturnal. They are so much fucking worse than Congress it’s not even funny. Sure, you might say, “Hey bud, if Congress could get their shit together and stop fucking up this country over petty political feuds, couldn’t the economy improve, allowing you to get a better job and maybe move out of the cockroach-infested apartment where you live? Or at the very least, allowing you to pay for an exterminator?” But that shit’s fucking ridiculous. You can’t lay the cockroaches’ misbehavior at Congress’s feet.

Plus, Congress has started to get their shit together, I hear. Something about actually starting to agree on immigration reform. And you know what, man, at least when Congress gets their shit together, it’s to work for a better country. When cockroaches get their shit together, it’ll be to take over the fucking earth and eat all of us humans for fucking lunch. The worst Congress can offer is inaction and inaction in a fucking cockroach is golden. They’re easier to kill when they’re not moving, anyway.



I have to admit that when I heard about the comparison between cockroaches and Congress, I laughed aloud – something I rarely do. Of course Congress rates lower than cockroaches, you fools.

There’s a reason why this study was conducted in the first place. Congress is a bloated, greedy, shallow pool of fecal matter. What’s worse, it’s stagnant. Sure, maybe an “idealistic” new shit drops in every four years, but if his mind hasn’t already been polluted by lobbyists, corporate greed, and honoring The Party above all else, I give it a week.

The fact is, people only fear and abhor cockroaches because they don’t understand them. I’d argue that a cockroach is fascinating, even elegant. Have you ever truly listened to the sounds of a Periplaneta americana as it scuttles across a floorboard? Have you observed its sleek, auburn pronotal shield as it pauses to eat decaying organic matter? Or the spread of its gossamer wings in flight? There’s a reason Kafka dedicated an entire novella to pontificate on its dark, twisted beauty in spite of its societal alienation. Some of us can understand what it’s like to be misunderstood.

But, anyway: Congress. The fact is, Congress has a great deal of power, and for far too long, its members have abused it. It gives me great pleasure to hear that finally, people can pinpoint the true beasts, the creatures who actually deserve the term “ugly” or “wretched” or “abject vermin.” (Although a person who, upon stroking the golden bands of a Supella longipalpa, could call it anything other than “exquisite,” is frankly a person I could never understand.)

Just think of it. With a cockroach, sure, you may not how many are taking momentary shelter behind your bathroom mirror or under your stove, but at least you know that a cockroach will always be a cockroach. A cockroach is who it is, regardless of whether or not people judge, debase, or persecute them. And I respect that. But with Congress, we have no idea where our congressmens’ loyalties really lie. We are fed a whole lot of rhetoric about hope, dreams, equality, and democracy, but when push comes to shove, our votes are in their sticky, slimy hands.

Let’s examine, if you will, the filibuster. The fact that it is legal for a member of Congress to indefinitely delay a bill whose outcome may affect millions of people is to me, a perfect example of why a cockroach is vastly superior. Why? A cockroach is and has always been incredibly decisive. When it comes to thinking on one’s feet, I trust the roach. (He has six. Plus, eighteen knees! How intriguing, right?) Maybe you don’t support a cockroach’s decision to crawl into your mouth while you’re sleeping, but at least the cockroach didn’t spend months parked on your nose while he debated semantics. Plus, I’ve found their odorous secretions to be quite zesty on the tongue!

Perhaps cockroaches do feast on our beer, cheese, leather, glue, hair, or flakes of dried skin, but Congress feasts on something even dearer to our hearts than our own scalps – our tax dollars. So thank you America, for siding with the cockroach.

In conclusion, odorous secretions.



POINT written by Jessica Pierce & COUNTERPOINT written by Lisa  DeBenedictis

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