David Mamet Pens Open Letter on Felicity Huffman and "Corrupt Joke" College Admissions

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David Mamet

The playwright, who has known Huffman and husband William H. Macy for decades, writes: "The unqualified may be accepted for many reasons."

If Operation Varsity Blues had a tagline, it could be "ABC: Always Be Cheating."

But David Mamet, who coined that catchphrase (sort of), has a few more thoughts about the FBI sting that has ensnared the likes of Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin — among 40 other wealthy parents, corrupt college coaches and standardized testing officials.

The celebrated playwright and screenwriter of films like Glengarry Glen Ross and Wag the Dog has issued this open letter in response to the scandal:

I worked for very many years in and around our Elite Universities. I am able to report that their admissions policies are an unfortunate and corrupt joke.

Harvard was once sued for restricting the admission of qualified Jews; a contest currently being waged by Asians.

The unqualified may be accepted for many reasons, among them, as Legacies, and on account of large donations made by their parents. I do not see the difference between getting a kid into school by bribing the Building Committee, and by bribing someone else. But, apparently, the second is against the Law. So be it.

I've known and worked with Bill Macy for nearly fifty years. We started two theatre companies together, one of which, THE ATLANTIC is still in operation in New York, after 35 years. I've known Felicity Huffman for those 35 years, she was my student, my colleague, worked in many of my films, and created roles on stage in three of my plays.

I'm crazy about them both.

That a parent's zeal for her children's future may have overcome her better judgment for a moment is not only unfortunate, it is, I know we parents would agree, a universal phenomenon.

If ever there were a use for the Texas Verdict, this is it. For the uninitiated, the Texas Verdict is: "Not Guilty, but Don't do it Again."

David Mamet