WASHINGTON -- The White House announced today that it was closing the controversial U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, after the escape of a shockingly emaciated prisoner, Hollywood actress Renee Zellweger, caused widespread outrage among plump young American women nationwide and raised concerns that the Republicans' 2008 presidential nominee would lose that demographic to Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York.
"We're shuttin' her down," President Bush said in a press conference this morning. "You can hogtie and horsewhip a jihadi and the 'Merican people will just go on shoppin' like nothin' happened. But mess with the self-image of lonely single women, and buddy, you'd better start sleepin' with one eye open."
Thousands of single women aged 16 to 39 converged upon the mall in Washington this past weekend to demand the prison's closure after photographs of a once curvy Zellweger, now bony and gaunt, surfaced on the Internet.
"Hey! Hey! Ho! Ho! Guantanamo has got to go!" they chanted as they trooped from one end of the mall to the other, leaving a field of half-read Helen Fielding novels and Godiva chocolate bars in their wake.
"Renee Zellweger was my hero!" 37-year-old secretary Nancy Jodoin of Bethesda, Md., said. "She looked like a real woman, giving me hope that some day I, too, might sleep with Hugh Grant. But look what those beasts have done to her! She could turn sideways and pass through a locked door! Now I'll have to lose 30 pounds just to feel good about myself again!"
Zellweger had been held at Guantanamo Bay on suspicion of being a terrorist because of her uncanny ability to speak with an English accent despite being a Texan.
"Real Texans just don't talk like that," Bush is reported to have said when ordering her detainment.
But Zellweger was in prison only a few months when she escaped, apparently by turning sideways and sliding between a door jamb and a locked prison door, then climbing atop a parapet and letting the wind blow her all the way to Florida.
President Bush did not say where the prison's roughly 375 other detainees would be housed. But he said that despite constant appeals from the adult film industry, the administrations had no plans to set free cultural terrorist Paris Hilton, whom Bush described as "doing to American culture what al-Qaida is trying to do to our economic and military infrastructure."
Andrew Cline is editorial page editor of the New Hampshire Union Leader and editor of the humor blog www.gunsnbutter.com.
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