Free Monologues - My Civil Rights

From Dear Chuck (one-act version)

My Civil Rights is from Dear Chuck, a play commissioned by the Choate Rosemary Hall Summer Arts Conservatory and written specifically for teen actors.

(Warning: Using this monologue without permission is illegal, as is reproducing it on a website or in print in any way.)


(A swim club. The actor perhaps hold a rubber ducky, a towel and whatever else would make him or her suitably dressed to go swimming. The actor points at a lifeguard.)
I should totally get a lawyer and sue that guy. Sue him for every penny he’s got, and sue the swim club, and I might just sue you too. Somebody’s gonna’ pay for my civil rights gettin’ violated.
Don’t give me that look like you don’t know what I’m talkin’ about. Playin’ dumb isn’t gonna’ keep me out of the kiddie pool. The sign doesn’t even say “kiddie pool.” It says “wading pool.” I want to wade. I’m real big on wading. I wade at the beach. I wade in the pond near my house, even waded in the Dead Sea once, which is really hard ‘cause all the salt makes you float. Who am I bothering if I wade here? I mean hey—I’m probably the only person in there that wouldn’t change the color of the water.

The lifeguard says maybe if there’s nobody else in the pool he’d let me swim. So I’m watchin’. The kids from the summer camp are at the snack bar having their afternoon cookies and bug juice, so they’re all getting out. But just as the camp kids are finally gone, there’s this one little twerp—looks like he’s two, maybe three—got those elbow flotation things, and he’s crying his head off and his Mom or nanny or housekeeper or whatever is draggin’ him in. He obviously doesn’t want to go—he’s trying to bite her hand—so why doesn’t this crazy lady just give the kid some time to get over it and stop scarring him for life. Because I don’t want to see him turn into a psychopathic killer, and I don’t own a bathtub, so this way, everybody gets what they want.

What’s her hurry? He’s just hittin’ the prime kiddie pool years. But I’m running out of time. I don’t want to be goin’ in there when I’m thirty—not that I shouldn’t be allowed.

I’m thinkin’ about a petition. Or a boycott. Or maybe a march where everybody sings “We Shall Overcome.” A lot. In a round. Because this is age discrimination, and it really sucks.

Co-Chair of the Alliance of Los Angeles
, member of The Dramatists Guild of America, and life member of the Philadelphia Dramatists Center.

Final Draft Resident Playwriting Expert and author of

Resident Playwriting Expert of The Writers Store.

Recent News
World Premiere!!!
Me, My Selfie & I co-premiered at Lompoc High School (Lompoc, CA) and Westmont High School (Campbell, CA) at the end of September. This one-act with a flexible cast introduces us to a group of teens as they struggle to find the balance between documenting their lives and living them. 
Take My Online Playwriting Course!
Want to study playwriting from the comfort of your home, workplace or anywhere at all?  In Introduction to Playwriting, you'll get all of the basics of playwriting and be well on your way to writing a new play, but you don't even have to get out of bed if you don't want to!  Look for a new session this summer.  Get more information and enroll here:
The Midnight Club is Now Published!
Read a sample of my latest play, the short comedy The Midnight Club, my teen monster-themed homage to the classic John Hughes 80s film. It's now published by Playscripts as part of a new collection, Scared Silly!
Playwriting Webinars!
Now available for purchase, two great webinars from yours truly! Each is nearly 90 minutes and packed with info (with a PowerPoint too!):
Playwriting 101:  Everything You Need to Know to Write a Play
Writing Plays for Young People: How to Write for the Biggest Market Nobody Knows About

Upcoming Productions
High School (non) Musical
Nevada Theatre Department (Nevada, MO), January 2018
The Magic Hour
North Branch High School (North Branch, MI), January 2018
Me, My Selfie & I
Pembina Trails School Division (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada), January 2018
Dear Chuck (one-act version)
Trinity Episcopal (Austin, TX), January 2018
4 A.M.
Redwood Valley High School (Redwood Falls, MN), January 2018
Me, My Selfie & I
Berkhamsted School (Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom), January 2018
After Math
Palmer Ridge High School (Colorado Springs, CO), February 2018
4 A.M.
Tigard High School (Tigard, OR), February 2018
The Magic Hour
Viking Theatre (Rock Hill, SC), February 2018
4 A.M.
Thurso Players (Caithness, United Kingdom), February 2018
High School (non) Musical
Montrose Area School District (Montrose, PA), March 2018
Thank You for Flushing My Head in the Toilet and other rarely used expressions
Del Valle High School (Del Valle, TX), April 2018
From Shakespeare with Love?
Bad Theatre Co. (Asuncion, Paraguay), May 2018
High School (non) Musical
Coakley Middle School Drama Club (Norwood, MA), June 2018
After Math
Pope John Paul II High School (Hendersonville, TN), November 2018
Great Expectations, or What I Did On My Summer Vacation: Next up, a ten-minute parody of Great Expectations to be part of YouthPLAYS' upcoming Lit on Fire anthology of high school reading list parodies.
Plays for Production
Free Monologues
Young Playwrights 101
Script Consulting
About Me
Connect With Me
Starting out as a writer? Get help by clicking here. You'll find playwriting instructional tips, links to young playwrights contests, sample query and cover letters and even a suggested reading list!
Can't figure out why your script isn't working? I can help. For a reasonable rate, I will give you detailed feedback to get your project back on track.

Click here for information.