Saturday, August 24, 2013

Three Blind Mice Should Make No Comment (Please)

There was certain inevitability to the dialogue in the wake of the Treyvon Martin case involving what has been termed 'white on black' murder (in spite of the fact that George Zimmerman might also be considered Hispanic, since one of his parents is).  In the weeks that have followed since Zimmerman was found innocent of the charge of second degree murder, we have unfortunately had instead a number of examples of 'black on white' murders brought to our attention, and a constant stream of vitriolic commentary wondering why 2013's Three Blind Mice of Bigotry have failed to find a voice with which to speak out with the same never-ending stream of divisiveness that they did since the tragedy of young Mr. Martin's death.

Fortunately or unfortunately for those focused on retribution in this country, and depending on which bit of nonsense you were intent on promoting, the nation (and the rest of the world) has continued on it merry and murderous path to provide all of the examples of Humanity's worst behavior that anyone could possibly need.  Just in the last week, two of these 'black on white' murders apparently occurred when an 88 year-old WWII veteran named Delbert Belton was beaten to death in Spokane, WA; and a college baseball player named Christopher Lane was shot to death while jogging in Oklahoma.  These are just two of far too many murders that occurred in the US during that period in various racial combinations.  There are unfortunately, hundreds of examples of such crimes every week and thousands of examples every year, with families left to mourn loved ones whose lives have been tragically cut short by the misdeeds of others.  There's no real surprise in these statistics, but there is a sadness in knowing that it's been going on since Cain killed Able.

Regardless of the sentimental pronouncements by the left and right however, these deaths are not a clarion call for gun control, a product of the relaxation of marijuana laws, or (as our three undiscerning agent provocateurs of race baiting would have us believe) a continuing acknowledgement of right wing racism in this country.  After all, hundreds of thousands are dying in Syria for reasons that have nothing to do with race, car bombs explode and suicide bombers continue to ply their trade in events that have nothing to do with the drug cartels, and new mass graves continued to be discovered around the world in places that these three sightless test lab animals of discrimination have never spoken of.  

There are some however, who hold these three in contempt for the dearth of public statement on some of these recent acts, but I'm not one of them.  Oh don't get me wrong, there are strong feelings of contempt stirring in my bosom; but they're reserved for most of the pronouncements these three make and the policies they espouse, not their silence.  In fact I welcome it.  

The Reverend Al Sharpton, in spite of having a MSNBC pulpit five days a week, has remained curiously (and blessedly) silent in recent days.  Then again, Mr. Sharpton is no longer a young man, and perhaps he's a bit worn out from carrying that racial chip on his shoulder for so long.  His reputation after all, has only suffered over the years by the verbal ejections from his pie hole, going back as far as 1987 and the spotlight he brought to the case of Tawana Brawley.  His random and unreliable recitations since may have gained him some questionable status within his community over the years, but they've left him today with nothing to show for his efforts but some shiny suits and the dubious reward of a prime time venue on a failing network.  I'm afraid that the best that can be said about the Reverend Al these days is that the factual basis of his offerings are as anorexic as his appearance  He helps his cause most by refusing to contribute to the discussion.

Now the other Reverend, Jesse Jackson, finally did get around to issuing a statement on the Oklahoma shooting, but it was one so anemic that we can only assume that the Reverend was off his game during a week that saw members of his immediate family packed off to serve in a way that many other recent Illinois office holders have before them ... in jail.  In such banal statements however, the Reverend Jackson may have shown far more wisdom than one would normally give him credit for.  I would never suggest that in light of this family situation, the Reverend's time and attention might better be focused on his own problems (and bookkeeping); and I'm sure that his lack of attention simply means he's far too explaining the facts of life (and law) to his grandkids.  Besides, unlike most of his causes, the current ones present no opportunity for the kind of camera time used for fund raising, nor a corporation that might be held hostage for a healthy 'donation'.  I suspect that the Reverend, far more savvy than his MSNBC religious counterpart, will see the value of discretion and continue to lay low while public opinion swings away from his cause.

As for the President, his spokesman evidently had not been watching the television news (where the White House evidently gets all its information), and therefore was unable comment when recently queried.  Having returned from vacation, the Commander-in-Chief himself was instead busy touring some of the nation's centers of higher education, subtly threatening those institutions with a form of government scrutiny normally only reserved for oil and pharmaceutical companies.  Hinting vaguely at price controls while promoting the value of borrowing money from the government to pay the inflated costs for a largely valueless education in a stagnant economy; he likewise had nothing to say on these recent events.  With luck and good advice, I suspect that such silence will largely continue.  

The President after all, is pretty darn busy these days.   After getting up, it's time to draw (or erase) another red line to lead from behind while watching the ongoing slaughter occurring in Syria; all while discussing which side of the Egyptian 'Arab Summer' he's going piss off next (or is it more?).  Then it's time to issue a morning statement blaming the Republicans for wasting the country's time with hearings over the phony scandals in the IRS, the NSA, and the DOJ whose revelations continue to make his Administration look as crooked as (if not more so) than the one in Chicago that his former adviser Rahm Emmanuel runs.  Later he can take a short break from cover ups and political castigation to circumvent Congress by issuing a few regulatory changes, unconstitutionally delay the implementation of a law or two, and encroach on the separation of powers; but before you know it, it's time for lunch.  Then it's back to a busy afternoon of insulting his political opponents by accusing them of things they might do (but haven't yet), followed by issuing another statement decrying their unwillingness to work with (give in to) the guy who just insulted them without a fight on any issue on which he expresses an opinion (not a plan, just an opinion).   The next thing you know, it's time for dinner.  If there's not a taxpayer-funded awards ceremony or concert going on that evening that sequestration hasn't interfered with, there might be time to squeeze in a hard-hitting interview on getting a new puppy with Jim Colbert or Jimmy Fallon (I sometimes get those two mixed up); or maybe with some luck, some 'night putting' before bed. 

But listen, we're far better off if these three carriers of racial 'hoof in mouth' disease steer clear of pronouncements on such events.  Let's be honest, their inability to cast an objective light on the subject would not add to anything meaningful to the national dialogue.  Their normal divisiveness might in fact further inflame already incendiary tempers, rather than quiet them.  As for what the two Reverends might want to believe about their so-called exalted standings in the community where such discussions are involved, the need for their proselytizing is dubious at best and toxic at worst.  And as for the President, he could stand to learn a lesson in the value of leaving local affairs to the local leaders and saving his Solomon-like wisdom for what appears to be a wholly inadequate foreign policy.  

Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) once said, "It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt."   My advice to our three rodent racial dividers would therefore be that when asked, they should stick to a consistent message:  

"No Comment!"


Anonymous said...

Tim, Happened on your blog after searching 10th amphibius tractor batalion. I got to know your mom and dad and enjoyed their company at several of the 10th reunions with my dad. Your mom and I have traded Xmas cards through the years. Just wondering how she is doing. I could not pull up your email for some reason. Can I give you my email here.
Thanks Jeff Stern

Timothy W Higgins said...


Contact me at and I can get you the email address.