Other than watching excerpts from the State of the Union speech, I tried to spend less time following politics over the last week, and that felt pretty good. I read 2 novels, and then started Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life – loving semi-retirement so far! – and at long last I was able to watch the contractor put the new roof on my Victorian house that burned last year.
Since I had a handful of stories from the past several weeks that I’d wanted to comment on but hadn’t had the chance, I thought that today I’d catch up on those.
But first I’ve got a new example in what I am right now declaring a recurring series: The Red Flag of the Week.
This week’s entry comes from the Super Bowl, where the unofficial Black National Anthem (Lift Every Voice and Sing) was sung before our actual national anthem. I understand that this is the third year this has been done, but I don’t like it.
I’m an “e pluribus unum” kind of guy – like a few founders of our country I could mention – rather than an “e pluribus divide-um” type. (E pluribus tribalismo?) (I don’t know as much Latin as I should.)
The kind of racial identity politics that leads to separate dorms, graduations, award shows and anthems – even when it is well-intentioned (and it very often is decidedly not) — is not likely to end in greater solidarity and love for our country.
More often, it leads to demands for more and more carve-outs for other ethnic groups. There are now more Hispanics than African-Americans in the US; shouldn’t they have their own “national” anthem? How about the Asians?
And why should it stop there? Wouldn’t Guatemalans or Brazilians be duking it out with the Mexicans for pride of place among the Hispanic anthem contenders? And the Japanese, Koreans and Chinese aren’t traditionally the best of friends, so would they all be happy with one pan-Asian anthem?
And don’t get me started on the Fijians.
Also, if all of those groups start getting jiggy with their own anthems, what about me and my buds over here in Crackertown? I’m half Appalachian hillbilly and half German. So do I get a stirring rendition of John Prine’s “Muhlenberg Country,” following by a rousing version of Germanic cutie Nena doing “99 Luftballoons?”
That way lies madness… and not just because the Super Bowl pre-game show would have to last for 16 hours, instead of the modest 12 hours it now takes.
Speaking of racial identity politics wreaking havoc in our society, does anybody still believe that choosing people for important jobs based largely on their race or ethnicity is a wise path to follow? Because I remember when the late Joe Biden stated that he was going to pick a black female for vice president, no matter what.
And now the second-in-command to our decomposing prez is the human distillation of cringe, whose greatest passions are Venn diagrams, yellow school buses and meaning-free repetition of vacuous banalities. I mean, aren’t we all just fascinated with,“the significance of the passage of time?”
One of the most pernicious unwanted side effects of affirmative action hiring decisions is that they call into question a nominee’s merit, even for those who are eminently qualified, regardless of whether they belong to a group for whom a thumb is placed on the hiring scales.
In some painful cases, some applicants are given the chance to demonstrate their qualifications, and the results are not pretty. And I’m not just referring to Que Mala. Or Liz Warren, whose cheek-bone-based rise has prompted many tribal spokespeople to release statements to the effect that they’ve got nothing to do with that crazy Caucasian lady. (#wemustneverstopmockingher)
Well, a few weeks ago Louisiana Senator John Kennedy questioned some nominees for district court judgeships, and among them was Charnelle Bjelkengren. She is African-American, and her past work includes participation in various associations with names like, “the Racial Justice Consortium,” “the Diversity Section,” and “the Systemic Racism Taskforce.”
In support of her nomination, the Biden administration highlighted that she would be the first black woman on the District Court in the state of Washington if approved.
But when Senator Kennedy asked her a few questions that should have been softballs for an average first-year law student, she… did not do well. (Welcome to Euphemism Corner, people!)
First Kennedy said, “Tell me what Article 5 of the Constitution does.” The judge hesitated for a long moment, then said, “Article 5 is not coming to mind at the moment.”
Kennedy said, “Okay. How about Article 2?” Her response: “Neither does Article 2.”
These are not tricky “gotcha” questions. They don’t involve some minutiae from a civil court ruling on the penalties for stealing a pig in West Virginia in 1889. There are only 7 articles in the constitution, and she went 0-for-2 on those!
In the interests of full disclosure, I probably wouldn’t be able to recall what those two articles involve if asked about them in that setting, either.
But in my defense, I’ve never gone to law school, and I’m not trying to become a District Court judge!
It would be like asking a Christian who went to seminary and has been a pastor for 10 years to explain what the Golden Rule is, or to name 2 of the 10 commandments, or to recite John 3:16.
I can’t imagine that many pastors would fail that test, yet this lady couldn’t come remember the articles of the constitution.
To quote a Bible verse I know, even though I’m not looking for pastoral work: Jesus wept.
On the schadenfreude front, I enjoyed watching the leftist overlords of NYC being hoisted on their own petards a couple of weeks ago, when their obnoxious virtue signaling about illegal immigrants came back to bite them.
After several years of moral preening about how they were “sanctuary cities,” a lot of Dem-run places – I’m looking at you, wokesters of Martha’s Vineyard — when given the chance to put their money where their Michael-Moore-size mouths are, have proved to be… less than consistent. (Seriously, come on in to Euphemism Corner!)
So when New York received a few hundred illegals a while ago, they temporarily housed them in an upscale Manhattan hotel. But when it came time for them to move to a migrant shelter in Brooklyn, the illegals refused. They complained that the Brooklyn shelter was “inhumane,” and that instead of beds, they’d be forced to sleep in cots.
One said, “I was promised a more stable place to stay, here at the Watson. I feel like I was lied to.” Many of them set up tents on the streets around the hotel, claiming that their rights had been violated.
In a country that they’d illegally broken into, and where they were being fed and housed for free.
On the one hand, that is infuriating to hear. These people are supposed to be humble refugees, fleeing from terrible third-world conditions and political persecution, but they sound more like the arrogant, entitled offspring of Dem politicians.
You know who sleeps on cots and doesn’t complain about it? Members of the US military! But that’s not good enough for these people.
Democrat NYC Mayor Eric Adams argued that it’s unfair for cities like his to “carry the weight of a national problem.”
Oh, it’s a national problem now, is it? Because when it primarily affected small border towns in a lot of red or purple states, you dopes said that it wasn’t a problem at all.
Until we can force the securing of our borders, I hope that every GOP governor will send every illegal immigrant who steps foot in their states straight up to the Dem-run sanctuary cities, and let them reap the consequences of their misbegotten policies.
When DeSantis sent a handful of illegals to Martha’s Vineyard last year, one of the white leftist ladies there claimed to just love all immigrants, but said, “We’re not a border town!”
You are now, so suck it up, buttercup!
Finally, Cassie the Wonder Dog and I want to heap some praise on a Marine Corps war dog who recently received a medal after completing four deployments, 50 missions and over 350 explosive sweeps in Somalia, Afghanistan and Iraq. The Belgian Malinois is named Bass.
His skills include detecting explosive materials, and tracking a person or group of people, along with my personal favorite: “performing team protection through controlled aggression.” I like the sound of that!
Among his missions, in May of 2019 he helped capture a Taliban bombmaker, while also detecting several bombs in the path of his squad when it was under fire. He’s now enjoying a well-deserved retirement with his former handler in Texas, and is universally recognized as a Very Good Boy!
I just wish he could do one more brief deployment in Brooklyn, where his handler could explain to some snooty illegals that they had 5 minutes to get into their cots for the night, after which any malingerers would experience of a little old-fashioned “shelter protection through controlled aggression.”
Semper Fi, Bass!
Fetterman/ Eric “Get these migrants out of here!” Adams, 2024!