Think back to the political drama in Wisconsin two years ago. The ugliest aspect of that drama, in my opinion, was the gathering of union members at the homes of legislators they hated. They tramped on lawns, chanted their slogans, screamed their abuse — and frightened and intimidated families inside. Including the pets, probably.
I remember thinking, “If I were on these people’s side — which I’m not — I would be especially appalled by their tactics. They discredit the cause in general. Will any decent liberal say so?” No. Not that I heard.
Anyway, I thought of all this the other day when reading about Kansas. What’s the matter with Kansas? Well, a pro-amnesty crowd — I’m tempted to say “mob” — gathered at the home of a public official, Kris Kobach. He’s the secretary of state in Kansas. They tramped all over his lawn, mounted his porch, shouted their speeches through bullhorns: “Sí, se puede,” and all that racket.
Later, Kobach likened their tactics to the Klan’s — citing “Klan laws,” which were designed, he said, to keep people from going to the homes of officeholders and threatening them. The amnesty crowd didn’t appreciate being compared to the Klan. They howled. And the shoe does not fit entirely. But it does in part, and they should wear it.
Like most Americans, I’m sympathetic to immigrants, and admiring of them. (That said, I’m not in favor of the “Gang of Eight” bill.) But if they and others behave this way, I become like the drunkest lout in the bowling alley: “Get out, and stay out” — at least until such time as you learn what democratic politics is about.
Also: Stay the hell off my lawn — and others’.
In our latest podcast, Mona Charen and I talked about why we became conservatives in the first place. I didn’t mention this, but one of my reasons was this: The Left was a bully. Almost more than anything else, I hate bullying. I was taught that the Right was a bully: the Brownshirts and all that. In my time and place, however, the Left was far more likely to be the bully.
And I recoiled against it (among other things).
The George Zimmerman trial is unfolding in Sanford, Fla. I wonder whether justice is possible in this case — because the case is “national,” rather than individual, as trials ought to be, really. I’d better explain what I mean.
In Sanford, a white man killed a black man — or at least a non-black man did. The New York Times called him a “white Hispanic.” In fact, I think the paper might have coined the term for the purpose of describing George Zimmerman. It doesn’t call Sonia Sotomayor, for example, a “white Hispanic.”
Do they have some kind of a color chart at the Times where they measure these things?
If a black man kills a black man — no furor. If a black man kills a white man — no furor. If a white man kills a black man — furor. Al Sharpton, “No justice, no peace,” etc.
Of the victim in this case, President Obama said, “If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.” Fine. And what is the relevance of that remark? What if the victim had been a Chinese girl? What would our president have said then? Anything?
I have no idea what the outcome of the trial should be. I am not a student of the case. But I’m afraid that the race gods must be appeased. That our national psyche demands a conviction — or else . . .
And that’s not justice, is it? Justice is more like, “What do the facts tell us, and to what verdict do those facts lead?”
That may be just too boring for America.
A word about Alec Baldwin — who let loose on a journalist the other day. (Perfectly understandable.) He wrote — he tweeted — “I’m gonna find you, George Stark, you toxic little queen, and I’m gonna f***…you…up.” (I’m adding asterisks here.) He continued, “If put my foot up your f***ing ass, George Stark” — this is gibberish, but I’m quoting accurately — “but I’m sure you’d dig it too much.”
Anderson Cooper, the CNN star, said — tweeted — “Why does #AlecBaldwin get a pass when he uses gay slurs? If a conservative talked of beating up a ‘queen’ they would be vilified.” (A conservative, or any other individual, in our modern English, is a “they.”)
Why does Baldwin get a pass? Was Cooper’s question rhetorical or does he really not know? He no doubt knows, and his tweet suggests as much: Baldwin gets a pass because he’s on the left. And to be on the left is to be forgiven all, or almost all.
Baldwin is a kind of spokesman or personality for the New York Philharmonic, the host of the orchestra’s radio series, I believe. Classical music is not a gay-hostile field, to say the least. I wonder which would be more disadvantageous to a person: to be a political conservative who would never engage in anti-gay rhetoric, or to be a political liberal who would.
Actually, I don’t have to wonder, not for a second.
Did you hear that Soledad O’Brien, late of CNN, has been hired by al-Jazeera? Is that not perfect, absolutely perfect?
Now that she’s paid by Gulf Arabs, will she discover a new appreciation of oil?