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Friday, May 6, 2016

Racism, Damascus, and Honey Boo Boo

Monday, January 14, 2013

It is not easy to write about racism unless you are criticizing it or endorsing it. I'm just reporting on it. The Des Moines School Board had a dream last year when preparing the school calendar. They designated the holidays of Martin Luther King (MLK) and President's day as snow make-up days.

Little attention was paid until last week when it was announced that school would be held on both holidays, and then the stuff hit the fan. A very articulate student took them to task and gathered signatures. Predictably, lest they be called racists, the Board backed down, and now school will go into June.

I say 'predictably' for the same reason more than 900 cities in the USA have changed the name of a street to MLK. Once such a proposal is in front of an elected official, they don't dare say no. Of course that theory is somewhat responsible for the lack of press criticism of President Obama. None of us want the racist label.

MLK was, and is, very important in our history but not to the point where his 'day' should be allowed to overshadow Lincoln's and Washington's. But it does, and it will.


Speaking of going in the wrong direction, Democrat Representative Josť Serrano (D-Bronx, N.Y.) has reintroduced a bill in the U.S. House that would repeal the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, thereby allowing President Obama, and successors, to serve more than two terms. That has as much chance as repealing the second amendment.


About as sure as death and taxes is the re-election of incumbents. Ninety percent of U.S. House members and 91 percent of Senators who sought re-election in 2012 were successful, despite an approval rating of less than 20 percent for Congress. For senators, this year's re-election percentage was the highest since 2004.

Term limits anyone? That would be a hard pill to swallow for Iowa Republicans when Chuck Grassley is up -- same with Tom Harkin, for those with liberal leanings. We tend to like our officials, but not those other rascals! For senators, this year's re-election percentage was the highest since 2004.


A new Rasmussen Reports national survey shows that 44 percent of likely voters are politically conservative on fiscal issues, while 40 percent claim to be fiscally moderate, and 13 percent fiscally liberal. So, how did 13 percent, knowing what a fiscal hole we are in, swing the election?!

Only eight percent (it was 24 percent three years ago) of voters now claim to support the Tea Party movement. I suspect part of the problem is the movement is not well defined.


Why is abbreviated such a long word? And, what is occasional irregularity?


A review of all the good things that happened around the world in 2012 must include President Obama personally seeing to the demise of Osama Bin Laden; that pretty English woman who survived morning sickness (although the excessive coverage of it nauseated the rest of the thinking world); and the long-rumored Higgs Boson was discovered - or something.

Other than those, though, 2012 was a pretty dismal yea. However on the positive side, Honey Boo Boo and Survival are not required viewing. One other bright spot was that the Cubs, despite losing 101 games, did not finish last.

For us personally, I'd give it a "C," with a resounding "F" for both the drought and election.


It is shameful that Damascus, Syria, the oldest continuously inhabited city in existence, is the site of extreme, difficult to comprehend, violence. Damascus was flourishing a couple of thousand years before Rome was founded in 753 B.C. Now, their own government planes are bombing the suburbs, and rebels are car bombing in the historic city.

More than 60,000 people have been killed in the Syrian fighting with no let up in sight. In a bid to keep the killing from crossing the Turkish border, American soldiers in street clothes have arrived at Gaziantep in southern Turkey. They will help deploy NATO Patriot missile batteries.

Hollywood finally voted for a Republican -- Lincoln got a dozen Oscar nominations.

Don Paulin, 2carpenterdon@gmail.com, 7557 30th Av, Norwalk, IA 50211 - 515-201-7236

By Don Paulin
Been There, Done That

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