The April 30 New York Times reported on three days of Justice Department hearings on police violence in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In the accompanying photo, only one person attending was obviously white. “Yeah,” said my cousin Ray Sixkiller, “funny coincidence there.”
Early in the week, the Nashville Humane Association was offering a “2-4-1 adoption fee” on dogs they describe as “BFF’s & must be adopted together.” The problem? Lisa is an 8-pound Chihuahua and Tito is a 92-pound Doberman mix. Humans tend to prefer big dogs or little dogs, so one of each as a set is hard to place. We did not call to see if Lisa and Tito found a home, because the Nashville Humane Association deserves kudos either way.
In other shelter news, the Associated Press reported the James family of New Jersey lost their dog, Reckless, along with their home in Superstorm Sandy in 2012. After months of calling shelters, they finally considered Reckless to be another victim of Sandy. On May 1, 2014, the family went to a no-kill shelter run by the Monmouth County SPCA to adopt a new dog for Ally James’s tenth birthday. The first pen they approached contained Reckless, a terrier-pit bull mix who is now back with his family. Chuck James told the AP, “Thank God for no-kill shelters because every time they kill an animal, it’s somebody’s friend who might be lost.” Reckless has now been microchipped.
KLBJ in Austin reported that Jacob Lavoro was facing a state jail felony for selling magic brownies, but when the weight of the sugar and butter and flour was added, as the law allows, the weight took the felony up to possible life in prison. In the same county, a man recently got 20 years for murder. Cousin Ray noted, “Too much rich food can kill you.”
In the Texas Lieutenant Governor election, Republicans branded the Democratic nominee, Sen. Letitia Van de Putte, “Barrio Boopsie,” so people will be sure to notice she’s Hispanic. The Republican Primary to determine who will probably beat her has turned into a comical mudfest. Incumbent David Dewhurst ran an ad showing his opponent, Dan Patrick, wearing a coat and a tie but no shirt. The picture is flashed briefly while the voice over accused Patrick of everything but appearing shirtless at a swinging party.
The picture came from a fundraiser for children with disabilities where Patrick auctioned “the shirt off his back” to benefit the charity Be An Angel.
House Republicans have announced a select committee to re-re-re-investigate the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens (Chinook) and three others, in the continuing attempt to prove that the deaths were the result of an Al Qaeda plot originating in the Muslim-dominated White House and covered up by Hillary Clinton and Susan Rice, who undertook to cover up the plot by handing out America-hating CIA propaganda on the Sunday political talk shows.
Virginia Senator Tim Kaine was on Cinco de Mayo Morning Joe announcing he has joined the “Ready for Hillary” organization. Given 30 seconds to respond to “If she runs, what’s her message?” Kaine gave reasons why she’s best qualified. As Mika Brzezinski pointed out, that’s not a message. My Republican Cousin Ray said I was being too picky. “In the last two elections, we nominated the only candidate not in the clown car…but only after he proved he could fit inside. If we keep that up, the requirement for a Dem to win is a pulse.”
Jimmy Kimmel played tape of Hillary Clinton asked to name her “guilty pleasure.” When she pondered a long time, “Are there that many?” Clinton: “No, I’m just trying to think of some G-rated ones.” The camera cut to her husband, who was not smiling.
The New York Times reported that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is on cruise control in his race against Tea Party challenger Matt Bevin, and expecting to become Majority Leader in the coming elections because the people who would benefit from a rise in the minimum wage and have benefitted from Obamacare don’t vote in mid-term elections.
I cannot watch the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner without remembering when the POTUS had to deliver stand-up knowing that he had just sent Seal Team Six to knock on Mr. bin Laden’s door and he needed to get back to the situation room—but didn’t dare pull a no-show and let the world know something big was cooking. The gag that got the most reaction by my home meter was when Mr. Obama observed that some Republicans have been giving House Speaker John Boehner a harder time than they give him, “proving that orange really is the new black.”
The New York Times contained a report on libertarian attempts to “free” Keene, New Hampshire from government by harassing meter maids. They can be called “maids” because the only male enforcement officer quit over the continual taunting about his service in Iraq that “I condoned the droning of brown babies.” “Clown car politics on the local level,” Cousin Ray complained.
Proving the Canadians have a clown car, the Toronto Star reported on a new Rob Ford crack smoking video and an audio tape of Ford saying of his female opponent, “I’d (bleeping) jam her.” Ford has taken a hiatus to seek treatment for substance abuse. According to polling by the Star, 86 per cent of Ford voters do not have a second choice. “Understandable,” said Cousin Ray. “Rob Ford broke the clown car.”
Boko Haram, the Islamic fundamentalist group in Nigeria, announced plans to sell approximately 276 girls kidnapped from a high school on April 14. Eight more were snatched this week from under the nose of Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, while world opinion is mobilized to demand action on Twitter hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. The English translation of “boko haram” is “western education is a sin.” The UN stands behind the Twitter hashtag #GirlsWIthBooks. Cousin Ray observed that Nigeria, too, has a political clown car, “but it’s a hearse.”
The Nigerian government’s response, taking a cue from the US government’s response to the climate emergency, has been denial. The army, often as brutal as Boko Haram, claimed at first that the kidnapped girls had been recovered. Goodluck Jonathan’s wife, Patience, was critical of the demonstrators demanding action. “There is no truth to the rumor,” claimed Cousin Ray, “that the Nigerian First Couple has three children named Ruthless, Feckless, and Clueless.”
In other religion news, The New York Times reported that some countries are exporting an unwelcome product, the polio virus, because of a combination of governmental negligence and Islamic fundamentalists killing vaccination teams. According to the World Health Organization, the documented vectors are Pakistan to Afghanistan, Syria to Iraq, and Cameroon to Equatorial Guinea.
Bruce Chadwick published a review of Godzilla on History News Network. Not the latest version due out this month and not the 1956 hit film from the US, marred by major political censorship. The original 1954 Japanese film, Gojira, has been released on a CD back-to-back with the expurgated American version, and the original Japanese black and white film will get a limited release in theaters. Cousin Ray wondered if American audiences are ready for Godzilla without the spliced in role for Raymond Burr as the White Guy Who Splains Things?
Sports Illustrated reported that Oregon State has fired basketball coach Craig Robinson, brother-in-law of the POTUS and widely credited with helping the FLOTUS get from the South Side of Chicago to Princeton. At 94-105, Robinson was the winningest coach in Oregon State history. “It ain’t easy,” lamented Cousin Ray, “being a Beaver.”
It cost a million bucks to file an application to open one of the seven new casinos authorized by referendum in New York. There are 22 applicants for the seven casinos, and The New York Times reported that people connected with those applicants have so far donated $55,000 to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and $43,500 to his probable opponent, Republican Rob Astorino. “The only arithmetic that makes sense in casinos,” Cousin Ray reminded me, “is the house advantage.”
Alan Lightman published an op-ed in The New York Times on May 2 pointing out what is obvious to most traditional Indians. The point of taking action to slow global warming is not to “save the planet” because the planet can get along just fine without human beings infesting it.
Chief Justice Roy Moore of the Alabama Supreme Court told the Pastor for Life Luncheon that the First Amendment only applies to Christians because “Buddha didn’t create us, Mohammed didn’t create us—it was the God of the Holy Scriptures.” “Justice” Moore is apparently unaware that Muslims recognize the same “God of the Holy Scriptures” and Buddha is not a God. For Indians, though, the problem is that “Justice” Moore goes on to talk about what was “brought over on the pilgrim ship” in a manner that disregards the beliefs of those who, in the words of Cherokee Will Rogers, “met the boat.”