Monday, November 30, 2009

Clearing The Decks

by Burt Prelutsky

Periodically, I find that my random thoughts begin to pile up and threaten to overflow from the dusty attic I call my brain. At such times, I have to decide whether to wrap them up and pass them off as gifts or place them curbside for the trash collectors. Inasmuch as we are fast-approaching Christmas season, try to consider the following remarks with the same equanimity you do those holiday fruitcakes that keep showing up on your doorstep year after year.

To begin with, could somebody please explain why they keep churning out one version of “The Christmas Carol” after another? Now, I have nothing against Charles Dickens’ little fable and, in fact, back in the third grade I portrayed Tiny Tim in a class production that is still spoken of in hushed tones. But isn’t enough ever enough? This December, Jim Carrey is taking a crack at Ebenezer Scrooge. The question is why. In the years since the 1914 silent film starring Charles Rock, there have been over 50 versions produced for either TV or the movies. Six Oscar winners -- Michael Caine, Albert Finney, Fredric March, Walter Matthau, Jack Palance and George C. Scott -- have bah-humbugged their way through the part, and another four Oscar nominees -- John Carradine, Basil Rathbone, James Whitmore and Sir Ralph Richardson -- have given it a go, while a fifth, James Earl Jones, had to settle for merely narrating a version.

Next on the agenda is the recent election in New York’s 23rd congressional district. That was the race in which ACORN’s favorite “Republican,” Dierdre Scozzafava, dropped out at the last minute, throwing her support to the Democratic candidate, Bill Owens, who managed to defeat Doug Hoffman, a conservative candidate with the personality and verbal skills of a guppy, by a scant three percent. Interestingly, nearly six percent of the goofballs in upper state New York trooped out and cast their votes for non-candidate Scozzafava. Which strongly suggests that when Mr. Owens goes to Washington, he should rent, not buy.

In the wake of GOP gubernatorial victories that same day in Virginia and New Jersey, Nancy Pelosi bragged that Owens had won in a district that had elected one Republican after another ever since the Civil War. As usual, she lied. Although the area has been gerrymandered any number of times over the years, Republicans haven’t been elected with any regularity even since the Vietnam War. In fact, 11 of the past 15 representatives from the district have been Democrats!

Speaking of House Speaker Pelosi, do you think she would be quite so determined to shove Obamacare down our throats if members of Congress had to live under the same system as the rest of us? Do you think for even one minute that she would agree to a health care plan that rationed plastic surgery?

For that matter, can you imagine Obama’s Hollywood groupies supporting cap and trade if it meant they could no longer gad about in private jets, Hummers and limousines or had to turn off the air-conditioning in their palatial villas?

Recently, I came across a quote by one of the better Scrooges, Ralph Richardson: “I have put on so many make-ups that sometimes I have feared that when I go to wipe it off, there will be nobody left underneath.” When you couple that notion with the fear some camera-shy aborigines have about their souls being stolen when their pictures are taken, I think we all have a clearer idea of why people like Whoopi Goldberg, George Clooney, Julia Roberts and Sean Penn, say the nutty things they do.

That brings us to Barack Obama, who’s never seen a TV camera or a teleprompter he didn’t lust after. Come to think of it, it’s too bad that his administration isn’t a TV show. If it were, we could at least hope it would be canceled after one season instead of four.

In case you missed it, he recently lifted the HIV Treatment and Immigration Ban, thus throwing open our borders to the diseased of the world, including that part of the world where many men believe that AIDS can be cured by having sex with young female virgins. But, really, who amongst us hasn’t at one time or another entertained the notion that what America really needs is an influx of foreigners with highly infectious diseases requiring really expensive, taxpayer-subsidized, health care?

Finally, allow me to introduce you to Diane Metcalf-Leggette, a first year student at Princeton, who is demanding that she be allotted twice as much time to take tests as her classmates. It’s her contention that she suffers from four separate learning disabilities; namely, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, mixed receptive-expressive language disorder, disorder of written expression and developmental coordination disorder. These conditions, according to her complaint, hinder her ability to process information and communicate in writing.

Well, heaven knows I’m as sympathetic as the next fellow when it comes to those poor souls cursed with mixed receptive-expressive language disorder, a group that I assume includes Barbara Boxer, Robert Byrd and Henry Waxman, but, frankly, I find myself in a muddle. I believe, by the way, that my condition is known in medical circles as the hopeless search for common sense in a world gone mad disorder.

For instance, in spite of my best efforts to ward them off, a number of questions come to mind and refuse to leave. One, I ask myself what is this doofus doing at Princeton; two, what would she do with a degree even if they gave her a month and a half to take each and every test for the next four years; and, three, what the heck is a person with her particular problems doing carting around a name containing 20 letters and a hyphen?
 

Friday, November 27, 2009

Redistributing Whose Wealth?

by Burt Prelutsky

For some peculiar reason, America’s left-wingers object to being called Socialists. In fact, we have only one member of Congress, Vermont’s Bernie Sanders, who has the gumption to admit he is one. Still, so far as I can tell, he’s no more socialistic than any of the other leftist pinheads in Washington. I mean, the truth is, Henry Waxman, Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters, Charles Rangel, Brad Sherman, Barbara Lee and all the rest of that silly crowd vote exactly the same as Sanders, so why aren’t they equally honest about their true identities?

Instead, they walk around like a bunch of mild-mannered Clark Kents, but as soon as a vote is called, they rush off to the nearest phone booth and emerge wearing a cape and little booties, just in time to vote for Obamacare, trillion dollar stimulus packages and cap & trade.

What is even more disturbing is that it’s not just the liberal media that denies the obvious fact that the “S” on Barack Obama’s own chest stands for Socialist. I keep hearing such people as Bill O’Reilly and Michael Medved taking members of their audience to task for even suggesting such a thing. I’m sorry, folks, but the emperor is not only naked as a jaybird, but he’s a bigger left-wing dingbat than Hugo Chavez.

Let us not forget that Obama was the presidential candidate who told Joe the Plumber that redistributing wealth was a good thing. Lest anyone think that was a one-time slip of the tongue, it was also Obama who announced that the terrible failing of the Constitution, the Supreme Court and even the Civil Rights movement, was that none of them ever promoted the redistribution of wealth.

Well, the way I see it, redistributing one’s own wealth is called charity. Redistributing other people’s, when done by the government, is totalitarianism. When perpetrated by an individual, such as Jesse James, Willie Sutton or Bernard Madoff, it’s called a felony.

To be honest, there have been times, even here in America, when socialism has been benign. We’ve had agrarian communes that fostered a share-the-wealth policy, although it wasn’t wealth, so much as labor and food that was shared. Israel has a long history of such communes, known as kibbutzim. The best thing about such communities, aside from the fact that people live there of their own free choice, is that sloths and troublemakers are easily spotted and banished, unlike the way it is in capitalist societies, where even able-bodied sluggards and ne’er-do-wells are able to survive through the generosity of the productive.

The way it works here in America, I regret to say, is that the chronically indolent are either given welfare or elected to political office.
 

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Hollywood Elitists And Other Morons

by Burt Prelutsky

A lot of people seemed shocked to discover that the folks at the National Endowment of the Arts were so ready, even anxious, to devote their talents to propagandizing on behalf of Obama and his administration. That merely proves that a lot of people haven’t been paying attention.

It’s my guess that a majority of those involved with the NEA -- even those few who are talented -- are always eager to roll over for left-wing politicians. Partly it’s because they are so hungry for attention and partly because they lack anything resembling a moral compass.

Allow me to give you a few notable examples of the way that people who earn their living in the areas of art and entertainment can voluntarily blind themselves to those matters that have moral implications. Just recently, we got to watch a swarm of Hollywood retards climbing all over themselves in a rush to defend Roman Polanski, a piece of Euro-trash who confessed to having raped a 13-year-old child. All sorts of big name, small brain, celebrities lined up to sign petitions on his behalf. By attesting to his character, they merely confirmed that they lacked any themselves.

Hollywood is the place where the members of the Motion Picture Academy were once so angry at producer Jack Warner for casting Audrey Hepburn, instead of Julie Andrews, in “My Fair Lady, that they refused to even nominate Ms. Hepburn for her terrific performance as Eliza Doolittle. However, proving, as usual, that they shouldn’t be allowed to vote even when politics aren’t involved, these lunkheads then gave the 1964 Oscar for Best Picture to “My Fair Lady,” which enabled the very same Jack Warner to stride onstage to thunderous applause.

Then there was the matter of Cliff Robertson and David Begelman. When Robertson, an Oscar-winning actor, discovered that Begelman, the head of Columbia Pictures, had forged his signature on a $10,000 check, he blew the whistle. After a police investigation, it turned out that Begelman had been financing his gambling habit with a lot of other people’s money, including Judy Garland, whom he had blackmailed. The upshot was that Robertson had his acting career short-circuited, whereas Begelman, who was only sentenced to community service, was then hired to run MGM.

Shortly after the scandal occurred, I happened to be having lunch with my agent in a restaurant loaded with Hollywood types. When Begelman entered, there was such a flurry of people competing for his attention, you could have mistaken them for a covey of cardinals vying to smooch the pope’s ring.

It’s not just actors, directors and producers, who act like dopes. Consider writer Norman Mailer. Perhaps because he was the fellow who once tried to settle a domestic dispute by stabbing the second of his six wives, Jack Abbott, who was serving time for bank robbery and murder, decided he’d be the ideal pen pal. Mailer became so enamored of Abbott’s writing, he not only used his considerable influence to get Abbott’s book, “In the Belly of the Beast,” published, but got this career criminal paroled. In New York, quite naturally, Abbott became the toast of the literati crowd, but only for a little while because six weeks after his release, Abbott stabbed 22-year-old Richard Adan to death.

Saving the best for last brings us to Leni Riefenstahl. In Berlin, in the 30s, as in Hollywood at any time, it wasn’t what you knew but who you knew, and Leni was a chum of Joseph Goebbels, Hitler’s minister of propaganda. Think of him as the head of Germany’s NEA. It was Herr Goebbels who helped get her the opportunity to make “Triumph of the Will” and “Olympia,” a couple of over-wrought “documentaries” dedicated to hyping the Third Reich.

After the end of World War II and for the remaining half of her 101 years, American and European cineastes -- the same twerps who do cartwheels over Michael Moore’s propaganda flicks -- showered her with honors and acclaim. This in spite of the fact that although she claimed she wasn’t a Nazi and would barely have recognized Hitler if she’d tripped over him, had said, “To me, Hitler is the greatest man who ever lived. He truly is without fault, so simple and at the same time possessed of masculine strength.” Sort of sounds like Chris Matthews going on about Obama or Oliver Stone mooning over Hugo Chavez or Fidel Castro, doesn’t it?
In 1993, Riefenstahl had the gall to deny that she deliberately attempted to create pro-Nazi propaganda. For good measure, she claimed she was disgusted that “Triumph of the Will” was used in such a way. It was reminiscent of Captain Renault’s shock upon discovering that gambling was taking place in the backroom at Rick’s, all the while pocketing his winnings.

Having seen her most famous films, I can assure you that unless you cut the movies up into a million little slivers of celluloid and used them for toothpicks, there was no other conceivable use for them except as Nazi propaganda.

Moreover, in 1934, Riefenstahl said that “Mein Kampf” had made a tremendous impression on her. “I became a confirmed National Socialist after reading the very first page. I felt a man who could write such a book should undoubtedly lead Germany. I felt very happy that such a man had come.”

She was so impressed with the book that she wrote the author a fan letter. The letter led to a meeting. The meeting led to her directing “Victory of Faith,” a movie about the fifth Nazi Party rally at Nuremberg. So much for her claim that she really only knew Hitler from his photos.

In fact, for someone who spent so many years churning out propaganda films, she was rather inept when it came to lying. For instance, on one occasion she claimed that she was totally unaware that concentration camps even existed, while another time she swore that she only worked for the Nazis because Goebbels had threatened to send her to a concentration camp if she didn’t cooperate.

Frankly, what confounds me is why she wasted even a single second lying about her past. I mean, even if she had been good at it, why bother? After all, sensible and moral people never believed her self-serving malarkey; and, as for the celebrity crowd, they simply didn’t care. They never do.
 

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The False Messiah

by Burt Prelutsky

When liberals wake up in the morning, what do you think they do first? Have a cup of coffee and a Danish or check their computers to get their talking points from the White House? And when they find themselves in a moral bind, do they ask themselves not what would Jesus do, but what would Obama suggest?

Another question that’s been plaguing me is whether Democrats regard inconsistency as their birthright. Or do they really think that when a GOP congressman calls a liar a liar to his face, it’s a sin worthy of censure and just possibly a good horsewhipping, but when a Democrat, Rep. Alan Grayson, in defense of Obamacare, insists that Republicans want sick people to die quickly, defends ACORN on the floor of Congress, and, for good measure, calls Linda Robertson, an advisor to Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, “a K Street whore,” it’s just frank and robust political speech?

Speaking of Obamacare, how essential can it possibly be that Congress immediately passes a bill that won’t even go into effect until 2014, but the President refuses to be rushed into making a decision about a surge in Afghanistan? I realize that Obama’s IQ slides about 50 points whenever he’s deprived of his beloved teleprompter, but, unlike the nonsense about phantom Americans dying in the streets because of our terrible health care system, surely even he understands that there are actual flesh-and-blood soldiers dying in Afghanistan. In the meanwhile, Obama takes his own sweet time consulting his Ouija board. But, then, we all know that members of the military tend to be conservatives, so why should Obama care two figs about their well-being?

Just as a sidebar, doesn’t it seem strange that Garry Trudeau, who went so far as to list the names of soldiers who died in Iraq in his “Doonesbury” comic strip, doesn’t bother mentioning casualties in Afghanistan? Apparently, war is only evil when it’s being conducted by a Republican president.

Leave it to liberals to push through a trillion dollar stimulus bill that has resulted in unemployment rising from about 8.5% to roughly 10% in less than a year and then try to shove through a multi-trillion dollar bill that will bring Castrocare to America five years down the road. But, these, after all, are the same clucks who insisted we couldn’t drill our way out of an energy crisis because it would take 10 years for the oil to get from the ground to our local gas pumps. Although they never got around to explaining why it would take that long -- was the oil going to spend a decade playing hide-and-seek? -- the fact remains that had they started drilling back then, the gas would just about be here by now.

But, then, Democrats never feel an obligation to be logical. Otherwise, they might feel compelled to explain how it is that those beret-wearing, stinky cigarette-puffing, anti-American, left-wing nincompoops in France can manage to get 80% of their energy from nuclear plants, but we’re supposed to make do with windmills and the energy generated by hamsters running on their little wheels.

As much as I disagree with the current administration, I, for one, didn’t object to the government’s recent decision to move a GM plant from Michigan to Joe Biden’s home state of Delaware. It may not have been a nice thing to do, but I think it’s worth it just for the opportunity to hear how the union bigwigs explain it to the UAW members in Michigan, where unemployment is hovering around 15%. Hey, you poor suckers, how do you feel now about busting your butts, not to mention the union piggybank, to help elect Obama?

Speaking of Michigan, I assume you’ve all heard the audio on which a couple of women in the Detroit crowd lined up to get government checks were asked where they thought the money was coming from. It seems they believed the manna was coming straight from Obama. When they were then asked where they thought he was getting it, one of the ladies guessed it was from his stash. The first time I heard it, I had to laugh. By the second or third time, it occurred to me that they simply assumed that, like every other cheap Chicago hustler, Obama had a slush fund at his disposal for buying votes. Which, when you stop and think about it, is exactly who he is and, moreover, what the money is.

Those two women and millions more like them are being paid off for past and future favors. But if you’re one of those people who voted for this huckster and didn’t get your payoff in Detroit, you’re a lot dumber than those ladies.

Getting back to Democrats and their inconsistent ways, doesn’t it strike you as peculiar that they cried bloody murder over Nixon’s enemy list, but don’t say boo about Obama’s attack on Fox News; the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; every American citizen who attended a Tea Party or a Townhall meeting; conservative blogs; Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck; the 1st and 2nd amendments; and in fact on everyone and anyone who objects to a single stupid idea concocted by the loony likes of Emanuel, Axelrod, Sunstein, Dunn, Holdren and Jones. If only Obama waged the war in Afghanistan with the same passion and conviction he wages war on his critics, one day we might actually defeat the Taliban and get to watch Osama bin Laden doing the tango with Rosie O’Donnell on “Dancing With the Stars.”

Some people -- not those folks who cling to their guns and their religion, you understand -- but some people look at Barack Obama and, rather than see a radical leftist who has no more business being the commander in chief than I do, see God Almighty. But I’m afraid they’re very much mistaken. There’s a world of difference between God and Obama. God, you see, believes in free will.
 

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Obama’s World And Welcome To It

by Burt Prelutsky

Many people were offended to see Barack Obama once again bowing to a foreign dignitary, the Emperor of Japan. For my part, I was actually relieved that at least this latest breech of protocol didn’t involve his kowtowing to one of America’s sworn enemies.

As most people are well aware, I have nothing but loathing for Obama’s policies, but even I am amazed by his reluctance to handle what I regard as the easy part of his job; namely, carrying off his responsibilities to be a figurehead, to be the proud symbol of this great and generous nation.

Instead, he tours the world on our dime apologizing for our alleged failings and transgressions. He goes to Denmark in order to lobby for the Olympics, in order that his corrupt Chicago cronies could cash in on crooked land deals, but he doesn’t go to Germany to help commemorate the falling of the Berlin Wall. Next, instead of expressing the grief that every decent American felt over the slaughter of American soldiers and an unborn baby by an Islamic terrorist, this bozo gave a partisan shout-out at a Native American shindig. Then, for good measure, he warned us not to jump to the conclusion that the Islamic terrorist was an Islamic terrorist.

If someone set out to show his utter contempt for this country and his disconnect from anything smacking of patriotism, including donning a lapel flag, pledging allegiance to the flag or covering his heart at the playing of our national anthem, he’d find it impossible to out-do our president.

I’m sure that a lot of us still recall the silent messages that American POWs sent us in photos taken by their North Vietnamese captors. They would hold their fingers in different ways to express their defiance of the enemy. I often find myself wondering what messages Barack Obama is sending, and to whom.

Recently, a friend sent me an email in which it was proposed that the Constitution be improved with a 28th amendment. It read: “Congress shall make no law that applies to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the Senators or Representatives, and Congress shall make no law that applies to the Senators and the Representatives that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States.”

I think that in 2010, any senator or representative, Republican or Democrat, who doesn’t sign on to co-sponsor the amendment should have to start looking for another job. I would also press for my wife’s 29th amendment, which states that when America’s economy takes a nosedive, the salaries of our elected officials are decreased to the same degree. After all, they’re not supposed to profit from their own corruption or incompetence. I mean, these goofballs work for us, not AIG or Goldman Sachs.

This past week, a reader sent me an email in which he referred to me as a philosopher. Even though I knew he intended it as a compliment, I denied it. A philosopher, it seems to me, is a person whose main preoccupation is figuring out why man exists and, whereas I believe the obvious answer is to keep the dogs fed, housed and bathed, the best he can come up with is that man exists so that he can ask why man exists.

Speaking of email, I often receive stuff that’s been floating around in cyberspace for years. I used to get annoyed when someone would send me something I’d already been sent 10 or 20 times, but, after finding that I’d passed along such things myself, I realized that if something was new to you, you had no way of knowing it had whiskers on it. Therefore, I suggest that whoever is the first person to send out these things should time-stamp it so that when it finally reaches me in 2015, I’ll know it’s been floating around for several years.

Getting back to Obama, how is it that there are still people around who regard him as a great orator instead of just a cheese-head who requires a teleprompter just to say “Hello,” and, for good measure, has this really annoying habit of turning…….every sentence into two distinct parts? But perhaps I shouldn’t be too surprised. After all, apparently there’s a sizable segment of the population that is unable to tell that a can of beer is cold unless it turns blue.

I’m also aware that there are a lot of people who refuse to believe that Obama is anything but a regular Yankee Doodle Dandy, as American as Mom’s apple pie, in spite of the fact that in “Dreams From My Father,” he wrote that in college, “To avoid being mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully. Those friends,” he wrote, were “The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists.”

He also wrote about venturing into the East Village for “the socialist conferences I sometimes attended at Cooper Union.” Then, in search of additional inspiration, “I went to hear Kwame Toure, formerly Stokely Carmichael of Black Panther fame, speak at Columbia.”

The fact is that even after college, he was still cherry-picking his friends. As we all know, they included such various Marxists, Maoists and Mau Maus, as, Bill Ayers, Bernadine Dohrn, Jeremiah Wright, Van Jones, Frank Davis, Anita Dunn, Louis Farrakhan, Raila Ordinga, Cass Sunstein, Andy Stern and Rashid Khalidi.

Frankly, I think he would have come up with a more savory circle of friends if he had made his selection from Wanted posters adorning the walls of the local post office.

That group should tell you all you need to know about this menace who manages, simultaneously, to be a narcissist, a Marxist and as humorless as Joseph Stalin on a bad hair day.
 

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Blacks And Blacklisting

by Burt Prelutsky

When it comes to liberals, a question that bedevils me is what it is about them that annoys me the most. I can’t decide if it’s their hypocrisy or their self-righteousness.

For instance, when George W. Bush was in office, leftists called him every dirty name in the book and then claimed they were merely carrying out their patriotic duty. However, once Obama was in the White House, they denounced anyone who even questioned the wisdom of quadrupling the national debt or transforming America in his own radical image as a fascist, a racist or a member of a drooling, knuckle-dragging mob.

Liberals campaign to turn Easter Vacation into Spring Break, Christmas into Winter Break and Columbus Day into something called Fall Day, as if we’re all pagans who hold the seasons sacred and prostate ourselves to the weather gods. At the same time, at least here in California, they’ve managed to make March 31st, Cesar Chavez’s birthday, into a state holiday and just recently turned May 22nd into Harvey Milk Day. So, while George Washington and Abe Lincoln have to share President’s Day, a labor leader and a homosexual councilman each gets his own holiday.

Inasmuch as I am one of the few people who have written honestly about race in America, you’d think that nobody would have to misquote me in order to prove I don’t subscribe to political correctness. But, alas, liberals don’t believe in leaving anything to chance. So it is that some time ago, in response to a black reader’s email in which he denounced white America as racist, I wrote that if this were truly a racist nation, such luminaries as Oprah Winfrey, Denzel Washington, Danny Glover, Kobe Bryant, Will Smith, Michael Jordan, Ryan Howard, Donovan McNabb, Beyonce, Colin Powell, Condi Rice and Barack Obama, wouldn’t be rich and famous. Instead, they’d be slaves, exiled to a gulag or dead. I pointed out that’s how things worked in a racist society.

I felt I had stated the case clearly and honestly. The next thing I knew, someone had changed the wording around in order to make it sound as if that was the way I wished things were! After the big lie went out on the Internet, I began receiving obscene messages from scores of black people who had never read me before. Of course they still hadn’t, but they had no way of knowing that. Furthermore, most of them seemed reluctant to believe me when I tried to set the record straight.

Recently, I received an email from a black man who identified himself as a 42-year-old living in a Chicago suburb. In response to an article I wrote attacking affirmative action, he wrote: “In the article you leveled the challenge as to why Asians don’t require an equalizing of the playing field. I think it has something to do with an unwritten pecking order. Let a white woman bring home an Asian man versus a black man and let’s see what the difference in reaction will be. Asians have always been more accepted because of that pecking order. Rightly or wrongly, that’s reality!!”

I replied: “Whose reality? The Chinese were treated terribly when they were brought here to lay railroad tracks. They were treated like untouchables and forced to live in slums that were worse than anything you can imagine. During World War II, Japanese people, including American citizens, were sent off to concentration camps after having their farms and homes confiscated. It appears that liberals have been treating blacks like victims for so many years that many of you have lost sight of the fact that a great many people have far worse lives and far fewer options.”

His response: “I’ve contended that I’d be ready to scrap affirmative action when sexual harassment laws are scrapped, speed limits for driving are suggestive, and paying one’s taxes is done on the honor system. Until then, reality tells me that such measures are needed so that the state can coerce the majority to do the right thing.”

“The problem with your argument,” I wrote, “is that sexual harassment laws, speed limits and paying taxes, apply to every American. Affirmative action simply benefits blacks, allowing them to leapfrog over more qualified students who, as a rule, happen to be Asian. Furthermore, I’d say that the state has done everything in its power to redress past mistakes for over 45 years now, with no end in sight. And what are the results of those good intentions? A 70% illegitimacy rate, a major presence in the world of illegal drugs and, in spite of affirmative action, more young males going to jail than to college. So, just how long are white people supposed to feel guilty for stuff they didn’t even do? Most white people, for instance, didn’t have ancestors who owned slaves, but a great many of them had ancestors who died fighting in the war that ended slavery. Perhaps I missed it, but I’m not aware that black Americans have ever acknowledged their debt to those who made the ultimate sacrifice.”

Roughly a hundred years ago, the black Renaissance man, Booker T. Washington, founder of Tuskegee Institute, observed: “There is a class of colored people who make a business of keeping the troubles, the wrongs, and the hardships of the Negro race before the public. Having learned that they are able to make a living out of their troubles, they have grown into the settled habit of advertising their wrongs -- partly because they want sympathy and partly because it pays. Some of these people do not want the Negro to lose his grievances because they do not want to lose their jobs.”

Imagine, the remarkable man who said those words never even had the opportunity of meeting Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Louis Farrakhan, Charles Rangel, Maxine Waters, Barbara Lee or John Conyers.

This brings us to the Hollywood Blacklist, a minor event which has received more attention and aroused far more passion in left-wing circles than the Nazi-Soviet non-aggression pact; Stalin and Mao’s 50 years of butchery; and Julius Rosenberg’s traitorous activities on behalf of the Soviet Union, put together.

I find it ironic, not to mention typically hypocritical, that a great many Hollywood lefties regarded “On the Waterfront” as a pathetic attempt by director Elia Kazan and screenwriter Budd Schulberg to justify their naming names to HUAC by making their protagonist, Terry Malloy (Marlon Brando), a squealer. However, six years prior to “Waterfront,” Abe Polonsky, who, at the age of 89, picketed the 1999 Academy Awards because 90-year-old Kazan was being given an honorary Oscar, wrote and directed a movie, “Force of Evil,” in which his protagonist, Joe Morse (John Garfield), winds up squealing to the cops. Oddly enough, in each case, the motivation is the murder of the hero’s brother -- portrayed by Rod Steiger in one, by Thomas Gomez in the other.

Apparently, squealing is okay if the bad guys are doing something truly reprehensible, such as running the numbers racket in New York City, but totally immoral if the villains are merely lending aid and comfort to -- not to mention tithing -- the Soviet Union.

Polonsky, who died an unrepentant Communist, once said, in reference to the HUAC hearings: “If you said you were sorry you were a radical and had seen the error of your ways, you were let off. That’s the kind of thing they do in Communist countries, but we’re supposed to be a free country.”

For the record, Polonksy was also the fellow who said, “Because we can’t be Joseph Stalin, we become movie directors.”

Do these idiots ever stop and actually listen to the things they say?
 

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Obama, The World's Greatest Menace

by Burt Prelutsky

When Barack Obama was campaigning -- not that he’s ever stopped -- back in 2008, he made a number of promises. As we all know, like a cad on the make, he was only trying to get us in the sack. Once he had his way with us, he barely remembered our name, let alone his various vows.

Some of the things he swore to included keeping lobbyists out of his administration, providing five days for the public to review pending legislation and a bi-partisan approach to problem-solving. Instead, lobbyists, particularly those representing unions, have freer access to the Oval Office than Michelle and the kids. Not only is the public not given time to digest major legislation, but neither are the legislators. Early on, you may recall, Congress was given less than 24 hours to vote on an 1100-page, trillion dollar, so-called stimulus bill; more recently, when it came to health care, Obama was telling the sheep on Capitol Hill to vote even before an actual bill was written!

So far as bi-partisanship is concerned, the Republicans have been banished to Washington’s equivalent of Siberia. These days, bi-partisanship simply means that David Axelrod and Rahm Emanuel are in agreement.

There is one promise, however, that Obama has kept. He vowed transparency, and anyone who can’t plainly see what the rock star and his left-wing groupies (Axelrod, Emanuel, Jeff Jones, Valerie Jarrett, Cass Sunstein, Anita Dunn) are up to is simply spending too much time watching “American Idol” and college football.

Consider, if you will, the way that Obama has managed to take the spotlight off his attempt to grab control of one-sixth of the nation’s economy that’s devoted to health care and to put the kibosh on conservative talk radio and free access to the Internet. All he had to do was declare war on Fox News. Just like that, the mass media, otherwise known as faux news, turned its attention to the phoniest battle since Gorgeous George and the Super Swedish Angel hung up their wrestling tights.

The way the media carried on, you’d have thought Obama was trying to decide whether to send 40,000 additional troops to fight in Afghanistan or to invade Fox.

On the other hand, it is just possible that Obama’s feud with Fox merely proves that he is as thin-skinned and as vain as some of us have suspected all along, which would fit right in with the narcissism that his constant TV appearances suggests. Not since FDR have we had a president so in love with the sound of his own voice. Not since Jimmy Carter have we had a president so convinced of his own saintliness.

Although Obama is a prime example of egomania, liberals generally hold themselves and one another in such preposterously high regard that normal people -- in other words, conservatives -- can only laugh.

For instance, because liberals are always blathering on about how much they love Mother Nature and how concerned they are about ecology, they are never asked to explain why they are so much better at talking the talk than they are at walking the walk. It’s not just the obvious phonies, either -- elitists such as Al Gore, Arianna Huffington, Michael Moore, Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert Kennedy, Jr., who live in mansions and fly around in private jets, leaving carbon footprints the equivalent of fair-sized communities in their wake -- that I have in mind.

I’m also referring to the crowd that showed up in Washington for Obama’s coronation and left our nation’s capitol looking like a pigsty.

I’m thinking of the California Coastal Commission, the folks entrusted with keeping the Golden State’s coastline pristine, but who can always be convinced, for the right price, to come up with a variance.

Another example of ecological hypocrisy involves those young Latinos called taggers and graffiti artists by liberals, vandals and punks by the rest of us. I have actually heard lefties refer to the spray-painted messes these jerks create as native art. But, naturally, they never seem to commission the youthful Rembrandts to come out and decorate their fences, walls and garages.

While on the subject, we shouldn’t overlook the greenies who populate Hollywood and who never once gave George W. Bush a thumbs-up for taking out Saddam Hussein even though his setting fire to the oilfields of Kuwait was the single greatest man-made ecological disaster in history, rivaled only by Adam Sandler’s 30-odd movies.

Finally we come to nature boy himself, Robert Redford. Although I am a free market capitalist and believe that Redford should be allowed to build a ski resort, a giant cell phone tower or even have his head carved out of a mountainside, if he chooses to on his own land, I have to question the environmental bona fides of a guy who creates a film festival in the snow-covered hinterlands of Utah.

I mean, every year, upwards of 50,000 people jet in from all over the world for the Sundance Film Festival. It may be swell for the Utah economy to have all those coke-sniffing, fossil fuel-burning, mugs showing up to watch bad movies and make distribution deals, but if you were really concerned about preserving the environment, wouldn’t it make more sense for these clucks to stay home and watch the movies on their TV sets the way the rest of us do?

In my experience, which consists of watching movies on airplanes, a movie that stinks at sea level reeks just as badly at 30,000 feet. Otherwise, why settle for Utah? It would make far more sense to hold a film festival atop Mt. Everest.
 

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Remember Our Veterans

Burt and Yvonne join the country in honoring our veterans. If you haven't read it recently, we hope you will enjoy The Flag & I. -ed.
 

Monday, November 9, 2009

A Major Disaster Named Hasan

by Burt Prelutsky

Some friends were trying to convince me that Major Nidal Malik Hasan will surely be executed for conducting his one-man massacre at Fort Hood. I was willing to bet he wouldn’t be. For one thing, why would he be the exception? Sirhan Sirhan wasn’t executed, Charles Manson wasn’t executed, even Jeffrey Dahmer wasn’t executed by the state; it took a fellow inmate to dole out justice to a real life Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter.

For another thing, Barack Obama, who had wasted no time denouncing the Cambridge police department as stupid and bigoted when his pal, Prof. Louis Gates, was momentarily inconvenienced, merely cautioned all of us not to jump to any conclusions in this matter. In spite of the fact that Major Hasan was a fellow who made no secret of the fact he was a devout Muslim who had no use for America and had just murdered a number of soldiers, Obama urged us to keep an open mind. At least the President stopped short of calling for a shout-out for the major.

At the same time, the head of Homeland Security, Janet “The Cannibal” Napolitano, was working overtime to guarantee there would be no backlash directed at American Muslims.

Considering that CAIR spouts Islamic propaganda seven days a week and that America’s Muslims, under the guise of supporting charities, funnel funds to Hamas and Hezbollah whenever the FBI isn’t watching, why are we supposed to be so concerned about hurting their feelings? Lest you regard this as mere partisanship, I used to ask the same question when Bush and Condi Rice kept telling us, as if they were proselytizing for Islam, what a wonderful religion it is.

By and large, American Islamics make little or no effort to assimilate into our culture. In fact, as we’ve seen in one honor killing after another, they’ve brought the worst of their “peaceful” religion to our shores. And there’s also the little matter of 9/11. With dozens of Muslim nations scattered all over the globe, places where female mutilation and sharia law are the order of the day, and other religions -- particularly Judaism and Christianity -- are verboten, why the heck do they come here in the first place?

As for Major Hasan, he just proves that the policy of “don’t ask/don’t tell” has been expanded from homosexual soldiers to include Islamic terrorists. The truth is, if the cretins who were fully aware that Hasan was a lethal menace, but let it slide for the sake of political correctness, had been running the military during World War II, they’d have turned a blind eye to a G.I. who was goose-stepping around an army barrack, wearing jackboots and a swastika.

It will be interesting to see if Hasan’s lawyers try to get him off by pleading diminished capacity. I mean, if his beliefs are insane, as I believe they are, what does that say about those hundreds of millions of Muslims who agree with him?

I’m afraid that in the current climate, the best we can hope for is that Major Hasan doesn’t wind up being appointed to the Joint Chiefs of Staff. But don’t be too surprised if somewhere down the line, he picks up a Nobel Peace Prize.
 

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Mother Nature And The Left

by Burt Prelutsky

When Barack Obama was campaigning -- not that he’s ever stopped -- back in 2008, he made a number of promises. As we all know, like a cad on the make, he was only trying to get us in the sack. Once he had his way with us, he barely remembered our name, let alone his various vows.

Some of the things he swore to included keeping lobbyists out of his administration, providing five days for the public to review pending legislation and a bi-partisan approach to problem-solving. Instead, lobbyists, particularly those representing unions, have freer access to the Oval Office than Michelle and the kids. Not only is the public not given time to digest major legislation, but neither are the legislators. Early on, you may recall, Congress was given less than 24 hours to vote on an 1100-page, trillion dollar, so-called stimulus bill; more recently, when it came to health care, Obama was telling the sheep on Capitol Hill to vote even before an actual bill was written!

So far as bi-partisanship is concerned, the Republicans have been banished to Washington’s equivalent of Siberia. These days, bi-partisanship simply means that David Axelrod and Rahm Emanuel are in agreement.

There is one promise, however, that Obama has kept. He vowed transparency, and anyone who can’t plainly see what the rock star and his left-wing groupies (Axelrod, Emanuel, Jeff Jones, Valerie Jarrett, Cass Sunstein, Anita Dunn) are up to is simply spending too much time watching “American Idol” and college football.

Consider, if you will, the way that Obama has managed to take the spotlight off his attempt to grab control of one-sixth of the nation’s economy that’s devoted to health care and to put the kibosh on conservative talk radio and free access to the Internet. All he had to do was declare war on Fox News. Just like that, the mass media, otherwise known as faux news, turned its attention to the phoniest battle since Gorgeous George and the Super Swedish Angel hung up their wrestling tights.

The way the media carried on, you’d have thought Obama was trying to decide whether to send 40,000 additional troops to fight in Afghanistan or to invade Fox.

On the other hand, it is just possible that Obama’s feud with Fox merely proves that he is as thin-skinned and as vain as some of us have suspected all along, which would fit right in with the narcissism that his constant TV appearances suggests. Not since FDR have we had a president so in love with the sound of his own voice. Not since Jimmy Carter have we had a president so convinced of his own saintliness.

Although Obama is a prime example of egomania, liberals generally hold themselves and one another in such preposterously high regard that normal people -- in other words, conservatives -- can only laugh.

For instance, because liberals are always blathering on about how much they love Mother Nature and how concerned they are about ecology, they are never asked to explain why they are so much better at talking the talk than they are at walking the walk. It’s not just the obvious phonies, either -- elitists such as Al Gore, Arianna Huffington, Michael Moore, Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert Kennedy, Jr., who live in mansions and fly around in private jets, leaving carbon footprints the equivalent of fair-sized communities in their wake -- that I have in mind.

I’m also referring to the crowd that showed up in Washington for Obama’s coronation and left our nation’s capitol looking like a pigsty.

I’m thinking of the California Coastal Commission, the folks entrusted with keeping the Golden State’s coastline pristine, but who can always be convinced, for the right price, to come up with a variance.

Another example of ecological hypocrisy involves those young Latinos called taggers and graffiti artists by liberals, vandals and punks by the rest of us. I have actually heard lefties refer to the spray-painted messes these jerks create as native art. But, naturally, they never seem to commission the youthful Rembrandts to come out and decorate their fences, walls and garages.

While on the subject, we shouldn’t overlook the greenies who populate Hollywood and who never once gave George W. Bush a thumbs-up for taking out Saddam Hussein even though his setting fire to the oilfields of Kuwait was the single greatest man-made ecological disaster in history, rivaled only by Adam Sandler’s 30-odd movies.

Finally we come to nature boy himself, Robert Redford. Although I am a free market capitalist and believe that Redford should be allowed to build a ski resort, a giant cell phone tower or even have his head carved out of a mountainside, if he chooses to on his own land, I have to question the environmental bona fides of a guy who creates a film festival in the snow-covered hinterlands of Utah.

I mean, every year, upwards of 50,000 people jet in from all over the world for the Sundance Film Festival. It may be swell for the Utah economy to have all those coke-sniffing, fossil fuel-burning, mugs showing up to watch bad movies and make distribution deals, but if you were really concerned about preserving the environment, wouldn’t it make more sense for these clucks to stay home and watch the movies on their TV sets the way the rest of us do?

In my experience, which consists of watching movies on airplanes, a movie that stinks at sea level reeks just as badly at 30,000 feet. Otherwise, why settle for Utah? It would make far more sense to hold a film festival atop Mt. Everest.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Inmates Are Running The Asylum

by Burt Prelutsky

When I first began blogging five or six years ago, I wondered how many pieces I would write before running dry. I needn’t have worried. I have now written close to 700, but in this age of lunacy, I’m far likelier to lose my typing skills than to run out of topics, or perhaps I should say targets.

For instance, take the stock market. Many people seem to regard it as a legitimate indicator of the nation’s economy. But inasmuch as it has been moving up slowly but steadily ever since Barack Obama took office, I have to wonder what it is about a failing dollar, a record deficit and a 10% rate of unemployment that makes Wall Street so doggone bullish. Frankly, when evaluating the sorry state of our economy, I think it makes more sense to rely on the reading of tea leaves and animal entrails.

I recall once reading that between one gig and another, Hugh Downs had spent more hours on TV than any other human being. I don’t have any idea if Ed McMahon or Regis Philbin or someone else ever surpassed his total, but I suspect that Barack Obama just might claim the record as early as next weekend. Is it possible that by now even his most devoted fans haven’t had their fill of him?

In the wake of Obama’s collecting the goofy Peace Prize, for which he was nominated within 11 days of his taking office -- for perhaps moving his mother-in-law into the White House -- he has become something of a worldwide punchline. Even the New York Times and Saturday Night Live have taken a crack at him. There’s even a rumor floating around that Joe Biden has begun telling Barack Obama jokes.

Speaking of rumors, I’ve heard that the President will next win the Heisman Trophy for having watched a college football game on TV, and I have started one of my own predicting he will win the Cy Young Award for having tossed out the first ball at the All Star Game.

Then there’s the theatrical event recently staged at the White House, which should make us question whether there’s anything about this administration that anyone but a card-carrying Obama groupie can believe. I refer to the white coats Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod had passed out to the doctors who, for reasons beyond my comprehension, decided to support Obamacare. Were they all veterinarians? Or perhaps they were a group of those pretentious Ph.Ds from the Ivy League who insist on being addressed as Doctor, even though they can’t set a broken leg or prescribe aspirins.

Is it possible that old TV commercial will be revised so that a distinguished-looking fellow in a white smock will admit, “I’m not really a doctor, but I played one at the White House”?

Next, we come to those liberals who insist that anyone who opposes Obamacare; the trillion dollar stimulus package; his energy bill; the gobbling up of GM, Chrysler and various financial institutions; his ties to the UAW, ACORN and the SEIU; his surrounding himself with self-proclaimed radicals; or who even takes exception to the First Lady’s flaunting of her biceps; is a racist. Even if, as a conservative, you respect and admire the likes of Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams and Clarence Thomas, all of whom are 50% blacker than President Obama, you are labeled a Klan member.

In fact, even if, by God, you voted for Barack Obama in 2008, believing, in spite of all the evidence, that he was a centrist, only to change your mind in 2009, after watching him blow trillions of your tax dollars on his pet pork projects, you might just as well be toting a lynch rope.

By this time, I don’t think you even have to be a conservative to recognize that the Democrats are like the foolish boy who cried “Wolf!” Unlike the little shepherd, they cry “Racist!” but, just like him, they’ve done it once too often.

Finally, we have yet another fine example of why liberals should not ever be in charge of anything -- not Congress, not the White House, not the military and certainly not public education. In fact, I believe that parents who keep their kids in public schools when they can afford to send them to private or parochial schools, should be arrested for child abuse.

In case you happened to miss the story, Zachary Christie, age 6, was so proud of joining the Cub Scouts that he brought his camping utensil, a combination fork, knife and spoon, to school, intending to use it at lunchtime. But he hadn’t taken into account the knuckleheaded administrators running the Christina School District of Newark, Delaware.

For violating the zero-tolerance policy regarding “weapons,” young Dillinger was not only kicked out of his grammar school, but faces 45 days of detention in reform school.

Last year, you might recall, a third grader in Delaware was booted out of school because her grandmother sent her to class with a birthday cake, along with a knife for cutting it. One can only hope that Granny then baked her a second cake with a file in it so she could manage to bust out of jail.

Some of us have long been puzzled how a dunce like Delaware’s Joe Biden could keep getting re-elected to the U.S. Senate.

Well, we can stop wondering. That mystery has been solved.

According to Zachary’s parents, the boy takes school so seriously that he sometimes insists on wearing a suit and tie to class. Now, however, it seems he’s afraid he’ll be teased because he’s gotten into trouble. I just hope somebody tells this six-year-old that if he hasn’t been ribbed over the suit and tie, he has very broad-minded schoolmates and probably has nothing to worry about.

But, what’s the world coming to when a nice little boy gets into hot water for taking a Cub Scout tool to class so he can be the cool kid eating soup with his own personal spoon, but nobody thinks a thing about it when Henry Waxman or Barney Frank gets anywhere near a microphone or Barack Obama gets within 50 feet of a Teleprompter.
 

Monday, November 2, 2009

Let's Call It "Infirmative Action"

by Burt Prelutsky

My wife and friends often find it bizarre that I answer every e-mail I receive from my readers, including those who merely write to insult me. On occasion, even I, not being a masochist, have asked myself why I do it. There are a couple of reasons. The first is common courtesy. I figure if someone has taken the time to write, the least I can do is respond. I do permit myself to cut off communication if by the third exchange I haven’t persuaded them to stop calling me a racist, a fascist or a moron. Insulting me is one thing, but boring me is quite another.

My second reason, though, isn’t even slightly altruistic. I have found, at least once in a great while, that in the process of trying to explain my position on a specific issue to a really stupid person, I am compelled to clarify my own thinking. And when I say a really stupid person, I am naturally referring to a typical liberal.

So it was the other week when a reader, a black woman we’ll call Ms. D, took me to task for an article in which I not only shared my uncensored feelings about the Obamas, but also took the opportunity to attack Affirmative Action.

She opened with a question: “Why do you assume that any acceptance of non-whites into educational institutions is due to Affirmative Action? What you’re saying by making that assumption is that non-whites couldn’t possibly have gotten into Ivy League schools on their own merits. Some non-whites don’t even indicate their ethnicity for this very reason. Even if one is accepted because of A.A., he/she has to work twice as hard to prove himself. Nor can A.A. be credited for non-whites who successfully complete their academic careers.”

I replied: “I wish you would just say blacks instead of non-whites. After all, Asians are non-whites and they don’t receive or require Affirmative Action. Next, I never said that blacks never get into good schools on their own merits. It’s liberals who say that and believe it. Otherwise, there would be no such policy. You don’t see it in play for Asians. But, then, 50% of Asians don’t drop out of college without getting their diplomas.”

“When,” Ms. D went on, “did Mrs. Obama ever say that America was a mean country, as you claimed she did?”

“She said it in one of her speeches during the campaign. It was around the same time that she admitted that until her husband ran for president she’d never been proud of our country.”

“You misquoted her. She said that for the first time, she was really proud of her country. The context of the statement being that America had looked beyond color for a change.”

“Lady, if you want America to look beyond color, why aren’t you opposed to Affirmative Action?”

"When did America start using Affirmative Action to elect its presidents?”

“As non sequiturs go, that’s a doozy. I’m not sure what you’re talking about, but I do find it ironic that Obama billed himself as the first post-racial candidate.”

“Why is that ironic?”

“Well, it’s one thing for him to get 90% of the black vote in the general election inasmuch as blacks will give 90% of their votes to any Democrat even if, like Robert Byrd, he was once a proud member of the Ku Klux Klan. But why would 90% of blacks vote for Obama over such a devout liberal as Sen. Clinton in the primaries except that Obama was 50% blacker than Hillary? So why is it you think that whites should look beyond color when it’s so obvious that most blacks don’t?”

“Even if Affirmative Action was why Michelle Obama was accepted into schools, should that mean that she can’t acknowledge or be cognizant of racial and other societal ills in America? Should non-whites do a step and fetch jig and say thanks Massa for dis here opportunity? I owes everything to you for my success. Are you saying that Affirmative Action is to cover up or excuse racial problems?”

“Affirmative Action should be called White Guilt in Action. If you don’t object to having your entire race patronized, I guess I shouldn’t mind. The only reason I do is because in order to make room for black underachievers who haven’t done the work and earned their way into colleges and universities, Asian students are being discriminated against. Too many blacks who say they only want a level playing field are lying through their teeth.”

“The success of those blacks you mentioned in your article in no way proves that we are not a racist society. Not when whites still rule America in every sector.”

“Hey, wake up, lady! There are only about 40 million blacks in a country of 300 million. At the rate things are going, Latinos may soon be in charge, but since when do 40 million people get to rule 260 million?”

“Not when most black males in America know what it’s like to be pulled over for no other reason than DWB, Driving While Black. Oh, that’s right -- all black men are drug-dealing gangbangers, so that’s probably why they’re profiled.”

“I don’t want to sound too condescending, but you should probably leave sarcasm to the professionals. I’m not black, but I was stopped by cops any number of times when I was young. When I first began driving at 16, I looked like I was 13 or 14. Then, when I was at UCLA and began riding a motorcycle, I was pulled over on a regular basis, especially when I was working late at the Daily Bruin or on the humor magazine. The problem was that I had to ride through Beverly Hills to get home, and Beverly Hills cops are particularly alert to suspicious characters. Somehow, though, I managed to survive the trauma with my manhood intact. I guess it did help that I wasn’t using or peddling drugs. Yes, Ms. D, it’s shocking but true that a lot of young black men actually traffic in illegal substances. Some black people are outraged that, in spite of Affirmative Action, more black men go to jail than go to college, as if that’s the fault of white society. Don’t you find it the least bit embarrassing that blacks blame whites for their problems with the same regularity that Democrats blame George Bush for the present mess in Washington?”

Ignoring my words as usual, Ms. D steamed ahead: “In your response to your critics, you never addressed whether or not you are indeed a racist. Do you in fact believe that non-whites are to conduct themselves by some societal code or standards determined by whites?”

“I believe that everyone in America should abide by a code of decent behavior. Walking around with a chip on your shoulder just because you’re black and whiny isn’t going to gain you the respect you obviously crave. At most, you’ll have to settle for contempt and handouts from politicians looking to lock up your votes.”

“You use a lot of words to say absolutely nothing. Do you hate non-whites or not? As evil as white supremacists are, at least one knows where they stand and what they believe about people that are not like them. Where do you stand?”

“I have always said that anyone who hates another person because of his race, religion or national origin, is just a lazy so-and-so because the chances are that if you simply make the effort to know him as an individual, you’ll come up with a much better reason to despise him. That being said, I don’t think you really care where I stand or will believe what I say, even though I have no reason to lie to you, seeing as I’m not running for office. But since you asked, I like people who play by the rules and who don’t think they’re entitled to a free ride or a lot of perks just because their great-great-great-great-grandparents happened to have been slaves. You’re not a slave, but you certainly sound like one. If I were you, I’d detest slavery, just as I and most other Americans do. But just as a certain black New York Times reporter confessed some years ago, I’d personally be grateful that as a result of that terrible evil, I was lucky enough to have been born in a country where one’s intelligence, drive and perseverance, are the only things limiting what any American can achieve. Sincerely, Burt Prelutsky.”