Roll Of The Dice
Were I born in Nigeria, I’d be taught Nigeria is the greatest country in the world and that I should be willing to sacrifice my life in its defense. Same as if I were born in Bangladesh. Or Suriname. Or Liechtenstein or Israel.
But I wasn’t. I was born in and remain a citizen of the United States.
Patriotism = dumb luck.
A Numbers Game
The folks in my echo chamber think — as I do — that all this NFL/national anthem folderol is a whole batch of silly string. But I assure you, based on my spying on sports fans sites, etc., millions of people…, nay, tens of millions of people are fed up to the gills with “overpaid” athletes “disrespecting” the flag.
Overpaid, meaning black guys getting rich, and disrespecting, meaning the same dermal-hued figures being uppity.
For the zillionth time, the questions remain: Just how many tens of millions of people like that are there in this holy land and what percentage of them will vote in 2018 and 2020?
Hugh Hefner’s dead. And, yes, I did read the articles in Playboy. In fact, it didn’t take me long to realize the images of the women presented in the magazine’s pictorials were not of real people but of airbrushed, artfully designed, bizarre fantasies of the 1960s-’80s white American male. Ergo, they weren’t terribly arousing to me.
I prefer human imperfection to eye-popping chimera.
No prevarication here: When I was 10 years old, through the age of 14 or so, I gobbled up Playboy every
Hefner & Ella Fitzgerald
chance I got. Sure. I wanted to see pix of naked ladies. A brother-in-law kept a neat stack of past issues in his home and whenever I visited my sister’s family, I’d strategize ways to get at it. After reviewing said pix of naked ladies, though, I read. Words. Ideas. Arguments. Issues.
There were civil rights. The 1st Amendment. Vietnam. The environment. Norman Mailer. Doris Lessing. Lenny Bruce. Martin Luther King. Bernard Malamud. Malcolm X. Joyce Carol Oates.
To this day I recall the articles rather than the Playmates™.
Hugh Hefner and his magazine opened up a world to me.
Later, I’d realize how he devalued females, and not just in his pictorial depiction of them.
He was, like the rest of us, both angel and devil.
Graham And His Fellow Crackers
South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham has finally admitted that which we knew all along — Republican leadership has never, ever been interested in the nuts and bolts of health care legislation. Nor do they have any inkling of what might replace the ACA they say they detest so much.
As the most recent failure of repeal-and-replace was suffering its deserved death, Graham was cornered by a reporter who asked him why, after seven-plus years of shrieking, panic peddling, and aborted legislation, Graham and his GOP-mates haven’t crafted a sale-able, passable new national health care law. The senator answered frankly:
Well, I’ve been doing it for about a month. I thought everybody else knew what the hell they were talking about, but apparently not.
Barack Obama’s signature policy initiative remains the law of the land. And Republicans remain steadfastly opposed to it. Even if they don’t know precisely why.
Or do they?
Now that this holy land is on the brink of becoming a majority-minority nation, wouldn’t it be a hoot to realign our two political parties to reflect that reality?
First, let’s look at the numbers. In 2014, the US Census showed some 20 million kids born on this acreage, with 50.2 percent of them being one minority or another. And by 2043, the overall American population is expected to cross the magical center line, when more than half the people will be some kind of minority.
So it’s happening, like it or not.
It’s also matter of faith among the general populace right now: The two parties aren’t cutting it anymore.
The Democrats and the Republicans are dying clubs.
So, how about this? The American people divide themselves into the Black Party and the White Party. The Black Party will be comprised of city-dwellers, dark-skinned folks, liberals and progressives, the young, and all those who long for a federal gov’t that strives to take care of its most vulnerable and neglected citizens. The White Party will be mainly Caucasian, natch, and it would skew toward the elderly. Its dominating philosophies will be the free market, a very strong military, god, and guns.
Now, black people would be welcomed in the White Party and white people, the Black Party. But, honestly, how many dark-skinned people are going to go White? Similarly, as our most recent national election bore out, most white people aren’t too terribly interested in rubbing shoulders, party-wise, with blacks, Latino, Muslims, Planned Parenthood-type women, and all the other outliers.
The Black Party and the White Party. Almost everybody can take pride in their color and wave their banner proudly. But, again, membership won’t be strictly skin-color-based. I’d be welcome in the Black Party tent and goofballs like a superannuated Ben Carson or some younger version of himself would be embraced by the White Party.
There’d be no more pretend courting of the other side and other sillinesses that define what we call political discourse today.
The white people of America can then relax. They won’t be so petrified that they’ll be lost forever in the shadows of the dark hordes because they’ll have their own power base, at whose conventions they can slap each other on the back tell tell each other how fantastic it is to be Caucasian. And dark-skinned folks can really wrap their arms around a party — and feel wrapped back — for the first time in half a century.
Crazy? You tell me.