Wednesday, February 08, 2006


From the mailbag -- on the King funeral

Oscar Madison responds to reader comments!

Comment on yesterday's post,"Word verification and comment spam."
I was actually hoping you would comment on the disrespectful behavior of the liberals at the King funeral yesterday. It looked like there were some old leftist warhorses at the Coretta Scott King funeral yesterday who were determined to use the occasion to get in some shots against President Bush. (Carter & Lowery).

No disrespect, Craig, because I'm fond of all my readers, including you, but I was actually hoping you would comment on efficient ways to delete comment spam. That's what I meant by the (admittedly ambiguous) phrase: "can anyone recommend a way to delete [spam comments] that is faster and more efficient than going to each comment and hitting the delete comments button?"

But since you ask, I will comment on your topic. What makes conservatives think they can and should go all Emily Post-al and become self-appointed authorities on appropriate behavior at funerals? I guess Republicans are flushed with success at their last whining binge about the supposedly "inappropriate" political display at the Paul Wellstone memorial ceremony -- they parlayed that into an electoral win.

So I guess complaining about "political statements" at funerals is going to become a knee jerk right wing response for the foreseeable future. But why do you think Bush attended the King funeral? Isn't that political -- to attend a funeral only because it would look bad politically not to?

Maybe Bush "had to attend," but there was nothing to stop him from finding a graceful, respectful way to bow out of making a speech. (Through Scott McClellan: "The President wishes to pay his respects to Mrs. King, but would like to leave the speaking to those who knew her better, so as not to appear to be using the occasion for political advantage.") I find it distasteful that Bush waxed eloquent about civil rights -- using the occasion to jump on a politically correct bandwagon -- when his administration has basically taken its Civil Rights division lawyers out of the job of enforcing the very antidiscrimination laws the Kings fought for and instead put those lawyers to work on deporting undocumented immigrants.

Carter's comment -- that the Kings had been victimized by the very sort of illegal wiretapping that Bush is now promoting -- was a rather mild allusion, I thought, to the almost insufferable irony of Bush giving any sort of elegy for Coretta King. Even Lowery has a point -- Bush has sent young American men and women, disproportionately represented by young black men and women, to die in Iraq based on lies. I may not have said what Lowery said, but I don't consider myself sufficiently morally superior to condemn it either.

If a memorial service is ever put on for me, I would hope that someone would speak about my political beliefs and values. And if someone who made a career of farting on those beliefs presumed to get up and speak about me, I would hope that someone who cared about me would take him down with a few potshots. I'm going to put that in my will.

We've never met or corresponded, Craig, but you and I both know that you spent a lot of energy in the 1980s and 1990s complaining about "political correctness" and how the "liberal thought police" were impinging on your free speech. But isn't that exactly what you're doing now? I can't say that it's "inappropriate" to make a politcal statement at the funeral or memorial of a political public figure in a highly politicized time.

One last thing: why are the conservatives using the comments function to politicize my cute little post on "word verification" words?

Further to your inquiry concerning comment spam, I, unfortunately, do not have a sure-fire way to eliminate it altogether. I respectfully submit that you utilize your research assistant to constantly monitor the blog, share with her your password, and charge her with the task of deleting what she may view as a spam posting.

Regarding the other matter of Ms. King's funeral, well, may we call it a funeral? Or was it a political rally? Sadly, both. As I said earlier, It looks like there were some old left relics who used the venue to pop shots at our President. I suppose, in today's politics, that wasn't surprising. You mentioned the Paul Wellstone funeral in Minnesota. The 2002 memorial service turned into a full-fledged campaign rally for Walter Mondale who was running against Republican Norm Colman for Wellstone's seat. Republicans at this memorial service, Trent Lott, for instance, were booed by the crowd. Some would argue that this memorial-service-turned-political-rally had much to do with the Democrats miserable performance in the 2002 mid-term elections.

In yesterday's service, the repugnant behavior was to be expected out of Joseph Lowery. He chose the occasion of the funeral of the widow of Martin Luther King Jr. to announce that we found no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, Never mind that Lowery is wrong. He's often wrong. For Lowery, the race baiting and liberal dogma always comes before fact and logic. He didn't measure up as President of King's SCLC, and he didn't measure up to the task of being a gentleman and honoring Coretta Scott King yesterday.

Then there was Jimmy Carter. Some people refer to Carter as "America's best ex-president." Well, if you want to consider his empowerment of people like Kim Jong Ill and Hugo Chavez as good for America, then you may have a point. If measuring the worth of a former president consists of measuring his affection for the world's dictators, then Carter is indeed one of the best. Carter used the occasion of this funeral to take a jab at bush over the NSA wiretaps. Carter has declared them to be illegal. Now he's a judge and a legal scholar. Carter brought up the fact that the FBI wiretapped Martin Luther King. He didn't mention that this happened under Democratic administrations. He also failed to mention that it was under a Democratic institution that tapes of those wiretaps, tapes purportedly showing instances of MLK's infidelities, were surreptitiously sent to his wife.

President Bush knew that this would happen when he went to the funeral. He knew that Democrats and liberals would use an overwhelmingly friendly audience to take their shots. He showed great dignity in sitting there and taking it all in stride.

Bush stood tall, Lowery and Carter stooped low.

Both Joseph Lowery and Jimmy Carter should be ashamed. Sadly, they don't have the class to understand that.

By the way my word is "BEABUE," which translates from French for an attractive baby, pronounced bay-bo

Nice word verifiction.
I'm sorry, but whatever went on at Coretta King's funeral is nothing compared to what "Reverend" Phelps has been and still is doing at funerals of homosexuals, and now for funerals of soldiers who have been killed in Iraq: staging demonstrations that basically say "God is punishing you"

It seems nobody has any decent manners any more.


"hqlitv" - High Quotient literary content: contains too many verbs.
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