For the most part, I’ve always regarded Mr. Jackson in the same regard as I have two other political figures of dubious accomplishment: Al Sharpton and Yasir Arafat.
Mr. Sharpton, aside from often behaving in a manner which befits a cartoon character (two words: Tawana Brawley), always seems to be in the middle of issues in which he has no place. And while he seemingly fights the system on behalf of African-American people in the City of New York as well as elsewhere, it always seems his agenda is more self-serving than selfless. Mr. Arafat, prior to his recent death, fought on behalf of the Palestinian people in their desire to establish a Palestinian state, but despite winning a Nobel Peace Prize for his part in bringing “peace” to the Palestinian-Israeli struggle, it was largely ignored that he was a terrorist that ordered or committed a variety of anti-Israel attacks that killed civilian women and children. When then-President Bill Clinton was able to secure Arafat a Palestinian homeland, something to which he had dedicated his life, he politely declined a compromise with Israel, opting instead to maintain “secret” alliances with Hamas, Islamic Jihad and whatever other terrorist groups were willing to continue blowing themselves up along with buses, cafes, cars and trucks filled with Israelis. By the time Arafat died, even President George W. Bush was aware he couldn’t be trusted because, with each denial of his involvement or knowledge of Palestinian-sponsored terror, it became increasingly obvious that he was not only aware of but directing anti-Israel terror.
These two men, to me, are examples of self-serving, egomaniacal, publicity-seeking leeches with bad intentions. Mr. Jackson hasn’t reached that level quite yet, in my opinion; however, if he truly believed “While law is important, law must be tempered with mercy to have justice," then perhaps he would respect Ms. Schiavo’s wishes to not be forced to endure an existence devoid thought, cognitive reason or pleasure. Justice is an ideal to which we should all aspire; is it justice to force a husband to disregard the final wishes of his wife and instead adhere to beliefs held by others? Another of Mr. Jackson’s suggestions followed: “a consistent moral and ethical position would extend a feeding tube to all who are confronted with starvation -- to demand public, government policy to feed the hungry.” I respectfully suggest that the American public is starved for government that will keep itself out of matters to which it should not and does not have jurisdiction. And personally, I am starved for politicians who are not full of shit.
Looks like we’re all going hungry.
As an aside, another aspect of the Terri Schiavo saga reveals the hypocritical nature of the so-called Christian Right. According to CNN.com, Ms. Marianne Clark questioned why Ms. Schiavo’s mother “counts less to the courts than the husband who asked that Schiavo's feeding tube be removed. ‘You have a husband who hasn't been faithful, and he's the one the judges all listen to,’ the Sarasota woman said from a protest line outside the hospice where Schiavo was in her second week without food or water. ‘There's nothing like a mother. A mother knows her child, and nobody else should be able to make that decision.’”
Sorry to disappoint you, Ms. Clark, but the Constitution of the United States is this country’s legal framework and, through the judicial branch, appointed Mr. Schiavo her legal guardian. Aside from the fact that the Bible regards the husband/wife relationship as far more significant than that of the mother/child, Michael Schiavo has remained at his wife’s side despite not being able to communicate with her for the past 15 years, despite her parents pleading for him to grant a divorce so they could retain control of her care. And Ms. Schiavo herself indicated she would not want to be kept alive artificially without hope of recovery. How much clearer can it get?
For once, couldn’t the freedom of speech of be preceded by the freedom of thought?
Thanks again to Ms. Clark for reminding us all how important it is to stay in school, study and not grant interviews unless one can speak without sounding like a complete imbecile.
Johnnie Cochran, the lawyer who was able to win acquittal for O.J. Simpson, passed away at the age of 67. He accomplished a lot of other things in his time, but the simple fact that CNN and other major news agencies opted to interview Mr. Simpson upon Mr. Cochran’s death says a lot. To be precise, what it says is that your entire life is encapsulated by a man who murdered, in cold blood, his ex-wife and her male companion, and walked. I don’t know who will deliver my eulogy but if it’s a multiple murderer who escaped penalty, I’d prefer instead a moment of silence on my behalf. Or a moment of sarcastic commentary followed by some belly-laughs and a belch or two.
Jerry Falwell is in critical condition, suffering from pneumonia for the second time in five weeks. Somewhere, Larry Flynt is laughing. And somewhere else someone is noting the irony of the “celebrities die in three” theory and wondering, if Mr. Falwell does not recover, what that suggests, assuming Mr. Falwell’s name will always be linked to Johnnie Cochran’s.
Finally, Douglas S. Smith Jr., a former Boy Scout leader was charged with receiving and possessing German kiddie porn. Mr. Smith, Jr., retired last month spending 39 years with that organization, and it seems to me that there’s really no more disgusting human being than a person who puts him- or herself in a position to aid and teach children but instead uses the opportunity for prurient, deviant interests. If or when Mr. Smith admits his guilt in connection with the charges, which is expected, if I were prosecuting the case, I would request the court to require Mr. Smith, Jr., to undergo a voluntary castration.
All images courtesy CNN.com