What Fresh Hell Is This?

December 11, 2004

Democracy In Action

I was watching "NewsNight with Aaron Brown" last night and he was showing a video of protests in Iraq's Sunni Triangle over the upcoming election. The voice-over by CNN Correspondent, Karl Penhaul said, "The message on the banner is plain. The faithful citizens of Burutz outrightly reject elections under the occupation. Friday prayers have just ended and several hundred Sunni men, maybe 1,000, join the anti-election protest. A cleric is joining in even though new laws mean they could be arrested if authorities suspect he's stoking anti U.S. sentiment."

Hmm...and we are going to bring to democracy to this land? To a land where the law says that you can be arrested for protesting against the other side?

Good luck with that.

The next segment was about former NYC police commissioner Bernard Kerik withdrawing his name from consideration for the job of secretary of homeland security. Kerik's expected appointment was supposed to be a feather in the cap of Rudy Giuliani since Kerik was Giuliani's guy. I know Giuliani is supposed to be a saint since 9/11 (and I give him all due credit for his actions that day and in the days right after when he filled the role that our at-the-time AWOL President could not), but I lived in NYC for 15 years and am well aware of Giuliani's full record.

It's hard to forget the numerous instances of unarmed black men killed or brutalized by NYPD under the Giuliani administration, including the best-known cases of the shooting of Amadou Diallo and the assault of Abner Louima. While most non-New Yorkers have heard of those cases, many may not be aware that while Mayor Dinkins was in office, there was a rally by police that turned into a police riot where they burned Dinkins in effigy and an African American female elected official was assaulted by the police. Then-candidate Giuliani was right there with the rest of the rioters. Nice to know that you can get arrested for a nonviolent protest in Iraq, but police 'protesters' can assault women on the streets of NYC and get away with it. I mean did you really think one of them would arrest one of their brothers?

And speaking of democracy and elections, it's been all over the local news that Pro Football Hall of Famer and Steelers legend Lynn Swann is considering a bid for PA Governor against Ed Rendell. Certainly one can assume that Republicans in this state might consider Swann a good candidate to carry out a divide-and-conquer strategy against the expected votes of African Americans who overwhelmingly go for Democrats like Rendell. But, how well will Swann play in Pennsyltucky? Pennsyltucky (also know as "The T") has nothing on the Red States when it comes to rednecks.

Perhaps a Swann candidacy might be expected to pick up some Western PA Yinzer Stillerz Fan votes as well. That can only mean one thing: the Dems will need to run Franco instead of Rendell.

Now that would be an election any Yinzer Stillerz Fan could wave a towel for!

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