When can we expect your article about Bennie Thompson? With one commie rag in Memphis do we really need another? I guess you get what you pay for and with this paper you don't get very much. I never read your paper but decided to try the last two weeks. Report on the music and leave the commie garbage out.
I get a lot of emails from readers. Some of them are complimentary. Some are like the one above, which I received last week. Because I'm weird that way, I decided to look through the past two issues to see what "commie garbage" we'd published. I found a few things that might have pushed this guy's buttons: my column supporting the state legislature's decision to not pass "open carry"; a Viewpoint column by Juan Williams that criticized false GOP attacks on Obamacare; the Tom Tomorrow cartoons. Not much else, really. Yes, we lean liberal politically, but "commie"? I don't get that.
But because I like pushing buttons, I wrote back to this fellow, who at least had the 'nads to sign his real name:
Bennie is next week's cover story. You might want to avoid picking up the paper.
(True confession: I had to look up Bennie Thompson. Turns out he's the African-American congressman from Mississippi who called Justice Clarence Thomas an "Uncle Tom.")
It didn't take long for my new pen pal to write back:
Can't wait. I'm sure you will call for the great general's park to be named after him or a national holiday or renamed streets. When your guns and money are stolen from you and your (sic) out in Obama's cotton field singing We Shall Overcome, don't say you were not warned.
Really, the president who can't even get the Democratically controlled Senate to pass a minimum wage bill is going to steal my guns and money? How exactly is this going to happen? The NRA has Congress and the state legislatures in its pocket. And due to increasingly permissive gun laws, more people than ever are carrying all kinds of firearms in public. If Obama's going to start taking guns, he'd better step it up, quickly.
And taking my money? The stock market is booming and all the bankers and hedge fund managers who caused the great crash of 2008 are living high on the hog again. There's no money left for Obama to steal. Wall Street's already got it all.
I think I can assume with some certainty the "great general" the emailer refers to is the well-known commie fighter Nathan Bedford Forrest. We haven't written anything about Forrest in the Flyer lately, but when we do, rest assured I will demand that all my sheep-like readers join me in the president's official cotton field for a hearty chorus of "We Shall Overcome, Comrades."
In the 14 years I've been the Flyer editor, I've gotten lots of hate mail. It mostly used to come in envelopes filled with pages of scrawled handwriting. I read them and put them in the wastebasket, chalking it up as a natural by-product of writing for a liberal paper in the conservative South. Lately, the angry folks have switched to email, and it comes in waves ...