The Rant (March 19, 2015) 

On SAE frat boys, young African Americans, televised church services, and Senator Tom Cotton.

click to enlarge Hillary Clinton - JOSE GIL | DREAMSTIME.COM
  • Jose Gil |
  • Hillary Clinton

So I was having a business lunch with some newly met colleagues last week and asking them about their interests. But in the back of my mind I was thinking about the Oklahoma University SAE fraternity members who were caught on film on a bus singing a racist song a couple weeks ago. My new colleagues are on the young side. Their interests were not at all out of the ordinary. They told me that they loved football and going out to eat and science and music. I thought to myself, well, that sounds a lot like the college students who were caught on film singing the racist song. Yes, those college students probably have a lot in common with my new colleagues, with whom I was enjoying grilled chicken, green beans, and macaroni and cheese. I was thinking that those college students would probably enjoy this lunch too, and I found myself wishing that they were with us. See, the colleagues with whom I was having lunch were a group of African- American sixth graders who were spending the day attending a young men's conference.

It hit me that if those college students had been at the table with these young men, they would have had a ball and would have realized that they have much more in common with these guys than they ever imagined. And maybe that would have opened their eyes to the fact that people are people and most people just want to be happy and successful, no matter what color they might happen to be. Actually, a lot of people would have benefited from being at that lunch table.

I am so grossly jaded about the world these days that I don't pay any attention to most of what's in the news, especially politics — and all of the never-ending posturing that pretty much sums up politics. I learned what I needed to learn about the world that day while talking with and listening to those sixth graders. One of them, a particularly small fellow whose eyes beamed with smarts and more than just a little feistiness, told me he planned to be an NFL football player. When I asked him if he had a plan B in case that didn't work out, he looked at me like I was a little bit crazy and said, "Of course I do." And when I asked him what that plan was, he very matter-of-factly replied, "Oh, an anesthesiologist. I'm reading a book about that right now."

I would follow politics if this young man were to become a politician. He seems so much smarter and wiser than that Tom Cotton guy from Arkansas who wrote the letter to Iranian officials and got 47 of his fellow Republican senators to sign it. I didn't really know much more about that, other than the headlines, until I saw something on television about it. I was spastically changing the channel to get away from a church service that involved a clergyman talking about "uncircumcised pagans." As fascinating as that was, I just couldn't hang with it, because televised church services creep me out for some reason. What made it even more fascinating was that a large group of people in costumes or robes or something was sitting behind the preacher, and one of the men in the group was gnawing away at his fingernails — on television.

Anyway, the Sunday-morning political show I landed on might as well have been about uncircumcised pagans too. The only remotely entertaining thing on the show was a segment about the Secret Service guys allegedly getting hammered and driving into a barricade at the White House during an active bomb threat investigation. Between that and the show's host bringing up the whole deal about the Secret Service scandal that involved all the hookers in South America, it was far more interesting than Mitch McConnell droning on and on and on and reciting the same rote sentence over and over to make a point, because he is devoid of the ability to utter an original, thoughtful remark about anything.

And I'm sick of hearing about Hillary Clinton's email accounts. SO WHAT? Who gives a shit what email accounts she used? WHY is this the main topic of the news? We all have personal email accounts. Frankly, I don't think her emails are anyone else's business than her own, regardless of what they were about. I think her detractors believe in their sad hearts that Hillary planned the Benghazi attacks herself. That's probably why Time magazine portrayed her on its cover as having horns protruding from her head. Anyone who believes that was accidental is living in fool's paradise.

Oh, and on CNN right now, they are talking about Jeb Bush breaking from his Paleo diet to eat biscuits and grits in South Carolina. I rest my case. I can't wait to talk with the sixth graders again.

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