€ Bumper sticker of the week: If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention.
€ Quote of the week: "When friendship dies, where do you go to say goodbye?" (Unknown)
€ I heard recently that a group of white supremacists were plotting to rob a bank in Centralia, Illinois. Seems they needed money for the cause. This is not the first time Centralia has been in the news concerning white supremacist activity. The Grand Dragon of the KKK lives outside of Centralia, although he has been demoted, or retired, I'm not sure which. Not far from Galesburg, in Farmington, the KKK has set up shop on the outskirts of town. They have recently been recruiting in Galesburg. Of course, Matt Hale, the would­be white supremacist lawyer, lives in East Peoria. So no one really needs to feel alone when it comes to this type of idiotic behavior taking place in your community. Seems there is plenty of hatred to go around. These people's names need to be published by the local press and a constant barrage of counter opinions need to be put forth. We cannot allow ourselves to be bullied by this type of stupidity. To stand idly by and do nothing is to support them. To any racist, bigoted, white supremacist who might accidentally read this, go away, we don't want you living in our community. Try Iceland.
€ My take on George Bush, Jr.:
‹ The first problem is he's George Bush Sr's son.
‹ "A dangerous world requires a sharpened sword," George Bush, Jr. He wants us to be a strong and mighty nation, not through moral character and acts of kindness and nonviolence, but through killing and mass destruction. To begin the 21st Century electing such a person would not be an act of moving forward into a new age, but a step backward into our primitive past.
‹ Bush claims he would be an environmentally conscious president. However, he governs over the most polluted state in the country. Texas is first in pumping cancer­causing chemicals into the air and water; first in hazardous waste incinerators; first in total toxic releases into the environment. Rank in terms of environmental spending:49th. He talks green, but walks with industry.
‹ Electing George Bush, Jr.would amount to about the same thing as having re-elected George Bush, Sr. It would be a dangerous waste of time.
€ I saw a story on "60 Minutes" about a priest in Rochester, NY, who was excommunicated for not following the rules. Seems he was a bit more mischievous than the Roman Catholic Church could put up with. His church grew from a dying congregation of 400 to thousands, which I suppose is never a good sign. But than again, you can't have people running around not following the rules. That could cause change, which of course organized religion is not much into. The excommunication divided the local church, which in official terms is called a schism, or splitting of the church. A spokesman for the bishop said he, the priest, was no longer a Roman Catholic. That takes a lot of nerve, and a large dose of misguided power. Anyway, the priest says he is, and goes about carrying out his ministry anywhere he can gather his flock together. Kind of a church in exile. These things happen when your dogma and theology are more important than the people.
€ Cities are cracking down on the homeless. Why bother trying to find them a place to live when you can endlessly harass and humiliate them? San Francisco, a place that has a history of being at least somewhat tolerant of the homeless, has recently started issuing them tickets and endlessly harassing them. There's an intelligent solution. Have them use all the money they've begged to pay a ticket so the mayor can live high off the hog. The brilliant bureaucrat who thought that up probably got a raise. In New York, Mayor Giuliani and the police basically run a police state when it comes to dealing with the homeless. Giuliani says they have no constitutional right to live in the streets, and they should go to a shelter and work twenty hours a week, even though no one will hire them. If you don't work, you get kicked out of the shelter, back onto the street, where you have no constitutional right to live. This is the kind of guy you wouldn't mind seeing a terrorist hold hostage for twenty years or so. Although I would feel sorry for the terrorists. This guy will make a great senator. He has double­talk down pat.