Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Real Losers

By Miss Kubelik

Today, as the alleged President of the United States calls suicide bombers by a name that a guy in the bleachers with a beer in his hand would use, we're reminded of a time when our Commander-in-Chief had a broad and beautiful vocabulary.

But ya know what? We don't have to pine for our now-retired President Barack Obama to find a politician whose words inspire. Look no farther than Mayor Mitch Landrieu of New Orleans, for heaven's sake.

Landrieu spoke as his city pulled down the last of four Confederate monuments that, um, people who are Donald Trump's favorite word protested against and, no doubt, made countless death threats about. And wow, what a speech.

Landrieu quoted Martin Luther King, of course, but just as significant, he quoted George W. Bush — who, before Donald Trump came along, was to us cats The Worst Person Who's Ever Lived. We think it's significant that Landrieu reached for Bush, who will be forever reviled in history as the heartless jerk who let New Orleans drown after Hurricane Katrina.

"As President Bush said at the dedication ceremony for the National Museum of African American History and Culture," Landrieu reminded everybody, "'A great nation does not hide its history. It faces its flaws and corrects them.'"

But wait, there's more.

"The historic record is clear," Landrieu said. "The Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis and P.G.T. Beauregard statues were not erected just to honor these men, but as part of the movement which became known as The Cult of the Lost Cause. This 'cult' had one goal...to rewrite history to hide the truth, which is that the Confederacy was on the wrong side of humanity.

"It is self-evident that these men did not fight for the United States of America, They fought against it. They may have been warriors, but in this cause they were not patriots.

"...[I]n the second decade of the 21st century, asking African Americans — or anyone else — to drive by property that they own, occupied by reverential statues of men who fought to destroy the country and deny that person's humanity, seems perverse and absurd."

To read the whole speech, click here. Meanwhile, we cats PURR in Mayor Landrieu's direction and thank him for his sensitive and illuminating words. We're so glad that in the age of Trump in America, eloquence still exists.

(UPDATE: It looks like we cats, columnist Frank Bruni and the headline writers at The New York Times were channeling each other.)

No comments: