Weekly Comments Archive
Archived Issue
Sunday, May 2, 2021
ISSUE #1061
Race, Masks, and Southwest Airline Snacks

Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) raised a ruckus Wednesday night, in his rebuttal to President Biden’s speech to Congress. He stated, “America is not a racist country.”

Immediately folks on Twitter and TV reacted, “Uncle Tim, we ARE a racist country!”

Well, are we racist? Let’s do a few comparisons that have nothing to do with race. Is the air in cities perfectly clean? No, but it’s 99% cleaner than 75 years ago. Is the water flowing in our streams so clear you can see pebbles on the bottom of the Mississippi River? No, but our rivers and lakes are much less polluted than a hundred years ago. Has all soil erosion from rain storms and wind been prevented? No, but keeping farm fields protected with crop residue and cover crops has made a huge improvement. And the Dust Bowl of the 1930’s has never been repeated.

So, have all racists been eliminated? No, they still exist. But we hope and pray we have improved on racism as we have on air, water and soil.

As Sen. Scott said, “I know firsthand our healing is not finished… When America comes together, we’ve made tremendous progress… (but) people are making money and gaining power by pretending we haven’t made any progress at all, by doubling down on the divisions we’ve worked so hard to heal.”

Whether you agree or disagree with him politically, Sen. Scott wrote and delivered a great speech.

The Mask Debate. To wear or not to wear, that is the question.

Let’s go back to January: have you been fully vaccinated? “No.”
Then wear a mask. Stay 6 feet apart. Wash hands often.

Today: Have you been vaccinated? “Yes. In February. Two Pfizer shots.”
Then wear a mask. Stay 6 feet apart. Wash hands often.

Are you surprised millions of Americans are in no hurry to get vaccinated?

Who sees himself as the role model for Covid mask wearing? President Biden. Did you know he was fully vaccinated in December? Does he know he was vaccinated? (Sorry, cheap shot.)

He wears a mask all the time, except while speaking at a microphone. He wears a mask alone in a cemetery. He wears a mask walking outside the White House with his wife. She wears a mask. They are alone.

The President wore a mask Wednesday as he entered the House chamber to address Congress. He put it on again after speaking. EVERYONE there wore a mask. EVERYONE there had been vaccinated.

Here’s my suggestion. If they want to get more people vaccinated so they can get back to normal, schedule another televised speech before Congress. Have ALL of them there, plus Cabinet and Supreme Court. And State Governors and Legislators watching on TV. (Like a normal State of the Union).

Picture this: The President enters and walks up to the lectern. He removes his mask and holds it high. He strikes a match (Gasp!), lights the mask on fire (VP Harris and Speaker Pelosi behind him are in shock!). He holds it proudly for three seconds and drops it into a cuspidor. As the mask smolders, he instructs the entire gathering, “On the count of three, remove your mask. One, Two, Three!” Can you hear the resounding roar? Both inside the Capitol and across the country, it’s like the Indy 500 announcement, “Ladies and Gentlemen, start your engines!”

I flew to Atlanta last Monday. Returned Thursday. First time on a plane in 18 months. Southwest 737’s were full, both directions. Packed. Everyone masked.

Southwest serves mini-pretzels and a drink. The message on the napkin handed out with the drink gives the instructions: Drink down, mask up. Between bites, mask up.

I got fairly proficient. Pull mask down to chin, insert a couple of mini-pretzels. Raise mask. Chew, swallow, and repeat. Mask down, insert pretzels, mask up. Chew. Swallow. Repeat.

By the time I finished (which wasn’t long; how long could it take to eat a dozen mini-pretzels?), I devised a better idea. It was too late for me to ask for another bag of pretzels but maybe you can try it on your next Southwest flight.

Here’s the idea. Lay your mask on the tray. Empty the entire contents of the snack bag onto your mask. Lean your face down close. Carefully raise mask to cover mouth and nose. Secure the elastic straps behind ears.

Voila, you have the entire bag of Southwest pretzels within millimeters of your mouth. This should operate somewhat in the nature of a feed bag on a horse.

Historic quotes by Will Rogers:

“About ten days ago our President delivered his first message to Congress. You know that’s one of the things that his contract calls for, that every once in a while, he delivers a message to Congress to tell them the ‘Condition of the Country.’ This message as I say is to Congress, the rest of the country know the condition of the country, for they live in it and are a part of it…The country must have been in pretty bad shape for it took 12,000 words for Mr. Hoover to tell how bad it was. You see when a thing is in fine shape, it don’t need much explaining, you can then just write, ‘Country. O.K.’” WA #371, Feb. 2, 1930

“Lincoln was great. He freed the slaves and put the Southern whites in bondage for the duration of their natural lives. He furnished General Grant with cigars to smoke and poor [Robert E.] Lee had no gas mask so he had to surrender.   Lincoln tried his best to prevent that war between the Democrats and the Republicans.   Since then, they have been settling their difficulties at the polls, with about the same results.” Radio, June 1, 1930

** Yes, I give presentations. Virtual and in-person. And one-man shows.

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