Tuesday, July 03, 2012

More Braggin' Rights

As a kind of warm-up to my last blog post, inspired by the encouragement of others who see something in my writing that eludes me, I fired off a letter to the editor of our local fish-wrapper, The North Georgia News. It’s a free weekly, full of junk flyers, bargain coupons, and advertising revenue. It’s also—as they proudly proclaim—“The Official Legal Organ of Union County”, and the most reliable form of news aside from the usual gossip, backbiting, and careless slander that is part of small-town life.

Well, imagine my surprise when this little rant got published. I just got a letter in the paper last fall. (See “Braggin’ Rights” from last November’s archive on this site.)

A bit of background: Some time back, a couple of Ku Klux Klowns from Fannin County applied to our state’s “Adopt-a-Mile” program. What it is, you ask permission, and the state grants you permission to pick up litter along a designated stretch of roadway. (The implications of the state granting permission to pick up trash may be addressed later…) When a family, group, or organization volunteers responsibility for the assigned sector, a small sign is posted for the quick-of-eye informing them that the next mile of right-of-way is relatively clean thanks to the efforts of [your name here]. In keeping with their long tradition of civic responsibility, the Klan decided to add picking up beer cans and burger wrappers to their heritage of murder, arson, and torture. These boys make me so proud!

The state denied the request, on several grounds. As it’s reported, the two individuals who filed the request are not residents of Union County, where they had asked for the first mile of state route 515 inside the county line. The stretch of highway they wanted to “protect” is a four-lane highway, where the speed limit is 55 or above, which the state cited as the official reason for denying the application. These people were extremely dubious about their mailing addresses, their reasons for requesting that particular stretch of roadway, and even their personal relationship. They gave an address in Union County that turned out to be a Post Office box registered to “the United Klans of America” or some such crap. The single word that sums it up is “bullshit”, and the two mooks were told to take a hike.

Then all this nonsense leaked out to the Atlanta Urinal-Constipation, and hit the Associated Press newswire. FOX News picked it up and ran it on their headline crawler, which was where it first crossed my radar. I had a good chuckle, and passed it along to Ms. Possum the next day, thinking it was some gnat-ridden county in flatland Georgia where this had occurred.

That was three weeks ago. Two weeks ago, the local rag ran a headline story that the Klan is going to hold a rally in our county seat in September. Below that was a detailed story about the “Adopt-a-Mile” flap. The editorial page was consumed with opinions, including the usual Q&A column allotted to our county commissioner. The chief-editor-and-bottle-washer, Mr. Duncan, weighed in with a column, hence my reference to him in what follows. He insulted the people of our adjacent county, and tried to link the name of their local high school football team to the machinations of the Klan. This whole mess took up most of the front page, the editorials, and the jump pages of the first section, which is the only part of the paper worth reading.

I keep telling myself “I have nothing to say,” but obviously my alligator mouth interferes with my hummingbird brain. I wrote the following letter. As of this writing, no one has burned a cross in my front yard. My lawyers, Browning, Colt, Smith & Wesson, are waiting to address anyone who wishes to express themselves in a rude or uncivilized manner.

I’m getting to the “I told ya so” moment, but it hasn’t quite arrived yet. For the time being, let’s just indulge a moment of vanity at being read by thousands of people, and have a chuckle at the foibles of local politics:

Dear Editor:

Why, in the second decade of the 21st century, are we still paying any attention to the Ku Klux Klan? What started as an angry reaction to the abuses of Reconstruction has evolved into a motley collection of cartoonish morons who are less deserving of passing notice than a dead possum on the side of the road. Whatever notions Nathan Bedford Forrest had in his head have long since evolved into a legacy of malicious hatred, ignorance, and murderous disgrace of the honor that Confederate general held at the end of The War of Northern Aggression. As a member of Sons of Confederate Veterans, I have joined many others in filing for restraining orders against the Klan for hijacking symbols of the Confederacy and defiling the heritage of the South, but to the credit of what’s left of our freedom in this country, those petitions have been denied. As it should be, idiots are allowed to speak their little minds, and those who bother to listen are permitted the discretion to agree or disagree.

Why, then, is Mr. Duncan trying to provoke a Hatfield-McCoy feud with Fannin County? The good people of Blue Ridge don’t wear their sheets, they sleep on them. There is nothing dishonorable about calling a high-school football team “Rebels” if one understands the origins of the Civil War and what it truly represented, which was not a “defense of slavery” or any other racial connotation one would care to imply. I’m catching a strong odor of brimstone and political correctness from Mr. Duncan’s editorial. I would stipulate that I despise the Klan, but it takes a lot of energy to actively hate anyone or anything, and they are not worth the emotional investment. One in four Klansmen is a federal informant, and the rest don’t have the sense God gave geese. I think the real reason the Department of Transportation denied their request to “Adopt-a-Mile” is that the state bureaucrats realized Klansmen are too stupid to stay out of traffic, no matter what the speed limit on the roadway.

This whole tempest-in-a-teapot controversy has been vastly amusing, but it’s time to get back to more important issues, like the validity of the insidious T-SPLOST tax about to be foisted upon us, or the Union County school board screeching for an additional $1.7 million dollars while they lay off teachers and retain space-occupying “administrators.” The Klan has had their little walk in the sun, and like “Deliverance” and the race-baiters of the Atlanta newspaper cartel, they have done more to set the image of north Georgia back than all the Hollywood hillbilly stereotypes combined. Paying any more attention to these clowns, or blaming their ignorance on something in the water in Fannin County, is like trying to teach a pig to sing: it wastes your time and annoys the pig.


(My full name, address, phone number and e-mail)


Blogger Hawkeye® said...


An outstanding piece of literature if I've ever seen one. ...Well, maybe the Bible is a bit more poignant... but I must say that this was a GOOD one!

(:D) Best regards from Tennessee

July 04, 2012 5:09 PM  

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