Sunday, September 9, 2007

Constitutional Rights & Wrongs W/ Burt "Dragnet 1967" Prelutsky

Burt Prelutsky is a card-carrying member of the Angry Old White Guys Club referenced a few items down. You know, this & that, blah, blah, young people today, on & on. See, he is older & Caucasian: Here's a chunk from his most recent complaint:

In the past, compassion was extended to the elderly, the abused, the innocent and the infirm. But during the last few decades, it has become an entitlement demanded by members of various voting blocs. In short order, it has been transformed into political currency doled out by political hacks trolling for votes.

He seems to be whining about identity politics. Imagine that, a group complaining about their mistreatment as a group. The nerve! Oddly enough, he does mention the "elderly" (though we're sure he doesn't consider himself so, nor do we consider him so) as deserving of compassion. And a lucky thing for him, because:

As some of you may be aware, I am one of the 175 or so older writers involved in a class action lawsuit that accuses the movie studios, the TV networks and a number of Hollywood talent agencies, of engaging in the unlawful practice of ageism.
Burt, just shut up & take it. It's their industry, & they can run it any old way they want to. You aren't one of those "liberals, leftists, Socialists, progressives, Maoists, Castroites, Communists, and all the other whack-jobs on the wrong side of history" types you were just bitching about.

But back to compassion:
Frankly, I’m sick and tired of pretending that foreigners -- be they Islamic terrorists or Mexican nationals -- are somehow entitled to constitutional safeguards, not to mention a grab-bag of goodies unavailable to law-abiding American taxpayers.
We're not completely sure what that has to do w/ "compassion," but that was where he started. And frankly, we're sick and tired of people taking the position that "constitutional safeguards" (rights, Burt, rights) apply only to American citizens. Which constitutional amendment was that again? If we're not mistaken, the Constitution applies wherever the U. S. government is the sovereign authority, and is not limited to citizens of the United States. Maybe he'll take it a bit further & say that "safeguards" should only apply to American citizens who've not been accused of anything. Or maybe he could take 30 seconds to explain the "grab-bag of goodies unavailable to law-abiding American taxpayers." Is there a hidden super-secret Dep't. of Cool Stuff for Swarthy Furriners that no taxpayer can find out about, & if you did they'd have to kill you? Is there another gift-giving agency for law-abiding work permit-holding legal alien residents who pay taxes? Please tell us. We'll gladly renounce our citizenship if there's an entire grab-bag of goodies in it for us. After all, we may not have any constitutional safeguards left anyway. And what if there's an "Islamic terrorist" who's an American citizen? The courts will be tied up for years w/ that one. (See also: Jose Padilla case.)
Recently, I received an e-mail from a kindred soul. She wrote: “Like a lot of folks, I have a job that requires I pass a random urine test. That’s not a problem. What I do have a problem with is the distribution of my tax money to people who don’t have to pass a similar test. Why shouldn’t one have to pass a drug test in order to get a welfare check if I have to pass one in order to earn it for them?"
OK, can't blame Burt for the idiocy of his "kindred spirit." Just for publishing her. We can point out that the drug test she has to pass is not government mandated, but employer mandated. For all we know, she may operate heavy equipment. Let's hope it's not a job that requires rigorous logical abilities. She has to piss in a cup in order to support herself, not in order to pay taxes. Perhaps she wants any one receiving government aid to pass a morals test rather than a means test. People living in the decadent, free luxury of public housing can already be evicted for drug convictions. College loan applicants w/ drug convictions are denied federally-backed student loans, by federal law. Not enough. Certainly cameras & microphones in all public housing (even the private housing of aid recipients) would be an excellent idea. One of those dirty welfare bums might say something w/ which "kindred spirit" disagreed. Can't have her precious bodily fluidstaxes supporting that, can we? Electronic monitoring by ankle bracelet (no, let's put microchips under their skin) woldn't be a bad idea either. And on & on. Where did these people get the idea that government assistance is a paradise, and that every penny of their taxes...Oh. Reagan & his anecdotal approach to governing. That's right. Forgot, just like Ronnie did.

And now Burt wraps it all up & brings it on home. Remember, he writes for telebision (& letters to the editor) so logic isn't his strongest suit:
Not very compassionate, I grant you, in these days of unbridled political correctness. But it certainly sounds far more sensible than anything I’ve heard from our elected officials. One can only assume that when this sorry collection of senators and congressmen took their oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution, they all had their fingers crossed.
Please, Burt, we're trying very hard to make the connection between what you call "compassion," & urine tests for all, & the Constitution, and the legislative oath sworn w/ "fingers crossed," &...&...Oh, at this point we're just throwing good money after bad.


D. Sidhe said...

Burt appears to have confused "compassion" with "decency". I understand at his age the synapses don't function at peak efficiency. I'm willing to be compassionate about this, but not to the point where I'll pretend he's right.

M. Bouffant said...

From The Editor:
Thanks. You've explained what we were trying to get at, what he really meant by "compassion," at least in his first paragraph. It's still up for grabs what he means the rest of the way. He may not be elderly, but he's certainly confused.