Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, June 2, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page B:3



 Mountain Views News Saturday, June 2, 2018 


Mountain Views



Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 


Joan Schmidt


LaQuetta Shamblee


Richard Garcia


Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 


Kevin Barry


Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Merri Jill Finstrom

Rev. James Snyder

Dr. Tina Paul

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Renee Quenell

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden


I can't imagine such 
a thing happening 
today: In the early 
1970s, when I was 9, 
my family left my sister Mary behind at the 
drive-in theater.

Allow me to explain, but you'll have to read 
my humorous memoir, "Misadventures of a 
1970s Childhood" on, to get 
the full story.

As it went, the outing had started off well 
enough. My father spent several minutes 
searching for a spot (it took time to find a 
window speaker that worked). We got out of 
the car as he opened the tailgate and folded 
down the back seats, then got back in. We 
began devouring corn curls, potato chips, 
onion dip and pretzels, and washed them 
down with Regent soda pop.

The blue sky soon fell dark and the film 
projector began rattling. Black-and-white 
numbers -- "5, 4, 3, 2, 1..." -- flashed onto 
the screen. Yellowed footage advertised hot 
dogs, popcorn and other concession items 
we could never get our father to buy.

It didn't take long before we began 
squabbling over pillows, blankets and 
positioning. My sisters complained that my 
big noggin was blocking their view, and so I 
was banished to the back of the car.

As I recollect, we went to see "Paper Moon" 
that night -- a movie about a Depression-era 
con man and a young girl who travel around 
taking people's money -- but my sisters say it 
was "Herbie the Love Bug."

Whatever the case, I was so busy devouring 
snacks -- we didn't have them often, so I was 
taking advantage of my good fortune -- I 
didn't care about the movie. My stomach 
was soon so full, however, that I ended up 
lying on my back, groaning in agony.

It's important, at this point, to understand 
how everyone was situated.

My father sat in the front seat on the driver's 
side. My mother sat to his right holding my 
sister Jennifer. She "shooshed" us constantly 
to keep us from waking the baby. In the 
back, under the pile of blankets and pillows, 
were my sisters Kathy, 14; Krissy, 12; Lisa, 6; 
and Mary, 4.

Throughout the first and second 
movies, there was plenty of sleeping, 
waking, snoring, squabbling, shooshing, 
complaining ("Mommy, Tommy stinks!) 
and trips to the restroom.

Unbeknownst to everyone, however, 4-year-
old Mary -- she always had a touch of 
wanderlust -- had slipped out the back of the 
car to go to the restroom. Preoccupied with 
my aching belly -- I was groaning pretty 
loudly by then -- I didn't notice her slip by 

About then the second movie was coming 
to a close. My father, always eager to beat the 
rush, hurriedly packed up the cooler and 
fired up the car. It never occurred to anyone 
that Mary might not be under the blankets. 
Off we drove as the final credits began to 

I don't recall how far we got before Lisa 
shouted, "Where's Mary?"

My mother, trying not to disturb the baby, 
instinctively began shooshing. It took five 
minutes or more before Lisa persuaded 
everyone that Mary was still at the drive-in.

Panic overcame us. My father made a hard 
U-turn and floored it. Our wood-paneled 
Plymouth station wagon roared down the 
road like the car in "Chitty Chitty Bang 

We fishtailed as we hit the gravel parking 
lot. The lot was empty but for the car that 
had been next to ours. Mary stood next to 
it holding the hand of somebody else's dad 
(who waited patiently for the dopey family 
that forgot one of its kids).

My sisters and I laugh every time someone 
brings up the incident -- in part because 
such a thing could never happen today. 
Today's obsessive parents, terrified by cable 
news, never let their kids out of their sight. 

To my family's credit, however, Mary was 
the only child we ever lost. None of us was 
ever left at a highway rest stop, as one family 
we knew did. Another left their kid at a camp 
ground in Ohio after a family vacation.

In any event, everything turned out well in 
the end. Mary has four children of her own 
now. She hasn't lost any of them yet.

Tom Purcell, author of "Misadventures of 
a 1970's Childhood," a humorous memoir 
available at, is a Pittsburgh 
Tribune-Review humor columnist 

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Words matter.

 What we say to each other, how we treat each other matters.

 There are basic norms of civilized behavior, outside the realm of 
politics, beyond the reach of cable network news, that we should all be 
able to agree upon.

 One of them is that, if you call an African-American woman an 
“ape,” that you are the worst kind of vile racist. And you deserve whatever scorn, whatever vitriol, 
whatever criticism that comes your way as a result of your actions.

 It shouldn’t be hard to call racist remarks racist. It shouldn’t be hard to decry a viciously 
personal and apparently unprovoked attack.

 But because of the remove of social media, because the forces at the very top of the American 
power structure have normalized the worst kind offensive behavior, there’s somehow a difference.

 Because we live in the times that we do, those same disgusting words, uttered by the 
comedienne Roseanne Barr, about the former Obama administration adviser Valerie Jarrett, 
who is African-American, are being inevitably viewed through the filter of partisan politics.

And that means, to some, they are, as shockingly, mystifyingly, horrifyingly as it seems, entirely 

 And to them, Barr - not Jarrett - is a victim.

 That sadly unsurprising sentiment came through loud and clear on Wednesday morning 
when a reader decided to share his views on my office voicemail.

 “Yes, I would like to show my support for Roseanne Barr,” he began. “The Muslim Brotherhood, 
The Planet of the Apes. Yeah, you have a perfect Valerie Jarrett. I studied this picture last night. 
What’s wrong with saying something like that? Oh, all the butt-hurt liberal media. You know 
what? I hope they all drop dead because Roseanne is right. And that lady ... woman is a b***h 

 That’s one of your neighbors. One of your colleagues. The guy in front of you in the 
supermarket checkout line. The person sitting next to you in church.

 That’s the hateful voice of racism here in central Pennsylvania. And if he were the only one, a 
lone whack-job crying out in the wilderness, that’d be one thing.

 But he’s not.

 He’s the torch-bearing, Nazi-flag waving white supremacist who marched in Charlottesville 
last year.

 He’s the extreme end of a spectrum that starts with the sort of ignorant prejudice that prompted 
Starbucks to close its shops on Tuesday to conduct sensitivity training for its employees.

 But sometimes they don’t march. Sometimes they wear suits. And they run for Congress.

 “Much love @therealroseanne. We live in a country were people don’t respect our constitution. 
One of most essential freedoms is freedom to express ourselves even if it makes others upset. 
It’s beautiful to think different. Shame on the leftist media,” Republican Omar Navarro, who’s 
running against U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., tweeted Wednesday.

Republican. Democrat. Independent. It doesn’t matter.

 There is no universe, there is no moral plane where what Roseanne Barr said is even remotely 

 It wasn’t funny. It wasn’t a joke.

 And it wasn’t the first time, either.

 As Christine Emba of The Washington Post writes, Barr has “a history of making inflammatory 
statements and pushing right-wing conspiracy theories - whether it’s lending credence to 
a bizarre theory that Democrats ran a pedophile ring; making wild insinuations about the 
death of Democratic National Committee employee Seth Rich; or accusing businessman and 
philanthropist George Soros of Nazism and attempts to undermine American democracy.”

 And because Barr has a platform, a voice, it emboldens others.

 Some among you will say that Barr had a First Amendment right to say what she said. And 
you’d be right. But the First Amendment doesn’t shield her from the consequences of her actions.

 Her employer, Walt Disney Entertainment and ABC, which knew what it was getting from 
Barr when they hired her and green-lighted her show anyway, fired her, calling her tweeted 
words “abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values.”

 Barr has since blamed her racism on the sleep drug Ambien, prompting its manufacturer, 
Sanofi, in some serious Twitter shade, to release a statement asserting that racism is not among 
the medication’s known side effects.

 In the end, though, it’s on the rest of us, Republican, Democrat, independent, Christian, Jew, 
Muslim, or nothing at all, to simply stand up and say enough, to forcefully assert, that racism has 
no place in our midst.

 Whether that’s on our TV screens or at the highest levels of power.


Copyright 2018 John L. Micek, distributed by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

An award-winning political journalist, Micek is the Opinion Editor and Political Columnist for 
PennLive/The Patriot-News in Harrisburg, Pa. Readers may follow him on Twitter @ByJohnLMicek 
and email him at


 I’m burned out on Trump TV.

 I don’t need to hear any more of his speeches or read one of his 

 I don’t want to watch every little thing President Trump does or says 
deciphered, misconstrued, attacked, defended, debated or analyzed on 
my TV every night by his many enemies and few friends.

 To try to get some actual news Thursday morning I turned over to 
the Fox Business Network to watch Stuart Varney and the gang.

 FBN covers real stuff and talks to real reporters about the ups and downs of stocks, the impact 
of President Trump’s trade deals on the economy and stories about the accelerating death spiral 
of the once-mighty Sears - the Walmart/Amazon of the 1900s.

 But even on FBN I couldn’t escape Hurricane Trump, that permanent category 5 media 
storm that blows away or crowds out the important national and global news of every day.

 The big Trump-related story of the morning was the continuing fallout over Roseanne Barr’s 
racist tweet about former Barrack Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett’s looks.

 The tweet caused ABC to instantly cancel her highly rated “Roseanne” sitcom and led Robert 
Iger, the boss of parent company Disney, to call Jarrett right away to apologize.

 FBN’s focus on Roseanne was a perfect example of how low the mainstream media have 
fallen when it comes to practicing real and important journalism.

 She topped the news on virtually every channel, but the big story of the day should have been 
President Trump signing the “Right to Try” bill, which finally gives terminally ill patients the 
federal okay to use experimental medications that have not yet been fully approved by the FDA. 

 Barr’s tweet was also the latest example of the double standard that permeates the liberal 
mainstream media’s “news” coverage of President Trump.

Barr, who made herself a juicy target for liberals by proudly calling herself a Trump supporter, 
was immediately canned and shamed by the leftwing media industrial complex.

 Keith Olbermann, Joy Reid, Alec Baldwin, Bill Maher, Don Lemon and “Full Frontal” host 
Samantha Bee - all card-carrying Trump haters - have said vile, crude and crazy things about 
Trump and his family.

 They did so with little or no harm to their careers.

 It’s safe for a liberal celebrity to call Trump a racist or a Nazi, as Olbermann did, or to call 
Ivanka Trump “a feckless c-,” as Bee did in her monologue Wednesday.

 They’ll usually get applauded, defended or given every benefit of the doubt when they pull a 
Roseanne. They almost never have to apologize.

 For example, Joy Reid’s homophobic blogs from 10 years ago have been glossed over or 
excused, and this week she and former riot-starter Al Sharpton were co-hosting a town meeting 
on racism at MSNBC.

 Christians, Sarah Palin and conservatives are fair game for nasty name calling and low blows 
in the liberal media.

 But if you say anything about a Democrat or a progressive, especially if it has any racial 
connotations, you’ll be a goner overnight like Roseanne.

 Her biggest mistake was openly supporting Trump. That made her a marked celebrity.

 She had a history of dumb and politically incorrect tweets, and she didn’t disappoint the 

 What she tweeted about Jarrett was wrong, not funny - and plain stupid. But if she deserved 
to be sacked for what she said, then so do Olbermann, Reid and a bunch of other liberals. 

 But Olbermann, a sportscaster whose nasty Twitter tantrums about Trump would embarrass 
a three-year-old, was recently rehired for about the 12th time by Disney’s failing ESPN sports 

 Bee apologized Thursday for “crossing a line.” TBS also apologized.

 That’s all they’ll have to do to amend for their sins.

 Bee gets a few points for saying she was sorry, but the liberal comedian was never in danger 
of losing her late-night job. 

 She knows the new rules of political trash talk - it’s not what you say, it’s who you say it against.


 Copyright 2018 Michael Reagan. Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan, a 
political consultant, and the author of “The New Reagan Revolution” (St. Martin’s Press). He is 
the founder of the email service and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. 
Visit his websites at and Send comments to Follow @reaganworld on Twitter. 

 Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate. For info on 
using columns contact Sales at

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