Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, June 6, 2020

MVNews this week:  Page A:8



 Mountain Views News Saturday, June 6, 2020 




Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 



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John Aveny 



Stuart Tolchin 

Audrey Swanson

Mary Lou Caldwell

Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Bob Eklund

Howard Hays

Paul Carpenter

Kim Clymer-Kelley

Christopher Nyerges

Peter Dills 

Rich Johnson

Lori Ann Harris

Rev. James Snyder

Katie Hopkins

Deanne Davis

Despina Arouzman

Jeff Brown

Marc Garlett

Keely Toten

Dan Golden

Rebecca Wright

Hail Hamilton

Joan Schmidt

LaQuetta Shamblee

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FRED Thomas

Joyful, at the sounds of voices from people that do not 
look like me, taking a stand (hopefully not just symbolic). 
I saw a sign this week being held by a middle-aged white 
man that read “I understand that I will never understand, 
yet here I stand”. That brought joy to my heart as it was the 
perfect sentiment. Joyful because of all of the unsolicited 
phone calls and messages from families I have known for 
decades. Joy to see most police officers showing a great 
deal of restraint and often times kneeling in solidarity 
with the protestors. Joy in hearing the voices of beautiful 
children, raised in our beloved town finally being able to 
share their experiences in a peaceful gathering of fair-
minded people at Sierra Vista Park.

Pain in remembering that this movement didn’t start with George Floyd, its 
roots trace back to the dozens of African American slave revolts in the 17 and 
1800’s (Nat Turner’s being the most well-known. Pain in knowing that Viola 
Liuzzo, Andrew Goodman, and James Chaney were white Americans that were 
killed for having the unmitigated gall to stand in solidarity against Jim Crow. 
Pain in remember the photograph Emmet Till. The pain in knowing that the 
ratifications to the US Constitution and fair and equal treatment laws still have 
not created a society that recognizes universally the attrocities of denying even 
one citizen their constitutionally protected rights. For all of my friends that stand 
unequivically for the 2nd ammendment, it pains me that you do not appear to be 
as resolute with the rest of our nation’s governing document.

Uncertain as to what happens next? Where do we go from here? How do we 
finally get to a place where we acknoledge evryones right to exist in a free and 
just society. Uncertain as to how to protect the institution of law enforcement 
from those in its ranks that blindly see their power and authority over their 
sworn duty to serve. Uncertain as to how to stop opportunist from causing 
distractions from real progress being made. Wether that be in terms of unlawful 
acts during peaceful lawful assemblies, or organzations that benfit from keeping 
us angry and separate. Uncertain as to what to teach my daughters about their 
future and the American Dream. 

What I am certain of, I love the United States of American and am proud to be 
an American, I am certain that I love our town and the people in it, I am certain 
that Racist/Elitist ideology strips away the very thing that makes this country 
worth fighting and dying for. I am certain that I will never forget the horrible 
domestic terrorism that has been perpetrated against African Americans, other 
minorities, and the poor. 

From one of the speakers at the vigil held on Thursday “No one can ever have 
peace, until everyone has peace”. I pray that we all gain peace. 



The incident in Central Park involving the White female 
dog walker and the African-American bird watcher has been 
on my mind even before I saw the video of the George Floyd 
murder. It’s a day later and I’m still thinking about 
the dog-walker although there is a never ending supply of 
other things to worry about. The White Lady was offended 
that someone, not any someone, a man, a Black Man had 
chastised her for walking her unleashed dog. There are many 
horror stories of White Women making up stories about Black 
Men. If you don’t know what I am talking about perhaps 
you should reread To Kill A Mocking Bird or look up the 
lynching of 14 year old Emmett Till on the Web; or for a real horror story check 
out the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 responsible for about 300 deaths. I am not 
saying that women have no right to complain. I am, like you, a supporter of the 
Me Too Movement but also am aware that in order to be taken seriously women 
may resort to untrue allegations of sexual misconduct. Recently Trevor Noah 
spoke at length about the limited sources of power accessible to women and the 
consequences of these limitations.

Okay, forgetting which should never be forgotten, the sexual misallegations, 
the question for me is whether or not we can consider the leashless dog-walker 
a racist. It turns out that she is, or was, an Obama supporter and a contributor 
to various Democratic causes. I would bet that she does not consider herself 
a racist and would say she is a believer in equality. I want by focusing on 
this incident and one other to direct all of us to examine our values and our 
unthinking behavior relating to our own prejudices. 

A number of years ago, but not that many, my wife was working as an 
administrator in Pasadena. My wife is Hispanic and after our marriage she, 
like many women in the business world, continued to use her maiden name. She 
was told by her boss that it would be a good idea for her to use her married name 
and then no one would ever know… Know what is the question!! The complete 
ignorance and racism behind thoughtless suggestions is what is frightening. 
If there is going to be change in the unquestioned and unexamined attitudes 
of elected officials, police and the attitudes of people the rest of us then must 
have conversations that allow us all to re-examine our previously unquestioned 
beliefs. It is sad that even at this time most of us are unwilling to engage in such 
conversations which might subject us to unwanted criticism. If racist and sexist 
attitudes and practices are ever going to change this risk must be taken. 

Kia Ora Be Safe

JASE Graves


I don’t know about 
you, but the next time I hear someone refer to the “new normal,” I 
think I might scream into my middle daughter’s unacceptable new bikini 
bottoms that I plan to confiscate and turn into a coronavirus face 
mask. If adjusting my daily activities according to COVID-19 protocol 
is now the norm, I’m ready to declare myself an official freakazoid, 
which is how most people (especially my family members) see me, 

I just can’t accept this way of life, and I’m not gonna take it anymore 
–unless the govern-ment, medical professionals, the local Walmart
manager and my wife tell me to. I now in-vite you to commiserate with 
me about various aspects of life that have gotten on my first, middle 
and last nerve.

Speaking of the Walmart manager, I’m not sure I can tolerate another shopping trip for my 
three daughters’ nutritional requirements – like tater tots, cocktail wieners and Reddi-wip. I’ve 
been to the local Walmart so many times over the past two months that I recently dreamed I 
had to fight off an attempt by the manager to fit me with one of those “Proud Associate” vests.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I truly appreciate all of my local grocery stores and their em-ployees 
standing in the gap for us during this pandemic. I’ve actually wandered the aisles (in the wrong 
direction) with tears of gratitude in my eyes while embracing an 18-pack of Angel Soft Mega 
Rolls. It’s just that I don’t think I can stand any more humiliation when my ration of ramen 
noodles won’t scan properly at the self-checkout counter and the “customer needs assistance” 
light of shame starts blinking again.

When I’m not instigating mass eye rolling among my fellow Walmart peeps, I’m usually going 
wackadoodle-in-place at home. I’m tired of my house, and I’m worried that I’m wearing it out, 
especially the plumbing. I’m not sure my home ever intended for me to oc-cupy it this much. 
We now have a permanent hiking trail in the flooring from my bed, to the refrigerator, to 
my recliner, and to the bathroom. You’d think with all of that exercise, I would’ve lost weight 
by now. Instead, I’m blaming my added pounds on uncontrolled hair growth, which has transformed 
my formerly stylish coiffure into one of those Russian ushanka-hats. (If you read my 
previous column, Hank says, “Hi!”)

I guess I can be thankful that I’m not spending all of this time in my house alone, but I’m pretty 
sure our pets wish they were. It’s a sad day when your dogs treat you like you’re intruding on 
their “me time.” Yes, these same creatures used to greet me at the door as if my wardrobe was 
made entirely of Oscar Mayer products. Now they treat me like that dis-tant relative with bad 
breath your parents used to force you to hug when you were little. Maybe the pets are acting 
this way because I’ve spent part of quarantine practicing my dog-grooming skills. But despite 
their poor attitudes, I’m happy to say they still have most of their appendages.

Finally, (and I can’t believe I’m saying this) I’m tired of dressing like I’m always taking a short 
break between naps – which I am. I’m not even sure I can operate a zipper correctly anymore, 
and a button fly is completely out of the question. I remember when I used to savor every moment 
lounging in a pair of sweatpants, pajamas, or Nike shorts. Now, I’m just praying for the 
day when I’ll have to squeeze into my khakis, navigate a complex net-work of belt loops, and 
wear a nipple-chafing dress shirt again. Ah, the good ol’ days of uncomfortable office attire!

With America starting to open up, I’m hopeful that life will soon return to its pre-corona monotony 
– and we can resume being terrified of other global threats like climate change, vaping, 
and cauliflower pizza.

Until then, I guess we’ll all have to deal with the “new normal,” and so will my two dogs – if I 
can get them to hold still.


Graves is an award-winning humor columnist from East Texas. 

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