Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, August 12, 2023

MVNews this week:  Page 12



Mountain View News Saturday, August 12, 2023 




Susan Henderson


Dean Lee 



Patricia Colonello




John Aveny 


Peter Lamendola


Stuart Tolchin 

Harvey Hyde

Audrey Swanson

Meghan Malooley

Mary Lou Caldwell

Kevin McGuire

Chris Leclerc

Dinah Chong Watkins

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








 At one time I was a strong advocate of free speech. Today 
I wonder whether defense of free speech conflicts 
with my advocacy for a growing number of progressive 
causes, including voting rights, reparations, transgender 
rights, and defunding the police. I came across a New York Times article 
that discussed debates within the ACLU. The article explained that today 
belief in the centrality of free speech to American democracy contends 
with ever more forceful progressive arguments that “hate speech is a form 
of psychological and even physical violence”.

 My wife and I have been devoted members and contributors to 
the ACLU for years. This year one or the other of us either misplaced the 
membership renewal request or actually threw it out without renewing our 
membership or contributing. Prior to beginning of this article I discussed 
our reluctance to renew with my wife who simply said that with all the 
“fake news” and purposeful lying presented on social media she today is 
conflicted about whether protecting such speech is a good idea.

 Let’s go back to 1965 the year I graduated college from the University 
of California, Berkeley. My major was Political Science and I planned 
to attend Law School. At the time of my graduation Wil-liam Shockley, a 
Nobel Prize winner credited with the discovery of the transistor. I knew 
little about him and was eager to hear him speak as I believed that the transistor 
was the future. At the last mo-ment Shockley’s appearance was cancelled 
for the reason that he was deemed to be too controversial”. I was 
appalled. As a political science major I was well-versed at that time in the 
opinions of Jus-tice Hugo Black who emphasized that freedom of speech is 
essential if we want to live in a society that is fair and equal for everyone. 
At the time I could not imagine any justification for censoring Shockley’s 
speech. I firmly believed then that the right to freely communicate one’s 
thoughts and ideas was a prerequisite for all other freedoms.

 Today, as part of my preparation for this article which I knew would 
focus on free speech, I did a little research. I learned that William Shockley 
preached that since blacks were reproducing faster than whites, the entire 
white race was in danger of being eliminated. Shockley was a darling of the 
KKK and undoubtedly planned to use his Berkeley commencement speech 
as a platform to spread his completely non-scientifically based theory. Not 
surprisingly, Shockley had absolutely no training in ge-netics, biology, or 
psychology. Today, despite my attitude toward the general importance of 
free speech, I applaud the Berkeley administration for censoring him. So 
what does that say about my atti-tude toward censorship?

 A couple of days ago I had a heated argument with a fellow Berkeley 
and UCLA Law School graduate who maintains that President Biden 
and Mr. Trump are equally responsible for willfully allowing and contributing 
to the spread of misinformation. He claims that both men censored 
information that opposed their political positions. He claimed that 
President Biden censored medical information that endangered the lives 
of many Americans. I don’t know where my long-time associate gets his 
information; but he is a very smart guy and adamant in his beliefs. Assuming 
there was actual medical information that undermined the safety of 
the anti-Covid vaccines was it acceptable to censor that information? Assuming, 
probably correctly, that the distribution of this information would 
have re-sulted in fewer people being willing to be vaccinated—and, once 
more probably assuming correctly, that the end result would have been 
thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, more deaths from the virus.

 Alright, what does medical information have to do with the ACLU 
and William Shockley? All I am suggesting is that the issue is not as clear 
as I once thought it was. Today’s conflicts in our broken society seem to be 
based on huge numbers of potential voters accepting as truth disseminated 
infor-mation which, at least to me, is clearly untrue. Freedom of Speech 
should not mean freedom to SPEAK knowing untruths! 

Hooray for truth, but who possesses it? Please speak to me share your 
thoughts and opinions at (Thank you Mr. 
Shockley for pioneering the road that makes instantaneous unimaginable 
internet communications s reality.) Ironic. 

No surprise to most of you I have long been drawn to the odd. (If 
you regularly read my column, you undoubtedly share the same 
dysfunction). I remember the precise moment I became fascinated 
with odd: The first time I heard comedian George Carlin perform. 
He asked a simple question: 

“If you have 12 odds and ends on a shelf, and one falls off and breaks, was it an odd 
or an end?”

He had no answer. And after years of seeking enlightenment regarding odds and 
ends, I too, have no answer. I still have the fascination though. Let’s see if you do.

By the way, my “odd facts” mentor is a newspaper columnist named L.M. Boyd. 
This column is dedicated to him. Shall we begin?

Dr. Geoffrey Bourne of the Yerkes Primate Research Center reported a chimpanzee 
could sort photographs of apes and humans into two separate piles. Peculiarly, 
every time she got to her own picture it got, you guessed it, put with the humans.

Best selling canned soup in the People’s Republic of China is labeled “White Fungus.” 

The capital city of Montana, Helena, used to be known as “Last Chance Gulch”. 

If anyone ever asks you, William Shakespeare’s three brothers were Gilbert, Richard, 
and Edmund.

Most popular names for girls and boys in America? Olivia and Liam. (Sorry Alex)

In case you’re interested 97.137% of all the world’s water is saltwater. 2.24% is ice 
and snow. .6129% is underground. .009% freshwater lakes. .001% is found in rivers. 
And .001% is in the atmosphere. And speaking of the Earth, the Pacific Ocean is 
25% bigger than all of the Earth’s acreage.

What U.S. President wrote the most books? Teddy Roosevelt penned 37. Speaking 
of books, if you asked Ernest Hemingway what’s the greatest American novel ever 
written he’ll tell you “Huckleberry Finn”. The one written by Mark Twain lol.

Those of you worried should rest, the television code of the National Association of 
Broadcasters strictly forbids any scene wherein somebody gargles. Includes commercials. 
Good to know.

If you want to know how old Donald Duck is, he was born in 1934. You do the 
math. Also, the first 20 years of Mickey Mouse’s existence the voice actor playing 
Mickey was a fellow named Walt Disney. (Sounds familiar)

By the way, there are about 5.5 million vending machines in Japan, 1 for every 23 
people that live there. Among other items you can order spaghetti with meat sauce 
served hot from a vending machine in Japan.

You heard it here first! Ever offered barbecue elephant for dinner ask for the footpads. 
Tastiest part I’m told.

The scientists who know this stuff tell us no squirrel ever remembers where he or 
she buried the nut.

Scientists tell us dogs never get bored. And speaking of science, your blood travels 
completely through your body every 23 seconds.

And finally, podiatrists tell us the best time of day to buy a pair of shoes is late 

If you are into dining and dancing, the next three Saturday nights will be hopping 
at Nano Café. Tonight, August 12 “M&M” is performing danceable tunes from 
6:30-9:30 at Nano’s. Next Saturday night “Free Wing” a rockin’ band will be performing 
7:00-10:00 at Nano Café.

And Saturday night, August 26th, my band, JJ Jukebox will be rockin’ and rollin’ 
to 60’s and 70’s classic rock and fun songs. Come dine, drink, dance and doo-wop 
with us. Reservations are a good idea so call (626) 325-3334.

If you like a quieter surrounding, go to Corfu Mediterranean Restaurant in Sierra 
Madre at 48 West Sierra Madre Blvd. Wonderful breakfast, lunch and dinner. In 
addition to the best kebab dinners in the western hemisphere, they also have terrific 
breakfasts. Friday and Saturday nights, my friend Len performs classic acoustic 
tunes from the 60’s and 70’s. A perfect compliment to dinner. (626) 355-5993. 
Closed Mondays and midday Tuesday – Saturday from 3:00-5:00pm. (open all day 

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I’ll never get over what the COVID-
19 pandemic did to the Ollie’s 
discount chain.

Pre-COVID, on my way to the restroom while 
shopping, I always sought out the coffee pot that 
announced sentiments to the effect of “We’ve had a 
pretty good year. Treat yourself to a free cup.”

Pandemic precautions made that simple pleasure 
go bye-bye.

I’m sure many of you share my pain. Others won’t.

Despite coffee’s long history and the omnipresence 
of Starbucks, there is no monolithic way of viewing 
the coffee experience.

Spiritual descendants of the old temperance movement 
take a stubborn pride in their “lips that touch 
brew … will get my stink-eye through and through” 

Even among drinkers, there exists an eye-opening 
variety of beliefs about frequency, purpose, composition, quantity and whether 
Juan Valdez could give Mrs. Olson the “richest, most aromatic” butt-whupping 
in a cage match.

My own immediate family demonstrates the spectrum of coffee attitudes. College 
junior Gideon has zero interest in sampling a cup of Joe. Early bird me? 
I savor a morning cup for the flavor and ritual more than for any stimulant 
effect. My bleary-eyed wife, on the other hand, simply must have a cup before 
leaving for work – or to surrender at the police station. (“I think I just murdered 
my snooze alarm. But it was self-defense!”)

What shall we say about purists like my mother who insist that anything except 
black coffee is an abomination? Does straight coffee truly dance upon 
their taste buds, or are they just too prideful to admit that sugar and creamer 
might deserve to exist? (“What modernist heresy will come next? Will people 
start bringing bananas right into their homes instead of climbing the trees to 
eat them?”)

Coffee should bring us together, but elements of class warfare or generational 
warfare are unavoidable. Folks who keep an economical 40-ounce canister in 
the cupboard (or grab the cheapest generic java that the convenience market 
dispenses) look askance at the elitists who spend a fortune every single day on 
conspicuous consumption of some froufrou gourmet concoction.

The notion is that the elitists are (a) making way too much money or (b) 
skimping on other things to finance their caffeine addiction. (“I could’ve 
sprung for a nicer funeral for Mom, but I couldn’t find a single casket with the 
Keurig seal of approval.”)

People disagree about whether to keep their coffee cravings private or shout 
them to the heavens. But it’s probably not a good idea to quote the ad slogan 
“If I don’t get American Ace Coffee, I’m going back to bed” on a job application 
– unless you plan to top it off by flooding social media with pictures of 
yourself sharing a bong with the HR director’s underage child.

Don’t let my babbling threaten your heartfelt beliefs but consider the Big 

All the memes, T-shirts, posters and Garfield cartoons about coffee mania are 
amusing, but what if they’re giving aid and comfort to our adversaries?

Somewhere Chinese students are fasting for a week, performing 500 pushups 
and solving complex quadratic equations in their heads. Americans? We’re 
sending the message “I can’t remember which is my right house slipper and 
which is my left house slipper until I’ve had my first gallon.”

Oh, it’s been a pretty good 247 years. Treat yourself to a free naval base, President 
Xi Jinping.

Danny Tyree welcomes email responses at and visits to his 
Facebook fan page “Tyree’s Tyrades.”

Mountain Views News

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