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Trembling Lip

We have declined, it has been said, from a people with a stiff upper lip to a people with a trembling lip. This has been attributed to the late Queen Elizabeth, but that is more myth than fact.

The screed of victimhood is pure political rhetoric from the usual Greek chorus, exacerbated by the years of the Obama-Trump-Biden trifecta. All are at fault in large and varying degrees: Obama for his unnecessary apologetics for our culture and history and weaponizing the IRS, Trump for his ignorance and crudeness and serial fabrications, and Biden for his making reasonable people who disagree with his policies enemies of the state, crushing the FBI and the Justice department under his heel, a man who won’t recognize his own grandchild. Shameful and unwarranted, but there you have it.

A few very recent USSC decisions, correctly decided, illustrate the frustration of thinking, rational adults and may prove to catapult dissenters into perceived heroic but actual pathetic stature. I won’t argue merits here, but I will pose ideas.

The decision of the Court that using race as a criteria for admission (and rejection) to colleges is overdue. Justice Sandra Day O’Connor wrote almost a generation ago that the USA was close to eliminating racial preferences for diversity, which is discriminatory on its face, from standards of admission.

No, she was wrong, and it is not always about race.

Yes, it is largely about zip codes, a trite but conveniently vivid euphemism for the disadvantaged. It is also about the local failure of education standards in poorer communities, but everyone gives that a glancing pass.

Here’s my solution. If Harvard, for example, really cares about diversity, the disadvantaged, and the underprepared to get admission to its august institution, it should put its money where its mouth is.

Instead of a two-week college prep immersion (which they currently tout and sell) make it a 2-year commitment. The Harvard endowment is today worth over $53.2 billion. That is more than the separate annual state budgets of 40, yes forty, states. It enriches dozens of managers, most notably its CEO, who makes over $9 million annually. I am sure he earns it.

Harvard, invest in poor zip codes. Have a real prep school and get disadvantaged kids of all sizes and colors and shapes a chance at the tony connections that come with being a Harvard alumnus. Make that investment and education will be better for it.

The second decision, which I can’t help shaking my head about, is the lawsuit attempting to force a web designer to create something against her moral fabric and beliefs.

If I hear one more comparison to the Alabama lunch counter protestors of February 1960 I’ll scream. The students, then, sat at a “whites only” lunch counter and vowed to remain there until they were served. They weren’t. Many were jailed, expelled from universities, and met with the racist opprobrium that came with those times. A disgraceful episode. Those students were heroes, all.

But there ain’t no comparison to the website creator’s refusal to accommodate. The students just wanted what everyone else would get: a cup of coffee, a coke, and maybe a slice of pie. They didn’t ask for kangaroo meat or flaming vodka-infused crème brulee (which was not likely on the menu then or served at all). The lunch counter provided X to customers and refused to provide X to the students because of race, only.

The website owner creator provides X to her customers, not kangaroo meat.

Justice Sotomayor cites a slippery slope reasoning in her dissent, which shows her legal and intellectual weakness. The slippery slope argument has always been a logical fallacy.

Last, the student loan farce. Of course, the court slapped that down, praise God.

One of the things that separates the US from Third World countries is the well-established honoring of legal, binding contracts. The loan forgiveness initiative of Biden’s administration was and is a cynical attempt to garner the votes of students in debt. I submit that it would have divided our nation even further, perhaps through violence.

If Biden feels so strongly about student loans perhaps he can write a check or two from the family account.

I pray we Americans can stop assuming there is a victim under every rock, or an oppressor standing on it. Someday.

Respect to the Court. Condemnation to Biden and his ilk for slamming those justices.

Peace. Out.

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Jul 09, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Kevin, I hope all is well in your world. I see the Skora clan on a regular basis. They appear content by every measure.

After lurking through some of your commentary, I decided to weigh in on this one. I hope this will be taken in the constructive tone in which it is offered. Yours is a fine point about the crutch of "victimhood." But until we can delve deeper into the subject over a beer, I offer this: we Americans are so adept at sharpening our differences that we forfeit the opportunity (and the imperative) to seek common ground. With each example you cite - affirmative action, religious freedom, integrity of contracts - grey areas abound, as compelling argumen…

Jul 14, 2023
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Well and nobly said, sir. I agree 100%. The USSC follows the letter of the law, and is not required to solve all social ills. We are, as a community. I think.

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