Friday, June 29, 2007

June 28 - Busy Day in Washington

Thursday, this past week, was a very busy day in Washington, D.C. Many people across this nation were pleased as punch and many would be pleased to punch somebody.

The Senate, after returning to consider the Comprehensive Immigration Act again, voted to kill the bill again. President Bush and Senator Ted Kennedy were dismayed at the failure of the bill to gain traction amongst native and foreign born American citizens. The after action remarks by Bush and Kennedy make it exceptionally clear that neither of these national leaders have any idea what it is that Americans want.

It's really very simple: 1) Secure our borders on all sides; 2) penalize employers of illegal aliens; 3) end the benefits programs for illegals that draw them here; 4) deport those already convicted of crimes and those who have criminal records in their home counties; 5) enforce existing laws; and 6) immigrants must learn English. After all that is done, then we can talk about modifying the rules. And, if that doesn't work, annex Mexico. (Further reading at Indigo Continuum #1.)

The House of Representatives voted 309-115 in a preemptive bill to prevent the FCC from requiring broadcast radio to provide equal time for opposing opinions. The Fairness Doctrine is wanted by liberal Democrats to counter the very popular and influential forum Conservatives have used to voice their opinions. The airwaves are already inundated with liberal viewpoint media from newspapers to television. Radio is the only venue in which the liberal view does not hold sway. And no, Limbaugh doesn't decide my opinions - I do. Conservative talk radio does let me know I'm not alone in my views and provides not even equal time for opinions in opposition to the prevailing position promoted by the MSM.

When the Fairness Doctrine was in force, there were a limited number of frequencies, all AM, and a very small number of outlets with circumscribed broadcast areas. There were only three or four national radio corporations and, if you youngsters can believe this, only three TV networks, ABC, NBC, and CBS. Some might include PBS, but they never had anything worth watching. Dropping the Fairness Doctrine opened the marketplace of ideas to whole new possibilities. Liberals went for the culturally significant FM music dial and Conservatives succeeded on the AM talk dial. The music of our lives is very important, but mostly for just remembering the good old days of childhood.

Trying to return to the Fairness Doctrine is really just an attempt by the Liberals to take their toys and go home. Well, they are not the Liberals' toys anymore, but they can still go home. The House vote said very clearly to the Senators who were considering reinstating the doctrine that the bill must go through the House and they've just rejected re-adoption, so don't bother. (Further reading at Indigo Continuum #2.)

Not to be outdone by the Senate and the House, the Supreme Court of the United States decided , finally, a major race based case, actually two cases heard together. Both Knoxville, Tennessee and Seattle, Washington had school district policies that determined school populations by skin color. The racial mix had to be at a certain ratio. If the ratios didn't meet the standard, then students were shipped around to the various schools until an adequate mix was achieved.

The Court decided 5-4 the practice, while well meaning, was itself racist and defeated the purpose of eliminating racism in America. Louisville had been under Federal court order to desegregate between 1975 and 2000. When the order was lifted, Louisville school officials kept many of the court ordered rules. Though parents and students could request attendance at any of the district schools, when the racial balance, defined as black and white, which meant that Latinos, Asians, and others were defined as white, varied from accepted normative guidelines, then admissions were denied on the basis of skin color.

Seattle, attempting to avoid racial concentration in any school, required denying students entrance into choice schools based solely on skin color. This attempt to avert any discrimination based on skin color or race resulted in doing precisely that and violating the 14th Amendment constitutional mandate for equal protection under the law. In his opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote, "[t] he way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race."

Answering the majority opinion, the liberal dissenters were afraid the decision would nullify the promises made in the landmark case Brown v. Board of Education. The 1954 Brown decision outlawed, but did not end the centuries old de jure segregation in government schools. Despite the pleas to Brown v Board, the promise of Brown was neither to assure racial balance nor to end discrimination in society, but only to end government sponsored discrimination on the basis of skin color.

Ending society's racial discrimination was left by the Court for society itself to iron out. Many people took up the challenge and Martin Luther King was a leader in the resultant Civil Rights Movement. In a speech so famous and so oft referenced that the meaning has been forgotten, Dr. King stood in front of the Lincoln Memorial and told us he dreamed of a time when all men, white men and black men, would be judged by the content of their character, not by the color of their skin. (Further reading at Indigo Continuum #3.)

After so many years, after so many riots, so much destruction and death, after so many false prophets have led us astray perhaps with this ruling we can return to the path of the Dream.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Monday, June 25, 2007