Honestly, I do. I’ve met a pretty good number of Newfoundlanders in my life, and almost all of them have been some of the nicest people you could ever hope to run into, and I don’t even mean with your car. And no matter what people say about them, I haven’t met a single Newfy who could come close to being as retarded as these folks from Arkansas, or as I used to call it until today, Newfoundland South.
What you’re about to read came to me in 2 different emails from 2 different places less than 10 minutes apart. I’d find that a lot stranger if stuff like that didn’t happen to me all the time, but it’s still something I laugh at and wonder about whenever it happens.
First we have a news article about a religious nutcake who wants people to be fired and $20000 in cash because his teenaged sons found a book about lesbians in a *public* library and were traumatized by it.
A Bentonville, Ark., man is seeking $20,000 from the city after his two teenage sons found a book on lesbian sex on a public library bookshelf.
He also wants the library director fired.
Earl Adams said his 14- and 16-year-old sons were “greatly disturbed” after finding the book, titled “The Whole Lesbian Sex Book.” Adams said the book caused “many sleepless nights in our house.”
Adams said the book is “patently offensive and lacks any artistic, literary or scientific value,” according to a letter he faxed to Mayor Bob McCaslin. He said the teenagers found it while browsing for material on military academies.
Adams wants the city to pay $10,000 to each of his sons. That’s the maximum allowed under the Arkansas obscenity law. However, the city’s attorney dismissed Adams’ claim as baseless. She said the book is not pornographic.
“There is not a valid legal concern here,” Camille Thompson said. “In fact, (the request for money) made me question his motivation.”
The library’s advisory board voted earlier this month to remove the book from circulation. Board member George Spence said he found the book crude, but said it could be replaced with one taking a “more sensitive, more clinical approach.”
In an e-mail Thursday, Adams said that “God was speaking to my heart that day and helped me find the words that proved successful in removing this book from the shelf.”
He said he would fight any effort to put the book back on shelves.
“Any effort to reinstate the book will be met with legal action and protests from the Christian community,” Adams wrote in the e-mail.
I know this probably won’t help matters any, but here’s my small and dare I say noble effort to prevent this type of confusion from happening in the future.
of, pertaining to, or affecting a population or a community as a whole: public funds; a public nuisance.
open to all persons: a public meeting.
of, pertaining to, or being in the service of a community or nation, esp. as a government officer: a public official.
maintained at the public expense and under public control: a public library; a public road.
open to the view of all; existing or conducted in public: a public dispute.
of or pertaining to all humankind; universal.
the people constituting a community, state, or nation.
a particular group of people with a common interest, aim, etc.: the book-buying public.
Taken from Dictionary.com.
Hopefully we’ve all got this straight now. The public is not just you, the public is all of us. You do not speak for the public, at least not all of it. So unless you want to build your own private libraries or start your own private broadcasting facilities, shut the fuck up and accept the fact that like it or not, everybody is the public and we’re all just a little bit different. Everything done for the public good is about striking the right balance, which does not mean that every crackpot gets exactly what he wants when he wants it. Every crackpot has the right to a voice, but the rest of us have an equal right to ignore that voice. It’s one of those things that makes the society you think you’re protecting with your what’s good for me is good for everybody else attitude so great.
Speaking of voices we should be ignoring, here’s a letter that Randy Cassingham dug out of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette and posted on Jumbo Joke. By the way, where it says warning in the headline, it’s supposed to say warming. The letter was posted on April 16th, and nobody from the crack editing staff has fixed it yet. then again, that might explain how something this stupid could make it into a newspaper.
Daylight exacerbates warning*
You may have noticed that March of this year was particularly hot. As a matter of fact, I understand that it was the hottest March since the beginning of the last century. All of the trees were fully leafed out and legions of bugs and snakes were crawling around during a time in Arkansas when, on a normal year, we might see a snowflake or two. This should come as no surprise to any reasonable person. As you know, Daylight Saving Time started almost a month early this year. You would think that members of Congress would have considered the warming effect that an extra hour of daylight would have on our climate. Or did they ? Perhaps this is another plot by a liberal Congress to make us believe that global warming is a real threat. Perhaps next time there should be serious studies performed before Congress passes laws with such far-reaching effects.
CONNIE M. MESKIMEN / Hot Springs
When I was first reading all of this stuff, the only thing I could think was you know, the next time the Americans feel like bombing someplace back to the dark ages, why not consider Arkansas? But the more I think about it, there’s probably no point. Judging from what I’ve seen today, they’re already there.