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James T. Harris

All In The Family

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As a son of Wisconsin “Genuine Milwaukee,” I have to admit that I found Sheriff Clarke and Mayor Barrett’s performance on Bashing-Brit-Piers-Morgan’s CNN show a little embarrassing and petty… and tawdry.  It was kind of like watching a family celebrate a Festivus "Airing of Grievances” in prime time! 

I mean watching two Marquette University High School alums, who are now Sheriff and Mayor, quibble over protection, jurisdiction, crime waves, furloughs and security, while being egged on by a cantankerous Brit who is trying desperately to revive his brain dead show on the craptacular Cable News Network, just didn’t make Milwaukee look all that good…  at least not from the southwest where I now reside. 

Having said that, Sheriff Clarke kicked both of their assets!  Thank God the white guys were liberal. If Piers and the mayor were conservative, their attack on the Sheriff (who is a black Democrat) would have been… Racist! 

But I digress… 

When it comes to the gun issue, or better put, our Second Amendment rights, the Left’s got nothing! 

They don’t have the law, they don’t have the moral high ground (Does an individual have the right to protect himself?), and they don’t have common damn sense.  This all came crashing home when Sherriff Clarke reminded a national audience that in August 2009, Mayor Barrett was the victim of a violent attack and sustained serious injuries while trying to defend a woman who was being threatened by a nut with a pipe. Would the attack have happened if Mayor Barrett had utilized his security detail? Nope. 

As a son of Wisconsin living in Tucson, Arizona, that reminder of “Our Mayor is no Cream Puff” Barrett’s folly struck a chord.  It struck a chord because in the very same week, I watched Tucsonans deal with our own family Festivus "Airing of Grievances.”   

Last week, former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords gave emotional testimony before the Senate on gun control. Two years ago, Gabby Giffords and some of her constituents were shot by a crazed gunman at a meet and greet event. She, like Mayor Barrett, chose to forego her security detail on that fateful day. The result? Six dead and thirteen wounded, including Ms. Giffords who has had a miraculous recovery but still suffers from brain damage.    

Last week, Giffords spoke her words on gun violence slowly and deliberately to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Those words, which were crafted by her speech therapist with the help of her husband (who has political aspirations), were music only to the cynics’ ears. To others, they struck a bad chord. 

Cynical: showing contempt for accepted standards of honesty or morality by one's actions, especially by actions that exploit the scruples of others.

In other words, we were being played; our sensibilities were being exploited.

For many in Tucson, the made-for-television Senate testimony was a reminder of the real-life decision that Gabby Giffords the politician made, and its real-life consequences. 

Here’s what former congressman and present Mayor of Milwaukee Tom Barrett and former congresswoman Gabby Giffords have in common. They are both liberal politicians (Democrats to be exact), who failed to protect themselves and their constituents in their moments of crisis, and now are trying to make sure that you, too, are just as defenseless as they chose to be. 

I’m just keeping it real… and all in the family! Both families!

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