Now that some of the dust has settled regarding the incident at the capitol March 1st, I think it’s time to kick some of that dust back up. The media coverage of the incident has been one-sided and in some key respects it has been inaccurate. That’s par for the course in an era where reporting of fake news has become commonplace. The hyperbolic and vitriolic attacks on the woman at the center of this happening, Brenda Arthur, has got me thinking that we as a society have stopped thinking. We are now running on pure emotion and adrenaline.
According to Bloomberg News earlier this week, “House leaders are planning a vote as soon as Wednesday [March 5th] on a resolution to condemn anti-Semitism, a senior Democratic aide said, after a series of controversies involving remarks made by first-term Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota.” The resolution was being worked on over the weekend by staff for Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and others.
So while the Democrats in Congress were considering on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, three Democrats in the West Virginia House of Delegates attacked a 67 year old Jewish woman, protesting against anti-Semitism during GOP Day at the Capitol. Those Delegates were Michael Angelucci (D – Marion, 50), Mike Caputo (D – Marion, 50) and Mike Pushkin (D – Kanawha, 37).
There’s a famous quote that I learned from my seventh grade social studies teacher: “Figures don’t lie, but liars figure”. That quote is often attributed to Samuel Clemens, also known as Mark Twain. However, according to other sources, the quote may have come from one of his contemporaries, Carroll D. Wright, who was once the top statistics expert in the US. Makes sense. From 1900 to 1901, he was university lecturer on wage statistics at Harvard, and in 1903 he was a member of the Douglas Commission to investigate and recommend a program of vocational education for Massachusetts. He was also the first U.S. Commissioner of Labor, serving in that capacity from 1885 to 1905. Recently, another labor figure, Dale Lee, the current president of the West Virginia Education Association, a teachers’ union, offered quotes of his own. He campaigned against SB 451 the Comprehensive Education Reform legislation recently passed by the WV Senate. It was defeated in the House. Dale Lee doesn’t feel the need for education reform having had this to say: “We have the 3rd highest graduation rate in the country; we are 17th in the nation in the number of teachers that are nationally board certified; we are the leaders in the nation in our pre-school program. But they don’t want you to know those things”. OK, Mr. Lee. Now we know.
Welcome to my new blog! It’s called the Ghost of Jefferson. I will be contributing to it on a regular basis. While there won’t be a set schedule, I will post commentary as often as I can. There will be a wide range of coverage: local, state and beyond.
We’re heading down the home stretch toward Election Day. A recent article in the Huntington Herald Dispatch announced that “West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie Tennant’s office is sending postcards to residents who may be eligible to vote but haven’t registered. The deadline to register to vote in the general election is [4:00 PM] Oct. 18.” In Jefferson County early voting begins October 26th.