Monday, September 26, 2005

Waking Up to the Reality

Tennessee State Representative Stacey Campfield posts some excerpts of the famous "I Have a Dream" speech by Rev. Martin Luther King on his blog and then the fun begins.

What's going on? Well, let's let the Rep. tell it:
I woke up this morning [Thursday, Sept. 22nd]
to front-page news of how I had asked for the
bylaws of a state funded organization and was denied them. Actually,
it's an old story.

Back in the spring, I had asked the leader of the black caucus, Johnny
Shaw, for a copy of the bylaws. Johnny said he wanted to see a copy of
the Republican Caucus bylaws first. I agreed and had a copy sent to
him in less than 10 minutes.

When my assistant returned from dropping them off, she notified me that
Shaw did not want to give me a copy of the bylaws. I called Johnny
Shaw back and he said unless I had a court order or attorney general's
opinion, he was not going to give me anything.

I later asked him again for a copy and was again rebuffed. I asked why
I couldn't have a copy and asked what he didn't want me to see. Johnny
said he didn't have to give me anything and asked why I wanted the
copy. “Do you want to be a member?” he said.

I said “I don't know. Are you asking me to join?” Johnny said “No!
You can't be a member.”

I asked “why?” He answered “because you are white.”

I work hard to represent all people of all races fairly and equally in
Nashville. My district is comprised of a diverse population, with a
large percentage of minority citizens. Many of my friends and neighbors
are considered minority. So although Johnny Shaw's question of asking
if I wanted to be a member was not out of the question, and actually
might be beneficial to many of my constituents, I stepped back and
dropped the issue because of his hostility and obstruction.

Until today of course, when I open the Knoxville News Sentinel many
months later to read the account from many months ago.

The timing is quite interesting since about a week ago on this site I
posted a story about how Johnny Shaw (who is serving on the ethics
committee) was pushing a bill through the legislature that would personally
and directly benefit him financially in his radio business.

I guess Shaw didn't like the message, so he tried to shoot the
messenger. In other words, he didn't like that I pointed out
his questionable ethics regarding the radio bill.
And, of course, the white Leftists jump in to help out. Tennessee Guerilla Women has a post mostly full of insinuation and associative blame:
There's a nasty new twist to the story about the white Tennessee lawmaker who wants to join the Black Caucus.

The blogging legislator has a link to a white supremacist site on his blog.
Of course, when you look at TGW's blogroll, you find links to Daily Kos, who famously said that murdered Americans in Iraq deserved their fate and to Cindy Sheehan, who has links to anti-Semitic organisations and has made anti-Semitic remarks herself.

If you want to question Rep. Campfield's motives, there are several easy questions you can ask him that would answer the question. Figure it out; it's not hard. I'd also like to know why the Knoxville Times-Sentinel chose to take up a months-old story when they did. Campfield implies a motive to them. Another good question! Sadly, newspapers are famous for practising the very opacity they so decry in other public figures. Best of luck prying an answer from them.

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