“I tell ya, I’m ’bout as crazy as a dog in a hubcap factory” – Thomas Jefferson Johnson [Eddie Murphy], The Distinguished Gentleman
For those who haven’t seen The Distinguished Gentleman (circa 1992) I’d hardly suggest going back and watching it now. The storyline was fairly clever. Congressman Jeff Johnson dies unceremoniously philandering with an aide. At this, Thomas Jefferson Johnson (Eddie Murphy) see’s an opportunity and campaigns for the open seat referring to himself as Jeff Johnson. Plenty of folks don’t realize the actual Jeff Johnson is dead and Murphy’s character wins the seat – and causes a great deal of shock when he reveals to the district that he’s actually a black man (not the conservative older white man they expected). Hijinks ensue …
In a story that perhaps exceeds The Distinguished Gentleman, one Dave Wilson recently won a seat on the Houston Community College board of Trustees by pretending to be black, defeating incumbent Bruce Austin who is black. Wilson is a hard-over right-wing GOPer with Moral Majority type ideals (staunchly “anti-gay” as the article puts it). Yet he won a race in Houston by never being seen. The things he pulled were impressive to say the least:
- Wilson’s fliers and websites feature smiling minority faces, which he lifted from various websites
- Wilson’s commercials talk about keeping “our” money for “our” children (classic), and are narrated by black females
- Dave Wilson claimed to be endorsed by Ron Wilson, a longtime state representative (and black), but the endorsement was actually from Dave’s cousin Ron in Iowa (a point he made clear in the fine print)
- Ads feature smiling black faces saying “vote for our friend, Dave Wilson”
You honestly can’t make this stuff up. At the “reveal” some folks were pretty angry, namely Bruce Austin. Of course, from way over here in Maryland I just have to look at this an laugh.
So, some politician lies through his teeth, claims to be somebody he’s not, and convinces people to vote for him who would never have done so had they known the truth … yeah, that sounds about right. That’s my America.
Hats-off to you Dave Wilson. I doubt we’d agree on any policy issues, but at least you are a dedicated snake bent on deceiving the people, not like the rest of the felonious liars who try to keep up the facade that they really are some sort of honest statesmen.
From the Philippines …
Changing gears (rather dramatically) we turn for a moment to the storm-ravaged Philippines. My oldest son was whining at me yesterday morning because I wouldn’t let him eat candy for breakfast. At this I pulled him over to my laptop and showed him pictures of the storm damage: destroyed houses, overturned cars, washed away towns, and people wandering the streets looking for water and food. To his credit, he got it, and understood that not having candy for breakfast wasn’t a big deal when you still have a house, food, clothing, and many other things.
I was able to make contact Sunday and again Monday with Dave Anasco, a missionary friend in the Philippines. He tells met that their town of Iloilo was largely spared from the massive damage seen on the eastern side of the archipelago. David and Christine and other GoToNations missionaries are on the ground working to provide disaster relief, and despite Ben Bernanke’s best efforts, American dollars still go a long way at providing help for “the least of these” (Matt 25:40).
I’m sure David and Christine and the other missionaries could find a good use for $1000 from everybody who reads this, but even $20 matters, and makes a difference to somebody: somebody thousands of miles away that you and I will never meet this side of eternity, but somebody made in God’s image just the same. Something to eat, a blanket to keep warm, a roof overhead, even if just for the night … when you’ve lost everything, the smallest of gifts makes a big difference.