Hello, and welcome to another edition of Ask Boomer With Attitude, brought to you live from Charlotte, N.C., where an epidemic of McCrory Fatigue has broken out. We have two real questions from readers this week, and one made-up one. See if you can spot the fake.
Dear BWA: Are you surprised by preacher/politician Coy Privette's involvement with a prostitute? -- Not So Coy
Dear Not So Coy: Yes, I'm surprised, but mainly because Privette -- who has presented himself for decades as a defender of old-time Christian morality -- is 74 years old. I guess that Viagra stuff really works. But I'm not the least bit surprised that yet another Republican who wrapped himself in "moral virtues" was caught with his fundamentalist wiener in Satan's Triangle. That kind of hypocrisy has become a GOP staple, as one "traditionalist" after another has turned out to be superfreaky. Privette, who pleaded guilty last week to six counts of aiding and abetting prostitution, was just the latest in a current bumper crop of Republican sexocrites (©!).
Recently, N.C. Rep. David Almond of neighboring Stanly County, abruptly resigned his seat after he was accused of exposing himself to a female employee and chasing her around the room. Almond added a classic GOP touch to his escapade by also serving as vice chairman of the House committee on children, youth and families. Almond's antics follow on the heels of Joe Boylan, a Moore County Republican, who is accused of getting drunk and groping Mecklenburg County state representative Tricia Cotham at a Raleigh steakhouse.
It's not just North Carolina Republicans who've been busy, either. The day before Privette's plea, Glenn Murphy Jr. of Indiana resigned his post as president of the national Young Republican Federation after he was charged with attempting to give oral sex to a sleeping man -- who apparently didn't want it. And don't forget Florida state representative Bob Allen, the chairman of that state's McCain campaign, who was recently arrested for soliciting sex from a male police officer.
And of course there's U.S. Senator David Vitter, recently found on the D.C. Madam's list of clients despite the fact that he "strongly believes marriage is a sacred vow." Vitter originally joined Congress when he replaced Rep. Bob Livingston, who resigned when he was found to be dipping into a neighbor's honeypot. Livingston, in turn, had been slated to follow Newt "Serial Adulterer" Gingrich as House Speaker. If you have the right attitude, the whole GOP/sexocrite © business is pretty hilarious, albeit disgusting. But surprising? Not anymore.
Dear BWA: I read your column about how the French do everything better than we do ("Want A Faster Internet Connection? Move to France," Aug. 1). If you think France is so great, please do this community a favor and move there as soon as possible. -- Leave Now Dork
Dear Leave: Well, I guess you told me -- you and a slew of other anti-French sophisticates who filled up my e-mail box with similar gripes. I'll try to make this simple: Just because you admire the way another nation does some things, it doesn't mean you don't love your own country. Can you understand that? I happen to believe in progressive government action that benefits ordinary citizens, no matter in which country they occur. What's a shame is that in the Bush era, we have to look to other countries for good examples -- and not just in France. For instance, it received little notice here, but Sao Paulo, Brazil -- the fourth largest city in the world -- has banned outdoor advertising, saying it was "visual pollution." I'd love to see that here. Ditto a plan that is working well in a few international cities: fare-free transit. I'll write more about that issue in a future column, but for now, Mr. Leave Now Dork, I think you and your "why don't you move to France" friends may have hit on something. I'll make a deal with you. If you and your conservative pals will pay to move my family and I to France -- or England or Belgium, for that matter -- we'll take you up on it. Don't think I'm not serious, either. How about it, pissed off right-wingers? Here's a chance to do something for your cause.
Dear BWA: What would you pick as the most ridiculous recent news story? -- Dying To Know
Dear Dying: The winner has to be the one about the 7-year-old British Muslim boy who was stopped three times at U.S. airports on suspicion of being a terrorist. Javaid Iqbal and his parents, who live in England, came to the United States to visit Disney World. Javaid has the same name as a Pakistani man deported from the United States -- a grown man, not a 7-year-old -- so, naturally, officials delayed his family's flights for hours on end while someone figured out that Javaid wasn't really a potential terrorist. The family even missed their flight home from America after U.S. officials further screwed up and cancelled their tickets during the "delay." You'd think something as important as a national airport security system would be able to cross reference names and birth dates. But again, the folks who set up the system are the same geniuses who let New Orleans languish after Katrina.