David Hogg and his Cohorts Blackmail Publix

 

He’s back. Just when we thought that David Hogg may have finally disappeared from the scene, he’s decided to force Publix, Florida’s largest supermarket, to cave in to his demands. Fortunately, Publix CEO Todd Jones has pushed back.

The harassment started when Hogg decided to dictate that Publix couldn’t contribute to the candidacy of Adam Putnam, a Republican running for Florida governor. Putnam (no surprise) is also an NRA supporter. In an effort to shame Publix, Hogg threatened to hold “die-ins” at Publix stores all over the state:

Hogg kept his promise, went out to the store location nearest the school, where he and other students laid down in the parking lot so they could draw outlines of their bodies.

Hamburg Is Ugly

 

I just returned from a trip to Hamburg and Berlin, and I was shocked at the amount of graffiti on the walls. I was so shocked that I couldn’t help commenting on it, multiple times, to my dear wife Marie, who finally became a bit testy. (“Kent, can we please move on past the subject of the graffiti.”) Here’s what it looks like:

In Big Ruling, SCOTUS Endorses Freedom Over Compulsion

 

The Supreme Court upheld the First Amendment Monday, ruling in favor of Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakes in Lakewood, CO. In a narrowly crafted 7-2 opinion, the court ruled that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission demonstrated hostility to Phillips’s religious beliefs.

Although Justice Anthony Kennedy’s majority opinion was full of the woke posturing we’ve come to expect, had this case gone the other way, religious liberty would have suffered greatly. This ruling was a necessary brushback pitch to overreaching bureaucrats trying to stamp out diversity of thought and belief.

It would be ludicrous for government to force Jewish artists to create paintings celebrating Easter or force atheist artists to promote Hindu beliefs. Either would be as offensive as forcing Muslim bakers to cater a pork barbecue.

A Little Local Color (Part 1): They Can’t Do That–Can They?

 

Our neighbor, I’ll call him “Tom,” showed up last week to borrow a couple tools from my husband. The trim, grey-bearded horse owner fits in well on our dirt road where all us locals are different in our own way. His expression is bemused, his humor cynical. The house number stenciled on the rock near his driveway intrigues me with the message: “Friend of Larry’s.” Like the arena owner up the road, he loves his horses but doesn’t put up with nonsense from them.

He was telling us about it as he sat in our living room chatting — first about working years at the plant, being at the union, being gypped. Then the horse story, teaching one to mind the electric fence so he wouldn’t escape again. Also, how his aged horse died and how the equine buddy left behind is pining for his old friend.

More Adventures in Double Standards

 

As you may know, I am spending this summer living and working in Olympic National Park in Washington State. Since I live in employee housing, I am routinely exposed to a wide array of individuals: country boys and girls from North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama; pale, soft-spoken men from Moscow; a fierce promoter of capitalism from Colombia; and a bevy of lefty college students, to name a few. For the most part, we live in harmony. Even my defense of the Second Amendment around the campfire, though met with pushback, was not subject to the sort of vitriol I might have experienced at the University of Michigan. But occasionally, cracks appear, and I’m once again reminded of where I am and with whom.

I recently wrote about an interaction I had with a coworker regarding an ostensibly uncontroversial assertion I’d made, namely that men, by and large, are physically stronger than women. Unfortunately, he is the subject of today’s story, as well. This time, my friend — and he really is my friend — will be an example of the incredible hypocrisy and lack of perspective demonstrated by your garden-variety, 20-something leftist.

How Can a HS Graduation Ceremony Possibly Be Depressing?

 

I went to three high school graduations last Friday. My daughter graduated from a high school in South Carolina, and her class was approximately 40% white, 40% Hispanic, and 20% black. The whole point of wearing identical robes and mortarboards is to de-emphasize personal identity and to emphasize their common identities and achievements. But I just couldn’t believe the divisions in what one would expect to be a joyous ceremony which should unite the entire community. I felt queasy watching the spectacle.

First, everything which was said on stage was repeated in Spanish, from a second podium (well, everything except the National Anthem). So a speaker would tell a joke, and everyone would laugh. Then the Spanish interpreter would talk through the audience’s laughter, and some people would laugh again.

Why Don’t the Little Girls of England Count?

 

Full disclosure: Were I writing this in Merrie Olde England, I would immediately be branded as “far-right” or “alt-right” or “a hooligan” or, maybe even worse, “a pest at a trial” who should be imprisoned. Thank God Almighty, I am writing this as an American, with all the rights and freedoms my Founders granted me!

I had a most interesting thought experiment recently, prompted by my reading of the truly astonishing treatment of Tommy Robinson by the British Courts and the gag order issued by the Judge, who must have set some kind of modern record in having him arrested, tried, convicted, sentenced and sent to prison–all in less than four hours.

Member Post

 

Yes, Mister President, that tragic observation is profound. The cerebral brilliance of your insight has once again inspired hope in my heart. Your benevolent wisdom continues to shine through despite Americans’ under-appreciation of all that you have done for humanity. And, amazingly, your demeanor remains as placid as ever, even in the face of today’s […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

Anyone else out there been watching Z Nation? I find this show pretty compelling, but also pretty disturbing. While the decency, steadfastness, self-sacrifice, and love of people like Doc and 10k and Addy are like a light shining in a dark place, I find Murphy’s behavior in season 3 no less morally than physically disgusting. I […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Partisan Political Origin of the Mueller Probe

 

It has been stated (notably, on the latest Commentary podcast) “There’s nothing illegitimate about the Special Counsel’s probe.” Is that really so? Consider the following:

1. It was begun as a counter-intelligence investigation (carrying on the previously existing counter-intelligence investigation of arguably partisan origins). The Special Counsel statute does not permit authorization of a counter-intelligence investigation. It must be a criminal investigation with the exact criminal events to be investigated explicitly spelled out (and there are limits as to what can be investigated based on evidence uncovered that is not pertinent to those crimes). The original authorization declared no such possible crimes.

Member Post

 

A few weeks back, in my discussion on marriage. I talked about my parents’ marriage 66+ year marriage. I stated it was like watching two tops just beginning to wind down.  Yesterday one of the tops wobbled and fell. My father, 93 died yesterday, June 2, 2018. On Wednesday he had hip replacement surgery. Friday […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Clinging to Utopia

 

The hysteria of the political Left seems to be growing and intensifying. Does anyone else believe this is happening? In my lifetime (although I’ve only followed politics for the last 20 years), I’ve seen the ranting of the Left rise and fall, but these times feel different. I’ve been thinking about the possible explanation for this phenomenon, and I’d like to hear your perspective. I’m going to begin by contrasting the conflicting views of the Left and the Right.

From my own observations, certain characteristics seem to be true for most of the people on the Left. A big part of their suffering comes from their holding to conflicting ideas and not recognizing their inconsistencies. For example, they are idealists and believe that all of society should strive for a Utopian existence, which has led them to embrace Marxist ideas (whether they admit it or not). We should all be treated as equals (unless we disagree with them), celebrate all cultures (except our own), and share society’s wealth with each other. Unfortunately, the Left also believes in not only the perfectibility of the world, but the perfectibility of men; they refuse to recognize that we are not only guided by reason, but we are emotional and unpredictable creatures. When we fickle human beings don’t cooperate with and participate in their endeavors, they become insulted and incensed.

Even though people are capricious, the Left believes they can straighten us out.

Appreciation from a “Non-Foodie”

 

Ella Brennan passed away last Thursday, May 31st, in her elegant New Orleans home, which is situated next to the restaurant she placed on the city’s (and the nation’s) culinary map. She was 92. In culinary circles, the Brennan name is as close to American royalty as you will find and yet, oddly enough, “Miss Brennan,” as she preferred to be called, couldn’t cook and didn’t especially want to either. But her mother could. While her father, Owen, worked as a New Orleans shipyard superintendent, Nellie Brennan’s imaginative home-cooked meals captured young Ella’s attention. “My mother had magic in her hands,” she would write years later.

As a teenager, Ella went to work with her older brother, Owen, at the Old Absinthe House, a Bourbon Street bar purported to have been the hangout of pirate Jean Laffite over 200 years ago. “Some girls went to finishing school,” Ella said. “I went to Laffite’s.” Then, in 1946, Owen bought the Vieux Carre’, a restaurant Ella Brennan later described as, “terrible.” Hired to manage the restaurant, Ms. Brennan later recalled that, “I didn’t know anything. But Owen was a raconteur. He slept till noon. He got me to do all of the things he didn’t like. So I learned.” This rather steep learning curve included diving into books recommended by Vieux Carre’s chefs, and frequent trips to New York City where Ms. Brennan frequented the “21 Club,” and was helped along by Helen McCully (food editor for McCall’s magazine) among other culinary innovators. “You had to go to New York in those days,” Ms. Brennan conceded, adding that, “I was trying to get New Orleans to that level.”

Back in New Orleans, the Brennan family was busy cultivating a collection of influential patrons and visitors to their restaurant. And their work was paying dividends. Preparations were under way to move the restaurant to a larger location on Royal Street when Owen died from a heart attack, leaving Ella Brennan to carry on his vision. The restaurant would be called Brennan’s and would exemplify the concept of, “dining as entertainment,” to use Ms. Brennan’s phrase. Along the way, Ms. Brennan pushed the boundaries of New Orleans cuisine and helped to create new additions such as Bananas Foster (for which I hereby submit Ella Brennan for sainthood) to the repertoire of New Orleans culinary favorites.