Richard Crowson Commentary

Beth Golay

 

A Kansan In Brownbackistan

To the tune of Okie from Muskogee: 

(Or view the video of Richard's performance below.)

--

We don’t like schoolin’ here in Kansas

Education’s something we abhor

Instead we give our money to the rich folks

And then we cut our services to the poor

We don’t need good highways here in Kansas

The wealthy, they’ve got jets to fly around

Who cares if our bridges rot and crumble

And make a few school buses tumble down

--

wikipedia.org

It’s not possible for me to discuss the Paris shootings without being self-referential, so please forgive me if I sound as if I’m making this tragic global story about me.

I’m not a particularly brave person. I never served my country in uniform, and as a child, never wanted to be a fireman or a policeman. Those folks are courageous.

Crossett Library, flickr Creative Commons

2015! Good grief it sounds like a year right out of the future! There’s just something about the way “2015” sounds that makes me think of cars that fly and people that get out of them wearing silver Spandex jump suits.    

Where is that dazzling future that my Weekly Reader predicted, back in 1962? Ok, we sort of have the “television phones” that once seemed so alluring. But no flying cars. No pills that reconstitute into full steak dinners magically. No robot house servants.

Scott Beale, flickr Creative Commons

We’re careening towards Christmas!

I adore this season in part because it’s one of those times when people behave in dramatically uncharacteristic ways. Stone-faced, no-nonsense types suddenly put bright lights on their rooftops! Guys that look like “Dog, the Bounty Hunter” can be seen contemplating assorted, delicate fragrances at Yankee Candle stores! Little old ladies in tattered coats with overdue utility bills put dollars into Salvation Army kettles!!

http://www.treesforlife.org

It’s late November and sandwiched tightly between our travel plans, meal preparation, shopping delirium and inevitable family drama, hopefully, will come a few moments of gratitude. We do have, after all, an entire day designated for it.

One person I know doesn’t have any problem opening himself up to feelings of gratitude. He doesn’t view the glass as simply half full, but rather, he marvels at the wonder of the glass itself. And that may be because he knows so well that there are so many folks out there with no glass set before them at all.

    

Well, Baby, I’m sad, and I’m down
‘Cause I’m progressive but I live in a conservative town
My next door neighbor’s just the nicest guy you ever could meet
But he’s a deep shade of crimson from his head to his feet
I vote left, but never right
All my candidates get beat up every election night
But this time I thought a victory was within my grasp
But then they counted all those red votes and I lost my ass-pirations

Richard Crowson

There’s a creeping, ghoulish specter out there haunting the state of Kansas this Halloween. The green, misty tentacles of its hot, fetid breath are curling and twining around us and even entering the very ears of Kansans everywhere. It’s called dark money.

The secretive spending by special interest groups during this election season has led to Kansas being the state with the “highest percentage of TV ads paid for by secretive outside money,” according to a recent story in the Wichita Eagle.

Pity poor Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. He finds himself recently in the unenviable situation of having to argue against his own intentions. Here is a man who has spent years working feverishly to keep certain people from voting. 

DonkeyHotey, flickr Creative Commons

Let me just say that as a political cartoonist, I love having the Republican elephant and Democratic donkey symbols to work with. They are so universally understood that I notice when speaking to elementary school students that by the ages of 9 or 10, most of them know what the elephant and the donkey stand for.

Richard Crowson

Don’t you feel sorry for all those millions of unfortunate souls who live in temperate, predictable, humdrum climates, while we in Kansas get to enjoy the glorious splendor of seasonal fickleness?

Blistering windy summers morph into mild, windy falls which gradually change into ice-age-y, windy winters, which then give way to spring’s warmth and…um… windiness.

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