The old adage goes that all politics is local and this was certainly true yesterday. Anne worked her marathon election official gig again and I supported one of our friends, who was running for office. Sandi won her seat on the Maplewood city council. In a three-way race, she easily beat her two opponents with 58% of the vote. I only helped her a little, but I got a free t-shirt out of the experience. Her ward has two polling places and I poll watched at the satellite site, the VFW hall on Big Bend and tagged team with her husband Chris.
I only spent two hours at the poll, compared to Anne’s double shift, but it was still quite interesting. While Chris ran home to attend to the dogs, I was still accompanied by Lois, who was soliciting signatures for an upcoming medical marijuana ballot initiative. In her company, I was just a greenhorn and she the seasoned pro. Pat Dolan, our county councilman also swung by. His election isn’t until August, but he wanted to plant a yard sign for the exposure. It was a nice experience and I look forward to repeating it again this year.
Today, is the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I remember that day and the days that followed. I was in high school at the time. Living in suburban Maryland outside our nation’s capital. King’s death sparked riots in Washington and elsewhere. Buildings within blocks of the Whitehouse were destroyed by arson, causing the sale of gasoline into cans to be banned. I was mowing lawns at the time and this would have inconvenienced me, except that I had learned to siphon gas out of the tank, making this law seem just silly.
Later, my high school in an effort to teach us all about discrimination ran an exercise, where for a week blondes were “discriminated” against. They were restricted to special lunch tables in the cafeteria and also subjected to other indignities, which I don’t remember anymore. I do remember that one of my blonde friends temporarily dyed his hair, so he could pass. This exercise made the national news causing additional notoriety. In hindsight, I am left wondering, what were we thinking? I guess we just didn’t know what to do.