“Why did you write a nasty political column during the holy season?” an offended reader asked. My answer was that even the first holy season was very political. A controversial census was underway. Jesus, Mary and Joseph were homeless – no room at the inn.
The actual column in question was about former FBI Director William H. Webster and his critical comments aimed at President Trump. One fellow hollered at me for being infected with TDS (Trump Derangement Syndrome).
A woman was close to tears telling me how Trump, indeed, needs to be called out for his immoral, reckless behavior. She thanked me for the Webster column. An e-mailer thanked me and sent a photo of a plaque honoring Webster in Ivory Crockett Park in Webster Groves.
My favorite phone conversation was with a conservative critic who said Trump is not his cup of tea, but that I am a big liberal hypocrite. After all, liberals have never been all that cozy with the FBI. Now an FBI guy is blasting Trump, so I’m a new fan of FBI G-Men.
He’s right. I was not an FBI fan back in my college days. After 30 of us students filled up two U-Haul Vans to go to Washington to protest Vietnam, the FBI came to snoop around on our campus. They asked our professors whether we were homosexuals or pot smokers.
Hey, times have changed. That was the Nixon era. Now recreational pot is legal across the river in Illinois and a gay guy is a top contender for president. And today’s G-Men are not your father’s or Tricky Dick’s G-Men. I’ve interviewed a few FBI agents — and they’re OK.
I don’t mind being called a hypocrite, though. Politics makes everybody hypocrites. I was silent when conservatives blasted Obama for budget deficits. Now conservatives grow silent when I point out Trump’s trillion dollar deficits.
Here’s another issue that makes for a few hypocrites. When Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevic had a “perfect phone conversation” for a quid pro quo offering up a senate seat (left by Obama) for favors, I thought it was a bit harsh to lock him up for 14 years in the federal pen.
Now, when Trump gets caught for a “perfect phone conversation” on a quid pro quo deal for arms to Ukraine, the other side thinks impeachment and a trial is a bit harsh. At least Blago wasn’t arm twisting an ally against Russia for his own personal political gain.
My conservative phone caller didn’t exactly agree with me on the idea that there’s plenty of tit-for-tat to go around. He did seem to like it when I thanked him for reading the paper. He also liked that I thanked him for caring about our country – not like those millennials who ignore the paper, hug their smart phones, and smugly tout apolitical attitudes.
So, there’s something that all of us crabby liberal and conservative geezers can agree on. Yes, we are really going to be in trouble when these uninformed millennials start running everything!