My high school of the ’70s wasn’t integrated. Sort of. I remember a few classmates wanted to get in on the protest action, looking for an opportunity to make a stand.
Having a race riot would have been pointless, akin to debating relatives when your family tree had no branches. At a time when calling someone a hippie was a slur, our conflict culminated in a “Cowboys vs. Hippies” melee.
Sorry folks. You can’t make this stuff up.
I sat on the sidelines, personally thinking both sides were pretty cool. No riots for me. Just reason.
At 65, I recently decided to get in the protest business. I wasn’t arrested. My geriatric arm is shot, so I threw no rocks or bottles.
Forsyth’s finest were present at the site where I took my stand. They were outside their vehicles, having a chat, probably discussing the Georgia-Alabama game.
No way I was going to let them off the hook. I wanted to tell them exactly what I thought of their kind. I was armed with my weapon of choice: a sincere smile.
After voting, I marched right up to them and said: “Thank you. We appreciate you keeping us safe.” They smiled and said “Thank you” back. It’s a safe bet they don’t hear that enough.
Oh yeah, back to the protest.
I voted early, as early as possible. Headed for the Coal Mountain Center on Columbus Day and discovered (groan) a fairly short line, encountering what must be the friendliest poll workers in existence.
My mom was a poll worker. I don’t think I would have gotten a “Micheal John, how could you?” for taking a stand.
Am I alone in thinking we are being told to do things that are chipping away at our personal freedoms?
The other day, a TSA worker told me to spread out as I placed my bag in the bin. I shook my head in pity. Give small-minded some folks a portion of authority and they’ll find a way to make up nonsensical requests.
Before voting, you would have a candidate to vote via a braille ballot not to notice all the “No Campaigning Within 150 feet” signs. Fifty yards out, if the quantity of signs were worth a dollar, we’d have plenty of cash to buy wings for Saturday football-watching.
As I navigated the Disney like queue, I was ready to brew up a brouhaha.
No, I didn’t protest about the mask mandate, although Greg reasoned Nick Saban proved masks don’t work by contracting COVID-19, despite wearing a mask wherever he went.
And no, I wasn’t wearing a Bama mask, a Bulldog mask, or even a Notre Dame mask.
I was wearing a mask with the likeness of a presidential candidate.
The nice lady checking IDs said: “I’m going to have to ask you to flip your mask around. There’s no campaigning allowed.”
I was ready. “I’m not campaigning. I’m protecting my health.”
In fact, I was asked to flip my mask around three times. I refused.
Nonsensical requests are not worthy of compliance.
I thought masks are worn to abate the spread of my germs, thereby protecting me from the germs of fellow voters? Flipping my mask would have unleashed my cooties on those around me.
This seems to be a period where the squeaky wheels are hogging more than their fair share of the grease.
I didn’t vote against anyone. I voted for who, in my eyes, is best for the country. It’s been said you’re in the danger zone if you openly support one candidate over the other.
Suffice to say, I cast my vote because I supported my guy over the other. There are predictions of escalated riots and violence after the elections. Gun and ammunition sales are through the roof.
I cannot imagine that happening here in our little patch. Here’s hoping reason will trump reaction.
OK, so who did I vote for? I could tell, but I’d rather flip my mask.
Mike Tasos’ column is published every other weekend. Comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. He is also on Facebook.