Thankful for the offensive

Letter to the editor

Posted: Wednesday, July 21, 2004

I can only speculate what will be next in the hyperambitious drive to make Juneau a more politically correct and homogeneous place to live. Something stinks in Juneau and it isn't the dog poop on the wetlands trail. Juneau has reached an entirely new level of ridiculous.

It is one thing to debate about the distaste of an "un-American" masked man, but it is another entirely that an official committee plans to quash him - or anyone else who might dare offend us. To members of the parade committee, I say shame on you. You have gone way too far.

The committee spews platitudes about respect for the First Amendment and then arbitrarily decides it will become the sole judge of what is "appropriate" for a public parade. Huh? Did I miss something somewhere? Even more ludicrous, the committee plans to regulate the behavior of those around or near the parade. After all, that "insurgent, distasteful un-American bastard" was not even in the parade.

Since there will no longer be any "inappropriate" floats, people, or topics anywhere near the parade, I would like to provide my input into what is inappropriate. First, the politicians and their flyers will have to go - definitely inappropriate to bombard people with political propaganda when they're trying to relax and be patriotic. Next, the commercial advertisers will definitely have to go. Frankly, I'm not crazy about the religious groups who participate either, especially the ones that aren't my religion. Incidentally, that parent group for gays and lesbians - I'm pretty sure that's "inappropriate." We all know how people feel about gays and lesbians around here unless of course we're gay or lesbian. And, of course, the Canadian Mounted police aren't even American. Who, in heaven's name, invited them?

To those who would prohibit views they don't agree with, I say quit being so sensitive. Turn away from the offender and ignore him or, better yet, debate him. Wave your flag, feel righteous in your distaste, and teach your kids when it's appropriate to protest. Most of all, be damn thankful for offensive views because at least you'll know that no one has suspended the Constitution when we you were too busy to notice.

Melanie Mickelson


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