Roy Exum: Yes, Controversy Divides

Thursday, January 16, 2020 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

The Wednesday headline reads, “Women’s Rally Controversy Divides (Chattanooga),” this news coming just three days before the event is to be held at Miller Park. The story led with the morsel that ‘maybe’ state Rep. Robin Smith should not have been invited because she ‘may’ be too controversial. The claim is that Robin is opposed to abortion rights and “Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans, Queer” (LGBTQ) rights.  It also said another State Rep., Signal Mountain’s Patsy Hazlewood, had been informed she could not speak but would be allowed to join other current or previously elected women from Hamilton County on stage.

In short, what should have been a glorious salute to our nation’s 19th Amendment, this on its 100th anniversary that gave women the right to vote, will instead be a farce of an occasion where only special, select groups will rule the day, each united in spreading their versions of hate, malice, and discord.

In what should be a stirring tribute to every woman and girl who has mothered this great nation of ours, the “empty drums” have sabotaged the real dreams of thousands upon thousands of the very women we adore. (The phrase ‘empty vessels make the most noise’ is an expression that means people who are noisy and talk the most about their opinions are often the most ignorant.)

I dare say our city has an uncommon abundance of great women. Candidly, Robin Smith is a close friend who I admire and the rumor is that she was invited into hostility to offset the fact Democrat Carol Berz, indeed another personal friend, would speak. What the “empty drums” fail to understand is that ignorance is in the opposite corner of knowledge, and to stifle any voice is … well, a choice. Want to stay stupid? Listen to just one voice – it’s as simple as that. The Woman’s March began as a far-left tool to beat up Donald Trump. Two years ago a Woman’s March zealot of sorts appeared on my computer screen, her blithering rant coming as she wore a brightly-colored replica of a female’s reproductive system on her head. Really? Would you ask her for directions to a toney restaurant? 

Here’s the story within this story. You may have missed an “open letter” on CNN several days ago where seven former White House press secretaries joined six former State and Defense briefers asking for a return to regular press briefings. Oh, the media still gets written handouts but there hasn’t been a stand-up question-answer session since last March. Surprised? If so, kindly follow these foreboding tweets:

* * *

Last January – yes, in 2019 – President Trump pushed the ‘send’ message on this one: “The reason Sarah Sanders does not go to the “podium” much anymore is that the press covers her so rudely & inaccurately, in particular certain members of the press. I told her not to bother, the word gets out anyway! Most will never cover us fairly & hence, the term, Fake News!”

Almost immediately, some leftist twit calling himself Joshua responded: “You still don’t get it! YOU WORK FOR ME! Not the other way around. It is YOUR DUTY to hold press briefings and be honest with the AMERICAN PEOPLE! It should be a crime to Lie to the American people as much as you do. You Spread PROPAGANDA not facts. I say "You're FIRED".

Not seconds later did a third voice appear: “Uh, he works for ME and all those who put him in ofc. His JOB is to do what he was HIRED to do. Not cow tail to the left.” (the word is actually ‘kowtow,’ a verb that means ‘act in an excessively subservient manner’ … but whatever.

* * *

My point is that voices of reason are now refuting the ‘liberal elite.’ Midstream America has jolly well had enough and, when the Women’s Rally takes place at Miller Park on Saturday, it will be a predictable flop instead of a creative, well-planned, and all-inclusive day to better both women and men in our community. Several organizers have already stomped off, so mad that they didn’t get their way. It appears everybody has hurt feelings, and a disjointed effort will cause the crowd to shrink far more than a 70 percent chance of chilly rain.

The CNN open-letter from the former press secretaries will also quietly go away. Stephanie Grisham is now the White House press secretary and she has little budge for the now-tainted media corps in Washington.

"This is groupthink at its finest. The press has unprecedented access to President Trump, yet they continue to complain because they can’t grandstand on TV,” her reply was forthright. “They’re not looking for information, they’re looking for a moment. This president is unorthodox in everything he’s done. He’s rewritten the rules of politics. His press secretary and everyone else in the administration is reflective of that. 

"In terms of the former press secretaries — they can publicly pile on all they want. It’s unfortunate, because I’ve always felt I was in this small club of only 29 others who really know what I deal with each day, and that was always comforting. They may not say it publicly, but they all understand why I do things differently. They know I have three roles. They know my boss has probably spoken directly to the press more than all of theirs did combined. They know the press secretary briefs in the absence of the president, and this president is never absent — a fact that should be celebrated. 

"Like so many trailblazers, history will look back on this presidency with praise — until then, I’m comfortable with how I do my jobs — and my team and I are always available to the press." 

* * *

Did you note the line, “ … they continue to complain because they can’t grandstand on TV?” What you don’t see is that CNN and its ilk are the ones who killed the Golden Goose. Hello.

Saturday’s Rally, in truth, is meant to grandstand, to give “empty barrels” a voice, but take pause to look at all of the women who have been successfully elected in Hamilton County. They may differ in their political stance, their shape, their color, their neighborhoods, and their religion, yet are exactly alike in two far more meaningful ways – the most important is that without exception each wants what’s best for all of us. The second trait, which bring guffaws from the liberal elites who openly wonder why they seem to face failure at every turn, is that every woman ever elected in Hamilton County is very much a lady.

Women have been empowered to vote for 100 years but being kind, having good manners, listening closely while never raising your own voice, and treating those with differing views with the respect you would enjoy in return are much older qualities that have never gone out of style. At last year’s March, several of those who were markedly deficient in manners were arrested. That’s right, they created such an obnoxious hullabaloo that hardly any message was ever heard. Those culpable can never understand why the law-abiding carnival goers avoid them and their irate message like the plague.

If it’s an Anti-Trump message, a confrontation over abortion, a plea for same-sex rights, or simply to stand in the rain and drink beer, promote it as such because when you generalize it as an all-inclusive women’s rally, the very women you seek to include won’t be found within 10 miles of Miller Park this weekend.

Surprise, surprise.

* * *

* -- “If I stop to kick every barking dog I am not going to get where I’m going.” - Jackie Joyner-Kersee

* -- “I hope the fathers and mothers of little girls will look at them and say ‘yes, women can.’” - Dilma Rousseff

* -- “What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” - Jane Goodall

* -- “I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and I believe in miracles.” – Audrey Hepburn

* -- “A strong woman stands up for herself. A stronger woman stands up for others”

* -- “I may be wearing makeup, but I can throw a fastball by you at the same time.” - Jennie Finch

* -- “I learned a long time ago that there is something worse than missing the goal, and that’s not pulling the trigger.” - Mia Hamm

* -- “Be a girl with a mind, a woman with attitude, and a lady with class.”

* -- “It’s possible to climb to the top without stomping on other people.”  – Taylor Swift

* -- “I was told I was dangerous. I asked why, and they said it was because I didn’t depend on anyone. I smiled.”

* -- “Motherhood is given the brush-off in our society. ‘Oh, I’m just a mom,’ you hear women say. ‘Just’ a mom? Please! Being a mom is everything. It’s mentorship, it’s inspirational, it’s our hope for the future.” – Sally Field

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