Monday, June 15, 2015


Not all that long ago, lovable TV imp Bart Simpson was being blamed for knocking down stuff with a bulldozer that he had appropriated for inappropriate use.  Since mothers know everything, his mom, Marge, accused him of the whole caper, and Bart, playing the innocence card, said, "I don't know anything about that bulldozer! I can't explain things I don't know anything about! I'm not cable news!"

I bring that up to say that I am about to talk about things that are none of my business.  Not that that ever stopped me before, but this is about other people changing, and, well, I just feel they have the right to, AS LONG AS they apprehend the simple truth that they will have to deal with the changes they make.

It's like the right of free speech that we all enjoy so much, and how people need to remember that they can still be held responsible for the things they say freely.  Go ahead and say false things, but plan to pay for it in court.  Tell the insurance company that someone stole your diamond ring, but when they find out you never owned one, they will get every nickel back with interest.

Changes. Like Caitlyn Jenner.  I haven't a nickel in the debate as to whether Olympic champ Bruce was doing the right thing to pole vault from one gender to another.  If that was the right thing for her, go be happy.  And the furor over whether she deserves an athletic award for bravery needs to be argued with the people giving the award, not with her.  I'm sure she didn't go through all this just for a plaque at a banquet.

Like Joyce Mitchell.  She's been employed at the Walled-Off Astoria in upstate New York, part of the team of people charged with keeping inmates on the inside of the walls. Now she's charged with aiding the escape of two murderous misfits of society. So, one day, she's working at the prison and married to a man who also worked there.  Then the next day, she's getting tools and supplies to convicts Sweat and Matt, because she changed her mind about what side she was on.  Then she changed her mind again and failed to show up with the getaway vehicle as promised. Now she is changing her garish yellow top for a nice orange jumpsuit. Whatever changed her and made her want to dump her husband to run off with two murderers is between her and him; the part where she breaks the law to arrange to do so is our business.

But the person of change whose story is really none of my beeswax is Rachel Dolezal, the most talked-about person in America this past weekend. She is, of course, the woman who seemingly changed her appearance and has been passing as African-American in order to work for the cause of civil rights and justice.  Noble ambitions, for sure, and even the NAACP says that her innate ethnicity is no barrier to work or membership there. It's up to her and the local and national offices of that organization to determine whether her ends were all right all despite her means.  That's their business. 

Caitlyn will thrive in the show business life, and Rachel may well have her dignity and privacy restored.  They made choices to change, but broke no laws.  Joyce is going to find out that orange is the new orange for quite a few more years.

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