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Arizona Soils Herself Again

the GOP needs to bitch slap the Tea Party

This is Dark Cloud on Wednesday, February 26, 2014.

General William Sherman, the man who noted war wasn't like hell but - in fact - was hell, once cast his compassionate eyes on Arizona, then home to really crabby people who whined about the Army a lot while ripping off the Indians to provide the need for the Army. Such was his affection for the barren state and its people and issues that he said in public that even though we had once declared war on Mexico to take Arizona - among other parcels - from them, we should declare another war against Mexico to make her take it back. He was dead serious. Sorta.

Arizona became the alternate Florida for this nation's crabby people in their dotage, but where much of Florida's decrepit elderly come from the East Coast and are moderate to liberal, much of Arizona is peopled by military types from southern California and the Midwest. In that regard, John McCain, their senior Senator, is exactly representative of the state's population.

Arizona has legislation before it that would, essentially, allow gays to be treated as second class citizens by those who view gays' very existence as violations of their religious beliefs. So, it's for religious freedom that gays could be persecuted and prosecuted, something we can all agree Jesus of Nazareth, who never mentioned sexual orientation or practice and who preached compassion, would really be thrilled to see. The Arizona Legislature has actually passed this bill allowing businesses to deny service to gays. A business, church or person need only cite the law as a defense against claims of illegal discrimination. Arizona was the last state to declare a holiday for Martin Luther King's birthday, you may recall, so this is all of a piece. They're largely bigots.

But also fans of football and money. When they realized that the NFL - readying itself for the first openly gay college player to be drafted, and in the first round no less - would not view this with enthusiasm and might just pull the 2015 Superbowl, currently scheduled to be played in Arizona, the enthusiasm seriously waned. Then, perhaps, a moment of calm and Arizona realized that gay marriage was sweeping into law everywhere, not just in this country, and gays - only a small portion of the population themselves - were supported by a huge percentage of the population who would all too willingly boycott Arizona, which would cost the state gabillions.

Further, even though they all profess to hate the federal government, the feds have a lot of land in the state and a lot of power and government projects - like border patrols - might move to New Mexico or any other location, reducing the state's finances.

Even the new Pope has shown remarkable compassion about gays but intolerance for wealthy priests and bishops and demands his church to focus on real issues in the world and how the church's huge wealth might constructively improve things. Are there Catholics in Arizona?

Republican Governor Jan Brewer flew home to veto the bill, it is widely hoped, because the business community, top to bottom, is infuriated with the legislature's pandering to the religious right. Sane Republicans are urging her to proactively veto it, including McCain and Mitt Romney. The Obama White House issued boilerplate condemnation and not much else. It doesn't have to. The change is rolling now.

The recent petty, stupid actions of our political right are just hissy fits. Obamacare is now doing well, and in response a militia group is openly trying to raise money to kidnap Obama, whom Ted Nugent recently called subhuman. Obama is the symbol of change unwanted by the vast throngs of Third Rate White Men who bemoan their loss of automatic status at birth once counted upon. They pretend he's a socialist, although it is the socialism of the US Armed Forces paying for many of Arizona's retirees who decry Obama. They call him weak and bullied by Russia and China, although Putin's man in the Ukraine was just forced from office and on the run and the pro-western faction is ascendent. China is behaving and increasingly constructive and publicly addressing pollution and some of its own failures and issues. Obama's foot just came down on Afghanistan and Israel both, which takes stones.

The US has regained some of its moral stature internationally and nationally under Obama, and all this noise is just the baseless screams from the flapping dewlaps of right wing pundits. The Left has yet to appreciate what the President has both done and allowed to happen. We might end up keeping Arizona after all.