Cops Get Off, Protesters Get Prison | Opinion | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Cops Get Off, Protesters Get Prison 

Smart Bomb: The completely unnecessary news analysis

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Let's say you got angry. Real angry. The cops had shot and killed a young man who was running from them. Then the District Attorney ruled the shooting "justified," because the young man had a gun. Let's say you got so mad that you and 200 like-minded folks protested, and you threw red paint on the street outside the D.A.'s office and then on the building itself to symbolize the blood of the dead young man. Then, let's say the D.A., who had been under a lot of pressure for how he would rule on the shooting, kinda lost it and charged you and six other protesters with first-degree felonies, punishable by up to life in prison. Let's say the world looked upside-down: cops were getting off after a killing, and protesters were going to jail. Let's say you had to sell your house and spend any savings you had on attorney fees to get the charges reduced to a third-degree felony. Let's say you were branded as a felon and whenever you applied for a job or tried to rent housing you carried the scarlet "F" that pretty much screwed up your entire life. Let's say Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill said, "That's justice." And let's say we then asked him, "What the fuck, dude?"

Trump's Face on Mount Rushmore
Remember when Republicans deified Ronald Reagan and wanted his likeness on money, buildings, roadways and Mount Rushmore? Whatever happened to the Trickle Down Expressway and the Ketchup Is a Vegetable National Park? It's probably those damned Democrats who stood in the way on account of they were forever wounded when Cape Kennedy was returned to its original name, Cape Canaveral. Utahns were particularly enamored with Reagan and wanted to rename the Kennecott Copper Mine as the Ronald Reagan Pit. But for reasons that aren't clear, Nancy Reagan didn't like the idea. Times change and now Donald Trump wants his due, telling South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem that he wanted his face on Mount Rushmore (we did not make this up). Recently, many of the thousands of Harley riders at the Sturgis (South Dakota) Motorcycle Rally wore T-shirts with Trump's likeness on Mount Rushmore between Teddy Roosevelt and Abe Lincoln above the phrase: "In Trump We Trust." The only problem is that there isn't much space between Teddy and Abe, so Trump's face is kinda squished so he looks like Marty Feldman who played the walleyed, hunchback Igor in the movie Young Frankenstein. It is what it is.

Poor People Don't Need Healthcare
There is nothing in the U.S. Constitution that says health care is a God-given right. That's among the reasons the Utah Legislature just cut $2.5 million for public health clinics that serve 13,000 uninsured low-income people. Bleeding-heart liberals are crying foul that those folks are left out in the cold while legislators have access to the best health care available. Maybe that's so, but those poor people chose to be poor, while our lawmakers chose to be righteous. After all, our legislative leaders have to balance the budget somehow in these troubled times—and, after tax cuts, well what are you going to do? And don't start with that business about how Utah voters had to go it on their own to get Medicaid Expansion under the Affordable Care Act because Utah legislators refused to accept federal funding to underwrite healthcare for 150,000 low-income Utahns. Look, Republican lawmakers have their priorities, and it's not supporting Marxism by providing health care to the Great Unwashed. We live under capitalism—not socialism. If we give them health care, the next thing you know, they'll want affordable housing and education. Nowhere in the Constitution does it say that education is a guaranteed right. If poor people want those things, they should become rich. That's just how it works.

Postscript—Well, patriots, here we are in a limbo of boredom punctuated by periods of white-knuckled fright. When some folks hear, "Black Lives Matter," they freak out. "All lives matter," they retort, as though someone was trying to steal something from them. "All lives matter," they whine as if they, too, had suffered slavery and 400 years of systemic racism—only their predicament is somehow worse. "Blue lives matter," they bark, grabbing up their guns and rushing out to protect police from protesters who want law enforcement to stop taking the lives of African Americans. Someone said that we have to go through these convulsions every 50 years to renew the blood supply to what eventually becomes anemic democracy. Talk about optimism.

If you aren't so upbeat and feel a bit confused lately, you're not alone. Our stalwart and virtuous Congressman Chris Stewart is right there with you. "No one knows what is true anymore," Stewart lamented as he straightened his tie and puckered up to embrace one of President Trump's 20,000 false or misleading claims since taking office on Jan. 20, 2017. "Our trust in the media has been destroyed because of their active deception," Stewart declared. What a frowny face.

He apparently doesn't realize how swimmingly well things are going in Trumpworld: The economy is skyrocketing like never before. COVID-19 is disappearing faster than dinosaurs in a comet storm. And Beach Blanket Bingo is back. Unfortunately, Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello are nowhere to be found and people are dying (no pun intended) for some good news. So, here are some of the bright spots the staff here at Smart Bomb has identified: Joe Biden cannot hurt God. The NRA is doomed. Bill Barr was spotted riding a bicycle in a Speedo. (A spokesman for Barr said, not true, he never wears Speedos.) McDonald's fired its CEO and is suing him for have a sexual relationship with McRibs. And 103-year-old Dorothy Pollack from Muskegon, Mich., got her first tattoo—a green, spotted frog. Now, if that doesn't bring a smile to your face, nothing will.

Alright Wilson, get the guys to put down the kombucha and Pepto-Bismol and play us a little something to bring our spirits up. And please—no belching or croaking:

Jeremiah was a bullfrog, he was good friend of mine
I never understood a single word he said
But I helped him drink his wine
He always had some mighty fine wine, sing it

Joy to the world, all the boys and girls now
Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
And joy to you and me

And if I were the king of the world
I tell you what I would do
I'd throw away the cars and the bars in the world
And I'd make sweet love to you, sing it now

Joy to the world, all the boys and girls now
Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
Joy to you and me

"Joy to the World"—Hoyt Axton

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