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I sure hope Donald Trump plans to donate his body to science. When his time comes, I mean.

I know it’s a long shot, the most science-averse U.S. President of all time bequeathing his remains to, say, the medical school at Harvard or Emory or the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, his alma mater. But I’m serious. He’s a rare human specimen, and he owes it to the nation — to the world — to make himself available for posthumous study.

First of all, there’s his body, the ample corpus that makes him look like a killer whale on formal-dress occasions and a colorful hot-air balloon when he takes to the links. …


America the beautiful balancing act. Photo: Noel Holston

The Washington Post’s Sunday magazine yesterday featured a powerful article about our bitterly divided country’s prospects for healing after Tuesday’s election. The author, Gene Weingarten, though he’s a humor columnist by trade, struggled to keep his optimism up.

I understand how he feels. So do millions of us.

A dear old friend, a naturalized American citizen who fled South Africa because of apartheid, told me the other day that despite accusations from the Right, she doesn’t hate Trump supporters, she simply can’t fathom their allegiance to such a creepy guy. …


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Nothing Donald Trump said during Thursday’s final Presidential debate told us more about who he is and how he views life than his response to a question that moderator Kristen Welker posed to both candidates in the closing minutes.

“President Trump,” she said, “people of color are much more likely to live near oil refineries and chemical plants. In Texas, there are families who worry the plants near them are making them sick. Your administration has rolled back regulations on these kinds of facilities. Why should these families give you another four years in office?”

Trump didn’t hesitate. “The families that we’re talking about are employed heavily and they are making a lot of money, more money than they’ve ever made,” he said. …


More, perhaps, than cheeseburgers, adulation sustains Donald Trump. It’s his happy meal, his comfort food, his B12. Last Saturday, at a tarmac rally in Muskegon, Michigan, he got a huge serving from a good-sized crowd of MAGA-capped supporters.

The big headline out of the Muskegon campaign stop was that Trump encouraged the crowd when a “Lock her up!” chant began in response to a swipe he took at Michigan’s governor, Gretchen Whitmer. She was understandably livid given that the FBI only days earlier had broken up a white supremacist plot to kidnap her and put her on trial for her “crimes,” mainly her efforts to stop people from doing stupid, stubborn, selfish things that are likely to prolong the Covid-19 pandemic and run up the American death toll. …


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President Trump with SCOTUS nominee Amy Coney Barrett, who likely will be portrayed by Laura Linney in an inevitable HBO movie.

To hear some of my fellow Democrats tell it, Amy Coney Barrett, her confirmation to the United States Supreme Court pretty much a mathematical certainty, will quickly lead the new conservative super majority to slam shut every door for women ever opened by the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

The hysteria and hand wringing are escalating so fast, I halfway expect to hear a prediction that Barrett will rescind women’s right to vote, own property and read books other than the Bible, then promptly retire from SCOTUS to a barefoot and perpetually pregnant life with her husband, Jesse, and seven kids. …


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“My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.” Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1933–2020)

In yet another assault on truth and logic, President Trump has insinuated that the reported “dying wish” of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — that her replacement on the court should be nominated by the Presidential candidate elected November 3 — is just one more hoax cooked up by Democrats to harass him.

“Sounds like a (Chuck) Schumer deal or maybe a (Nancy) Pelosi or Shifty (Adam) Schiff,” Trump harrumphed.

His “suspicion” was echoed and magnified by his personal cheerleader on Fox News, Tucker Carlson, who impugned Ginsburg’s integrity while pretending to extol it. …


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Homemade 2020 political sign, Watkinsville, Georgia. (Photo: Martha Winkler)

“Like they say, it takes all types to make the world. But sometimes you wish it didn’t.” — Gloria Naylor, Bailey’s Café

Ain’t that the truth, now more than ever?

Our country hasn’t been so divided since the run-up in the 1850s to the Civil War, but this time, though there are similar moral and social issues at the heart of the conflict, the geographic aspect is not so defined than you can draw a Mason-Dixon line between North and South.

Animosity is festering among citizens who live side by side, albeit dispersed in different proportions from state to state. If shooting were to break out — as some worry it will and a few appear to hope — it would be like a massive barroom free-for-all, an ugly, bloody mess that would wreck our economy and make us easy pickings for a hostile foreign power. …


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In the south Mississippi town where I was born and raised, folks are in an uproar over the possibility that the Confederate monument on the courthouse lawn may be removed or demolished.

Well, some white folks anyway. I did not see any brown or black faces among the Facebook profile photos of the more than 800 people who shared or weighed in on a post, a rumor that the city council was meeting to decide the monument’s fate.

Here are a few of the comments, verbatim:

“Taking a statue down is not going to change anything,” wrote one resident. “It is history you cannot erase history you learn from history but you cannot erase it.” …


Donald Trump and I now have something in common: We both ran afoul of Facebook content guidelines Thursday.

In the President’s case, it was because of ads designed and placed by his reelection campaign. The paid posts asked Facebook users to sign a petition condemning “far left groups,” particularly antifa, the do-it-yourself anti-fascist movement that the Trump administration has sought to blame for the violent and destructive aspects of the wave of Black Lives Matter protests.

The red flag for Facebook’s gatekeepers was a red triangle that appeared in ads. As anybody who has read any World War II history — or seen Schindler’s List or Holocaust or even Inglourious Basterds — would likely know, an inverted red triangle was a symbol that the Nazis forced accused Communists, Social Democrats, Freemasons and other opposition party members to wear on their clothing. …


Deaf in the Time of Coronavirus

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This is a post about deafness, not theft, but bear with me.

Some lowlife stole the outgoing mail from my mailbox a few days ago — water bill, phone bill, couple of greeting cards, and a survey from the Audubon Society. Around noon I had noticed that the front flap was hanging down and the little red flag was still up. I went out to the street to check and found the mailbox was empty, which is odd. We almost always get mail, if only an appeal for a donation from the PBS or St. …

About

Noel Holston

Mississippi native, award-winning veteran of The Orlando Sentinel, the Minneapolis Star Tribune and Newsday, stand-up storyteller, lives in Athens, Ga.

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