Ethics Hero: Minnesota Vikings Punter Chris Kluwe

Chris Kluwe is the kicker. Emmett Burns is the football.

I can’t highlight Maryland state delegate Emmett C. Burns’ effort to use his position and power to stifle free speech and political discourse without honoring NFL player Chris Kluwe, who put Burns in his place with an online open letter of remarkable clarity, passion and venom. Yes, it was not civil; it was, in fact, frequently obscene. Nonetheless, his indignation, expressed in a colorful upgrade of the language of the locker room, was well-earned. When an elected official in a supposed democracy starts trying to use his power to shut up citizens who disagree with him, maximum shaming is paramount. In this case, a little obscenity helped get the word out (and made it fun to read, too). Highlights of Kluwe’s polemic: Continue reading

Emmett Burns Emulates Rahn Emanuel, or, What Does It Tell Us That Yvette Clarke Is NOT This Month’s Most Incompetent Elected Official?

Brooklyn, NY, circa. 1898. If you look closely, you can see the slaves working in the windmills…

In case you missed it, Rep. Clarke, the Congresswoman from Brooklyn, NY, had thousands of American banging their heads against the wall (and, tragically, many more, like those who voted this dolt into office nodding their empty heads and saying, “She speaks the truth!”) when she told Comedy Central’s wag Stephen Colbert that Brooklyn still had slavery in 1898, a full 33 years after the Civil War and the passage of the 13th Amendment. When Colbert, in mock surprise, said, “It sounds like a horrible part of the United States kept slavery going until 1898! Who would be enslaving you in 1898 in New York?”, Rep. Clarke, eager to fill the gaps in Colbert’s knowledge of New York history,  informed him that it was “the Dutch”…who lost control of New York when “New Netherland” was conquered by the British in 1664, 200 years before the end of the Civil War. Continue reading