MISS: Kate Smith sang hundreds of songs in a career that stretched from the 1920s to the 1980s. Lillian Gish appeared in scores of films starting in the 1910s and continuing until the mid-1980s. But both have recently run afoul of the purity police on the hard left, and honors that had previously been accorded them have been stripped away. Smith’s recording of “God Bless America” has been pulled for New York Yankees and Philadelphia Flyers games, and a statue of Smith has been removed from outside the stadium where the Flyers play. The reason? She sang two songs in 1931 that offend current sensibilities. As for Gish, her name has been taken off a movie theater at Bowling Green State University in Ohio because she appeared in the 1915 epic “The Birth of Nation.” Segments of the movie are notorious for their depiction of African Americans and glorification of the Ku Klux Klan. But Gish did not write or direct the movie, nor even appear in the segments we now view as offensive. But guilt by association appears to be enough in this case. If we quit looking at the totality of people’s achievements and expect them to attain a level of unassailable perfection, who will we have left to honor?
MISS: Pennsylvania has a problem with its public employee pensions, and legislators approved a plan that would take away traditional pensions from newly hired state employees, instead putting them in 401(k) plans. But what’s good for the goose in this case is apparently not good for the gander. According to PennLive, just 20 of 218 lawmakers who are in the state pension system have signed on for 401(k) plans. The rest are settling for the traditional pension. That includes 43 freshmen legislators. If a 401(k) plan is good enough for state employees, it should be good enough for their employers.
MISS: Back in 2017, a police dog in Butler took a bite – well, a few bites – out of crime, and the fellow on the receiving end of the chewing has now gone to federal court with a lawsuit against the city of Butler, two officers and a deputy chief. Joshua Rivera of Franklin, according to a report in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, was a passenger in a vehicle that was pulled over by Butler police in May 2017. He had an outstanding warrant for his arrest and decided his best course of action was to flee. Alas, for him, the police dog ran him down and bit him a few times. Then Rivera was hit with a Taser. His lawsuit claims excessive force was employed, and that he was not a threat to anyone. Sorry, but we’re having a hard time feeling sorry for a guy who ran from police and disregarded their orders to surrender.
MISS: Are members of the Pennsylvania Legislature taking bribes? Protesters who showed up the other day in the state House chamber believe they are. According to an Associated Press report, the demonstrators chanted, “stop taking bribes,” and tossed dollar bills from a balcony in a protest against current state law that fails to limit the value of gifts lawmakers can take from lobbyists and others. Before they were escorted from the premises, the protesters also displayed a banner reading, “Some are guilty, all are responsible.” We’ll not comment on anyone’s guilt, but we won’t hesitate to say that our lawmakers have failed miserably when it comes to taking action on gift-ban legislation that has been introduced over the years. It’s time that changes.