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VOL. 130 | NO. 236 | Friday, December 4, 2015

Dan Conaway

Dan Conaway

Knee-Jerk Outbreak

By Dan Conaway

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A SAD STATE OF AFFAIRS. WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States government has mobilized against a clear threat to the country.

Troops have been sent to identify and capture members of an ersatz government openly operating here in defiance of federal law. This group claims theirs as the only true religion, and that laws be based on it as prescribed in the tome of that religion. They believe no other laws to be valid in the eyes of God, and no rights assigned or any authority recognized if any are based on such godless laws. They seek to prohibit the teaching, or even mention, of any other religion in schools.

While within the borders of a sovereign nation they believe themselves to be answerable only to themselves. They draw their support from deep and shadowy resources that direct their actions and demand their loyalty. They are male-dominated, disdainful of art and science, resentful of education, and brutal to dissent. They should be considered armed and dangerous by divine right.

This group – the Legislature of the so-called State of Tennessee – has been surrounded and surrender is being negotiated. Health insurance for the working poor, roads and infrastructure, education funding, government transparency, freedom of and from religion, habeas corpus, right to trial, right to organize, voting rights, women’s rights, LGBT rights, just about everybody’s rights are being held hostage, but our troops remain hopeful of a peaceful resolution.

The country is holding the Constitution and a pair of state Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey’s boots. Ramsey really cares about those boots.

All of this is in reaction to Tennessee House Republican Caucus Chair Glen Casada’s proposal to have the National Guard round up every single Syrian refugee in the state – men, women and children – and put them away somewhere. The troops were just going to arrest Casada but – like the Syrian refugee threat – they had to make us safe, according to sources close to the decision:

“If one crazy like Casada is in that legislature there be might be more. Remember, people in that body made him chair of something. We have to round them all up. We have our eye on his grandmother, too.”

Meanwhile, in other news …

The United States Congress, both chambers, has suspended all activity until after the first of the year due to an epidemic outbreak of deadly Knee-Jerk. Contracted almost immediately after tragic events in Paris and Mali, both bodies were completely overcome – kicking their desks over in attempts to rise and propose hyperbolic, overheated legislation, kicking all reason and the constitution aside, unable to stand for anything America stands for, succumbing to and appealing to base and baseless fear. Even some 30 governors and all the Republican presidential candidates were infected with apoplectic, raging Knee-Jerk.

The children and grandchildren of the innocent Americans of Japanese descent imprisoned during World War II may have heard stories of what uncontrolled Knee-Jerk can do.

I’m a Memphian, and you know what they say about ignoring history.

Dan Conaway, a communication strategist and author of “I’m a Memphian,” can be reached at dan@wakesomebodyup.com.

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