Static: Wednesday, August 22, 2007
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
(Not)Waving a Red Flag

Jerry Lobdill begs to differ with Static’s deDELETEion of what happened at city hall last week when a group of local activists asked the Fort Worth City Council to go on the record in favor of impeaching George Bush and Dick Cheney. In fact, “beg” is too weak a deDELETEion. A vein probably starts throbbing at the side of his head when he thinks about it.
His objections and those of others who were there? Let’s see — the four or five Industrial Workers of the World folks (Wobblies) in attendance weren’t actually part of the impeachment group. They didn’t wave any red or black flags in council chambers or come up to the lectern to talk about abolishing capitalism. (Please, not before Static’s next paycheck clears!) The speaker described as a veteran of several tours of duty in Iraq served in the first Gulf War, not the current conflict. And that’s just for starters.
In fact, the flag-waving and anti-capitalism talk among the Wobblies happened outside council chambers. And though the IWWers did tell Static they were there to support the impeachment resolution, it’s correct that they didn’t say so to the council, and that they were not among the organizers of the effort. The information on the veteran’s record was just wrong.
Lobdill, a retired scientist and progressive Democrat, also said Mayor Mike Moncrief was gracious to the folks who presented the resolution and that the council was respectful toward the speakers, who represented a spread of political persuasions (but not the lunatic fringe from either side). But the biggest reason the column raised his blood pressure was that he felt it painted the whole group with the Wobblies’ “wild-eyed-radical” brush without justification. If the idea of impeachment is to gain traction, it’s important for the people supporting it to be recognized as solid citizens, he said. “We dressed appropriately and spoke thoughtfully,” he said. “I had never seen any of the IWW people before and had no idea who they were.”
Static gets to express opinions, is proud to be snarky, but always seeks to be factual. Bottom line: We blew it. Fort Worth Weekly regrets the shortcomings in last week’s column.

Squelching a Black Lung
Fort Worth started as a rough-and-tumble Army stronghold, home to soldiers fighting Indians during the country’s westward expansion. It evolved into a rowdy cattle town, with gunfights in the streets and colorfully named areas such as Hell’s Half Acre. Fort Worth was an independent, vibrant place filled with colorful characters. Now, in Static’s humble (even humbler than usual: see above item) opinion, we’re a bunch of plasticized lapdogs, allowing a mouthy moralistic majority to push us around.
Case in point: this week’s decision by the Fort Worth City Council to ban smoking in restaurants. Sure, this kind of heavy-handed crackdown on smoking is happening all over the country, but we’re not Everytown, we’re Cowtown. At least Councilman Carter Burdette — a nonsmoker — had the courage to characterize this ordinance for what it is — stepping on personal freedoms and imposing on the rights of property owners.

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