To paraphrase Ray Bradbury, something weird this way comes.
We are well into October and just a few weeks from election day, so there are two reasons to be scared. The first is the holiday season and the wave of popcorn movies about unkillable serial murderers and animated perverse household objects that stalk you in your scary two-story house with the basement you never go into until you hear …
You get the idea.
The second terrifying collection of thoughts is associated with the upcoming mid-term elections in which voters (and yes, non-voters) will choose which bunch of barely-qualified legislators and officials will be celebrating on Nov. 9, and which will not.
Take that a step further and ruminate about the folks who think that other people’s behaviors are always in need of reform – through legislation or lecturing at the supermarket – while their own is as spotless as Stephen Hawkings’ algebra grades. So, in that spirit, here is my little lecture about stuff more frightening than Frankenstein’s monster.
Scary Thought Number One: People who can’t or won’t use a turn signal, who leave their car engine running and the door unlocked “just for a moment” or who think a yellow traffic light always means “go real fast!” are allowed to vote, own firearms and buy fireworks.
Scary Thought Number Two: Folks who don’t know the difference between the Second Amendment, the Second Commandment and Second Base arguing vehemently about politics or religion.
Scary Thought Number Three: People whose secular deity is the immortal “They.” As in “They ought to do thus-and-such.” There is no “they.” There is a complicated array of people, money, law, nature and effort that go into any enterprise, and it’s often “you” who should do something, friends’ and not put all the work on “They.”
Scary Thought Number Four: Individuals who let their small children roam and romp through a busy parking lot or allow their untrained dogs to run off the leash in a well-used park. Your kid or mutt always come right back when you call, right? Right?
Scary Thought Number Five: Eighty million eligible voters in the U.S. didn’t cast ballots in 2020, which leaves the 67 percent who did. And that is considered a good turnout. More will stay home this year.
Be afraid, be very afraid.
Jim Tortolano’s “Retorts” column usually alternates with “Usually Reliable Sources,” but he wanted to get this out in time for Halloween. Oh, and as they used to say in Chicago and Springfield, “vote early and often.”