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April 29, 2014

There is Always a Payday

Harry M. Covert

To those enjoying bonus years, after the normal three score and ten generally accepted by insurance guessers and church-goers of all sorts, mature days and years should be nice and free from foolhardiness and folly.


Apparently the imprudence and stupidity remains alive and well. It can be irritating and unpleasant sometimes to visit Frederick restaurants where many diners include some ripened elders who think they have the right to be discourteous to the servers by yelling – and not leaving tips. Some look as though they are homeless, unwashed and without clean apparel.


Merely because we are fortunate to enjoy advanced years, there is no good reason for poor public or private conduct. Actually, it is not unreasonable to correct those for being unruly and frankly rude to the staffs and other customers.


This comes to mind after a weekend where some supposedly good people of advanced ages prove to be embarrassing to themselves and others.


Many youngsters of the past were thrilled to learn the “Code of the West.” They were obviously borrowed from what some people call The Good Book.


Gene Autry, the late owner of Major League Baseball’s California Angels, made his fortune in Western movies. Among his code was “A cowboy is free from racial and religious intolerances.”


Donald Tokowitz Sterling, a real estate magnate and billionaire, owns the National Basketball Association’s Los Angeles Clippers. He apparently is not a true blue cowboy. At 80 he doesn’t follow in the footsteps of classy actor-businessmen like Gene Autry.


Then there’s the old fellow from Bunkerville, Nevada. This late 60s rancher has set political thinkers back untold years. He has never learned that old cowboys can’t fight the government, or that there is always a payday, especially if you’re using “guvment” land.


Hopalong Cassidy’s Creed says: “Our country’s laws are made for your protection. Observe them carefully.”


It is clear, too, that reporters and other disseminators love their jobs and access to all things as members of the highly-exalted Fourth Estate.


Immediately Cliven Bundy was seen on television, heard on the radio and in the papers. He was thinking he was standing for good. He was made a fool by politicians looking for a sucker to use and they did. The reporters did what they do well. Report the facts. All folks had to do was watch, listen and read. Poor old Cliven apparently is living in centuries past.


Roy Rogers, King of the Cowboys, told his Riders’ Club to “Always respect our Flag, and Country.”


From all of the reports and audio recordings Mr. Sterling has never learned anything about sweetness and light. He has learned a great deal about how to make money, step all over people and be careless in his words and deeds.


It is true American jurisprudence does not prosecute citizens for what they “may think in their hearts.” There are consequences and heavy ones for what is said verbally, especially in recordings. There is no code listed for “dumb.” Probably should be.


Cliven Bundy is not an example of what is good about America. He is certainly allowed to have his opinions. He doesn’t have to be stupid. It is stupid to try and stare down legally authorized law enforcement agents. He is fortunate to be alive today. The sworn officers were attempting to carry out court-ordered instructions.


Mr. Bundy knows about cattle. He cannot expect any help from reporters when he’s handcuffed and taken to a federal jail. He didn’t need to take off a boot to show he was clueless.


Gene Autry also said, “A cowboy is clean about his person in thought, word and deed.”


It is an amazing thing that men and women can be successful almost beyond measure in business. Mr. Sterling is apparently a poor example of what it means to be a role model for anybody. He will undoubtedly finish his days as a pariah to former friends and enemies.


Cliven Bundy is not a representative of any political party, nationally and especially here in Frederick.


Enough said about the Clippers’ owner, who was born in Chicago. He has lived out his life on the left coast.


The masked man, The Lone Ranger, also espoused good ethics. He said, “sooner or later, somewhere, somehow, we must settle with this world and make payment for what we have taken.”


Everyone can learn a great deal from times past – and those most recent.


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