I cannot let Ted Kennedy’s passing go without comment.
For the past 48 hours we have witnessed both extremes in the media coverage of this man’s life. One extreme has been the adoring, fawning, excesses of MSNBC et al … worshiping him a liberal lion while the other extreme has concentrated on his many personal excesses defining him as a lowlife.
Listening to Chris Matthews wax poetic about Teddy yesterday I wondered if I could control my gag reflex. I was also thinking how curious that Matthews has excused Teddy of every misstep and indiscretion while at the same time crucifying Bill Clinton. Whatever Bill Clinton did in office, his dumb ass escapades with Monica never reached the scale and magnitude of Teddy’s actions during the summer of 1969.
I have been a Kennedy Democrat most of my life. That means a JFK Democrat whose government policies were fiscally conservative and reasonable. Ted Kennedy and the Democratic Party of today is now despised by me. Its policies and practices, as applied by Pelosi, Reid, and Obama, are anathema to my very core.
The truth, as I have witnessed it … as aYankee originally from New England … as one who loved the Kennedy family of folklore and fame, is that Teddy sure as hell was no saint. He was a man whose personal sins were far greater than most. He was a heavy drinker and a womanizer. I understand the pain and multiple losses in his life, but these losses cannot excuse his own destructive behavior.
I remember the day I heard about Chappaquiddick. I was living on the Cape at the at the time. Funny how I remember the time and place. I was sitting on a Falmouth beach … it was around noon when the news came over the radio. We were all stunned. What other word is there to describe the accident and Teddy’s actions, that allowed Mary Jo Kopechne to die in that over turned vehicle in seven feet of water?
Before leaving the Cape that summer I visited the accident/crime site with friends and looked at bridge and water where the car entered. I remember wondering how could Teddy have mistaken the road that lead to the wooden bridge and that the surrounding area seemed smaller than I have envisioned.
As always, we saw that being a member of the Kennedy clan means never having to say I’m sorry.
Did Ted Kennedy accomplish some great things while in the Senate? An honest answer is yes. Of all of his legislative accomplishments I have the greatest respect for Title IX. It remains a legislative accomplishment that has probably done more to bring equality for girls and women than any other piece of legislation save the Equal Credit Opportunity Act of the 1976. People forget that until that act was passed it was virtually impossible for a married woman (any woman) to establish credit in her own name!
Which leads me to today and Teddy’s last “great act “for America … knowingly endorsing Barack Hussein Obama, a man clearly ineligible to serve as the President. Yes, this last great act was to purposely bypass a key clause in the Constitution thereby establishing a precedent that might allow “The Arnold” to run for office. I’ve written about this before see here and here.
There have been numerous attempts over the years, beginning in the 60’s, by Democrats and Republicans alike to bypass the natural born citizen clause of the Constitution. There are many who, believing they possess superior intellect and vision about America’s future, feel that anyone, even a naturalized citizen having lived here for a mere 20 years should be eligible to run for office.
When one examines this position, it becomes abundantly clear that it is intellectually bankrupt and illogical, and worse still is dangerous for the safety and security of our country to allow people who not natural born citizens to hold the singularly most important position in the world. This is not xenophobic it is common sense. Think Russia would allow an American to become naturalized, live in their country for 20 years, and then run for the top office in their country?
And so, Teddy’s last great act was to knowingly ignore the Constitution and help a man whose British citizenship at the time of his birth clearly made him ineligible for run and hold the office of President without committing fraud against the American people and this country’s electoral process.
I am measuring which legacy is worse, Mary Jo Kopechne’s death or the intentional desecration of our Constitution … of placing the welfare of one man ahead of 300 million citizens.