EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


March 24, 2013

Column: Failings and follies from Washington and beyond


Please, hold the outraged emails – I’m not saying this means she deserved to be assaulted. But alcohol played a major, probably pivotal, role in this tragedy. The victim did consent to drinking, until she drank too much. The two boys also were drinking, and as we all know, alcohol undermines good judgment. Underage drinking is also a crime.

Our political leaders are forever saying some policy should be implemented, “if it saves even one life.” In this case, three lives have been irrevocably tainted, and it could have been avoided if there had been better control of teen access to alcohol.

Michelle Shocked, the folk-pop singer, is on every politically correct person’s do-not-call, do-not-listen, do-not-buy list after she made some anti-gay remarks at a San Francisco club last Sunday. Since then, even after she issued a couple of apologies, 10 of the remaining 11 venues on her tour canceled her shows, and she canceled the other one herself.

Situations like this call for a version of the Golden Rule, I think: Do unto others only what you think should be done to yourself.

In other words, if she had issued pro-gay remarks that offended her audience, and 10 of her next 11 concerts were canceled by the venues, would that be considered just retribution for expressing her view?

I think we all know the answer to that one.

Taylor Armerding is an independent columnist. Contact him at t.armerding@verizon.net

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