Friday, July 4, 2008

Jesse Helms takes July 4th to heart for once, improves America by dying

Racist, homophobic, misogynistic, xenophobic and hypocritical, multiple-time Senator Jesse Helms was a poster boy for the Reagan era Congress. He died today at the age of 86 (meaning he wasn't a Confederate vet as widely believed), improving America just a wee bit. "Happy birthday, USA!"

Helms was one of the more visible and in some ways honest of the gaggle of politicians who have kept the US mired in the 19th century. Highlights of his career would include advocating for South Africa's apartheid regime, voting against every civil rights bill to come before him for 29 consecutive years, opposing the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday (King was an "agitator"), running racially-charged TV ads and gay-baiting politicians who disagreed with him.

Helms also voted against domestic programs and our piddling foreign aid ("rat holes" was his literal term for most of the rest of the planet) while supporting every above-board and covert, illegal military budget he could find. It's still jaw dropping that when confronted with retro bigots and simplistic mental midgets such as this, the Democratic Party remained completely flummoxed.

Helms' damage will be with us for decades, but at least the man himself is gone, and, as I'm not a rapture believer like Helms, I'm glad to say he's gone for good. Have a burger and a beer, America just became a slightly better place.

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