Right Opinion

The Wretched Refuse

Burt Prelutsky · Aug. 8, 2016

In “The New Colossus,” the poem at the base of the Statue of Liberty, Emma Lazarus put out a call for the wretched refuse of teeming foreign shores. I believe we have received our allotment and we can now stop advertising. Perhaps it’s time we replaced the poem by the unrepentant communist with Irving Berlin’s heart-felt lyrics to “God Bless America.”

But the more wretched the refuse, the more that left-wing politicians — who see in every 10,000 Muslims that Obama welcomes aboard 10,000 potential voters, not the hundred or two hundred potential jihadists the rest of us see — seem to like it. That also explains why Hillary Clinton thinks the numbers should be increased by a multiple of six or seven. But why shouldn’t she? She has already proven with her private server that served as a direct pipeline to Russia, China, North Korea and Iran, that national security is the very least of her concerns.


In the wake of the Dallas massacre, we had to listen to one politician after another pretend they saw the deaths of five police officers as nothing more than an excuse to parrot talking points about guns. The truth of the matter is that liberals know that stricter gun laws wouldn’t make any difference when it comes to shooting galleries like Baltimore, Philadelphia, Atlanta and Dallas. After all, more Americans are killed over a typical weekend in Chicago, the city with the strictest gun laws in the nation, than in a month of fighting in Afghanistan.

I even had to listen to Tim Scott, a black Republican senator from South Carolina whine that, even as an office holder, he has been pulled over by traffic cops. My heart might have bled for him if I hadn’t been stopped by cops at least 15 times from the time I was 13 until I was 21. And why? All because of WORMBADWLS, DWATYTHAL and RMMAMIBH. I realize they’re not as catchy as DWB (Driving While Black), but I was stopped regularly for Walking-Or-Riding-My-Bike-At-Dusk-While-Looking-Suspicious, Driving-While-Appearing-Too-Young-To-Have-A-License and Riding-My-Motorcycle-At-Midnight-In-Beverly-Hills.

It’s all true. Because we lived adjacent to Beverly Hills when I was in my teens, if I walked or rode my bike to a store or the library, I could expect a Beverly Hills cop to ask me where I was going and what I was up to. For a few years after I started driving, I looked too young to be legal, so I kept being pulled over and asked for my license. When I was working late at the UCLA Daily Bruin and would ride my motorcycle home through Beverly Hills, I could count on being stopped and questioned on a regular basis.

Big deal. I didn’t give the cops any guff and they didn’t hassle me. It was annoying, but even back then I figured they were just doing their job. Isn’t that why we pay them? I guess you’ll just have to take my word for it, but that was my honest attitude.

Now, let’s say I was a young black. Let’s say I’m driving in my blue car with my brother and an APB has just gone out that a 7-11 has been knocked over by two young black men who got away in a blue car. Obviously, witnesses are not going to be able to narrow down the manhunt by saying that one of the guys had blonde hair and blue eyes and his cohort had red hair and green eyes. Heck, you can’t even make out tattoos on black skin. In that situation, why wouldn’t the cops pull me over for questioning? Are they supposed to simply look at me and my brother and somehow intuit our innate goodness?

But if a Republican senator is going to take it personally that he happens to resemble a lot of thugs, he can blame his parents, his genes or perhaps God, but he sure doesn’t have a bone to pick with the police.


Although it may seem a trivial matter, one of the things I hate most about these tragic events is that even Fox News feels compelled to cover it 24/7, pretending that nothing of any importance is taking place anywhere else in the universe, all the while providing facetime for every governor, mayor and police chief, who wants to take advantage of the TV cameras. Worse yet, if they happen to be Democrats, you can give odds they will be spouting the usual swill about stricter gun laws, which is code for gun confiscation and the repeal of the Second Amendment.

You may have noticed that whenever liberals get together, whether it’s on a TV panel or the floor of the Senate, they typically form a daisy chain whose message might as well be “I’ll believe your lies if you agree to believe mine.” I say that because even I can’t accept they are so stupid that they mean even half of the touchy-feely nonsense they spew about Islam, illegal aliens and urban blacks.

What has confounded me in the past is that while I understand that Democrats will say and do anything in order to win an election, I could never figure out why those being lied to by their politicians and the media never seem to mind being played for suckers. I finally decided it’s because the typical liberal voter would do and say the same things if he thought he could get away with it. As a result, they are never morally outraged by Bill Clinton’s lechery, Hillary Clinton’s endless lies or Barack Obama’s tyrannical instincts; the overriding emotion they experience is one of envy.


The Supreme Court has outlived its original purpose. Once the politicians were allowed to use partisan litmus tests on perspective justices, the Court quickly morphed into an unelected version of Congress, legislating from the bench while ignoring the sacred truths of the Constitution. If you disagree, please explain, aside from the black robes, the difference between Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor and, say, Chuck Schumer, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi.


Another once-honorable institution that has lost its moral center over the past few decades is the American military. I’m not referring to the heroic grunts who continue to risk life and limb on behalf of the nation. But so far as the brass are concerned, they have become an appendage of the left-wingers in Washington; they have become loyal lackeys who don’t object to promotions being based on partisan fealty and don’t mind in the least that social engineering (women in combat, gays and transgenders in uniform) now trumps military strategy.

And while the military brass continue to collect their medals and the dunderheads in Congress continue to wrap themselves in the flag and deliver high-sounding folderol in praise of our wounded warriors, veterans continue to die at an alarming rate while waiting to see a medic at VA hospitals.


Because I’m a simple man, my wants are modest. I don’t need ten million dollars or a house in the Hamptons. I’d be happy as a lark if every time a politician told a lie, his nose would grow an inch, and every time a newspaper printed a lie, the page would burst into flames.

But if I can’t swing that, I suppose I’d be willing to settle for ten million dollars and the house in the Hamptons.

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