Law and Disorder

Instead of all the needless nattering about guns and bullets, there is a public safety issue that the states and the federal government could actually do something about. I refer to prisons. Why aren’t we building more and bigger ones?

Maybe it’s just me, but that seems a lot more sensible than releasing felons because some pinheaded bureaucrat decides we should be overly concerned about the discomfort of robbers, rapists and murderers. I mean, these are the most vicious of the vicious, and we’re treating them like guests at a hotel.

I even know how we could start funding construction of new prisons. I suggest we simply stop providing prisoners with gymnasiums, TV sets and sex change operations. They did not, after all, go on a TV game show and win 10-20 years at a Marriott.

Another way to help cover the cost is to sell naming rights to corporate sponsors, just the way they do with stadiums and arenas. All by themselves, rap music record companies could easily re-christen the likes of Leavenworth, Attica, Soledad, Folsom and Sing-Sing. And, what’s more, the new monikers would be far more fitting once you realize that among the major labels are Asylum, Bad Boys, Gangsta Advisory, Captivity, Psychopathic, Low Life and Konvict Muzik.

Also, unlike sporting venues, where the payoff to the corporation ebbs and flows with the fortunes of the teams, the nice thing about having your company’s name attached to a penitentiary is that people will always be grateful to be reminded that those walls are keeping them safe from the human vermin inside.

Getting back to guns for a moment, Harry Reid admitted that Dianne Feinstein, even with 55 Democrats in the Senate, wouldn’t be able to muster even 40 votes in support of her bill to eviscerate the Second Amendment. But rather than force those 15 or 20 Democrats to cast votes in opposition to Obama or face the ire of the NRA in 2014 and beyond, McConnell and his Republican colleagues threatened a filibuster if the bill was brought to the floor. The question that comes to mind is just how stupid are they?

Is it possible that because Rand Paul got so much attention for filibustering John Brennan’s appointment to head up the CIA, Republican lunkheads have decided that they will now filibuster against everything except a pay raise?

Speaking of Obama, I found it amusing that he recently got in hot water for complimenting California’s Attorney General Kamala Harris on her looks. Now if he’d gotten an earful from Michelle, I might have understood it. But, instead, he caught hell from a coven of feminists who treated the poor schnook as if he’d referred to Mrs. Harris as a broad, a dame or a skirt. According to these harridans, by commenting on her looks, Obama was turning the clock back by several decades. You would have thought he was campaigning to reverse the 19th Amendment, denying women the right to vote.

I would have loved to have listened in on his apology to the woman. What could he say? “Hi, Kamala, it’s Barack. I just wanted to call and assure you that I didn’t mean it when I said you were good-looking.”

Because it always annoys me when I hear people refer to a federal judge who delivers a stupid ruling without naming the schmuck, as if the ruling came down from the Mount, I always try to track him down. In the case of the decision to make Plan B, the so-called day-after contraceptive pill, available without a prescription and without age restrictions, the dunderhead was Federal District Court Judge Edward Korman. It was he who decided that girls as young as 11 or 12 should be able to go into a drug store and buy a comic book, a candy bar and contraception off the shelf. No big surprise. After all, that’s the sort of nonsense that federal judges do on a regular basis. What I was surprised to discover was that Korman was first appointed by Ronald Reagan.

But I suppose I shouldn’t have been too surprised. After all, when guys like Clinton and Obama appoint justices to the Supreme Court, it’s always someone like Breyer, Ginsburg, Kagan and Sotomayor. Good old-fashioned left-wing ideologues. But when it’s time for the likes of Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan and George H.W. Bush, to handle it, it’s just as likely — make that more likely — to be a Brennan, Burger, Blackmun, Kennedy, O’Connor and Souter, as it is to be a Scalia or Thomas.

So, whereas the Democrats vet their judicial appointments to within an inch of their lives, knowing that the Court will be their lasting legacy, the Republicans seem content to pick their names out of a cap. And a dunce cap, at that.

©2013 Burt Prelutsky. Comments? Write

Author Bio:

Burt Prelutsky, a very nice person once you get to know him, has been a humor columnist for the L.A. Times and a movie critic for Los Angeles magazine. As a freelancer, he has written for the New York Times, Washington Times, TV Guide, Modern Maturity, Emmy, Holiday, American Film, and Sports Illustrated. For television, he has written for Dragnet, McMillan & Wife, MASH, Mary Tyler Moore, Rhoda, Bob Newhart, Family Ties, Dr. Quinn and Diagnosis Murder. In addition, he has written a batch of terrific TV movies. View Burt’s IMDB profile. Talk about being well-rounded, he plays tennis and poker... and rarely cheats at either. He lives in the San Fernando Valley, where he takes his marching orders from a wife named Yvonne and a dog named Angel.
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  • JohnInMA

    Burt, here’s my thought on one of your points/rants: AG Harris doesn’t dress down. She doesn’t dress in gender neutral attire. She dresses appropriately for her position and to appear attractive. For anyone, even the president, to recognize her success in that aim is perfectly reasonable. Even rational. If she was in the camp of the rabid feminist loons, she would be wearing burlap or perhaps a man’s suit…..or something else.

    It’s not like anyone made a glaring sexual comment. “Attractive” is not even synonymous with “hot” or worse “hot b*tch” or any other sexually suggestive terms.

    Feminists have become as insignificant as the PETA crowd, and all they do now is look for trivial ways to get attention and stay relevant. It’s backfiring.

  • helplessinil

    I was thinking of starting a petition for “Vigilante Day”. We could form a neighborhood group, locate local violent criminals who are not incarcerated and take them to a predetermined garage for the beating of their life. They would then be released with a warning that we would be checking up on their criminal record again next year on “National Vigilante Day” to see if they need another appointment. I would think we might see a drop in our crime rate.

  • Wheels55

    Prisons should be funded by the assets of the criminal and that of his family. That way, maybe families will guide their lost ones a little better.

  • Douglas Makinen

    Not until the left gets the Supreme Court to change the law to allow inmates/felons to vote will they move forward with your idea. Based on the speed at which our “rights” are changing, we should see this modification during the next democratic presidency which will be in 2016. Regarding corporate naming rights, it would only be fair to add a democratically elected inmate representative to be on the board of directors. A portion of the income from the corporate name would then be distributed to the inmates and set aside in a “union fund” that would ensure the inmates get a good start when they are released. And don’t forget, a lot of cash could be generated if you had pay per view for those on death row.

    • Burt Prelutsky

      Douglas: I don’t think the Democrats will win in 2016, especially not if Clinton or Biden is running. Obama barely won last November, and neither of those two old white people is going to muster the same number of black or youth votes as Obama.


  • RickonhisHarleyJohnson

    By the way, thanks for adding to my vocabulary, Burt. Had never seen the word harridan.

    • Burt Prelutsky

      Rick: Always happy to help a pal.


  • RickonhisHarleyJohnson

    I too, have wondered what’s wrong with Republican Presidents’ justice appointments. This party has been losing me since Bush 41 and it only seems to get worse!

    • Burt Prelutsky

      Rick: You and I agree. So you may have cause to start worrying.


  • cmacrider

    Burt: Re: filibuster by Reps. The counter argument is that by Cruz and Paul serving notice that they threatened to filibuster a derogation of the 2nd amendment the day before the Senate went back to their constituencies was a decisive factor. Senators went home and were confronted by their constituents demanding … they are standing up why aren’t you. The net result was Harry the undertaker couldn’t muster sufficient votes to pass anything of consequence.

    • Burt Prelutsky

      cma: Reid had already announced the votes weren’t there. Filibusters should be few and far between or they’re simply political stunts, like the one Rand Paul pulled off.