The Battle of Athens

In 1946, there was a rebellion in McMinn County, Tennessee, that came to be known as the Battle of Athens. Frankly, I had never heard of it until recently. I guess it took the latest campaign against the Second Amendment to remind people that there was a time when Americans had to depend on their guns to ensure their rights against their fellow Americans.

It was shortly after the end of World War II. A group of rotten politicians, a crooked sheriff and his corrupt deputies, were once again trying to steal an election by confiscating the ballot boxes and reporting the tally. It had been a way of life in the city of Athens, but this time was different. This time, a bunch of returning veterans, who had just got done fighting and bleeding for liberty in Europe and Asia, decided to put a stop to it. And thanks to their guns, they did just that by storming the sheriff’s office and rescuing the votes before they could once again be miscounted..

The battle was short-lived, as they often are when the people finally get their fill of being pushed around by bullies drawing government paychecks.

I recently got around to watching The Iron Lady with Meryl Streep doing her accent shtick as Margaret Thatcher. Her performance wasn’t terrible, and thanks to makeup, they managed to make her resemble Mrs. Thatcher. What was truly disgusting about the movie is that well over half of it was spent showing the woman shuffle around her apartment, talking to her dead husband, while suffering from Alzheimer’s.

If the producers had wanted to make the case at this late date that it’s a dreadful disease that destroys the mind and memory of those afflicted, they could certainly have based it on a fictional character, as TV has done more times than I care to think about. But this should have been the story of an extraordinarily courageous and accomplished woman, with her melancholy end, at most, a minor coda at the end of her inspiring saga.

After watching the movie, it occurred to me that there’s nothing the Left enjoys so much as depicting the lives of those they detest on stage and screen. They have already demonized or at least ridiculed the likes of Nixon, Palin, Reagan, Bush and Mrs. Thatcher. Next, I hear that the devoutly liberal John Cusack is set to produce and star in a movie about Rush Limbaugh. I don’t think it’s because they look alike.

Until I heard it from Michael Medved, I had not been aware of the fact that although only about nine percent of all Americans are left-handed, every president since 1988 has been a leftie. I’m not sure what it all means, but I’d say that in Barack Obama’s case, it has not only prevented him from being even-handed, but has let it totally dictate his political agenda.

Although I’m aware that most liberals would love to see all guns banished, I’m equally aware that Democrats, especially those up for re-election in 2014, merely want to raise their voices in moral outrage. They sure don’t want to go on record by voting for such blatant nonsense. Still, it was pretty shabby of them to pretend it was a matter of life and death that law-abiding Americans identify themselves and their legally-obtained weapons, when these are the very same palookas who insist it’s an infringement of civil rights for people to obtain photo IDs in order to vote in our elections.

Just to prove that all the liberal loons are not taking up space in the Oval Office or Congress, otherwise known as the Politburo, we have proof that they are also well-represented in Pennsylvania and Maryland school districts. In the first case, a six-year-old boy was suspended from school for pointing his finger at another tot and going “bang-bang.” Rumor has it he’s facing more serious charges now that it’s been discovered that his other fingers were loaded.

In Baltimore, a five-year-old girl who threatened another little girl, saying she was going to shoot her with a pink Hello Kitty toy gun that blows soap bubbles, was initially suspended from kindergarten for 10 days. But she had her punishment reduced to two days, thanks, no doubt, to a last minute stay of execution by the governor.

Only time will tell if these two little menaces will still grow up to be another Bonnie and Clyde, but at least nobody can accuse those school systems of not doing their level best to keep the world safe for gangbangers, psychos and jihadists.

Speaking of schools, it recently occurred to me that in my youth, criminals used to have to seek a safe haven by fleeing to countries that didn’t have extradition treaties with the United States. But, more recently, as we’ve seen with the tawdry likes of Angela Davis, Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, they only have to go as far as the nearest college campus.

Perhaps the last word on the phony war on guns — the only kind of wars that liberals condone – came to me in a recent email: “Ban all gas tanks over five gallons. There is no reason on earth for people to have large capacity gas tanks except to run from the police in deadly high-speed chases.”

©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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  • artlouis

    All the Presidents since 1988 means four people: the two Bushes, Clinton and Obama. Since one Bush may have passed along the left-hand gene to the other, this becomes less remarkable. If only all the right-handers in the country were right-wingers.

    • Burt Prelutsky

      art: I have now been told that G.W. Bush wasn’t a southpaw. Now I’m really glad that I attributed the “fact” to Michael Medved.


  • GlenFS

    Burt, thanks for another informative and amusing piece. I don’t know how you do it, but am glad that you do!

    Schools are completely lost on any sense of right and wrong. I don’t know if this is based on looney liberal relativism or what, but they can’t seem to tell the difference between a child’s hand gesture and a crime. This doesn’t bode well for their ability to educate the next generation of Americans. I would not send my kid to a public school these days and no conservative should.

    • Burt Prelutsky

      Glen: We are in perfect agreement. When it comes to hypocrisy, conservatives who send their kids to public schools run neck-and-neck with liberals in Washington, D.C., from Obama on down, who all send their kids to private schools while ballyhooing public schools.