P&J aren't quite sure what "granular" means in this instance. Eating granola every morning, something every Jim Beam-on-my-Frosted-Flakes GOP Congressman would abhor? The fact that Republicans have their heads in the sand when it comes to civil and human rights? How about grainy photos of Mitch McConnell and John Boehner in bed with some D.C. women (or men, for old Mitch) of the night?


SCALING DOWN

In the aftermath of the horrific Newtown massacre of innocent children and their teachers, an analogy:

Draft-dodging coward Dubya Bush, torture advocate Dick Cheney, and administration in-house whore Condi Rice justified the American invasion of Iraq by (falsely) claiming that we needed to confiscate "weapons of mass destruction." Yes, we claimed ultimate moral authority to take on a country because it supposedly held weapons that could wipe out people in droves.

So why not apply that approach to individuals here in our own country — individuals with weapons they might use to mow down their neighbors' children?

Dare we wait to seize assault weapons? Or prevent people from acquiring them? Only if our Congressmen are lacking the cojones to face the truth, which is likely the case — so loathe are they to jeopardize their NRA campaign contributions.

Yes, we guess the moral high ground only extends so far.


HAPPENINGS AT ROOTS

There's always a lot happening at the Roots Cultural Center on Westminster Street in downtown Providence and this month is no exception. Here are a couple of noteworthy events.

On January 16 at 7:30 pm, there will be an evening of poetry hosted by Ray Davey. Ray is Providence's poet laureate and he coached the Providence Poetry Slam team that won the national championship back in 1996. Ray tells P&J that a couple of young, up-and-coming local poets will be appearing at this event. Only three bucks for what looks to be a fine evening of Providence "cultcha."

On January 19 at 3 pm, friends of the recently departed Richard Walton (see last week's "Cool, Cool World") will be gathering to pay tribute to this iconic figure. Your superior correspondents understand that there will be further tributes in the months ahead, including opportunities to contribute to some of Richard's favorite charities, such as Amos House and the Sister Cities Project. But this day, it will be friends telling stories and toasting the beloved man. If you were one of Richard's many pals, you will want to be there.


ANOTHER WORTHY BENEFIT

If you've been following the news, you know that funds have been cut for Teny Gross's Institute for the Study & Practice of Nonviolence, a vital program in the capital city. On January 12 at 7 pm, there will be a concert at the Columbus Theater on Broadway in Providence to benefit the Institute's programs. Headlining the show will be a couple of guys from nationally acclaimed Providence band Deer Tick, John McCauley and Ian O'Neil. This is an 18+ event and tickets are $20, but the work that the Institute does is effective and worthy of your support.


KUDOS AND CONGRATS . . .

. . . to our friends Al Gomes and A. Michelle over at Big Noise (bignoisenow.com) music promotions. Long a fixture on the Rhode Island music scene, Big Noise has been engaged by the Beach Boys to handle promotional duties for a variety of projects the venerable American band is engaged in. A nice little gig for a quality Vo Dilun outfit.

. . . to longtime WJAR anchor Gene Valicenti. Gino must be the busiest news man in town. On top of working evenings at Channel 10 and hosting a very entertaining Saturday morning show on WPRO radio, he has just signed on to anchor the daily morning news on WPRO. When does this guy sleep?

Send Pulitzer-grade tips to p&j@phx.com.

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