What is it about this time of year? First there was the "holiday tree" controversy at the State House. Then there was the case of nut job Peter Zendran, who allegedly attempted to destroy a menorah on display at Providence City Hall.
Perhaps local officials should stop placing religious symbols on public property. There are plenty of other spots to erect symbols of meaning.
And then there's the Nativity scene in Tiverton, erected by the Amicable Congregational Church and based on a creative interpretation of the Nativity story by the Reverend Bill Sterritt. Rifuture.org is serializing Rev. Sterritt's tale and it has become fodder for talk radio hosts and callers.
Your superior correspondents feel this updated take on the birth of Jesus is both fascinating and in keeping with the message of Christianity. But others are incensed that someone would stray an iota from the Biblical tale. P&J don't get it. Why would something not erected with public money or placed on public land and telling an inspirational tale in keeping with Christian tradition be cause for such a fevered response?
Let's see if we can find some balance and meaning during this season.
Our quote of the week comes from Casa Diablo short duration personal savior Matt Taibbi's December 7 "Taibblog" on the Rolling Stone site, regarding the abrupt post-election resignation of Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina, a Tea Party standard-bearer who opposed any and all legislation that didn't meet the Tea Baggers inane and hypocritical "no higher taxes, less government spending" philosophy, if you can call blatant obstructionism a "philosophy."
Taibbi spoke to a congressional aide who explained the paucity of tears accompanying the Tea Party champion's departure with this little nugget: "He's the biggest douchebag in Washington, and this is the douchebag capital of the world."
We are sure the folks at the Heritage Foundation will be delighted to hear that about their new boss.
PICKIN' UP CHICKS
Miss Rhode Island, Kelsey Fournier, is now going for all the marbles in the 2013 Miss America Pageant, and she needs your help to put Little Rhody on the national parade of pulchritude map.
We have met Kelsey both personally and professionally (and keep your thoughts to yourselves, you swine), and she is an intelligent, talented and — because it does tend to matter — beautiful young woman who was gracious enough to help P&J of her own good will on an occasion where her presence promoted both kids' education and community safety.
You can vote online for a contestant to make the Top 15 in the Miss America Pageant, to be televised live on January 12. Vote by January 10 at missamerica.org/ videocontest/contestants/rhode-island.aspx.
Like good politicians in Our Little Towne, P&J urge you to vote early and often. If Miss Fournier finds a way to shine at this competition, we assure you that the state couldn't do better than to have her recognized nationwide as the lovely face of The Biggest Little.
And a note to the pageant organizers: when it comes to the fun fact about Vo Dilun that you utter on television, perhaps you could stay away from that more-Dunkin' Donuts-per-square-mile factoid you threw out last time — even if Dunkin' is an advertiser.
Dazzle 'em, Kelly.
CHEERS TO D.C. GRIDLOCK