PROTESTERS’ ARIA…..DON’T FENCE ME IN

The Washington Post’s Eugene Robinson is one of the world’s outstanding columnists. No question about it.

He and his wife enjoy Key West. They spend one month during the season here. She painting at the Studios of Key West. He reading, writing, giving talks, and walking around chatting with those he runs into.

In a recent column, Robinson commented at length about the protesters who have been demonstrating in several states. He opened the column with an old Cole Porter song. Don’t Fence Me In. Published in 1934. Its popularity remained strong through World War II.

I recall singing it many times with my parents. That’s what we did back then. My Father used to buy sheet music. Words only. Some evenings, we would sit int the living room as a family singing off the sheets.

Don’t Fence Me In had an unusual popularity. Remained popular an especially long time. Recorded by some of the top singers of the era: Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Gene Autry, Roy Rogers, Ella Fitzgerald, and Willie Nelson.

As Robinson reflected, the tune fits today’s protesters. Describing the song as the Protesters Aria for today’s generation my doing.

Don’t Fence Me In’s opening words: “Oh, give me land, lots of land under starry skies above, / Don’t fence me in. / Let me ride through the wide open country that I love, / Don’t fence me in.”

The “protesters” don’t understand that unless they “fence” themselves in, many more deaths that should not have occurred will occur.

A step back in Key West history. A banking story.

The Bank of Key West sat at the corner of Front Street and Exchange Alley. The bank had been opened by some affluent Key Westers. The building was destroyed by fire in 1846.

The people of Key West were panic stricken. As far as they were concerned, their money burned in the fire. The bank owners sensed a run on the bank in the making.

Fortunately, all books, cash, notes and valuables were stored in a fireproof safe on the second floor of the bank. The owners were aware however that their depositors might not believe that their monies were safe.

Two of the owners took the bull by the horns. The day after the fire, they took space at the U.S. Naval Station. A large table was set up. “Heaps of silver dollars and packages of currency were piled on the table. Bags of silver were stacked all over the floor.

Behind the table were two of the owners. George Lewis and George W. Allen. The sight of the men and money dissuaded the crowd who had come to withdraw their funds. They left without doing so. Their confidence restored.

“Square Grouper” is a familiar Keys term. In the 1970’s and 1980’s when drug trafficking was big, boats or planes would fly offshore the Keys and drop bales of marijuana into the water. Local dealers would go out in small boats and pick up the bales.

Apparently square grouper days have returned.

Thursday afternoon a barrel of marijuana washed up on shore in Marathon. The barrel contained 5 separate large plastic bags. The contents of each marijuana. Total weight 90 pounds.

This morning’s KONK Life ran a photo the north end of Duval in the late 1960’s. What a difference the years have made!

The area totally unrecognizable. No Pier House, Ocean Key Resort, Hogs Breath or Mallory Square.

The price of gasoline has benefited purchasers from the over supply of oil world wide. Everywhere, but in Key West. Till this week. The price dropped under $2 a gallon. At one station only. The Shell Station in Key Haven at the corner of U.S.1.

The Lower Keys Medical Center is opening to additional business. Not a total reopening. Effective May 4, the hospital will resume outpatient surgeries and elective procedures.

All hospitals hurt financially if they cannot perform outpatient surgeries and elective procedures. A hospital full of coronavirus patients is not a money maker.

The hurricane season is a month away. Opening day June 1. The word is it could be a rough one.

Powerful hurricanes not expected till mid August. These are described as the “red meat” of hurricanes.

I have learned not to place much faith in hurricane prognostications. They rarely are accurate. The “big one” usually comes when least expected.

The hotel industry taking a beating. Understandably.

The Hotel and Lodging Association released new data. These are nation wide figures. Seventy percent of employees are laid off or furloughed. Eight in 10 hotel rooms remain empty.

May Johnson still sick. Today’s entry from her 1896 diary: “Better but very weak from yesterday’s vomiting.”

Trump time.

I mentioned yesterday New York City’s problem with dead bodies. Insufficient funeral personnel and inadequate monies to bury people.

The government could pick up the bill. FEMA is authorized by law to finance the burials IF the President consents. Trump has refused to consent.

Ergo, the bodies stack up. Many in large refrigerated trucks.

A senior living facility has experienced 98 deaths. Most of the bodies stacked in refrigerated trucks outside the senior building.

Donald, a little help for the dead! Can it be so bad? Is it because they cannot vote? Or perhaps because many are Puerto Ricans and black?

The banks, hotels, corporations, universities, etc. receive stimulus assistance. What about the little guy who lives in a small apartment with his family. The rent came due yesterday. He could not pay it.

Several months ago I suggested a solution to the problem. It was one we all knew had to occur.

My solution simple. Defer rent payments till things return to some semblance of normal. Where the landlord has a mortgage, defer mortgage payments to the bank for the same length of time.

A big help!

Why not done? Others have made a similar suggestion. Is it because it would screw up a bank’s cash flow?

The White House announced it is prohibiting Fauci from testifying before a House Appropriations Sub-Committee wednesday.

Why?

I do not know whether the President has power to do so with Fauci.

I do know this. It makes it appear Trump has things to hide. I doubt anyone would argue the point.

It is wrong to bar Fauci from testifying. The coronavirus crisis is perhaps the worst that has ever faced this nation. Transparency required. The people have a right to know exactly what is going on.

Trump always likes to keep the truth hidden. Wrong each time. Especially wrong this time.

Donald, Donald, Donald. When are you going to stop screwing around with China? You have already caused enough damage going back to the time you were elected.

The stock market began a radical drop friday afternoon. It began with the White House announcement that Trump was considering imposing additional tariffs on China in response to the Covid-19 epidemic.

The market will probably open down monday morning.

I cannot understand Trump. To his way of thinking, a strong market means a strong economy. A position I do not agree with.

Not the issue, however. Trump does think so. It would seem he is cutting his own throat by imposing additional tariffs.

His thought process confusing.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

24 comments on “PROTESTERS’ ARIA…..DON’T FENCE ME IN

  1. That Marathon weed find and easy accessibility of the stuff, wink wink, is just more proof that the so called war on drugs is a total waste of time and money. Legalize everything now.

  2. Duh- Lou is absolutely correct in saying rent and mortgages should be deferred. So should utilities. Add car payments and any other bills too. Most people working, now not working, in Key West have no income and haven’t had any for two months.

    They aren’t paying their rent anyway since they have no money. Even the stimulus money (which many haven’t seen), and unemployment money (which most haven’t seen) isn’t nearly enough to pay rent, etc in Key West.

    So since you can’t get blood from an out of work turnip, defer any payments until everything is opened up. Make it at least till January 2021 since that’s how long it will take before crowds can come back to Key West.

    • Not really sure that’s necessary or even desirable, at least as a blanket policy. I cant think of a single rich person in all of the Keys, and that includes Key West (and there is a lot of those in both) who’s financial situation is seriously impacted, including Lou. Same goes for those retirees only living on a fixed social security income.

      This kind of aid should be considered for those that are impacted and DON’T believe government is an intrusion and should get out of the way – let them suffer their conscious.

      • Duh – You are correct about rich people. Let them eat cake.

        But the majority of people living and working on Bone Island are not rich. They are the hotel staff, the bartenders, the wait staff, restaurant and bar owners. Small, privately owned places like the Speakeasy Inn & Rum Bar could go under.

        It’s also the musicians and entertainers who depend on tourism. T-shirt shops are closed; cruise ships aren’t coming and the vendors at the Mallory Square sunset celebration are making no money. Popcorn Joe isn’t selling any popcorn.

        None of these people (except maybe Popcorn Joe) have enough income to pay the rent and utilities… let alone anything else. They number about 20,000.

        This isn’t unique to Key West… it’s the same all over. So I say again, defer payments on housing, utilities, car payments, credit cards, or anything else you can imagine until at least January 2021.

  3. I remember years ago, you know the Wall Street protestors era. Mostly I remember how the right wing LOVED to smear them for their efforts, based mostly on how they “looked.” They were particularly shamed for being dirty, long hair, bearded scumbags who had no respect for the rule of law, etc., etc,

    No such problem with today’s protesters, they are the right wing and all’s well with their armed appearance, ideals and methods. Not a peep from those same “holier than thou” msa Main Stream American” hypocrites.

  4. I was listening to a NPR Fresh Air segment interview of a science writer for the New York Times. Forgot his name.
    The writer stated China could very well be the nation that comes up with the ultimate cure for Covid-19. He wishes trump would stop calling Covid the Wuhan Disease and saying other things just to get China’s goat. We may need them.

  5. In Wuhan mobile cremator’s were used to dispose of bodies. The US governments also have them. Any reason why NYC did not use them?

    This number was his estimation based on the number of bodies China’s crematoriums are burning every day. Data has surfaced recently to suggest Wengui’s estimate may be correct.

    • Sandy Feet is a Troll who is almost always wrong about everything he posts, particularly anything to do with China or the Chinese people. Yet he persists with more garbage as if he thinks anyone here is going to believe him. He also posts lies on the Sesame Street blog.

      • posted by someone who delusionally believes that any post she doesn’t like, is from the same person, so she repeatedly posts a previously prepared, canned response  Just Ignore this person.

  6. China just add a bunch more suffer dioxide in to the air. More acid rain Is that why we may need China. No good for our limestone rock here in KW.

    • Sandy Feet is a pest with a vocal and innate hatred for China and the Chinese people, frequently using derogatory references to their race, embarrazzing Lou’s many Chinese readers.

    • Sandy Feet regularly trolls this post because he thinks he clever. He also thinks he knows everything, like what other people don’t (?) hear on NPR. He also frequently corrects other people’s spelling. He does this to gain Lou’s attention and appreciation.

  7. Your story regarding the sheet music reminded me of a very special ritual my Dad and I had when I was a little girl. Hed come in to tuck me into bed and hed have his sheet music with him. Hed sing a few songs to me as I fell asleep. Thanks for bringing back some wonderful warm memories.

  8. I’m really worried about this year’s hurricane season. Any early hurricane that could require an evacuation will be difficult and if we have any kind of virus spike it could be devastating.

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