Saturday, January 7, 2012

Harry Reid Honors a Noble Leader

Nevada Senator Harry Reid has had more than his share of trouble. Criticized for shaping a federal road project in way which enhanced his personal real estate investments, discovered as having improperly used campaign funds, exposed as engaging in cronyism while assisting the development of golf resort, receiving tainted contributions from Indian tribes related to casino business and Jack Abramoff, shocking the African-American community by evaluating President Obama as being fit for office because he is a "light-skinned" Black who speaks with "no Negro dialect", and finally saying "I don't know how anyone of Hispanic heritage could be a Republican" - Reid has gotten himself into trouble over and over again.

The last two instances are worth closer examination - Reid's analysis of Obama is startling because of its blatant racism: by any reasonable standards, it is a transgression to evaluate a President of the United States by his skin color. Reid's comment about Hispanic voters and their party affiliations reveals a thickheadedness almost beyond comprehension: Reid is the Senate Majority Leader, and to either not know, or not care, that some of his fellow Senators are Hispanic Republicans, is moronic beyond calculation.

To Reid's credit, however, he does some things well. On January 8, 2007, he spoke words which attracted unanimous concurrence. On the floor of the Senate, he said, concerning President Gerald Ford, that

as a Member of Congress, he was outstanding. He was praised by people who served with him. He served for about 25 years in the Congress and became the Republican leader. He, of course, was Commander in Chief as President of the United States.
Reid noted that it was Ford's character which earned such praise:
Gerald Ford was, above all, a man of integrity, a man of honesty, and, ultimately, a role model for all of us who serve in Government.
President Ford was a role model because history has proven the salutary effects of his actions:
time and time again, he proved himself the right man at the right time, healing the Nation after the scars of Watergate and moving our country forward.
Harry Reid saw in Gerald Ford's personal life the same noble character which the nation saw in Ford's presidency:
World War II veteran, star athlete, even an Eagle Scout - Gerald Ford was the core of what America is all about, a shining example of what we hold best in America. He took office at a dark time in our country's history and shepherded this Nation through the trials of Vietnam and Watergate, with a bipartisan spirit of reconciliation and grace, a shining example to us all. He reminded a wounded Nation of the honesty and decency of its leaders.
Reid concluded by noting that whatever amount of honor is left in this nation, it is here due in part to President Ford:
This Government, this Nation, this world are better from Gerald Ford's life and service to our country.
History may well see to it that Reid's words about Ford outlast the memory of Reid's scandal and missteps.