The subject is Al Franken – heinie grabber. Al’s defense is that he’s in a lot of photos every year and doesn’t remember grabbing any butts. Really. I couldn’t make it up if I tried. It also seems that he remembers sticking his tongue into actresses mouths differently than they do. Again, another amazing surprise.
I won’t bore you with details of conversations I’ve had, but the liberal folks seem to write it off as “just juvenile behavior” and “not so much like real sexual assault – you know, like other people” and similar excuses for him. Fine. You fly your flag that way, and I’ll fly mine my way. Just remember, this is a double edged-sword that you’ve been using on the the right for years, and now it’s coming back in your direction. Buck up, little cowboys, when you excuse it because it’s one of your team, you have to excuse the other guy’s players as well. Also, might I simply ask you this: what would your response be if Al Franken stuck his tongue in your mouth and grabbed your parts? Is he still just a high-spirited prankster? Is he still just a silly guy who never grew up? Or a guy who abuses women? Good. Now we know where you really stand. Let’s give others the benefit of the doubt on that one as well.
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In case you were wondering about the white gloves, they are an item I am never without in my other life: Santa. If you see a picture of me after the first few years of my being Santa, you will note the white gloves. You will also, with very rare exceptions, note the gloves visible in some part of the picture. Now, the exception would be if I’m at the back of a mob of people and the gloves are behind a row of flesh. But I’d wager that 98% of the photos I’m in, and it’s tens of thousands every year, you will see those white gloves.
Strangely, I have 0% doubt about ever grabbing any adult by the bum, breasts, or other non-negotiable parts. That’s ZERO. And, I’m almost willing to bet Mr. Franken a year’s pay that I’m in a lot more pictures than he is every year. I’ll even do a lie-detector test if he’ll do the same. The one caveat is babies and runaway toddlers: when they are placed in the cradle of my arms, it’s a good bet that I’m holding them along their entire length. That happens when you’re as big as I am and your hands are huge. Same with escapee children diving for the floor – you grab any handle you can to avoid cracked skulls and broken arms.
Here’s the concept Al is missing: it’s wrong to grab people the way he’s grabbed people. It’s vulgar. It’s intrusive. It’s reprehensible. It’s criminal sexual contact in some states (sadly, not in Minnesota, where you can grab a butt without consequences of a sexual nature. It’s still assault, but not sexual assault.) The “He’s an entertainer” defense doesn’t cut it, because I’m one as well – not on the same scale, but still in the public eye asking for smiles.
Lots of people sit on my knees every year. Kids, men, women, grandfathers, grandmothers, the offensive line of the Vikings, and the occasional dog or cat. With the exception of the two years I had knee surgery, I’ve allowed people to sit on my knee because it makes a great photo. I’m a big guy with strong legs and can take it. I’ve never made anyone do it, always their choice. But the invitation is out there for anyone under 300 pounds. I do not allow them, however, to sit on my lap. Because no matter how innocent it seems, the potential for disaster is looming in the background. It’s called “standards.”
There is, if you are worth a damn, a moral code to dealing with the public. From my first day in the public eye as Santa, I have avoided situations that might compromise my integrity. I hate boozy adult parties. I’ve been propositioned more than a few times by both sexes (yes, I’m cisgender and proud of it.) and never let them get to phase two of the offer. Not worth it in any way. I love my wife. I respect my clients. I don’t need any strange diseases, angry spouses, shattered images, or, most importantly, guilt for not following my own rules. They happen to be the ones God put out there as well.
Al, and I think since you work for me I can call you that, you need to get a pair of white gloves. Wear them whenever you are in public so we can track your hands. And grow another kind of pair. The kind of pair that allow you to stand up for what is right and proper.
If you’d like to send Al a pair of white gloves to remind him of his responsibilities, you can mail them to: 60 Plato Blvd Suite #220, St Paul, MN 55107. Please be polite and stick to white gloves, and white gloves only.
Finally, a note of thanks to all who contributed to the last post’s funding campaign to help pay for my friend Arthur “Tweet” Williams funeral expenses. You were all very kind. The short story will be out to you in email form later this week.
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Assault on Saint Agnes is available here. Just click this link!
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