By: Keith Kappes
Carter County Times
Today’s message is directed to those guys (and a few gals) who like to dress up in military camouflage and carry their loaded assault rifles in public as they try to keep various, mainly unarmed groups of protesters from hurting each other.
Don’t be surprised, however, if the mobilization order for this new mission doesn’t include the dude in Louisville who recently dropped his AR-15 on the street and slightly wounded three of his own troops when the weapon accidentally discharged.
Rumor has it that he has been transferred to the Barney Fife Brigade for clumsy, wannabe riflemen who now must carry their bullets in their shirt pockets for the public’s safety.
Surely, you remember ole Barney, played by Don Knotts, as the bumbling but lovable deputy on the Andy Griffith Show, now in syndicated reruns for about 50 years. Knotts won five Emmys in that role and never wounded anyone.
As for the title of this commentary, it is based on a growing list of complaints that hundreds, perhaps thousands, of neighborhood mailboxes have been removed by the U. S. Postal Service.
The USPS owns about 142,000 of those blue mailboxes. They claim removal and relocation of the boxes is done routinely to match the changing volume of outgoing mail.
Other folks say the mailboxes are disappearing because of President Trump’s feud with Congress over more operating money for the USPS. His critics say he wants to restrict the right of Americans to vote by mail.
The furor is focused on Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a former shipping executive and a major Trump donor. In about 11 weeks on the job, DeJoy says he has overhauled the Postal Service’s finances by reducing overtime and reassigning 33 executives, according to various media sources.
The issue recently became political fodder when Joe Biden, a candidate for president, joked about citizens physically trying to hold onto their local mailboxes.
A Montana senator said the postal changes had “set my hair on fire” as he threatened to call the postmaster general before Congress to explain. Sadly, no photos of the senator’s burning hair are available.
Joyfully, the postmaster general now says the mailbox removals have stopped temporarily and that all mailed ballots will be delivered in time for the November election.
I don’t know if President Trump is trying to sabotage the USPS or not. But I would feel better if we provided armed (but unloaded) sentries at neighborhood mailboxes as a less dangerous mission for our various militia groups.
Keith Kappes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org