- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 31, 2003

No nerds here

We’re glad to see, given all the talk this week about gay “marriages,” that real men are back in Washington.

The September 2003 issue of the American Enterprise is all about men — the return of the manly politician, how Democrat and Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill are different breeds, what women want from men, manly art, the hunting male, why maleness is back in fashion, how feminism has undermined masculinity and what President Bush, Donald H. Rumsfeld, Rudolph W. Giuliani and Dick Cheney all have in common.

The magazine also invited six spirited women into its offices, among them author and syndicated columnist Mona Charen and National Review Washington Editor Kate O’Beirne, to talk about the condition of the male species.

Our favorite question: “Why are there so many wimpy male journalists?”

Miss Charen: “Because they’re liberals. Not to say there aren’t some conservative wimps. But conservatives never really bought into the notion of androgyny or into feminism, and so conservative men never felt the need to abandon their manliness. Liberal men, on the other hand, thought that was being enlightened. So, since most journalists are liberal [89 percent in Washington, according to a Freedom Forum poll] a lot of them are wimpy.”

Miss O’Bierne: “It goes back to how these journalists spent their high school years, which I assume was being stuffed into lockers by other males. This also explains the whole media love affair with John McCain. He created a fighter pilot ready-room in the back of his bus and told off-color jokes and brought these former high school nerds into the circle of the cool guy. They were so thrilled that one of the jocks was finally paying attention to them that they just swooned.”

Keep out

Montana has become the first state to prohibit the sale of land to the federal government.

“State land may not be sold to the federal government or to any agency of the federal government, except for the purpose of building federal facilities and structures,” says the amendment introduced by Republican State Rep. Rick Maedje and signed into law by Republican Gov. Judy Martz.

“Not only does the federal government fail to pay taxes on land it holds, but even the PILT payments [Payments in Lieu of Taxes] it promises us never come through,” Mr. Maedje explains to Environment & Climate News.

“Worse yet,” he continues, “Montana has had nothing but serious problems in the last 30 years with virtually every acre the federal government claims to have jurisdiction over in this state. Selling the feds our state land is like rubbing salt in a wound.”

Finally, a roof

After three years of legislative delays, the most-visited memorial in the nation’s capital will get a visitor center.

The U.S. Senate has unanimously approved legislation allowing a visitor center to be built at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, a vote that memorial-fund founder Jan C. Scruggs calls “an enormous victory for America’s young people.”

“This educational facility will provide thousands of students each day with the opportunity to learn about service, sacrifice and patriotism at The Wall,” he predicts.

Last May, after several failed attempts, Sen. Chuck Hagel, Nebraska Republican and Vietnam combat veteran, re-introduced legislation to build the center, along with fellow Vietnam-combat vets Sens. John Kerry, Massachusetts Democrat, and John McCain, Arizona Republican.

Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle of South Dakota and Virginia GOP Sen. John Warner also have been longtime proponents of the center.

When completed in three or so years, the center will provide an overview of the Vietnam War and the resulting memorial, as well as photographs of those killed or missing in action and some of the more than 60,000 items that have been left at the Wall over the years. The center will be built underground within the Memorial’s existing 2-acre site.

Hippie return

“Environmentalists Against War” will converge in San Francisco on Oct. 4 to draw attention to the environmental and social justice effects of war — from Iraq to the home front.

Concerns of the activists (in their own words): erosion of civil liberties while targeting U.S. immigrants, labor and people of color; analysis of the military budget and what social services are suffering as a result; military exemptions from environmental laws under the guise of national security; proposed new U.S. nuclear and conventional weapons and the resultant arms race; public health impacts of depleted uranium and other war-related toxins; oil dependency and the Bush administration’s energy policy; U.S. refusal to sign treaties that ban weapons; exposing WMD (weapons of mass destruction) “lies” and the propaganda campaign for war; and the next presidential election.

We guess the latter means they won’t be supporting George W. Bush — granted they vote.

John McCaslin, a nationally syndicated columnist, can be reached at 202/636-3284 or [email protected].

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