Blue fish, blue state
When former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama read Dr. Seuss books to school children during their tenure in the White House, they received nothing but praise.
When current first lady Melania Trump donated Dr. Seuss books to one school in every state earlier this month to mark National Read a Book Day, a Cambridge, Mass., elementary school librarian said she wouldn't keep the books, ripped into Seuss and attempted to shame the first lady for giving the books to a well-to-do school.
The first lady's choice of Seuss, said Liz Phipps Soeiro was a "cliché," Seuss is a "tired and worn ambassador for children's literature" and his illustrations are steeped in "racist propaganda, caricatures and harmful stereotypes."
Former President Obama, on the other hand, said at a "Read Across America" event last year that "pretty much all the stuff you need to know is in Dr. Seuss."
Soeiro said Trump should donate books to libraries in Detroit, Philadelphia and Chicago. She didn't mention it, but all three cities have large pockets of poverty-ridden neighborhoods and have for many years been run by Democrats.
"Are those kids any less deserving of books simply because of circumstances beyond their control?" she wrote. "Why not go out of your way to gift books to underfunded and underprivileged communities that continue to be marginalized and maligned?"
The Cambridge school system said the librarian had been "counseled" on policies such as using "public resources" for "political purposes" and said she was not authorized to accept or reject any donated books.
Her grace comes with a dagger
Former first lady Michelle Obama, apparently with a straight face, criticized Republicans in a speech last week for not supporting her husband but also said "most 'formers' do take a step back. They do let the current holder of the office lead. You do step up when you're asked, and you do try to make sure what you say is constructive."
One of her "constructive" lines, referencing President Donald Trump, was this: "He is our commander in chief — he was voted in. Ha ha. You know, we may not like it."
Then came her killer punchline: Democrats, Obama said, are "leading with grace, humility and diplomacy."
What? Regardless of your feelings about Trump, no one could truthfully say Democrats are doing that. They have lied, miss-stated and exaggerated about the president's every word and move since his election.
Former President Barack Obama's predecessor, Republican George W. Bush, did exhibit grace and humility where Obama was concerned, but what did Michelle Obama say?
"Now, like I said, there was a whole party that didn't do that for my husband — a whole political party that did not do that," she said. "But what we've learned is that part of our legacy is leading with grace and being humble and diplomatic."
Wow. Just wow.
Why are we here again?
Protesters during a canceled free speech rally in Berkeley, Calif., recently seemed intimidating with shouts and signs and banners, but the facade melted away when a videographer asked them questions about what they were protesting.
Arthur Fletcher, who goes by Fleccas on YouTube, checked in with a few protesters with a microphone attached to a wooden spoon and a small digital recorder.
He said, overall, about 5 to 10 percent of protesters he talked to could explain what they were protesting.
One man holding a sign calling President Donald Trump the "enemy" and a "tyrant" said the police were "promoting hate speech" because they were standing between protesters with different points of view. He said the University of California was inviting "sick people" like Milo Yiannopoulous, Ann Coulter and former White House staffer Steve Bannon to speak. Such people. he said, want to "brainwash Americans" and feel "it is OK to cull people and put them into camps." Yiannopoulous, he said, encourages people to run over protesters in cars.
One woman yelling across a police line at another protester, when asked, wasn't quite sure what was bothering her about him.
"I can't pick out a quote in particular," she said.
Across the line, the man many of the protesters were targeting with shouts of "Nazi scum" was no Nazi or white supremacist but a Trump supporter of Indian descent who had had a friend killed by an illegal immigrant.
Men marry men. Women marry women. Men and women have married trees. Three men married earlier this year in Colombia.
So sologamy, where Laura Mesi recently married herself in Italy? It's just "a pinch of madness," she said.
"I firmly believe that each of us must first of all love ourselves," said the 40-year-old fitness trainer. "You can have a fairy tale even without the prince."
The ceremony was complete with white dress, three-layer wedding cake, bridesmaids and 70 guests, but carries no legal weight.
"I told friends and family that if I had not found my soul-mate by my 40th birthday," Mesi told LaRepubblica newspaper, "I would marry myself."
The woman said she was the first of her gender to have such a ceremony in Italy. A man beat her to the punch earlier this year in Naples.
Of course, a few detractors commented on Mesi's social media wedding pictures: "So sad," "you're out of your mind," and "there's something wrong with your brain" were a few, but she said "nothing and no one can turn off my smile."