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Friday, August 05, 2005

Only Say Good Things!!

I do not know how much national coverage this story got, and I doubt that it was even a blip on the international radar - but in Miami it is a big deal.

Former Miami and Dade County Commissioner Art Teele killed himself last week. He spattered his brains all over the lobby walls of The Miami Herald. Needless to say, when a high profile politician shoots himself in the lobby of a major newspaper, it results in some headlines.

For those of you who do not live here, Art Teele was a crook. Just google his name and read some stories yourself. He was found guilty of accepting bribes, there are audio recordings of him making threats to police officers, he pulled strings so companies he had a stake in got fat county contracts - even if his companies were not the low bidder, and there are even reports from a free paper (which by the way has an excellent reputation for accurate in-depth investigative reporting) that Teele was involved with male and female prostitutes, drugs, and all sorts of other things.

There was nothing good about this man. He was a crook that STOLE MILLIONS from taxpayers. He killed himself because he was going to serve jail time, and could not deal with that fact. He was not going to get away with it.

Teele was able to stay in office mainly because he played the race card on voters. Teele was a black man, and represented areas where there are a lot of black voters. His supporters did not want to hear any bad things about him, they were convinced he was doing positive things for them. Not that Teele was the only crook in office, it is just that the other crooks would move on to bigger and better things, or the bad press would cause them to loose an election so some other crook could take over.

but after Teele killed himself, people protested. What did they protest? Who did they blame? Whose fault was all of this? Obviously it was the newspaper! Had the newspaper just not printed anything, Teele would still be alive today! How DARE the media to report news! The man is dead now, and it is their fault.

People have protested both the Miami Herald and the New Times. They have protested the police. They have protested the State Attorney. Basicly, anyone who had anything to do with the investigation into Teele are being blamed for his suicide.

Another thing being said is that ONLY good things should be said from this point on, because Teele has children. Excuse me?!?! We should not say that the man was a crook who STOLE from the public because he has kids? We should lie, and cover up the truth, and condemn the media, because of what?!?!

The people who are protesting are also victims here - their tax money was stolen too. But they do not see this. I do not know what they see, but apparently it is something not in line with reality. The man they voted for and supported WAS A CROOK, and still would be a crook if he had not blown his brains out. And Art brought all this on himself by being a crook, NOT the newspaper. Had the man choose an honest life, he would have never been under investigation.

But forget all that. We should only say good things about him now. We should forget the rather long list of bad things.

And if Hitler had children, what then? Would the same logic apply, or would it be OK to print the truth about him?

I think this is bullcrap. Just because you die does not mean you deserve a flowery eulogy from everyone. Anything good he did (not everything he did was bad) was wiped out by his criminal activity. He made his own legacy, not the newspaper.


Blogger DazzlinDino said...

Ever see the Billy Crystal eulogy in Analyze This(or Analyze That, one of the two) when his father died......

Blogger Tom & Icy said...

Just hope you don't write my obituary!

Blogger BarbaraFromCalifornia said...

Yes, that story broke while we we in Miami. It was indeed sad that he felt the need to take his own life, but the media reaction to it was even sadder.

Blogger GodlessMom said...

I heard about it on the local news here in Houston so it has made the national news circuit. People are so loath to speak ill of the dead it's funny. It's like they will jinx their way into Heaven or something.

Why do you suppose people are so incapable of seeing the negative in politicians they have supported? If their own spouse went out and did some seriously henious things I don't think these people would wear the same blinders. Yet if they vote for an elected official all bets are off, it's like once you cast your vote you can't change your mind about a person's character. Weird.

Blogger dddragon said...

Didn't hear about Teele. Bud Dwyer did the same thing here in PA in 1987. Mom can tell you more about it, she was in the same building at the time and could have been a witness at his trial. Googling his name will result in quite a few sites, some graphic.

Blogger Tan Lucy Pez said...

Your post made my stomach hurt, for more than one reason.

As my daughter, dddragon wrote, I was in the Pennsylvania State Treasury Building because I worked there as an accountant. It was the morning January 22, 1987. I remember there was snow on the ground.

R. Budd Dwyer was the PA State Treasurer, and had been convicted of bribery. He called a press conference, talked to the reporters for about half an hour, protesting that he was innocent, and then drew a .357 magnum, put it in his mouth, and pulled the trigger.

Later that day, I actually saw his blood on the wall. Not on purpose. They left the door open and I had to walk past his office to get out. Why did they leave it open?

He was guilty. But I was very sorry that he felt so desperate; sorry that he had died.

He wasn't wicked. He was guilty. But, he wasn't wicked.

If he had lived, he would have been sentenced later that day. If he had been sentenced, his retirement funds would be forfeit. By dying that morning, he saved his retirement funds for his wife and children.

The film of him shooting himself was shown on TV, over and over. His children and wife have to live with that image forever. That's the fault of Budd Dwyer AND the press. It was wrong to show his brains flying on TV. And you could see that.

Does the press have to speak well of the dead? No. The public deserves the truth.

Sorry for the long comment. I will NOT be hurt or upset if you delete it. Truly.

Blogger AP3 said...

The public does deserve the truth, and it is silly to blame the media for Teele's death.

I guess when I hear this story, I'm mostly struck by how sad it is that Teele shot himself. I can't help but feel sorry for him for feeling that miserable in THAT moment. Can you imagine? That must be unbelievable emotional pain. And of course I'm sure we all feel horrible for his surviving loved ones.

But the tragedy of his death is a separate thing from the wrongs he did. If he did wrong, and it sounds like he did, then the public should be told by the press. But he's dead now, and he must've been miserable, so his punishment is complete.

Blogger Saur♥Kraut said...

Iguana, Yup, you are absolutely right. I'd add more but you said it so well. I wasn't familiar with the case, but the guy sounds unbelievable.

Blogger Fred said...

Miami politics in general has always been tainted. Heck, at one point, the feds had to take over the city becasue it was run into the ground.

Teele died as he lived - tragically.


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