Thorns & Roses: The Worst, Best And Most Absurd (6/16)

Rose: Louisville’s Known Hometown Hero

Louisville needs to renew the Hometown Heroes program, at least to honor one more hero: Hannah Drake. Drake, who has been gracious to allow LEO to run much of her work over the past several years, was featured for her Project (Un)Known in the Arts section of The New York Times Sunday. Project (Un)Known, a multimedia artwork that is a memorial to enslaved people, which will be officially dedicated this Saturday, “is both a remembrance and a provocation — a memorial to those whose stories will never be uncovered, as well as a challenge to the public to unearth narratives that may exist, but are hidden in archives, in attics, in family genealogies, in corporate histories. The hope is to help shift those narratives from the category of ‘forgotten’ to ‘known,’” The Times wrote. Project (Un)Known is a remarkable project — and important for this city to embrace, as we struggle to overcome the evil of racism, segregation and oppression, today.

Thorn: KY’s UnAmerican Senators

A “favorite” social media question is: Which state has the worst senators in the country? Florida’s bad, Texas… both awful. But the answer is Kentucky: It’s not even close, and the margin is only getting wider after this week. Sen. Mitch McConnell, who has singlehandedly devastated the integrity and functionality of the Senate (and federal government), escalated his attacks during a radio interview on Monday. McConnell told conservative (and deranged) radio host Hugh Hewitt that, if Republicans reclaim the Senate majority in 2022, he would block a Supreme Court nomination from President Joe Biden in 2024, and likely would block a nominee in 2023. It’s hard to imagine a more direct assault on American democratic institutions… but that won’t stop Rand Paul from trying! Sen. Paul tried to explain the minority-Republican’s abuse of the filibuster to thwart any legislative action pushed by Pres. Biden and Democrats, because that’s the difference between representative democracy and direct democracy, The New York Times reported. “The idea of democracy and majority rule really is what goes against our history and what the country stands for,” Paul said. “The Jim Crow laws came out of democracy. That’s what you get when a majority ignores the rights of others.” At this point, we’re used to their bullshit… we just figured they would be better at covering it.

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Rose: Back In The Pulitzer Glow

The Courier Journal, which won a Pulitzer Prize last year for breaking news for coverage of former Gov. Matt Bevin’s pardons, finished as finalists in two categories this year — breaking news and public service, for coverage of the police killing of Breonna Taylor and the protests that followed. Over the course of the last few years, Courier Journal has produced exceptional work from incredible journalists. They deserve this time in the spotlight. And to the numerous other journalists in town, we saw your fearless on-the-ground reporting over the last year. People like to spout shit about how local journalism is dead, but this city is loaded with media talent. We’re still here to criticize and pester all of you, but we also respect and admire a lot of your work. 

Rose: Protecting Our Rights 

On Monday, State Rep. Attica Scott and her daughter Ashanti Scott filed a lawsuit against the LMPD for violating their constitutional rights, after officers from the department arrested them during the protests in Louisville. The Scotts were arrested and charged with felony rioting, but that was dropped a few weeks later, since it was immediately clear how absurd that was. The majority of charges against protesters have now been dismissed, leading us to believe that the police were using arbitrary arrests as an intimidation factor. This sends a message that that can’t be tolerated. 

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