“If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools.”

— Plato

By Dr. Jim Ferguson  

The disadvantage of writing a weekly column is that it’s difficult to be contemporaneous. Actually, I like being spontaneous and writing about what interests me, rather than writing for an assignment or a job.

There are exceptions to spontaneity because I do plan columns for Thanksgiving and Christmas. And just around the corner is another notable exception, an event which may determine the well-being of the Knoxville community.

Early voting for the city council begins October 13, with the General Election scheduled for November 2, 2021. It is critical that conservative candidates be elected and defeat the progressive socialist Democrat incumbents. I believe progressives on the city council have taken Knoxville in the wrong direction. We have the opportunity to make a difference, since Knoxvillians get to vote for candidates in ALL five districts up for election.

Unfortunately, many do not consider the city council election to be important enough to vote and, as a result, a low turnout is expected. Becky and I cannot remember an election where we have not voted. However, our 50-year voting record pales beside Becky’s mother, Joanna, who voted in every election for 84 years until her passing in January, 2021. At 104 years old it was her time, but I wish we had this strong woman’s vote in November.

The somewhat mythical Amazons were strong, warrior women probably from the central Eurasian steppes and Synthia. The Greek historians Homer (the Iliad) and Heroditus wrote about these fearsome Amazon women as did modern classicist Adrianne Mayor of Stanford University. One wonders about such stories. However, Harvard historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich observed that “Well behaved women seldom make history.” Perhaps the Amazon myth has significant elements of historical truth.

I like strong women and, in fact, I’m married to one. And I learned long ago that I look better standing next to Becky, who, despite her strength, maintains her grace. And there are other strong women in Knoxville. Becky and her group of Amazons are supporting the “common sense” conservative candidates running for Knoxville City Council. You may have seen around town their Common-Sense signs listing the conservative candidates. Vote for them and make a difference in Knoxville.

I admit that I have never been absorbed by local politics. I have always been more interested in national and world affairs. However, I’ve come to realize that congressman Tip O’Neill was right, “All politics is local.” We are not going to solve America’s problems from Washington, D.C. We have seen the destructive results of a top-down and top-heavy government, currently on steroids with progressive socialist Democrats. We must take back our country, beginning in our city and then expanding outward and upward all the way to Washington, D.C. Our battle begins with Knoxville’s City Council.

I realize it’s hard not to feel discouraged by rising taxes, ruinous spending and debt, inflation, open borders with illegal invasion, the Afghan debacle, the DOJ threatening parents and Covid induced insanity of mandated vaccination and mask tyranny. A progressive friend told me, “I’m in my 70s and can’t do anything about the problems of the country.” I appealed to him for his children and grandchildren’s sake. He actually said, “I’m not gonna worry about it.”

Folks, this is not the love of country and duty of the Americans who stormed ashore on Omaha Beach or fought the Battle of the Bulge or stared down the Soviet Union saying, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” We do not have to risk life or limb; we just have to show up and vote against those who are destroying us from inside.

Becky and I often pick up our grandchildren from school. As I watched them file out, obscured by masks, I thought of the old Bangles song, “Manic Monday.”  It is certainly not a “mask less” Monday for my grammar school grans. It’s really pathetic because children wearing masks are virtually useless. Even adults frequently adjust their masks, touch their face, rub their eyes or adjust glasses and pull their masks down to sneeze from ragweed blooming this time of year. I hate to think about what goes on in a child’s mask.

Last week I wrote about masks and vaccinations. No one should miss a Doctor Is In column! but in case you did, the bottom line is

  1. Only N95 masks protect you from others, and they are difficult to wear properly.
  2. Paper Surgical masks, if worn properly, protect others from you.
  3. Vaccinations protect you from serious Covid infections, but, like masks, are imperfect and cannot replace common sense.

I’m concerned that standard masks offer people a false sense of security. It is speculated that handwashing, social distancing and masks had an impact on the historically low seasonal flu rate for 2020-21. While this seems logical, there are no clinical studies that confirm this hypothesis. Saint Fauci should be studying this rather than spouting his conflicting platitudes.

You may remember the Parkland student David Hogg from the tragic high school shooting in Florida. Hogg took yard-sign, virtue-signaling to a new level by saying he chose to wear a mask so others would not mistake him for a conservative. In other words, his “facial diaper” is a political statement/stunt.

I believe if you want to wear a mask, do so, but at best it offers 10% protection against Covid. Maybe this is worth it to you, but I believe commonsensical social distancing would offer greater protection. After all, quarantine is a proven technique with infectious diseases. Double and triple masking of your face is “Kabuki theater” to quote Saint Fauci.

Folks, we must choose life and Americanism. Life has some risk, but if we isolate ourselves from others, we are already dead. Furthermore, it is our duty to vote, and I plan to vote for all five of the candidates below. State Senator Becky Massey champions the power of 10. Encourage 10 others to vote. Join me and the Amazons of Knoxville to take back our city from the radical, progressive Democrats, and then we will move on to taking back America.