When Ham Sandwiches Attack . . .
Vol: 67 Issue: 24 Tuesday, April 24, 2007
When Ham Sandwiches Attack . . .
Generally speaking, ham sandwiches are quiet and unassuming and don’t really seem to have much of an opinion on any given subject.
Indeed, a ham sandwich can be a welcome friend, it can be a traveling companion, eventually, it can even be lunch, but there is no recorded incident in which a ham sandwich has ever exhibited any malevolence.
The last time a ham sandwich gave society a major problem was the Mama Cass Affair. When Cass Elliot (Mama Cass of the Mamas and the Papas — in case you were out of town for the 70’s) died in 1974, her death was popularly ascribed to having choked to death on a ham sandwich.
The ham sandwich was innocent. There was a ham sandwich and a Coke found by her bedside, but the sandwich was untouched. The coroner eventually ruled that Cass Elliot died of a heart attack brought on by obesity.
Blaming the ham sandwich was a bad beef. . .
Actually, the only thing a ham sandwich has ever been guilty of, in my experience, was bad judgment. Who can forget the time that a ham sandwich incorrectly assumed two packages would not get mailed unless somebody took them to the Post Office? Or how humiliated that same ham sandwich was when the Post Office Lady picked the packages up?
(Come to think of it, that particular ham sandwich had a Jewish accent. Hmmmm)
Now, sadly, another ham sandwich is back in the news. This time, however, it isn’t charged with murder, or parodied in a TV commercial for its bad judgment.
In this latest incident, the ham sandwich is charged with committing a hate crime.
Once again, however, it appears that the ham sandwich is getting a bum wrap. Allow me to explain. . .
A middle school student in Lewiston, Maine is being investigated by police for a possible hate crime because he placed a bag containing a ham sandwich on a cafeteria table where Muslim students from Somalia were eating their lunch.
Why Muslims students from Somalia were in a middle school in Maine eating lunch is grist for a different mill. Don’t they have cafeterias in Somalia? But I digress.
Anyway, the school superintended took prompt action, ordering the student who brought the ham sandwich to school suspended, and promising more disciplinary action, should the investigation prove the ham sandwich was guilty as charged.
“Placing ham where Muslim students were eating as an awful thing,” said Stephen Wessler, the executive director of the Center for Prevention of Hate Violence. “It’s extraordinarily hurtful and degrading. They probably felt like they were back in Mogadishu starving and being shot at.”
(Images of ham sandwiches running amok with high-powered automatic weapons flash across my mind at this point. No wonder Clinton pulled us out of Somalia in the 1990’s.)
Continued Wessler, “No child, Muslim or normal, should have to endure touching a ham sandwich.”
But wait! Isn’t there some other rule about not touching somebody else’s lunch in a cafeteria?
Evidently, THAT’S kosher — provided one isn’t actually IN Somalia, where touching somebody else’s lunch can be a capital crime punishable by death — depending on how well-armed the owner of that lunch is at the time.
And what does the guy mean by, “No child, Muslim or NORMAL?” Surely Stephen Wessler, as executive director of the Center for the Prevention of Hate Violence, wasn’t suggesting that Muslim children aren’t ‘normal’, was he?
Wessler continued, “Incidents like this that involve degrading language or conduct are often said by the perpetrator as a joke. But unfortunately we don’t live in a world where young children try to be funny, we live in a society in which these types of actions always escalate into violence against minorities.”
“If people think insulting Muslims with ham is okay, more degrading acts will follow. The Jews had to go through the same thing when the Nazis would force-feed them bacon; do we really want our schools to become concentration camps?”
To which I reply with a hearty, “Heck, NO!” I can see Wessler’s point. First, some kid brings a ham sandwich to school . . . and the next thing you know, Jewish kids in middle schools all over America will be forced by Nazis to eat bacon.
A joke??? I’m not laughing. And neither is the Executive Director of a Ham Sandwich Anti-Defamation League. According to Porky Pig, “H–h-ham s-s-sandwiches are r-r-r-routinely t-t-t-t-targeted f-f-for m-m-m-m-m-m-mal-l-l-l-icous p-pprosecution. How mmmmany t-t-times have you heard that a prosecutor c–c-can g-get a g-g-g-grand jury to indict a h-h-h-ham s-s-s-sandwich?”
The middle school principle, Leon Levesque, assured Somali parents throughout Maine, “the incident does not reflect the moral values of the school staff and students. We need to take a look at this and review how a careless act is degrading and causes hurt to other people. All our students should feel welcome in our schools, knowing that they are safe from attacks with ham, bacon, porkchops, or any other delicious meat that comes from pigs.”
You probably think that I’m making this up. A ham sandwich as a hate crime? Sadly, I am not.
The story was reported by both Boston. com and the Lewiston Sun-Journal — it’s on the level.
According to the Sun-Journal, its been a rough week for Somalis in Maine.
“A lot of anger and hate has been flying around,” said Steve Wessler of the Center for the Prevention of Hate Violence. In the days after last Thursday’s report of a hate incident at Lewiston Middle School involving a ham steak left at a lunch table to insult Somali students, a Sun Journal newspaper forum was so filled with hostility it was shut down.
Wessler said he received hate e-mail and two phone messages in which a man threatened to commit violence against him.” The poor guy. What should be done? That is the question that has Pine Tree Staters all a’twitter.
Noted the Sun-Journal; “For years, Catholics suffered prejudice before being accepted.” (But, as everybody knows, it is harder to use a ham sandwich to commit a hate crime against a Catholic. He would be just as likely to eat the weapon, destroying the evidence in the process.)
But change is in the works. Last year, a local man named Brent Matthews rolled a pig’s head into a local mosque. Last Saturday, perhaps driven to despair by angry falafels, Matthews committed suicide in the local Marsden’s parking lot.
As one local, Edward Boucher, told the paper, “Eventually these things work themselves out.”
“But does it make it right?” the Sun-Journal quoted Zamzam Mohamud, 32, the mother of one traumatized victim. “Then does it just keep going? Where does it stop? There isn’t much of a community if we don’t make a change.”
And THAT is where the laughter stops.
America’s reputation was built around the concept of the Great American Melting Pot. In happier times, new immigrants would come to America to become Americans. The idea was to melt all the various cultures of all the various immigrants into a single, uniquely American culture.
Under that concept, Americans were not required to adopt the culture of its immigrants, but rather, immigrants were expected to adopt the culture of America. What made it a ‘community’ was that immigrants made ‘the change’ to conform to the existing culture.
The concept of “multiculturalism” — the Holy Grail of the liberal Left — insists that immigrants refuse to assimilate into American culture, forcing immigrants into cultural ‘ghettos’ where liberal politicians can pander to concentrated special interest lobbies.
One can’t win in Florida without the Cuban vote. One can’t win in Texas or California without the Mexican vote. One can’t win in the Northeast without the black vote, or in New York without the Jewish vote. And one can’t win in certain parts of Michigan without the Muslim vote.
So a liberal need only pander to the demands of the various concentrations of minorities to win public office — from which he can strengthen his base by bashing America as a whole as a collection of hateful xenophobes.
One can’t engage in class warfare without some underprivileged class to champion. And the best way to ensure that is to keep immigrants concentrated in ethnic ghettos as exiles from their home countries, rather than as immigrants to the New World.
Zamzan Mahamud’s solution was quoteworthy because her solution fits the liberal agenda — that America that must change its culture to conform to that of its immigrants.
Since America is made up of immigrants from every country in the world, there will always be more changes to demand, more immigrant groups to pander to, and more elections to be won.
Today, the ham sandwich. Tomorrow, Sharia law. Eventually, pictures of Osama bin Laden festooning American cities and towns.
Sound far-fetched? No more so than the fear of Nazis force-feeding bacon to Jewish kids in American concentration camps — cleverly disguised as middle-schools.
When a ham sandwich is a hate crime, NOTHING is too far-fetched.