Jackson's Inaugural Absence Welcome

Inauguration Day 2001, when Republicans rejoiced after eight years of Clintonian despotism, wasn’t without its problems. An intruder shaking the new president’s hand, a protest along Pennsylvania Avenue, biting cold weather, and Ricky Martin all put a damper on the otherwise joyous occasion.

One thing, however, made it especially delightful: Jesse Jackson was nowhere in sight.

Of course, Jackson spent the day “”reconciling with his family in an undisclosed location”” — i.e. hiding from the media — because of the child he fathered out of wedlock.

Some people were surprised, and others were shocked, yet some of us already knew that Jackson is human slime. We must go far beyond his affair, to when he was acting as Bill Clinton’s “”spiritual advisor,”” for us to see his true colors.

Let’s examine his status as “”reverend.”” This is a taboo topic, because Jackson has no congregation to speak of and no church to name. His only following is the faceless string of protesters who trail him wherever he wanders. Apparently, he is a self-proclaimed minister who uses his title to immunize himself from all the steep, unfounded allegations he wields like a sword.

The protests and allegations immediately following the presidential election were just the latest examples of Jackson’s preposterous behavior. Think about it. Shortly after Al Gore retracted his concession, Jackson arrived in West Palm Beach, Fla. with hundreds of protesters. Whether Jackson and his protesters had been briefed on the object of their protest is unknown; all that is clear is that they were ready for action and eager to cause trouble.

I was shocked when I woke up that morning. It was as though the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse had arrived in Florida. There were protests everywhere, there were citizens who claimed they voted for the wrong candidate, there were minorities angry because they were turned away from polling booths, there were people calling for a revote, and every reporter in the country flocked to participate in that circus. They were also mad about some guy named Chad. It was a nightmare.

George W. Bush won the election fair and square. The voters, the Florida legislature, the U.S. Supreme Court, Congress, time and the Constitution have already established that firmly. What I find curious, however, is how Action Jackson and his fan club arrived in Florida so quickly. They had mere hours to mobilize and organize, but they did, and they did it well.

The Democrats were building this storm before any electoral votes had been called for either candidate. With thousands of Floridian Democrats angrily claiming to have voted for Pat Buchanan — even though most of them had, in fact, voted for Gore — this was definitely a battleground ripe for the picking for Jesse “”Rent-a-Mob”” Jackson.

That’s right: “”Rent-a-Mob”” is my favorite nickname for Jackson. I don’t believe he has ever worked a day in his life. All he does is protest. How do you think he supports himself and his family? Through protesting. How can you possibly respect a professional protester? And as I mentioned earlier, he’s always ready for action, and he certainly loves publicity. You need an angry mob to protest something? Call Jackson: He’s always open for business.

The problem I have with his behavior in Florida is his baseless accusations that Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Secretary of State Katherine Harris were responsible for disenfranchising African American and Jewish voters statewide.

I can handle accusations that they favored Bush in the election but I don’t believe it had any influence on the outcome of the election. Jackson’s claim, however, is simply unbelievable. It just shows that the man has no ethics. Claiming that police were sent to prevent minorities from voting might have been justified in the 1960s, but without some hard evidence this is nothing more than slander, for which Jeb Bush and Harris could file substantial lawsuits against Jackson. Mostly, I wish they would let the issue rest, but part of me wants him sued.

Don’t misunderstand me. I advocate civil rights as much as the next guy. I cannot, however, condone Jackson’s obviously unacceptable, underhanded methods.

I can’t go into much more detail here without a Kenneth Starr-sized report to justify all my claims. What I can tell you, however, is that this man is bad news.

In his youth, Jackson was friends with Martin Luther King, Jr. If you don’t remember anything else from this article, remember this: King was a great man who dedicated his life to fighting for civil rights and succeeded, but Jackson leeches off the African American community to serve his personal goals.

Jackson has been out of the spotlight for more than two months now. I can only hope he stays out.

More to Discover
Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$200
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$200
$500
Contributed
Our Goal