Friday, March 27, 2015

Meet my pal Joe


Ann and Joe Scheidler
     I've written about Joe Scheidler before  And while I know he represents something truly despicable, and has enough baggage to fill an airplane, I find it impossible to hold it against him. Perhaps because he's always so friendly—that counts for something in life. He pushes his beliefs, energetically, yet maintains a certain decorum, at least to me.

     “Hey, it’s my pal, Joe Scheidler!” I said, happily, seeing the white-bearded man on the corner of Madison and Wacker holding a 5-foot-tall sign showing a fetus at eight weeks. I pumped his hand. Good old Joe, known him for years.
     “Honey,” I said to my wife, who works downtown now and commutes with me. “This is the famous Joe Scheidler, national director of the Pro-Life Action League.”
     He stuck out his gloved hand. She looked at it.
     After nearly 25 years of marriage, you’d think I’d know the woman. But I forget. My wife’s a hardass. When I found myself in a booth at Gene & Georgetti, having coffee with then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich, I also forgot. We were getting on, bonding and, wanting to show off, I asked Blagojevich if he’d mind saying hello to my wife. I dialed the cellphone, handed it to him. “Hello!” he said in his fake butch voice. “This is Governor Rod Blagojevich!” The smile died on his face. He mechanically handed me back the phone.
     “What are you doing?” my wife spat. “I didn’t even vote for him. Come home.”
     But that was over the phone. Face to face with Joe, 87, father of seven, grandfather of 23, she melted — a little. After a moment that lasted an eternity, she took his hand with her left and gave it a single squeeze. We continued on our way, pushing east on Madison.
     “The left hand doesn’t count,” she said.


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20 comments:

  1. Thank you for the reminder - I haven't done my 2015 contribution to Planned Parenthood yet. I think I'll put that on the weekend chore list.

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  2. How about a group shot with you, Joe and the Westboro Church? After reading several of your books, virtually all of your columns and posts, you'd think I know the man? Perhaps this is taking "know thine enemy" a bit far?

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  3. I doubt that you and Joe Scheidler are the polar opposites you depict. Myself, I support laws protecting the right to abort, but have no argument with those who would try to persuade women not to do so.

    John

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  4. I think this underplays Scheilder's history a bit - he and his Pro Life Action League aren't in the same league as Westboro loons, but they have worked with Don Wildmon's "Family Decency" outfit which has engaged in anti-semitism (remember their "Wasserman Is a Jew" posters when they attacked "Last Temptation of Christ"?) and Sheidler is easily the equal of the religious conservatives Mr. Steinberg has attacked viscously in terms of gay bashing. I used to listen to his recorded hotline from time to time.

    Which makes it ironic Mr. Steinberg mentions Jay Mariotti - whatever else you can say about J.M. (and I've heard from friends who have met him that he was a pretty cold fish), his writings on sports were not only great reads, but were often a beacon of moral clarity where other sportsjournos were apologists. Like when others were writing "leave Marge Schotz alone" drivel.

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    1. "...Mr. Steinberg has attacked viscously..." Well, that would imply he's been spitting on them, at a minimum! Just a typo, I realize, A-n-A, but not a good word-picture. A funny one, though... ; )

      Neil,

      Seems to me that your wife's attitude is akin to Senators or Reps of rival factions no longer having lunch together, doing away with the simple civilities of the old order. I can understand the impulse, but I still think common courtesy has a lot to be said for it. Not even shaking hands takes it to another level, entirely. "“The left hand doesn’t count” -- oh my, nailed him with that one!

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    2. I wonder about the validity of the "simple civilities of the old order."

      Famously, the Allies and the Germans had a Christmas Truce and of course, each side treated officers with the utmost respect and courtesy, none of which prevented them from killing each other in then unprecedented numbers.

      John

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    3. J - apologies for conjuring the image (which you have justifiably repaid in kind!)

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  5. He’s battling for what he believes. The people who believe otherwise, well, they’re just sort of sitting there, letting it happen.

    "The best lack all conviction, while the worst/Are full of passionate intensity."
    --W.B. Yeats

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  6. The various pro-choice women's groups have been incompetent from Day 1.
    They've totally failed to understand the people they were up against & even worse, failed to understand those that agreed with them.
    I think the worst decisions that most of them made was in their choice of spokeswomen. For some reason, the heads of several organizations happened to be lesbians, but not your average lesbian, but ones who flat out hated men & that really hurt them. They let Andrea Dworkin on TV as a spokeswoman for women's rights & that angry, male bashing, ugly fat slob in farmer's overalls [the only clothing that came large enough to fit her] just pissed everyone that had been with them. They refused to attack her on the grounds that attacking another woman was wrong.
    The anti-abortion loons had great graphics, the Stop sign. the pro-choice women have some round mess that looks like a 3 year old designed it. And if you don't think graphics are important, then remember that companies spend millions just for a logo that won't annoy the customers or be unreadable.
    Then they went & supported candidates who were unelectable, not because of their position on abortion, but because they were jerks.

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    1. I must have missed Andrea Dworkin's tenure as head of NARAL.

      To the extent that Dworkin is even mentioned anymore, it's almost entirely by MRAs and others hostile to feminism.

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    2. It's not that Dworkin was the head of NARAL, it was that she somehow managed to have influence & that NARAL was run by man hating lesbians for a while, which wrecked their credibility among the rest of the pro-choice women & men.

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  7. While I like to see a lady with choice up to month 3, women and men should know enough to use birth control first, the poor can even get it for free in clinics, and too many women let men get away with , oh won't wear condom, then stuck holding bag or don't do for selves. Many kinds, doesn't have to be pill, heck even spermicidal stuff at walgreens, I don't want my tax dollar paying for abortions. Wow, your wife sounds like a tough one, Neal, and 'm a female saying that.

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    1. oops , meant to spell that Neil, not neal

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  8. Exactly,Clark, even as hetero female and married I don't like those man hating butch lesbo types.

    That doesn't mean I'm against gay rights in general

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    1. I've known plenty of lesbians and count some among my good friends. I've never known any who were "man haters." Do some exist? Of course, just as there are men who hold women in contempt. I've also known women who are "butch types." I've never known any who are hateful toward men. The man-hating stereotype has more to do with the fevered preoccupations of Freeper types than it has to do with most people in the real world.

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  9. He picketed our high school graduation. The one his daughter was attending. He came in for the ceremony though. My parents sat behind the two of them, and my mother quite enjoyed that the reason for his picketing came out to speak to the graduating class, his wife forgot and clapped for him, and he gave her a look and reminded her that she wasn't supposed to clap.

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    1. I feel sorry for his daughter, prob mortified. Unless she's brainwashed too

      with time neil, you 're getting too conserve.

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    2. he prob doesn't do dishes, thinking it's women's work only, bet he never changed a baby diaper

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  10. I'm solidly with your wife on this one Neil! The day that men can become pregnant and carry and give birth to babies will be the day that they will have a legitimate right to express their opinions about abortion. This guy is a public nuisance of the worst kind and he should be made to keep his overbearing, condescending opinions to himself! Please don't encourage him with your attitude of approbation.

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  11. he prob bosses and controls his stepford wife

    I knew of some extreme born agains, think women shouldn't take pain relief at hosp or birth at home since old testament woman didn't or is evil, lol

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