Cheap thrills, voice­mail and VJ Day, 2018

New Haven Register (Sunday) (New Haven, CT) - - MORE OPINION - KEN DIXON Ken Dixon, po­lit­i­cal editor and colum­nist, can be reached at 860-549-4670 or at kdixon@ct­ Visit him at twit­ and on Face­book at kendixonct.hearst.

Sum­mer­time is bot­tom­ing out, so I was cel­e­brat­ing the 50th an­niver­sary of the great Ja­nis Jo­plin’s “Cheap Thrills” record and the iconic “Lit­tle Piece of My Heart,” first recorded in 1967 by Aretha Franklin’s big sis­ter Erma.

When I got this two-part phone mes­sage from a Sad Sack lost in the pro­pa­ganda cloud of In­foWars, all I could do was crank Ja­nis up to stun on the liv­in­groom stereo. The threat from the white su­prem­a­cist (prov­ing the con­tra­dic­tion in terms) came at the per­fect time, as I was en­gaged in a pre-pri­mary-elec­tion cleanse.

“Come on, come on, come on, come on and take it!; Take an­other lit­tle piece of my heart now baby.; Oh break it.; Break an­other lit­tle bit of my heart now dar­ling, yeah, yeah yeah . ... ” Ja­nis sings.

“I con­tin­u­ally oc­ca­sion­ally, con­tin­u­ally oc­ca­sion­ally... what­ever, read you talk­ing about dumb s—-. You and your white priv­i­lege s—- and mak­ing excuses for… black peo­ple. I feel bad for black folks that are de­cent, that are do­ing de­cent things, man…” In­foWars dude prat­tled.

The call came to the Capi­tol Press Room from a nearly ar­tic­u­late man who first con­ceded a point of mine about the role of lo­cal news­pa­pers and how any num­ber of things we cover at Hearst Con­necti­cut Me­dia are not “fake news,” even as the def­i­ni­tion ex­ists among right-wing fab­u­lists and race-baiters.

The voice-mail quickly turned omi­nous, de­tail­ing racist an­gles on iso­lated as­saults around the world that could only be pro­moted by Alex Jones, who, if you’ve been liv­ing un­der a rock for the last six years, has broad­cast the hoax that the mas­sacre that left 26 dead at Sandy Hook Ele­men­tary School never hap­pened.

“Didn’t I make you feel like you were the only man yeah! Didn’t I give you nearly every­thing that a woman pos­si­bly can? Honey, you know I did! And each time I tell my­self that I, well I think I’ve had enough. But I’m gonna show you, baby, that a woman can be tough…”

“...A woman beats a 91-year old man with a piece of con­crete, brick. Wow she was black. Some­how that was left out of the piece. That’s what I’m talk­ing about home­boy… de­mo­nize the white peo­ple and pretty much give the blacks a pass on pretty much any­thing. OK? And you talk about fake news… You’re a piece of s—man. I would love to run into you some­day and whip that …. smirk off your face that you got in your pic­ture.”

At this point, In­foWars dude con­vinced me that he must be bit­ter about a re­strain­ing or­der against him. Maybe he had to turn in his guns to the State Po­lice un­til that date be­fore a Su­pe­rior Court judge.

“You’re out on the streets look­ing good. And baby deep down in your heart I guess you know that it ain’t right. Never, never, never, never, never, never hear me when I cry at night. Babe, I cry all the time!”

“You —————. Grew up in Green­wich and you preach to ———- me? You piece of —— you….”

I can take the as­sault threats and the barn­yard ex­ple­tives, but just be­cause I noted a re­cent visit to Green­wich on the cam­paign trail, the Alex dude gets it so wrong. My late fa­ther, who dropped out of Ham­den High School at age 17 to be­come a Navy medic for two tours in the Philip­pines with the Marines in World War II, later got a job teach­ing gram­mar school in Green­wich, where he also worked nights in the morgue at Green­wich Hos­pi­tal. He and my late mother lived in an at­tic in a down­town Green­wich house. I was born in that hos­pi­tal. When I was 17 months old we moved out of town and I grew up in Stam­ford.

On Tues­day, the day of the Re­pub­li­can and Demo­cratic pri­maries — to re­mind those of you reg­is­tered with ei­ther party to cel­e­brate our free­doms and vote — I will arise in the predawn so I can fly the gov­ern­ment flag I re­ceived af­ter his death, from the front porch, to meet his wishes. For Tues­day is VJ Day, the an­niver­sary of the vic­tory over Ja­pan in 1945.

“And each time I tell my­self that I, well I can’t stand the pain. But when you hold me in your arms, I’ll sing it once again. I’ll say come on, come on, come on, come on and take it! Take it! Take an­other lit­tle piece of my heart now, baby. Oh, oh, break it! Break an­other lit­tle bit of my heart now, dar­ling, yeah.”

The threat from the white su­prem­a­cist (prov­ing the con­tra­dic­tion in terms) came at the per­fect time

/ AP

Blues/rock singer Ja­nis Jo­plin per­forms at the New­port Folk Fes­ti­val with her band Big Brother and the Hold­ing Com­pany in 1968.

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