An Open Letter to Roland Burris


Dude. I’ve been sitting on my modern black leather couch glued to CNN watching the drama unfold, and I have to say I’m extra sick of you. At first I was just pissed at corrupt-behind Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich. I mean, he did try to sell President-Elect Obama’s vacated Senate seat. And when he tried to further politicize the situation by appointing a Black man (that would be you), I got even more upset. But when you accepted the appointment and started talking all that smack, I was appalled.

Oh, yes. I was watching live on Sunday when you asked Don Lemon “Is there a such thing as taint in the law?” and then yelled at him: “I am the junior Senator from Illinois!” Word, Roland? And it only got worse. Monday, you got nasty with reporters during your press conference at Chicago’s Midway airport, saying you didn’t understand why reporters were there perpetuating drama. Um, I’d say they were there because you called a press conference, you dick.

But the arrogance and general assholery aren’t what make me the most upset. My yelling at the screen didn’t drown out the television until I saw the reports of Black politicians and “religious leaders” saying this is a race issue. Now I’d never say it’s not a good idea to have a qualified Black person in the Senate, but you’re not being denied a seat because your skin is the same color as Barack’s and mine. The Illinois Secretary of State didn’t sign your credentials because you were appointed by the cat who tried to sell the seat! Say what you want about not being able to control your supporters making it about race, it’s clear that you’re riding this ish ’til the wheels fall off.

I know you’re not stupid, or delusional even. I’m smart enough to recognize that even as you say you’re pushing the issue because of your “commitment to serving the people,” this is really about your commitment to serving yourself. I mean, I dig the appeal of being a U.S. Senator; it’s a dream job for someone trying desperately to get into the history books. But at what price your soul?

Hell, if you don’t mind being Blago’s Bitch for the rest of your career, go right ahead. And, hey, it’s okay if everybody and their mama wonders exactly what you did (or paid) to get this seat. And, man, don’t worry about it when your fellow Democratic Senators give you the cold shoulder in committee and devalue what I’m sure would be valid opinions and solutions. Who cares if the people of the great state of Illinois would have a lame duck representing them in the Senate. You just go right ahead and take this all the way to the Supreme Court as your lawyer, Timothy Wright, threatened when you were turned away yesterday. I’ll be glued to my fave channel to see how that works out for ya.

Do the right thing,

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