Burt Prelutsky

The biggest question I have regarding the Republicans in Washington is deciding if their stupidity out-weighs their cowardice or whether it’s the other way around. On Monday, they seem to be worried about offending homosexuals. On Tuesday, they’re terrified of angering blacks. Wednesday, they’re scared stiff of alienating illegal aliens. By Thursday, they’ve taken to their beds, suffering from the vapors. The really nutty thing is that very few of those people are going to vote for them anyway. But of course if they dared come out against same-sex marriages, affirmative action or tax-funded social services for Hispanic scofflaws, they’d be scolded by the New York Times and the Washington Post, and that’s something they simply couldn’t bear.

The latest example of Republican goofiness is something called First Tee. The Justice Department oversees the Office of Juvenile Justice and delinquency, a federal boondoggle if I’ve ever heard of one. Recently, these bureaucrats decided to give 500,000 of your tax dollars to the World Golf Foundation to help get urban youngsters interested in, of all things, the game of golf.

Bill Clinton had his midnight basketball program, which gave inner-city teenagers a government-sanctioned reason to avoid doing their school work, but at least the youngsters only needed a basket and a ball. But golf?! Are we tax payers going to have to pony up greens fees, golf carts and those red-and-yellow knickers, for these kids?

Apparently, the Justice Department had 102 ideas on their list, and this one was green-lighted even though it was judged to be only the 47th best one. Perhaps the fact that George Herbert Walker Bush is the honorary chairman of First Tee had something to do with moving it to the top of the list or perhaps I’m merely being my usual cynical self.

But the thing that’s keeping me awake nights is trying to imagine, if First Tee was only in 47th place, what the heck was dead last? What could have possibly been in 102nd place? Getting our urban youths to take up the accordion or perhaps teaching them to polka?