Michael Berry's Dead Osama Pep Rally

Categories: Spaced City

Janise Car.JPG
Photos by John Nova Lomax
Wheels fit for a celebration.
Early yesterday, Michael Berry, the former Boy Wonder of Houston politics turned radio rabble-rouser, sent out a press release plugging a "Houston Celebration: Osama Bin Laden Dead." The event would be later that day at Hefley's, a Texalicious bar/BBQ joint in what used to be Freedmen's Town. The event would be starting at four and Berry would be gracing us with his presence at 5:30, the release said, and he wanted it known that this was to be a NON-PARTISAN event. (Caps his.)

He then closed his communiqué with a slam at Sheila Jackson Lee. So much for the nonpartisanship, but bless his heart, that's just a reflex for him. As Hunter S. Thompson trained his dog to attack on hearing the word "Nixon," as Chief Inspector Dreyfus would degenerate into a cold-sweating bundle of tics and spasms at the mere mention of Inspector Clouseau, so it goes with Michael Berry and Sheila Jackson Lee. Berry seems unable to go 500 words without nipping at her expensively, if not tastefully, shoed heels.

Turns out that dead Osama pep rally was a much more subdued affair than we thought it would be. In fact, it was so subdued that the perpetually irascible KTRH grouser showed up over an hour and a half after he said he would, which was about an hour after most of the media, including Hair Balls, had already lost interest.

But we are getting ahead of ourselves. We had to be there. This was history.

And we went expecting to see vengeful, drunken mobs like the ones we saw pictured in New York and Washington overnight Sunday. What we found instead was a slightly militarized happy hour with deafening AM radio providing the audio.

osamatshirtSalas.JPG
Bud Light and an "Osama Dead" T-shirt: Ain't that America?
There was less a sense that we were attending the aftermath of a public execution of a very bad man than there was a sense of relief, a feeling like that in the days after Hurricane Rita swerved east.

At about 5 p.m., from half a block away, the event looked promising. The parking lot was studded with the masts of three or four TV vans. A company called Big Fat Freedom was handing out T-shirts bearing Osama's likeness with a red X through it and the single word: "Terminated." (Another shirt read "God Bless Arizona," so there goes that nonpartisan thing again.)

Before they switched to a live feed of Berry's show, the jukebox was kicking out country, blues and classic rock jams. (Naturally, we did not escape without hearing the obligatory dose of Lee Greenwood's stomach-churning "proud to be an American" song.)

All that was missing was the turnout. The five or six cops on hand were supremely bored, and the dozen or so reporters had to fight over people to interview. (In fact, I wasted my first interview questioning a guy at the bar inside who turned out to be a freelance photographer there to do his own story. For the record, he thinks Osama's death was a good thing, and he is glad it happened.)

Meanwhile, all the flat-screens in the bar were tuned to Fox News, and George Thorogood's Delaware Destroyers were rumbling through their cover of John Lee Hooker's "Boogie Chillun." As I read for the first time details of Operation Geronimo, the fateful raid, as the news-scroll unspoiled tidbits like the choppers descending and disgorging 24 fast-roping Navy Seals, I couldn't help but feel a surge of testosterone.

In all seriousness: America! Fuck yeah, baby!

Energized, I spoke to B. Lee Frazier, a 69-year-old white guy sitting alone at a table outside. Frazier said Osama's death was long overdue, and he was shocked that it had finally happened. I didn't bring up Obama, but Frazier broached the subject for me. "I don't make judgments," he said. "I give credit to whoever was in office."

By this time, Berry's show was getting beamed into the bar. Berry was saying that Obama should have called George W. Bush and given him credit for never forgetting about 9/11. WTF?

And today wasn't about presidents anyway, Berry continued, it was "about the brave men and women in our armed forces." He said that many of them would be at this event and we should buy them a beer and show them our support. I didn't see any, yet.


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27 comments
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Joanie Maverick
Joanie Maverick

Sorry, but I fail to see the difference between a foreign cleric and an American talk show host who are both calling out to their followers for the bombings of buildings and citizens on American soil.

GayAggie'87
GayAggie'87

I ate at Hefley's once while my car was being washed. After I had already ordered a sliced beef sandwich, I saw they had a Michael Berry Burger and came to the conclusion that this is not my kind of place. Too bad, because the BBQ was great.

Josefinaporto
Josefinaporto

Is it Mr. SMASH or Hulk? You musn't be trifled with, I can tell by your name. If only we all had your ability to see into the heart and soul of someone we never even met and had the pure spirit of truth in us that allows judging them utterly devoid (nice wording, you spend a lot of time alone reading don't you?) of moral character. It's probably best that only you have the Power, though. If we all had it, the slick slime of smug judgement that oozes out of your type would make the great flood look like a mere puddle. Or was there a great flood? It's your fantasy, you decide. I would respectfuly request, however, that you leave me out of your fantasy life.

Rev. Dr. H. SMASH, Esq
Rev. Dr. H. SMASH, Esq

... or as your mother said so eloquently, you seem to be confusing libertad with libertinaje.

Just because you CAN say and do cruel things, doesn't always mean you should.

Rev. Dr. H. SMASH, Esq
Rev. Dr. H. SMASH, Esq

Since we can't see see into the hearts and souls of others, we are sadly forced to estimate their character by their words and their actions. Your own words, as quoted in this story, are indicative of someone who goes around actively looking for someone at whom to spew your contempt. You even managed to make the writer uncomfortable via your views which he declined to publish here.

After expressing your annoyance at being unable to burn someone else's holy book without anyone getting mad, and implying that others should be denied the same benefits and opportunities that come with citizenship that YOU HAVE ENJOYED YOURSELF - don't even TRY to act as though you are merely the victim of some mean old liberal on the internet.

Sometimes if you present yourself like a jerk, you lead others to believe that you are a jerk.

Justsayin
Justsayin

First time I'm ever seeing Democrats come out in support of the death penalty for criminal offenses. Too bad they didn't read Osama his Miranda Rights as Obama and Holder were pushing for first term.

AnsonW
AnsonW

Criminal offense?

Wasn't it the Repubs who were so adamant that terrorism is not a criminal act and shouldn't be treated as one by John Kerry. To them 9/11 was an act of war, and demanded an invasion of some place or two. At least a bombing.

(The equivalent of an IRA bomb going off in Belfast, and them invading and bombing Boston)

In retrospect, we should have treated it like a law enforcement action. Would've killed him sooner and save 50,000 American lives and about $4 trillion.

Justsayin
Justsayin

Asking for some consistency from the current administration and his defenders. Flip flop.

What's the difference betweeen this and the bogus Haditha massacre (that saw the men charged cleared)?

The administration keeps changing their story of events. That got a border patrol guard in Federal prison for shooting a drug smuggler in the butt.

Reportedly Usama was unarmed. And the story of there being a "firefight" seems to have waned as well. Stormed in, shot up some people.

I'm okay with killing a modern Hitler (and no I'm not talking about the Bushitler the Left had wetdreams about) like Usama Bin Laden.

Can't celebrate this death if it violates every rule of "human rights as defined by the UN" you all so believe apply.

AnsonW
AnsonW

Silliness.If we authorized our military to bomb the guy from the air, or shoot missiles into a cave to kill him, I'm fairly certain it was quite consistent to shoot him in the head. Hell lesser enemy combatants were tossed into the brigg and tortured; some found innocent in the aftermath.

Shooting a fleeing, petty criminal is somewhat different, unless you are Michael Berry.

stwilhelm
stwilhelm

Did you go the same event that I did? I was there and knew upon my arrival that Berry would be late as the Astros game was cancelled which meant regular programming would continue. It was not by his design to be late, stuff happens. There were plenty of those that served and they were each recognized -- a rep from every conflict since Korea. I had the distinct pleasure of purchasing beer for two different soldiers. Yes, the media was there and subsequently left priot to Michael's arrival. The Pledge and the Gettysburgh address were recited. The National Anthem and God Bless America were sung. It was a proud day. And, Mr. Berry did give credit to Mr. Obama, as well as Bush and Clinton.

All in all, it was an incredibly enjoyable, patriotic evening. I guess some experiences are in the eyes of those that experience it!

AnsonW
AnsonW

Nat'l Anthem and God Bless America sung in unison?My version of Hell, squared.

Desmondintutu
Desmondintutu

My version of hell.

Anyone see that racist billboard Berry bought on inbound Katy Freeway? Says it:

How About Them Apples, Boy?

Wonder who 'Boy' is he's referring to after the midterms?

Dennis Abernathy
Dennis Abernathy

 The word boy is always meant to be a racist term? That's the kind of thinking which perpetuates the hate, contempt, and confusion about what is meant by any use the word boy in a sentence. The racist seems more like the one who interprets all with a racist slant.What is the problem?  How about those apples, man? Yes there is racism but to make that your goal in life to point out every little or big racist comment or wording certainly does more to perpetuate racism than the ignorant racist who needs to be noticed when putting up a sign or saying something with a racist or seemingly racist tone. So either learn to use your words and thoughts to raise free thinking, race free, intelligent people or find a place where all is perfect and no one abuses the language we use.Good luck with that. Who is the president anyways Berry or Obama? Let's get real someone like those who are still racist can make noise or signs but those of us who matter should learn to ignore some of the ignorance which still fills the minds of Americans. By the way did you see the groups of people flooding into stores and steeling all that they could carry you might have recognized someone in the crowd but did you help to have that person correct their sense of right and wrong?   

H_e_x
H_e_x

Its a commentary on the recent Canadian election, duh.

Al
Al

You're a Racer. Like all liberal you see racism where there is none. And like all liberals you choose to do no research into the things you hear. "How About Them Apples, Boy?" is Berry's response to whenever someone shoots a criminal.

GWEST
GWEST

YOUR MOMMA like boy apples!

AnsonW
AnsonW

....Al, you're prob one of 18 in Houston know that.

I just know his response is festive whenever someone shoots a criminal. Like the Pasadena crims who were killed by a neighbor while fleeing. He's the kinda cowboy who would shot others in the back.

Getout
Getout

Like the SEALS who shot an unarmed Usama? War crimes only occur under Bush's watch I guess.

H_e_x
H_e_x

He drives fast cars? Cool!

Carjacker
Carjacker

I bet some of the, um, paramours Berry cavorts will are ethnic. Probably.

Wyatt
Wyatt

You can burn all the Korans you want. She knows that, right? That it's not illegal?

Josefina
Josefina

Yes I know that, and what is so disturbing is how many people gets so upset about it. And when some idiots burn our flag so few have any thing to say about it .

Craig
Craig

So Lomax found somebody's politics "wrongheaded in the extreme".

Fascinating.

John Nova Lomax
John Nova Lomax

Yes, I did. Your opinion may differ. I am allowed mine too.

Hulk SMASH
Hulk SMASH

they weren't wrongheaded. they were just utterly devoid of moral character.

Guest
Guest

What? No free MIchael Berry For Congress t-shirts? Cheap bastard.

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