More on Lockdown Threat, Allen West
OK, some new information on the threat that caused the Broward County lockdown, and it's coming from the original source, right-wing radio talker Joyce Kaufman.
Kaufman said on Lou Dobbs' radio program that:
-- The threat came from a woman, not a man, as has been reported.
-- The woman lives in New Port Richey, outside of Tampa.
-- The woman became incensed after watching Rachel Maddow's show Tuesday night about Kaufman being named as Congressman-Elect Allen West's chief of staff. In it, Maddow played a video of Kaufman telling a Fort Lauderdale Tea Party rally on July 4 that if "ballots don't work, bullets will."
Kaufman said the woman wrote in the email something to the effect of, "I'm so glad you said we should take to the streets and use our weapons."
"Someone directed her or she was so incensed by the piece that she saw on television that that she decided to stage this very elaborate, very dangerous, and very disgusting attack which involves children," Kaufman said.
It's starting to sound like this was an extreme political reaction to the extreme statement by Kaufman. Considering the context, authorities may have overreacted with the countywide lockdown. Then again, it's hard to second-guess the decision when a threat was made.
We do know that early on, authorities -- and certainly Broward Supt. Jim Notter -- believed that the threat had come from a man and that his wife had confirmed it was real. Still trying to find out what the religious and ethnic slurs were that Notter indicated were contained in the threatening email.
Expect more of this kind of potentially dangerous brand of nonsense. When West himself appeared on Kaufman's show yesterday, he was using the same extremist rhetoric as Kaufman, whom he said he couldn't have beaten Democrat Ron Klein without.
He doesn't talk of political debate; he talks of "battlefields." He doesn't talk about the opposition party; he talks about his "enemy." As the Sentinel reported, he said on the radio show yesterday of the threat, the lockdown, and Kaufman's quitting as his chief of staff that he is "even more focused that this liberal, progressive, socialist agenda, this left-wing, vile, vicious, despicable machine that's out there is soundly brought to its knees. You don't have to worry about me doing the right thing in Washington, D.C.''
What next? Is West going to talk about how he must protect our precious bodily fluids from the enemy? Did we just elect Gen. Jack Ripper to Congress? Who is West's army now? The Outlaws motorcycle gang he's become so chummy with?
That's a U.S. congressman talking, and he's talking about a lot of his own constituents, AKA liberals, progressives, Democrats. I think a lot of people in West's district who didn't know who they voted for last Tuesday are probably wondering right now, "What the hell did I do?"
It's not that West was stealthy about it. He's always displayed his batshit qualities. He's always said this is about "class warfare" between "a producing class and an entitlement class."
"If you're here to stand up to get your musket, to fix your bayonet, and to charge into the ranks, you are my brother and sister in this fight," he said in a speech that became a YouTube sensation.
Inside, someone sent me a ruling by a Broward County judge in a divorce case that is just too, uh, unusual to believe. Read it after the jump.
In November 2009, Broward Circuit Judge Richard Feder issued a ruling in the Ben-Shimol divorce. He apparently wasn't impressed with the husband or wife at all. A couple of highlights from the order:
Having weighed the testimony presented, which had gossamer-like weight, the credibility of both parties which barely tipped either scale except the husband's side which had one or two more feathers of a gnat, the Court finds as follows:
1) The marriage is irretrievably broken beyond the Court's ability to restore anymore than all The King's horses and men could for Humpty-Dumpty so that dissolution is granted...
3) Choosing between Tweedle-Dum and Tweedle-Dee is a difficult choice without Solomonic power to physically divide each child...
I'm always looking for odd rulings and language coming from the courts. This fits the bill.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss New Times Broward-Palm Beach's biggest stories.
- Hollywood Looks to Build Affordable Housing for Artists
Wed., Feb. 10, 7:30pm
Thu., Feb. 11, 7:00pm
Fri., Feb. 12, 6:00pm
Fri., Feb. 12, 7:30pm
- Divers Protest Beach Renourishment Project in Broward
- UniverSoul Circus Still Uses Elephants, Draws Protesters in Miramar