Friday, August 05, 2005

REACT: Durbin wants citizenship for Casimir Pulaski

Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) has introduced a bill to grant Casimir Pulaski U.S. citizenship. I am sure Casimir would be very honored except for the fact that he has been dead for 226 years. He got knocked off by the British in the battle of Savannah.

What is with these meaningless posthumous gestures? He was a hero of the Revolution, drawn to America by the ideals of democracy. Or maybe, it was because he had to flee Poland. Seems he had a run in with the law --- over trying to dispatch the Polish king to the afterlife.

In America, however, Casimir has his own day (March 4). His name is engraved on tons of schools -- but thanks to the quality of our public education system, the students of those schools have no idea who he is. He has one of the longer streets in Chicago named after him, which was change half a century ago from Crawford. Well, not all of it is named Pulaski. Unpatriotic folks in the north suburbs clung to Crawford (whoever he is).

So, why citizenship now?

I have a theory. Since all the lead sponsors are Democrats. I suspect that by granting him citizenship, they can get him registered to vote, in the long standing tradition of the Chicago donkey party.

Least you think me irreverent about the Polish revolutionary, you should know that my mother is a Sikorski, and my not-so-immediate family includes General Wladyslaw Sikorski, the Dwight Eisenhower of Poland. Furthermore, I was one of those lobbying for the creation of that special day for Pulaski. I had nothing to do with renaming Crawford, however. Although, I grew up just off of Crawford, as we use to say.

By coincidence, General Sikorski died the year I was born -- so I had nothing to do with that either. He died on the Fourth of July, no less. Some say that General Sikorski was murder by the British. (Do the British have a thing about doing in Polish generals?)

Someone should warn General Pulaski about the plot to make him a citizen. Not only will he have to vote in Chicago, but I suspect being dead is not going to get him out of paying taxes. We even have a tax known as a "death tax."

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