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Rated: E · Non-fiction · Comedy · #2269614
Good Morning Fascist Insect
Good Morning Fascist Insect
Word count 452

I grew up in Berkeley, California during the zany, crazy 60s and 70s, graduated from high school in 1974. My father was a local politician, in the SF Bay Area. He was president of the Berkeley Co-Op, taught at SF State, was President of the Peralta Community College District, and ran for Congress against Ron Dellums. He lost but got 40 percent of the primary vote, which I said was not bad for a ‘boring white professor dude.” He was also Undersecretary of Labor for Kennedy and Johnson, served on numerous civic associations, and was a labor arbitrator. Because of my father’s position, and political activities, he became known as a “conservative” in Berkeley, and those were fighting words in the hyper blue city that Berkeley was.

But I will always remember, the time he became known, briefly as a “fascist insect” The Symbionese Liberation Army –( the SLA )-the radical terrorist group that kidnapped Patty Hearst, and robbed a couple of banks, had put out a manifesto a hit list of people they deemed “fascist insects “and called upon the people to rise and assassinate the “fascist insects”.

My father got on the SLA hit list for daring to impose a mandatory ID requirement for all students and faculty at the community colleges. to combat a crime problem, and to make the campuses closed to non-students and staff.
For that crime against the people, that actions of a fascist police state, he became a “fascist insect, an “enemy of the people, and must die according to the SLA.

The Berkeley police dispatched police officers to guard us 24/7 along with the other 100, or so people on the hit list.

One day I woke up, got the SF Chronicle and Berkeley Gazette newspapers, chatted with the police officer on duty, as I did when I saw them, thanking them for protecting the family, went in and saluted my father, saying,

“Good morning fascist insect.”

My father being of stern German Scandinavian stock glared at me as he did not have a sense of humor. My mother, being of Irish and Cherokee background had a great sense of humor and was always mocking him much to his dismay. They had a stormy love-hate relationship.

She came out and laughed and said,

You got that right, son. Yeah, he is a fascist insect, but he is our fascist insect.”

and saluted him and we made fun of him until he stormed out of the house.

That evening when he came home, I kind of apologized for my lame joke. He said that was okay and we dropped it. My mother and I continued to laugh about this incident for years.
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