Monday, August 9, 2021

Kamala Harris talks voting rights and space exploration during dedication of LBJ Monument for Veep Day

Happy National Veep Day! After three posts about Mike Pence interrupted by an entry about the show Veep, I'm dedicating today's entry to Kamala Harris with a serious message followed by a silly skit.

I begin with the most recent video from The White House YouTube account to feature the Vice President, Vice President Harris Delivers Remarks at the Lyndon B. Johnson Monument Dedication.

Vice President Kamala Harris delivers remarks for the unveiling of the monument to President Lyndon Baines Johnson at Little Tranquillity Park.
In addition to providing the video description I used above, the press release from the City of Houston quoted Vice President Harris's remarks.
“President Johnson led through extremely difficult times—through national grief, through global threats, through deep-seeded injustice. And I believe that there are lessons we can learn from this monument of a man and apply to the moment we're in,” said Vice President Harris.
The press release also summarized LBJ's accomplishments in civil rights.
President Johnson regularly ranks as one of the greatest presidents based on his extraordinary legislative achievements, including the three seminal civil rights bills that after 100 years achieved full legal rights for all Americans. Also included in President Johnson's extraordinary portfolio is the Immigration Act of 1965, which opened legal immigration from all nations equally, based upon family reunification and needed job skills in the United States.
Houston dedicated another monument in Little Tranquillity Park that day.
Also dedicated Friday at Little Tranquillity Park was a memorial to Apollo I astronauts Command Pilot Gus Grissom, Senior Pilot Edward White and Pilot Roger Chaffee, who perished on January 27, 1967, while testing their capsule prior to launch. Little Tranquillity Park has contained for years two small memorials to the astronauts of the Space Shuttles Challenger and Columbia, who perished in service of their country. The memorials include two semicircles of seven Magnolia trees, with each tree representing one of the astronauts. The new Apollo I memorial includes the planting of three additional Magnolia trees, each representing one of the astronauts.
This reminds me that I've blogged about the Challenger disaster, but not about either the end of space shuttle Columbia or Apollo I. Maybe I should do that. It also explains why Vice President Harris talked about LBJ's actions on behalf of space exploration, including the founding of NASA. I'm glad she included those accomplishments in her remarks.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner tied the two monuments together.
"This is a special day for Houston, and I hope people from all walks of life will visit the site honoring President Johnson and the astronauts who gave their lives in service to our country,” Mayor Turner said. “On this date, August 6 in 1965, President Lyndon Baines Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act. As we reflect on this historic occasion, it is hard to believe that we are still working to uphold the rights of ALL eligible voters. President Johnson was a Southern white man from Texas fighting for civil rights and during his lifetime changed the course of history both politically and socially."
It is not a coincidence that the dedication fell on the 56th anniversary of LBJ signing the Voting Rights Act, so it is not a coincidence that Vice President Harris said what she did about voting rights, especially while Texas Democratic legislators left the state for D.C. and have been arrested for demonstrating for voting rights.

Since I made fun of former Vice President Pence three years ago, I'm going to do that for Vice President Harris this year with an Emmy-nominated performance by Maya Rudolph, Kamala - SNL.

Vice-President Kamala Harris (Maya Rudolph) and her husband Doug Emhoff (Martin Short) host Ted Cruz (Aidy Bryant) and Joe Biden (Alex Moffat) for a friendly Passover dinner.
Not only couldn't I resist, but I'm glad I saved this video until now. Not only does it feature Rudolph as V.P. Harris, but also Emmy nominees Aidy Bryant, Kenan Thompson, and Cecily Strong. Good luck to all of you!

Once again, happy National Veep Day!

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