The Empty ChairSeptember 26, 2012 - Author: newscoma - Comments are closed
(Editor’s note: This story appeared originally in the Crockett Times today. I was sent this story from Glad Castellaw who gave permission for me to reprint it here as the original op/ed is behind a paywall. Castellaw is the president of the Crockett Policy Institute. And, as you know, I love to hear from the west side of the state.)
By Jon Worrell
Many folks here in Crockett County would agree that Clint Eastwood’s monologue was indeed an iconic moment at the recent
Republican National Convention. However, many others were more struck by Mr. Eastwood’s later explanation of his rambling,
incoherent, and profane remarks; he said in effect, ”if you are dumb enough to invite me, you have to live with what I choose to
We all have to ask ourselves if Mr. Eastwood’s remarks were an accurate reflection of the person who invited him, the party’s
nominee, and the Republican Party itself and if that is truly the effect we want on Crockett County. A lot of us think that it is
The record of the Democratic Party here in Crockett has been considerable; our schools are in the top tier, our tax rate is low,
and our Democratic office holders are extremely competent and responsive. We still have many things to do as the county
moves onward, but it will be done in the measured, practical, and sustainable manner that has been our hallmark.
The world is not ending and the communists are not in control; neither here in Crockett nor at any level of government in the
United States. It’s just not so and to continue to repeat any such ludicrous conspiracy theories demeans us all. There is enough
hate and discontent in the world without somehow making your choice of political party a test of your faith, your belief in
democratic government, or your patriotism.
Crockett Democrats run small businesses, teach our children, and farm the land; they are your neighbors. They also serve
our great nation in the military services and then come home to take up essential roles in our community, churches, and civic
A veteran, my father Ray, was in the Navy and served in the Pacific at Pearl Harbor during World War II. Afterward, he came
home to run the family business on Court Square, serve in the Alamo city government, and act as a leader in the Methodist
He was also a leader of the county Democratic Party and would be very proud of the Veterans’ Memorial that Democrats like
Ira Burrow and Bobby Cates, joining with county Republicans and Independents, built on the Courthouse Square. There are a
lot of other Democrats from Crockett County who also served our country in the military and then came home to serve in other
ways in our community, such as former county clerk Gerald Reasons, who fought on Iwo Jima and now Glad Castellaw who
became a three star general in the Marines. Thank God that in the military they do not put a (R) or (D) on dog tags; nor on the
tombstones of the dead.
But let there be no doubt there is a difference between Democrats and Republicans. That difference is between fairness and
privilege, between inclusion and exclusion, and between tolerance and intolerance.
This year and over the next few years we will have the opportunity in local elections to choose who “affects” Crockett the
most, Republicans or Democrats. This county represents America’s grass roots, the true center of gravity in our country, our
heartland. There is no empty chair in Crockett; the Democrats have and will continue to have a track record of service to God,
country, family, and to this county second to none.
Jon Worrell runs a small family business in Alamo, TN and is the chairman of the Crockett County Democratic Party.