Americans love honoring people posthumously. Usually no matter how your life may have ended, if you did something positive and memorable during your existence there is a good chance that some state legislature or city council will pass a resolution in your honor (at a taxpayer cost of about $500.00 max).
Plenty of state legislatures, from hard red states like Tennessee to deep blue mid-western havens like Illinois honored Michael Jackson after his death. And this was a man who not only was a prescription drug abuser near the end of his life but had been dogged by accusations of child molestation for almost 20 years.
Or even better, the state of Mississippi passed a resolution honoring the life of former NFL quarterback Steve McNair – and this is a guy that was killed by his underage girlfriend/mistress in some bizarre murder suicide.
In the end, we’ll find a way to justify our legislative love. So can someone explain to me why Republicans in the New York State senate are rejecting a bill to honor Whitney Houston?
In a move so petty that it could’ve come from the Mitch McConnell controlled federal Senate, New York Senate Republicans have rejected Whitney Houston posthumously. The New York Daily Post reports that Democratic State Senator Eric Adams (D-Brooklyn) proposed a resolution honoring the late singer – but it was rejected by state Republicans.
Behind the scenes Republican senators claimed they didn’t want to appear to endorse Houston’s drug use since they had just passed a new piece of legislation stiffening penalties for prescription drug abuse.
I’m fairly confident that everyone who knows anything about Whitney remembered that she said “Crack is Whack” … which is a much stronger anti-drug message than anything else she managed to do over the last 10 years. A more credible rejection might be because Houston was not from the state of New York. However, like Michael Jackson and others, her contribution to popular culture was national in scope, so who cares if she hailed from the state? More importantly, one of her most famous songs, a heartfelt rendition of the Star Spangled banner during the 1991 Super Bowl was a national treasure, and she re-released the song after 9-11 to donate proceeds to the families of victims. If that doesn’t make her an unofficial New Yorker I don’t know what does.
Hopefully, less political heads will prevail and this bill will get passed. It is much more meaningful to discuss the impact of an artist’s good deeds than to haggle over the particulars of how they died.