Saturday, September 10, 2016

the moral dubiousness of Tom Hanna

Tom Hanna: the sheriff of Sedgwick County (an area in Colorado close to the Nebraska border )  is currently sitting in jail for allegedly sexually assaulting a “special needs” girl.


Why would I take interest in some random (alleged) misdeed of a law-enforcement officer in a remote region I never had heard off? The reason is thus: I went to elementary school with the guy. As a matter of fact, some of my earliest memories are fond and full of laughter with regards to the chap. You see, he was the first kid I met who told tales so far-fetched even my first-grade mind and those of my contemporaries were astonished.  My buddy Doug and I played along with him, while some of the other kids called Tom Hanna’s bullshit.

“My daddy installed lasers on the space shuttle” he said.
“NUH-UHH” yelled Chris Holzer, in confounded disgust.
“Oh really? Wow, that’s cool” Doug and I would say.

Later, I recall Chris coming to Doug and me at recess and saying, “Hey guys, Tom is lying.”
“We know.”
“Then why are you believing him?”
“We’re not. We are pretending to so maybe he’ll tell more lies, and it’ll be funny.”
Chris nodded his head, and looked at us like we were some first-grade mad geniuses, when what he was really seeing was the makings of first-grade connoisseurs of B.S.

Chris could never maintain the ruse; I think he tried but had to call bullshit at Tom Hanna’s every tall boast: Tom’s claim of spending the night in jail caused Chris’ face to turn red and prompted the first cuss word I ever heard from the mouth of a first-grader.

When Tom brought us a picture of himself standing across from his spitting-image and claimed it was his twin brother, Doug and I oohed and awed, while Chris, knowing it was some sort of camera trick, became the first person I saw receive detention for spewing a string of insults at the young bullshit artist.

Tom’s revelation that he had fired an M-16 rifle received wide-eyes and “wows” from Doug and me, but Chris Holzer could stand it no more: it was the first time I saw someone punch someone else in the gut. 

Perhaps, in a way, Chris Holzer was onto something: he was trying to call him out early and nip the bastard in the bud.  Maybe Doug and I are to blame, for we enabled the moral dubiousness of Tom Hanna….