he Missouri Senate nearly broke down last week over the appointment of Platte County’s Todd Graves to the University of Missouri Board of Curators. It was a silly display by government. Graves is a smart, successful businessman and former public servant. He’s a successful, Mizzou graduate with deep roots in this state. He’s the epitome of the type of people you want to govern the operation of the state university system.
He’s also served as a high-ranking official in the Missouri Republican party and that has become political hunting grounds for many liberals and even some Republicans.
The Senate’s eventual confirmation of his appointment by the governor was the right thing to do but getting there was ugly and unnecessary attempt to tarnish his reputation. The worst part were the attempts to tie him to the misdeeds of former Governor Eric Greitens. It is just silly to try to shame people around Greitens for Greitens personal behavior. Greitens was elected governor by the people, and no one was aware of his personal behavior with his hairdresser at the time; that doesn’t mean the voters or his supporters were complicit.
The Associated Press story that announced Graves as a member of the University of Missouri Curator had this sentence, “Former Gov. Eric Greitens endorsed Graves to lead the Missouri Republican Party shortly after he was elected. Greitens resigned in 2018 amid the fallout of a sex scandal and ethics investigation.”
Was that necessary? Was it relevant?
You know what they didn’t mention? Graves past public service career as the once youngest prosecutor in the state of Missouri here in Platte County. They also didn’t mention that he was appointed as the United States Attorney in 2001. They also didn’t mention that his is the current chairman of the Stanley Herzog Foundation. A foundation that is going to completely redefine Christian education in our region before they are done.
It was a sad display of politics and unfair to Graves. A rewarding gubernatorial appointment to serve his university became a tawdry political side show.
I would like to make it abundantly clear that I do not have a “hairdresser.” My hairline is in a race to the very top of my forehead and it requires very little expertise to trim; therefore, I tend to shop my business around from place to place. I can’t assure you that I would not have a “hairdresser” if I had better hair. I am also not running for governor.
The lack of access to the Kansas City Royals’ broadcasts got me a little nostalgic last week. I’m not up to date on the changes, but apparently a lot of television providers are not carrying the games this year because of contractual dealings among providers and MLB.
It reminded me of a babysitter from my youth. In the 1970’s, she would stay with my sister and I during the summer and when our parents were gone. Her name was Melvena Walker, and she was a tremendous person, quick with a laugh for nearly every moment. She always carried her transistor radio. As best I can recall, she only tuned into one radio station and that was for Royals baseball. It’s one of those things that takes you back immediately. Melvena playing solitaire and listening to the Royals on a small radio and the world seemed like it was in a fairly good spot.
Maybe a little solitaire and baseball on the radio could cure some of what ails us today.
(Guy Speckman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or getting hair plugs)