LIFE IMITATING ART
In 1964, Director Sidney Lumet brought to the screen one of the most gut wrenching motion pictures of all time -- THE PAWNBROKER. Rod Steiger's brilliant portrayal in the title role earned him a well-deserved Academy Award nomination as a Holocaust victim trying to scratch out a meager living in a Harlem pawn shop. Steiger's Method Acting technique was dead-on, offering up a lead character so wracked by the past that he's barely functional in the present. The ultimate result is that this pawnbroker places the love of money over all else in his life.
Forty-two years later another pawnbroker makes history, at least here locally in Comal County, Texas. County Judge Danny Scheel's scare tactics prove effective as he and his minions defeat the Tax Rate Rollback Election by a little over two hundred votes. This inconceivably stupid outcome reminds me of another movie -- DUMB & DUMBER.
I fully understand that some might think that my focus on Herr Scheel's ownership of a pawn shop shows little respect. Let me respond by first stating that this is about all I know about the man since I was unable to find anything else during my search on the internet. All of the other members of the County Commissoners' Court, for example, post biographical information on the Court's official website. Not so with Danny Boy. In actuality, this was all I really needed to know; who could be better qualified than a pawnbroker to lead the pawns of Comal County into doing exactly what he wants?
(Actual photograph of two Comal County voters taken Saturday, April 13th)