“You’ll rue the day you dismissed my amendment,” thinks Republican Indiana congressman Dan Burton, who unsuccessfully advanced a new plan to ensconce Congress in a Plexiglas shield, which would have protected it from terrorist attacks.
Born of a morning visit to an inner-city bodega, where lost, Burton had gotten directions and a couple “King Dons” from a foreign national behind three inches of Plexiglas, Rep. “Melon Man” Dan Burton (R-IN) had an “ah-ha” moment and promptly proposed study of similar acrylic protection for Congress. It was attached as a quiet, little amendment to a bill that was submitted but failed last week. Its legacy COULD have been a life-saving, transparent cocoon that would forever shield Burton and his cohorts. His explanation follows.
“What this bill does is it would authorize a study to look at enclosing the chamber, the gallery chamber, with Plexiglas so that somebody can’t throw a bomb down on the floor and kill a lot of us,” Burton told the Rules Committee Thursday.
Wide-eyed colleagues listened intently as Burton continued.
“You could take a detonating device that looks like a watch so you could get through the metal detector,” Burton explained. “And when everybody was on the floor, as many as you wanted, you could put that into the plastic explosive, toss it out on the floor, and there is no way you would lose half of us if we were on the floor, at least, or more. I don’t know how much damage it would do.”
Urging Congress to “think outside the box,” (an expression that should merit immediate incarceration, if not at least a forceful, direct kick to the junk) Burton went on to say that in addition to its protective benefits, such an improvement could also have aesthetic value.
Burton’s previous claim to notoriety stems from a reenactment of the alleged Vince Foster murder by Clinton, in which he employed a melon of disputed origin.
The Indiana legislator is most famously known for re-enacting the alleged murder of former Clinton aide Vince Foster by using a gun and a melon (the type of melon is in dispute). Having lived in Fort Wayne for 5 years, I can attest to the quality of their produce. Unfortunately, I also experienced the vapid void that permeates Indiana’s political landscape, where new ideas go to die and where legislators like Burton can indeed rise to the top.
Is congress indeed at risk of terrorist attack? Are curreny safeguards insufficient to protect our legislators as they conduct the business of their constituents? Time will tell. But based on recent DHS reports stressing increased potential for domestic terrorism by right-wing hate groups, it seems logical to suggest that one way our legislators can minimze potential exposure to such violence is to stop behaving like such total morons. Hear that, melon man?