The Colonel is a knuckle-dragging, monosyllabic-grunting, died-in-the-wool Philistine.
He knows it.
He ain't smart and you can't make him.
The Colonel reticently remains rooted in the past. He glories in it. He spends so much time looking back that he is in constant peril of tripping over the most minute present ripple in time.
Don't get him wrong -- the Colonel loves a lot of the neat nifty things about modernity and looks forward to the next neat nifty things that will make his life even more leisurely and laconic.
But, the past is ignored -- and reviled -- at the peril of the future.
In our past, we find the traditions -- the very foundations -- upon which our futures are safely built.
Safely built. Our future cannot be safely built if we destroy every traditional vestige -- in the name of "progress" or "political correctness" or some other misguided attempt to equalize outcomes regardless of effort -- which, heretofore, served as unifying points around which society rallies.
Cutting ourselves loose from the moorings of our past may seem the most "modern," "civilized," or even "humane" approach to safely navigating the rocks and shoals of the next age, but that course only leaves us adrift at the whims of the fickle popular winds. The future drives us then, sucking us into eddies and whirlpools of idiocy.
There are, certainly, many idiotic beliefs and behaviors from our history that must be relegated to the dust bin of of discredited social norms. But, the valuable, society-rallying traditions far out-weigh the idiotic ones and should not be discarded solely because a tyrannical minority's overactive sense of sensitivity damns all tradition by association.
The Colonel's relative point to this rambling rant, for which you, dear reader, have long endured, is this:
Leaders -- really good ones -- know the importance of anchoring an organization to the largely innocent traditions that make it unique and distinguishable in the raft of flotsam in the sea of society.
So, we turn to the sad political melodrama once again elevating the state of Mississippi in general, and its flagship university -- University of Mississippi ~ Ole Miss -- specifically, onto the derisive national skyline.
The arcane state bureaucracy responsible for overseeing the plethora of important issues impacting the institutions of higher education in Mississippi, rather than focusing on ensuring the survival of affordable education for the State's future, picked a fight completely unrelated to that end.
They fired the leader (our "tradition" is that we call that person "chancellor" -- not "president," like the rest of the indistinguishable flotsam of public universities) of the University of Mississippi (which, it must be said, is their charter) for reasons not fathomable by the Colonel nor any of the other far more intelligent citizens with whom he shares residence in this great state.
To be sure, the Colonel has been foremost among the vocal critics of Dr. Dan Jones' tactical decision-making since he took charge more than five years ago. The Colonel vehemently disagreed with his high-handed dismissal of Ole Miss traditions, in the name of "social progress." Dr. Jones seemed not to know, or care to acknowledge, the difference between pride and prejudice.
But, dang it, Jones was OUR chancellor. He might not have been born a natural citizen of Rebel Nation by virtue of undergraduate matriculation, but we "naturalized" him with a baptism of intra-familial political fisticuffs.
He was learning to be a Rebel.
To the good ole boys in Jackson, Butt Out!
Dan is our man, and we'll take responsibility for his education.