Post-Holiday Boos

Humbugs to Ibarra, Arensa and Abu-Jamal.

Now that the holidays are over, I would like to say "Bah, humbug!" to the following individuals, groups and institutions:

· Tucson City Councilmember Jose Ibarra for criticizing the spending of Mayor Bob Walkup while Ibarra himself is the biggest spender on the entire City Council. Do some research before you open your yap. That's why I never call anybody fat.

· The Tucson Police Department officers who were involved in that midtown shootout a couple weeks back. They fired 10 shots at the suspect and hit him exactly once. Come on, guys, we don't expect you to be able to fan your revolvers and shoot the guy's buttons off his shirt, but one out of 10? And then, the one you did hit him with was in the groin.

· Former UA basketball player Gilbert Arenas, who spent roughly half the money he received for leaving the UA early and signing with the NBA's Golden State Warriors on a car! Well, not just a car, a Cadillac SUV, the very thought of which is an embarrassment in a category all its own.

It's really hard to tell who or which part of our society was hurt and/or let down most by the overconfident and undertalented Arenas. He showed himself to have no heart by losing in the national championship game and not having the competitive fire to come back and try to win it all this year. He proved to be an easy liar when he responded to a question as to whether he was coming back for his junior year with, "I sure hope so. I really want to. We've got unfinished business."

He showed himself to be self-delusional when he told friends that he was going to be a lottery pick in the NBA draft, and then didn't even go in the first round. He exposed his complete lack of common sense when he spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy the high-end gangsta ride and then equip it with monster speakers, multiple CD players, a video surveillance camera and three televisions! (And yes, he admits to watching TV while he drives.)

Then, he apparently decided that it's OK to be a thief, because he stiffed some Tucson guy 50 grand on the installation of all the ridiculous electronic crap. When asked about those allegations, Arenas' agent and lackey replied, "Well, we thought Gilbert was going to go higher in the draft."


If he didn't get the money he had unrealistically been counting on, then maybe he should have bought an Isuzu, played real hard and worked his way up to a Honda Accord.

Oh, yeah, his playing ... . He appeared in two games this season for the Warriors and scored one point. Then he got put on the "injured reserve" list. That's NBAspeak for "You suck, but we were stupid enough to give you a guaranteed contract."

Almost no one on the injured list is actually injured. They're just guys who can't be cut, and placing them on the list allows the team to bring in another player, one who might actually be of NBA caliber.

I hope his Cadillac SUV has a good heater in it, because this guy's career has Fargo, North Dakota, written all over it.

· The airhead celebrities who want to spring convicted Philadelphia cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal. I'm all for liberal causes and sharp scrutiny of police activities, but this is almost as embarrassing as Jane Fonda posing on an anti-aircraft gun. According to unshakable (non-police) eyewitness testimony, back in 1981 Mumia shot and killed in cold blood a cop who had stopped Mumia's brother for driving erratically (and the wrong way!) down a one-way street. He was convicted and sentenced to death.

Our system of "justice" has allowed him to pursue appeals for the past 20 years! During that time, he has been asked to do college commencement speeches from prison, has become the absolute sweetheart of some guilty and not-too-bright celebrities, and has reportedly become a millionaire off his craven crime. Then, a couple weeks back, an appeals judge strongly upheld Mumia's conviction, but ordered a new sentencing hearing because the jury may have received confusing instructions.

After the ruling, Mumia's case was a hot topic on the news talk-show circuit for a couple days. My favorite supporter of his was a Philadelphia resident who called herself Pam Africa. (I'm betting she wasn't born with that name.) In a language that sounded like a third cousin, twice removed, from English, she babbled on about racism and then mercifully closed with, "It's not just movie stars who support Mumia. It's presidents of countries like France, Africa and New Mexico."

Gee, and after taking all the time and trouble to name herself after a country.

· All of the people who benefited from or misused the 9/11 tragedy to advance themselves or their cause. Like Fox-TV's Bill O'Reilly, who unjustly attacked George Clooney about celebrity fund-raising efforts. Clooney was a part of a group that threw together a monster show in about an hour and a half and saw it raise $150 million. O'Reilly's nitpicking was almost as embarrassing as Jerry Falwell's attempt to link the terrorism to America's acceptance of nontraditional lifestyles.

Or how about Mullah Omar, the Taliban leader who said that if the U.S. set one foot inside Afghanistan, America would be destroyed? I'm sorry, I've been helping my son get ready for finals. Exactly how long did it take us to sweep your country clean? Was it two weeks or three? And exactly which rock are you hiding under these days, Bitch?

Finally, I hate the fact that some political opportunists attempted to use President Bush's handling of the crisis to legitimize his ascension to power. Bush's performance does not erase the scandalous way he took office. And neither does it mean that Al Gore wouldn't have done just as good a job, as some idiots like to suggest.

Oh, yeah, has Paula Aboud conceded yet?