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Mr. Bush, Rosa Parks' dead corpse is not a photo op

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How fortunate for President Bush and Judge Alito that Rosa Parks chose to die last week. I mean, why spend money on an expensive public relations stunt with flags and soldiers when you can get the whole kit and caboodle for free?

Rosa Parks' body is not a prop for partisan publicity stunts. Well, it wasn't definitively one until today. When the Congress decided to let Rosa Parks lie in state in the US Capitol building, I admit to worrying, just a bit, that this was more GOP publicity stunt than a truly heart-felt gesture to honor one of the heroes of the civil rights movement. After all, the GOP is not beyond using dead women - well, brain-dead women, at least - as props for their political passion play. So it was understandable that more than a few of us were a bit uneasy about the GOP suddenly wanting to honor the US civil rights movement only months after one in four Republican Senators refused to sign a resolution against lynching.

And now we know the rest of the story. Bush's Supreme Court pick, Judge Alito, will be visiting the Hill today and, oh what a coincidence, he's going to pay homage to Rosa Parks in state. Oh, and, gosh, do you think there will be cameras there to capture the Kodak moment?

Now, maybe this isn't a stunt to use Rosa Parks' corpse as a tool to further a far-right extremist agenda that she would never endorse in a million years. But if that's the case, that this is simply a heartfelt gesture to honor a great woman, then I'd like to know if Judge Alito was coming to Washington anyway to pay homage to Rosa Parks, whether or not he was going to be the Supreme Court nominee. If not, then this is a PR stunt.

Oh, and one final question for Judge Alito. Did he ever visit Rosa Parks when she was alive?

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