Gray Matter Matters - Now More Than Ever

(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A funny thing happened on my way down the hill. You guessed it, I live on a hill, a hill so steep in fact that it substitutes for a treadmill on the highest incline setting. It beats a gym hands-down: no membership fee — outside the insultingly high property taxes that the regressive LA government blows on patronage and pandering; fresh air; vitamin-D producing sunshine; and proximity to my WFH (work from home) workstation.


Every so often, a neighbor who has a permanent case of RBF (resting bitch face) lumbers by and grunts at me from behind her 2-ply cloth face covering when I say hello. This, I reckon, is because she knows I’m not a loony LA Leftist, having seen my red Leo 2.0 hat, and because I don’t (and won’t) wear a mask outdoors. Before you pile on, CA’s mandate applies to situations where distancing is not possible, such as when participating in riots.

The other day, while I was walking one of the two pups, she buzzed by in her Mini Cooper. I waved and grinned. Turns out, she was moving the car to free up driveway space at her sinful and immoral single-family home. So minutes later I would pass her again, this time on foot.

And wouldn’t you know, she was maskless, chatty, and reached over to pet the dog. I can chalk this up to only one thing — her rational brain kicked in. It reminded me of something I’d heard from a highly-respected physician who advised people like me to give people like my grumpy neighbor the confidence and courage to reject nonsensical attempts at behavior modification.

I’m seeing this type of epiphanic expression on the NextDoor platform as well — mind you, not as it relates to masks, but the issue of rampant homelessness. Taxpayers from across the ideological and political spectrum are increasingly reaching a consensus that our years-long exploding epidemic is the sum of the following: mental illness and addiction; California’s abominable law known as Prop 47 deceptively named the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act by the devious former State Attorney General who’s one heartbeat away from the presidency. (Note to the reader: keep your eye on your own state legislature, because this woke public policy model is all the rage); greedy developers and labor unions who make bank building fancy apartments for people who refuse them; and venal politicians who use the unhoused as pawns in their cynical game of pandering, virtue-signaling and shaming taxpayers, and amassing power.


LA’s Mayor Garcetti and the feckless boobs on the City Council have bled the taxpayers (including the working poor) dry and continue to lament the lack of necessary funding to address the catastrophe they have created. My NextDoor neighbors have finally awakened to the overarching fact that our elected officials and the agencies they run are not only inefficient and bloated, but corrupt. Props to my homies for engaging their power of critical thinking and for spittin’ truth.

And it’s snowballing. There is a growing number of journalists who are jumping ship — from the comforts of their corporate compensation packages to independent publications and platforms, which aren’t known for being super lucrative. The fearless and very fair Bari Weiss is the most recent who comes to mind. She left the New York Times when the paper went off the rails, caving to fanatical activists in the newsroom who bullied management over editorial practices.

Josh Rogin, who’s thus far not been kicked out at the Washington Post, courageously reported on the Wuhan lab suspected to have allowed the virus to escape, as well as the fetishized (my word) Anthony Fauci’s relationship with the facility. He also called BS on media colleagues who failed to do so.

Thank Bari and Josh for empowering you to use your brain.

There are more reasons to be hopeful. As the media and its consumers continue to lurch to the Left, shifting the Overton Window and attempting to smash it on our knuckles, more Americans are waking up to the madness. Even the meek and once weak can’t stay quiet.


It is now incumbent upon all of us to support rational thought. Speaking truth to tyranny is liberating. Hat-tip goes to my colleague at, primetime host Jesse Kelly. Jesse is BASED. We should all be BASED — just make sure it’s in reality. Gray matter matters.

Emily Barsh is a media consultant based in Los Angeles. She says you may troll her on Twitter and Instagram @EmilyTVProducer.


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