The first book about Tennessee politics I’d like to will into existence is, of course, a history of the Memphis Fords, with a whole narrative arc about the minor tragedy of Harold Ford Jr. not having a snazzy hat.
But after that, I swear, someone needs to write a book about Mike Turner. I vote for Jeff Woods. Read this article and tell me you don’t get a vision of what the book would be like–all genial ambition and well-earned bluster and constant self-foot-shooting.
And then, tell me you don’t want to find a way to sit down with Jerry Maynard, give him a couple of beers, and hear this story again off the record.
“He was trying to make us feel more comfortable and saying that, growing up, he had black friends and black people came to his house for dinner, and basically he was letting us know he was comfortable with us,” Maynard said.
“And did that make you feel comfortable?” civil rights attorney Larry Woods asked Maynard.
“I know Mike,” Maynard testified. “I’ve known Mike for a while. So I gave him a pass. I wasn’t offended because I know Mike.”
“When you say you know Mike, what do you mean?”
“Mike’s a good old boy,” Maynard replied.
The thing is that you know this whole thing just sounds like Turner. If he didn’t say this, folks sure know him well enough to come up with something that sounds plausible.
The thing I’m still confused about, though, is why Turner inserted himself into this situation to begin with.