KRAYESKE MORE THAN A GADFLY

The Shad had never met Ken Krayeske before last week when Laurie Perez and I interviewed him for a segment on FOX-CT’s (Channel 61) “The Real Story.” Like just about everyone else, I knew him name from his run-ins with the Hartford police (through the state police) and with UConn basketball coach Jim Calhoun. I am guilty of thinking him only a trouble maker trying to get his name in the news. Turns out, that’s not the case at all.

Krayeske is the Green Party candidate for Congress in the 1st district (that’s why we had him on the show). For the record, neither of the so-called trouble-making moments was of Krayeske’s doing. The state police put him on watch-list as a security risk to Gov. Rell in connection with a parade. The Hartford PD got the list and grabbed up Krayeske when he tried to take a picture of Rell. They then held him for hours until Rell’s event that evening was over. As of this writing, neither law enforcement body has been held to account for the outrageous violation of Krayeske’s rights.

Krayeske was also vilified for daring to attend a news conference and question the state’s emperor UConn basketball coach Jim Calhoun about his state salary. Krayeske’s confrontational style didn’t help but Calhoun is a bullying, NCAA rule-breaking prima donna who was awarded for his program likely incurring sanctions with a big, fat raise.

This is not to say some of Krayeske’s ideas aren’t wacky or even dangerous. He advocates a 70-percent reduction in the nation’s defense budget. Such a move would likely invite terroristic chaos around the world and the destruction of Israel. But at least he invites a conversation about important issue environmental issues. Besides, he has no chance of winning. Yet at the end of the day, the state could use a few more Ken Krayeskes.