The ballad of Johnny Logan Spencer

Some poetic observations on Johnny Logan Spencer of Kentucky, sentenced today to federal prison for posting to the Internet a poem threatening the life of President Obama.

First, in haiku:

A white-pride dullard
Threatens Obama in verse,
Gets 33 months.

Such a confining form. Perhaps a limerick would work better:

There once was a racist named Spencer,
Whose poetry he didn’t think to censor
He wrote of killing Obama
But the feds said, “Como se llama?”
This moron, he couldn’t be denser.

Or maybe we should make it seasonal:

’Twas three weeks before Christmas, and in Kentucky
Johnny Spencer was feeling fairly unlucky
His poem he’d penned with murderous intent
An ode to assassination, a racist’s lament
The feds they did catch him, and took him to court
And now off to prison with a Marshal’s escort
So let’s learn from Johnny, and remember this day
Threaten the president, and you surely will pay.

OK, those sucked. Anybody out there good with iambic pentameter? Have at it.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • RR, Uninvited Columnist

    What the hell is the point of this posting?

  • John W

    Same question as RR. But I would title the poems “Odes to an Idiot!” Maybe they can have him share a cell with the moron who threatened Pelosi umpteen times, including a threat to burn down her SF home if she voted for the health care bill. Hope the guy enjoys his prison health care.

  • Truthclubber

    Richman goes AWOL,
    writes drivel for his blog post,
    soon to be fired.


  • Free Johnny Logan Spencer Jr!

  • HappyFeet

    Wait…um First Amendment, right?

    Guess not.

    No “suspended sentence” like the “Occupy Wallstreet” people get for defecating on cars, broken windows, sexual assault, trespassing, etc. No?

    I mean a POEM for God sake?

    Well then, I for one, Welcome our new Censor Overlords.

  • Josh Richman

    It’s a class D felony under 18 USC 871.

    The U.S. Bureau of Prisons reports that Spencer was released from prison on Sept. 7, 2012.