Saturday, December 17, 2016
THE GNASHING OF TEETH WON’T GET THE JOB DONE
Opening a Church of the Open Road discussion
It has been over a month since our great land began the “smooth transition of power,” no matter how unsmooth the process appears this time around. In those weeks, the awful rancor of the 2016 election has done anything but abate. Although seemingly magnified now, it is a given that with the upcoming change in administration, some people will benefit and some people will – how do we say this? – benefit less. Some folks will enjoy gains in wealth and security and personal satisfaction, some won’t. That, it can be argued, is the normal result of any election.
But our reaction has been anything but normal. Or civil. Fans of the president-elect still clamor for his opponent’s incarceration while foes of the outcome cry for some sort of postponement in the Electoral College process until all the facts are known about out-of-country influences in the campaign(s). These and other doubts, misgivings and finger-pointings are manifested on social media as a mélange of marginally literate tweets and/or barely factual Facebook memes designed to create sides and accentuate differences rather than bridge those differences. The incoming administration appears to distrust the CIA, the CIA and the FBI struggle to look at the same evidence and arrive at the same conclusion, Congress refuses to take any action that might involve compromise or bipartisanship, while the person on the street has difficulty differentiating between news and outright lies cloaked as news. Meanwhile, no one is receiving the answers they want to hear to the questions they are asking. The populace seems mired to its axles in the mucky aftermath of campaigns based less upon policy and issues and the better angels in us all, than in flashpoints of innuendo, character assassination and generally nasty behavior. The result? A country not moving forward.
Lee Iacocca, in a series of ads for Chrysler in 1992 said, “You either lead, follow, or get out of the way.” [Actually that quote belongs to Thomas Paine and/or General George Patton.] One can only imagine that power brokers in other corners of the world, seeing our raucous disarray, might be of the opinion that the United States is about to tumble into that “get out of the way” posture. Not an enviable position for the country that used to be the envy of all others.
So here comes the question:
The continued gnashing of teeth won’t get the job done.
A request: The Church of the Open Road invites your response and you can do it in the comment section of this blog post, even though you may need to go through that “Captcha” authentication process. Please do. If you choose to respond on Facebook, where you may have first discovered a link to this post, know that I would like your permission to copy any comment you make* into the comment section of the blog. That way, we’ll actually have a discussion. [*You will show up as “anonymous.”]
What prompted all this? A buddy of mine and I have been sharing our - let’s call ‘em “concerns” – about the recent unfolding of events. Apparently, he’d been having similar discussions with others when his daughter – perhaps growing weary of his bitching and whining, as, I know, many of my family members are – said, “We may be very unhappy with the outcome (of the election) but having repeated discussions of worry and consternation will not help. We need to change the discussion and start talking about what is most important and then define the actions we need to take with respect to that which we deem most important.” To which I would add: “And then act.”
With the help of some “Church of the Open Road” community members such as you, perhaps we’ll begin to formulate a refined discussion and begin to move things forward, lifting ourselves out of the muck, mire and gloom and into a brighter tomorrow.
Thanks, in advance, for your thoughts and participation.
Church of the Open Road Press