Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Choosing Sides

Yes, Mark: let's choose up sides.

You can have Halliburton and Enron; we’ll take the union guy working third shift at the plant.

You can have the corporate executives; we’ll take those who’ve lost their jobs—all one million of them.

You can have the xenophobic rubes; we’ll take the immigrant who still believes America is a land of both compassion and opportunity.

You can have the folks who don’t even know what positions their own candidate believes in; we’ll take the folks who read a paper once in a while.

You can have the chicken hawks who send working class kids to war as they make millions; we’ll take the guy who actually served.

You can have the holier-than-thou Bible thumpers who claim to know the mind of God; we’ll take the devout and humble of any faith who use their religious beliefs to guide their lives, not to pass judgment on others.

You can have the HMO executives and the drug companies; we’ll take the uninsured citizens of the wealthiest nation on the planet.

You can have the corporate polluters; we’ll take the children growing up breathing toxic air.

You can have the rich who have had their taxes slashed while we spend billions on war and explode the deficit; we’ll take middle-class Americans who are now shouldering most of the tax burden.

You can have those who claim they want to wage a “culture war;” we’ll take those who want to build bridges.

You’ve got all the liars; the truth-tellers are on our side.

Take the people who talk about fighting terrorism; we’ll take those who actually make us safer.

The NRA is all yours; we’ll take the cops on the beat who face well-armed criminals.

You can have the militia members, John Birchers, and homophobes; we’ll take the union members, the civil rights activists, and the environmentalists.

You can have the Pentagon brass; we’ll take the homeless vet whose VA benefits have been cut.

The folks with a vacation home in the Hamptons or in Aspen? All you, Mark; we’ve got the single working mom pulling a double shift to put food on the table for her kids.

You can have the people who talk about not leaving a child behind; we’ll take the children that get left behind.

You can have the Commander in Chief who can’t be bothered to attend a single funeral of a fallen soldier; we’ll take that soldier’s widow and children.

You can have those who appeal to fear; we’ll take those who call on us to hope.

You’re right, Mark. Character isn’t something you can buy. It has to be earned. It has to be earned by serving your society. It can’t be inherited like a famous family name. It can’t be donated to you by deep-pocketed donors. It can’t be won by sending others to kill and be killed. It isn’t given to you no matter how much you flaunt your supposed piety. It’s earned day in and day out, usually without anyone else watching. It’s earned by telling the truth. It’s earned by standing up for those who can’t stand up for themselves. It’s earned by looking out for those who get left behind or who are looked down on. It’s earned by fighting the good fight. It’s earned by hard work and deep thinking. It’s earned by self examination. It’s earned by having integrity.

And that’s The Counterpoint.



At 10:20 AM, Blogger Carynel said...

Excellent! Love your response! I stopped watching our local "Sin" Clair FOX station over a year ago because of that idiot Mark (i'd like to break his) Hyman. He gives Marylanders a bad name.


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