When you want something so fervently that you’ll destroy a close friend’s reputation to get it, you can’t afford it.
Are you willing to do anything to win, to get your way, to cover up, bluster, gossip or lie your way out of or beyond your words and actions? That disqualifies you.
In the South grow honest-to-John briars. They’re socially accommodating, by which I mean they’re happy as clams growing up with other weeds, trees, vines or extremely lethargic people. But enough about midlevel government bureaucrats.
Briar thorns are prominent, tough, sharp and intrusive; and since briars tend to be strong and thick, they’re stubborn. They don’t particularly want to go anywhere and are admirably resistant to being eradicated.
That’s the polite way of saying you can hurt yourself trying to pull them. Voice of experience. The scars eventually healed.
Walking anywhere around briars causes a ‘waitaminit’ moment, wherein the vine suddenly extends inch-long thorns to 2 1/2 feet, grabbing onto your clothing and whispering, “Waitaminit.”
While reading yesterday I ran across the literary equivalent of a ‘waitaminit’ briar vine. The writer was referring to the meaner, nastier, Great-Divide vitriol that seems to have overridden the good sense of everyone seeking our nation’s presidency. He indicated that colleagues and lifelong friends seem to have become willing to allow their handlers and advisors to follow a scorched-earth strategy, to which the writer referred as being more expensive than each of them knows.
He called it a ‘hole-in-the-soul’ cost. Consider that for a few seconds.
He called it a ‘hole-in-the-soul’ cost.
Anything so disruptive, uncalled for and intentionally misleading as to make a permanent wound whose scar will forever bear witness to what once was but will never again be can be said to have created a hole in one’s very soul. Forgiveness may be sought and granted. Grace may once again flow in and through them. Yet the relationship will never again be what it was.
Yeah. Just like those briars. Even now as I looked for the right picture, I unconsciously reached with my left hand to rub the palm of my right hand where those briars ripped that flesh. The immediate wounds healed. The memory of the instant pain and blood doesn’t go away. That’s why a forgive-and-forget philosophy is nice but not realistic in this life.
To instantly forget that event and fail to learn from it would guarantee that the next time I encounter briars I’ll reach up there and try to pull them down again.
So not happening.
No matter who ascends to the United States Presidency, driving ambition has caused them all to inculcate fatuous invective they or their advisors hope will distract us voting citizens long enough to win the election.
There are better ways to win an election.
Our Founders have received some disturbing venom of their own over recent years, primarily by those intent on rubbing out their careful work in establishing our republic. They were no more perfect than you nor I. At times they heatedly disagreed. Yet they remained gentlemen throughout that arduous process. Listen to one of them whose words should be echoing across every news outlet – and in every candidate’s huddle:
“[N]ever suppose that in any possible situation, or under any circumstances, it is best for you to do a dishonorable thing, however slightly so it may appear to you.” —Thomas Jefferson, 1785
A campaign strategy that produces a “hole-in-the-soul” cost is to my mind unworthy of any office.
At head-on-pillow time, they’ll not forget it any more than I’ll ever forget those briars.
© D. Dean Boone, February 2016
As I was recently reading I ran across a ‘waitaminit’ phrase.