On a particular, recent occasion, it happened that our friends Brain and Heart, Neuro & Myo respectively, had taken up residence on that park bench, not officially reserved for them of course, but nonetheless their pew, upon which to resolve the ills of society, or at least to expound upon them from their singularly unique perspectives. Amidst multi-colored blossoms and the outbreak of warming breezes, the impending exchange held forth the promise of useful debate, debate unlike that taking place in the State Houses and the Nation’s Capitol, where actually hearing and listening to the observations of one’s political and philosophical challengers seems, at best a lost art, at worst, purposeful disregard in pursuit of one’s own agenda.
Myo spoke first. She made mention of the most recent statements of intentions from President Biden’s speech to Congress this past week. She was particularly perplexed as to the statement that he claims to have “inherited a nation in crises.” From her point of view, save the pandemic, she opined that pre-COVID America seemed to be progressing on several fronts, although she allowed that there was much work to be done. Neuro interrupted her, a tendency he has tried over the years to control, but has been unable to completely overcome. He explained that while it did seem unfair to ascribe the programs and agenda of the previous administration to the present woes of all things American, it was more the purveyor of the curriculum that most distressed the populace, not all but enough to change the head coach, and many of the athletes, and thus the approach to the governing game.
Myo would not be distracted however. She pointed out that the conversation itself has been co-opted, which she explained is a primary tactic of the oppressor and despot. In today’s climate, should one disagree with and offer alternative approaches to the various plans and programs of the majority, as slight as such it may itself be, the immediate response is an attempt to marginalize, to cancel out the thoughts and ideas of a different mindset. She offered a case in point. When Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) declared that “America is not a racist country”, within minutes he was designated “Uncle Tim” by the Twiterati. She wanted to comment on the term Twit-erati, but saved that for later so as not to divert from the point at hand. Although the Senator went on to describe instances of racism he has had to deal with in his own life, a colloquy he engaged in order to make the point, his disclosures would not overcome the fact that he takes issue with that wing of his opponent’s narrative, those who would criticize in an effort to silence. Neuro was tempted to tag Heart as a racist right then and there, but thought better of it and chose not to slide into today’s almost universal misuse of the term; uses that in most instances are meant to diminish another’s contrary thought; a use that actually turns the meaning and significance of the term in on itself. He ain’t considered a brain for nothing.
But while Neuro did not necessarily disagree with Myo, he did point out that, in fairness, the President, on a few occasions, seemed to be extending a hand to both sides, and appeared, at least ostensibly, to be attempting to craft an atmosphere of open debate and co-operative efforts on behalf of the American people. On the issues of immigration and the Second Amendment for instance, he expressed a willingness to work with the other side in an attempt to find the ways to resolve two most troublesome matters infecting the land of the free and home of the brave; for quite some time. Neuro after all knows that words are important, but that it is actions that count. He surmised that for as long as a speaker’s enterprise fails to reflect proffered eagerness to “unity”, the franchise remains disappointing and hollow. Brain also knew that rhetoric is just that, and remaining only as such invites a blast of uncompromising gridlock.
Of course, heart innately knows all this, and was a bit encouraged by the possibilities that statesmen and women might actually see fit to put aside sectarian and fractional conduct to engage in behavior which would foster co-operation on these, and many other pressing issues. She is however, in one sense, a realist, in spite of what the romantics may say about her, and is well aware that the blue and red have intrinsically different paths to the ballot box. She remained hopeful however that the good of all the people will take centerstage, that the would be Unifier-In-Chief actually means what he says, and that all the peoples’ representatives do all the peoples’ work. Anything less then, like the use of the term racist, turns the entire pronouncement on itself, and will be seen for what it is, an attempt to “Do as we want, not as I say.”
During this chat, a small group of children, playing nearby this patio of reflection housing Brain & Heart’s Sofa of Good Sense, was spotted by our cognoscenti. Neuro pointed out how innocent children are, untroubled by the work and responsibilities of the adults around them. Myo instantly agreed but added that unless those adults resolve to respect our differences, differences in thought, differences in philosophies, and even, how simple to do, differences in skin color for instance, the adult world of the children presently inhabiting American playgrounds will be vastly changed, for better or for worse, depending on one’s frame of reference. Heart was also quick to point out that the freedoms of childhood should mature into the freedoms of America, which freedoms must be preserved and made to flourish, under any political scheme.