Biff America: Sending some love to the other side
Eagle County CO, Colorado
“An eye for an eye and the whole world will be blind.”
You’ll notice that quote of Khalil Gibran’s on car bumpers, coffee mugs, and wherever liberal paraphernalia is found.
I take the quote to mean that as long as people, nations and cultures insist on responding in kind to acts of aggression then aggression will perpetuate. In order to start afresh someone, some government or some party must break the cycle, take a punch and “turn the other cheek.” Sound familiar?
Certainly this pertains to governments, militaries and leaders but it begins with individuals.
What follows is my attempt to break the cycle.
Since the recent election I have received countless e-mails from friends trying to get my goat. Many have been forwarded to me by those on the opposite side of the political aisle and whose party got its butt kicked Nov. 4.
One e-mail, forwarded by one of my GOP pals, was copied from a conservative blog.
The author wanted to set the record straight in regard to Ted Kennedy. As most everyone knows, Senator Kennedy recently had a malignant tumor removed from his brain.
The editorial in question chided the media and those who have lauded praise and platitudes on the Senator from Massachusetts.
Rather than offer sympathy for an illness which some might consider a death sentence, the blog chronicled Teddy’s misdeeds from his college days to Chappaquiddick. The message being, that rather than honor the man, we should focus on his sins as well as his accomplishments. I did not take the time to research every negative assertion though I do know some of it was valid.
Many of us who hail from the Commonwealth of Mass consider the Kennedy family ours. We have shed tears not only over the deaths of JFK, RFK and John-John but extended family as well. I know of more than a handful of times that Teddy himself has interceded on the behalf of regular people in my home state. (One of them being my own brother.)
For that reason I responded back to my right-wing-buddy with an equally nasty e-mail where I admitted Teddy, like all of us, is flawed but then compared him to his conservative champion ” G.W. Bush; I think I used the words, dupe, halfwit and criminal. I sent that e-mail reply to get even.
I’ve also received e-mails concerning our next president, which border on racist. I don’t believe that those who sent me those are necessarily bigots. I believe it is more likely that they just believe humor is an excuse for poor taste.
I can identify with that. I too have been accused of being in poor taste (often over a microphone) in my attempts to be clever.
For each Obama-bashing e-mail I’ve been forwarded from friends and associates, I usually respond in kind with something equally negative regarding Bush, Palin, McCain, Hannity, Fox and whomever or whatever I deem will annoy the sender.
That all stops now. I’m going to break the cycle of nastiness and say something nice.
This won’t be the first time I’ve deviated from my liberal base ” I like country music and handguns. What can I say, I’m a maverick.
So I’m going to just rip off the Band-Aid and say it, I think G.W. Bush is probably a good guy; I’ve even done some research on this.
I have several friends who know Bush. Some have mountain biked with him, others have spent a fair amount of informal, non-political time with him. Many of these people are as left-wing as I am but almost all have said that he is a good dude.
To be clear, I have not changed my opinion of him as a president or of his administration. But I do think I might enjoy hanging out with him, just as I enjoy hanging out with some of those losers who send me stupid e-mails. I also believe that he (as misguided as I think it may be) believed he was doing what was best for this country.
Whew! I have to tell you; that was not as painful as I thought.
It has been my experience that the lion’s share of people who I maintain have their heads up their butts politically, are decent people ” once I get to know them.
So, this is my small gesture to reach out and ask both sides to stop the cycle of pettiness.
Even if we don’t agree, we all can show each other respect and courtesy founded on our commonality.
We all want basically the same things ” peace, love, prosperity and snow.
Except for Cheney … That guy is pure evil.
Jeffrey Bergeron, under the alias of Biff America, can be seen on RSN TV and read in several newspapers and magazines. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Biff’s book “Steep, Deep and Dyslexic” is available from local book stores or at Backcountrymagazine.com.