My friend is dying of cancer. Today, it doesn’t matter to her if there are activist liberals, conservatives, pro-lifers, or gay, left-handed librarians without free lunch. What matters is that her husband can rest beside her one more time and that her adult daughters can kiss her cheek and gently place ice chips on her lips. Nothing else has any meaning.
I see and read about all the protests and I wonder how we all became so offended by life. Why is political correctness and self-righteous indignation more powerful than common sense, courtesy, and decency? I see the tortured faces of the pawns of politically-orchestrated outrage, and I wish they could realize they’re being used by selfish politicians seeking reelection. I was in college during the “burn the bra” protests, and I refused to participate, mainly because these girls need all the support they can get. There always will be women who support or oppose polarizing issues such as abortion, so let’s start with that fact and work together to replace grievance with gratitude.
I’ve traveled to 32 other countries and have witnessed true oppression. I’ve cried at the sacred ground at Dachau Concentration Camp in Germany, I’ve visited a cooperative in a shanty town in South Africa where women are making vases from pieces of broken glass, and I’ve seen a school in India that has dirt floors and no books. Young children walk miles to school because they know education is their only way out of poverty, and they compete for the luxury of borrowing a bicycle so they can peddle to school. They are equally poor, destitute and driven, and they cannot comprehend the glorious opportunities we have in our country.
Let’s stop all this whining and raise a glass of wine instead of a fist. We can’t pit women against women, ideology and rhetoric against theology and democracy and ever hope to succeed as a civilization. We should understand our differences and accept with amazement and gratitude that we each bring unique perspectives and beliefs. Show me a utopia of bliss and contentment and I’ll show you a movie called The Stepford Wives. It’s time to cut all the caustic crap.
Tonight I’ll go outside and silently appreciate the solitary splendor of a full moon as I say a solemn prayer for my dying friend. And, in her honor, I refuse to protest anything but resolve to be grateful that I have one more day tomorrow to love my children, rock my grandchildren, embrace my husband and whisper, “Thank you.”