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Ain't No Getting Around It

Posted: August 10, 2010

Sometimes things are just what they are, whether we can accept them or not. This doesn't make others wrong, or make us have to agree. We can just go our merry ways and leave alone what we don't want to agree with or accept if we can't have direct and decent discourse.

Martin Scorsese would probably have appreciated that position coming from those who never saw his film, 'The Last Temptation of Christ,' but took to the picket lines anyway. They were afraid their sensibilities were going to be offended without knowing the facts.

Skeptics are in denial, who need to believe the geoglyphic art or Nazca lines of Chile's Atacama Desert in Peru, depicting spiders, birds, animals, etc., are natural formations when research shows that people made them. It is difficult for some to step out of their comfort zones. Some people refuse to believe anything beyond their limited viewpoints, or ones that are contrary to their own. To have something stare us in the face and deny it exists is intellectual dishonesty. If Dorothy and her companions avoided the yellow brick road, they may never have found the little old man behind the curtain. Nothing says they had to stay for tea. They could have believed him or not to get her home. That's the point. We can believe what we want, making life our personal journeys.

I recently saw the film, 'W.' directed by Oliver Stone. False advertising pandered to the Left and others who learned to hate Dubbya by the time of its initial release. Josh Brolin and Oliver Stone portrayed a much different George W. Bush than trailers depicted and I saw along with those who mimicked him. He was that buffoon who constantly mocked Americans and Troops alike, doing his insipid gestures and jokes exactly like Jon Stewart's imitations of him. Bush's constant mangling of syntax showed up only occasionally in the film, and they were not nearly as egregious as they were in reality.

I was an outspoken critic of George W. Bush both in print and on radio. But, as depicted by Oliver Stone, who is no slouch and probably not an avid Bush fan, the man he portrayed is someone, many might have a lemonade with—to keep him off the booze, of course. ;-)

Many people probably got what Brolin and Stone might have been doing. It seemed they were going for who GWB might have become had he not wanted the presidency so much that he allowed others to pull his strings. This seemed to exacerbate his goofiness when trying to put on a happy face to cover anger, frustration, and disappointment. If he had not been so eager to prove himself to his disapproving father, things might have turned out better had he managed to become president on his own merits without being selected.

Oliver Stone burrowed through W's foolish veneer to expose someone who actually cared passionately, but for the wrong cause he inherited, 'Project for a New American Century' (PNAC). Though his brother Jeb was an original signatory, George was not. Brolin and Stone may end up granting W his wish, i.e., history awards him better judgment than facts bear out to future generations who never witnessed events firsthand.

Like a good film maker, a good attorney embraces his clients. Sometimes, an attorney has to do research to plead clients' cases convincingly. Is this not better for the clients than him making up anything just to sway the jury with persuasive oratory? But then, if guilty, maybe the client would prefer the attorney not look into the matter too deeply. A decent, not just competent, attorney might drop the case. On the other hand, if the client is in the right, it behooves the attorney to plead his case passionately and positively.

Over a decade ago, I met a homeless man suffering from what looked like secondary syphilis lesions. He was holding a flute. I used to play the flute. After speaking with him and his companion, I bought them cokes. It was a very hot day. As payment, he played his flute—beautifully. Though he was Caucasian, his lyric speech pattern reminded me of the late eloquent actor, Paul Winfield. The homeless man's name was Ian. I was so touched by that thrown away person, I wrote about 'Ian' in a collection of similar short stories called, The Plaid Shirt. Being homeless and, probably, dying of syphilis, didn't make him bad or stupid. He had a brand of wisdom that only his journey could have shown him.

Everyone has a piece of the truth. Even those whom we dislike and disagree. Will we be better off if we can acknowledge the rightness of those we don't like, when they are right? Probably.

It would be nice to see the Hatfields and McCoys also come together instead of constantly squabbling. The country surely would become healthier as well. The re-emergence of committed third parties wouldn't hurt either. Will it really take massive funding, or just massive voting to give greater numbers to third parties in Congress? As voters, we need to stop believing the 'one party system' will save us from the 'other party.'

... stay tuned ...

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