Your birthday is coming up on November 8th (as you know). At this time of year, especially, I think of who you were, where you might be, and what you might thinking about so many troubling issues facing the United States today.
Last night, at a social event, which, had you still been alive, you would have attended, Mr. Griffin asked me, “Whom would Hugh have voted for?” Although you were a life-long Democrat, with great compassion for the “Little Guy” (now known as Joe the Plumber), I didn’t hesitate in saying that you would have voted for McCain. Your worries about terrorism and our nation’s security would have trumped the true excitement and pride you would have felt about the first African-American becoming the most powerful man in world. The Greatest Generation, of which John McCain, the first President Bush, and a handful of other leaders are members, is almost gone.
We are left with untested Baby Boomers, perhaps some of the most selfish and flaky personages to ever lead our country. We are also left with those who would play Robin Hood in an effort to make everyone feel good. We are left with the sardonic humor of David Letterman, whose mean spirited ego treated the war hero, John McCain, like a garbage bag.
When I left the event last night, I felt very sad. Not only are you not here to hug me and tell me I am the most wonderful person in the world (other than Mom), but also, you are not here any more to shoot the breeze and to discuss the world’s most pressing problems.
The other night, when Ron was out of town, and I was alone in my bed, I woke up suddenly. The ceiling seemed to be wavy; I blinked several times and a thin vaporous shadow seemed to move through the room. The dog didn’t bark; the alarm didn’t sound. Could it have been you?
Not likely. I must have been thinking of The Alchemist, in which a delightful old man with wisdom and magical stones, appears on the scene to bring a small shepherd boy vast knowledge about the way of the world.
You are no alchemist and my theology teaches me that ghosts do not visit.
This morning, the sun is shining and fall is here. Earth is still a wonderful place to be, and I am looking forward to my day, but I miss your perspective– your enthusiasm about capitalism, your support about hard work, your insistence about playing fair…all of that I miss.
Before long, those of us who work hard will be paying for those who don’t want to work, socialism will replace capitalism, and fairness will be determined by a governmental agency.
Thinking about our local, state, and national governments reminds me that we need less of them.