“I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.”
“Those in authority not only organize things to suit themselves, they interpret things to suit themselves.”
By Richard Holloway from his book “Doubts and Loves: What is Left of Christianity.”
As someone who readily admits my observations of the world and the human condition are more than slightly skewed to the unusual, I always get enjoyment when a person far more erudite like the honorable Richard Holloway comes to a similar conclusion. The one amendment to his quote I have to add would be that everyone, not just those in authority, interprets things to suit themselves but ignore all facts and commonsense that runs counter to their views no matter the price they might have to pay in the end. Now you might be wondering what has brought another episode of my strange ruminations? I am so glad you asked.
Since becoming First Lady Michelle Obama has taken up the cause of fighting obesity in America by championing exercise and healthy eating habits. Since no good deed ever goes unpunished in the land of the overweight and the home of the mentally deficient her sensible stance has been the subject of harsh criticism if not outlandish conspiracy theories by those on the right-wing of American politics. It really is a testament of American stupidity when the merest mention of sensible exercise and occasionally choosing a salad instead of a greasy half-pound burger becomes a socialistic conspiracy that threatens the very foundations of the Republic. Now understand I am no food saint, my culinary habits tend to be on the bad side along with my exercise routine being spotty no matter how hard I try to establish a regular schedule. However, I recognize that I am the captain of my own fate and do not fear some government boogieman forcing me to eat tofu.
This brings up the trigger to my newest brain droppings. It began last Saturday afternoon after my wife, daughter, and I left the movie theater. We had just seen the latest “Men In Black” movie and decided to grab an early dinner at one of those ubiquitous national restaurant chains that look identical inside and quite frankly serve nearly the same menu. If nothing else such restaurants prove the point “that a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.”
After my family and I were seated, it became apparent that the people at the table in front of my point of view were full-fledged Tea Party supporters. Ignoring the energetic discussion going on at the table the bright yellow t-shirt with the coiled rattlesnake and the words “Don’t Trend on me” worn by the patriarch of that group made it self-evident. No matter what teabaggers might say about them being oppressed by the liberal masses, it is still a semi-free country and they had every right to express their view to each other even though a number of their beliefs had me an evil emissary of socialism.
Now the one item I have yet to mention is that the Tea Party patriarch sitting at the table in front of me was pushing close to three-hundred pounds but could have stood no higher than five feet-five inches. His entrée was one of the huge half-pound burgers I mentioned earlier and along with a heaping pile of French fries there was enough greasy aroma in the air to send your average vegan into a suicidal fit. Of course the topic eventually turned to something called by them “food freedom” with the aforementioned liberal elites and media attempting to take away the right to choose from good Americans.
This went on for several minutes with the group talking about the stupid stuff liberals and nanny state intellectuals would force everyone to eat. It became a laugh riot for them until patriarch dude started choking. The sound of his distress caught my attention and when I looked up patriarch’s face had turned as red as a stop sign. The choking cleared after a minute or two but patriarch then started complaining about his chest hurting. Panic soon appeared in his eyes with his wife helping him out and to their car while the others in that group paid the bill and followed soon after.
Now if there were a moral to this story I would offer it here, except that as I wrote earlier I am no health and food saint myself. As much as I hate to write this, I did find some dark humor in patriarch’s situation. I have no idea of the ultimate resolution concerning his chest pains and hope he is okay. But I cannot help but feel that he truly believed there is some horrific Obama inspired conspiracy to make everyone eat healthy he may have given his life that day so Americans could continue to be grossly overweight and enjoy artery clogging foods. In twenty-first century right-wing America that is true patriotism.