Sunday, May 5, 2019

"I Pray People With Good Sense Will Get Power and People With Power Will Get Good Sense"

Even as I was a child I would watch TV and videos and afterwards really think and analyze what they were trying to say and to understand it.

There was a program on CBS back in the late '80s and early '90s that made me laugh a lot but it also made me think.  It had a character, an extremely classy, sophisticated, strong woman named Julia Sugarbaker.  The actress name was Dixie Carter.  Unfortunately, she has since passed on but her monologues from the television show live on forever on YouTube.  She was well known as an actress and off-camera to be very passionate about issues and would give powerful, well thought out speeches.

I recently remembered a scene where she was running (for what I believe was) for a board of education elected seat.  She had an on-camera debate with another person running for the same seat.  I have since found that clip on

Now even as a child, after just one viewing of this show and her monologue it was blazen across my mind and I never forgot it.  I felt that the words she said and the way she worded them were so passionate yet elegant and I agreed with them and I still do.

Let me back up for a moment and give you some context and history about this scene.  In the late '80s and early '90s, during President Bush (41) reign (and I did then and have always believed that he was one of our greatest Presidents but I didn't always agree with him on each policy choice or stance) there was an issue that divided the nation; the Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag.  There were those on one side that felt the pledge should be compulsory (required, even against one's will) to be stated at the beginning of each day.  And there was the other side that was of the opinion that everyone should say the Pledge of Allegiance but not be required by law to say it at a certain date and time as determined by the state (government).

That is what this clip is all about, or at least that is what it was about back then.

When I rewatched the clip, over and over, I felt that we are in another time of even greater division where this clip is appropriate today, some 30 years later.  In our divisive time that we are in, where a vast majority of the population is polarized to one side or the other.  And it seems to me the answer should not be one side winning over the other, in either way, but that cooler heads shall prevail and for the good of our nation's past, present and future history, as we are about to reach our Sestercentennial, the celebration of 250 years of independence in '26, that we should compromise.

There are many many lines in this speech that I firmly agree with but the very last line is the one that stands out.

Now, I'd like you to watch it in it's entirety and continue reading.  I fully understand that for some it will be difficult to here because they will disagree and I fully understand that for others it will be difficult to here because they desires she shares, after 30 years, still have not been resolved.

Here it is.  Keep an open mind and listen to each of the words she says, as they go by quick.  She makes many strong points.  Just push the play arrow to start.

I agree with all that she says including the part that the government should not have the power to dictate when or where I have to do something as intimate as saying the Pledge of Allegiance or prayer.

Here is a transcript of her speech, in case you missed something, it does go by quickly...

"No Mr. Brickett.  I have not forgotten.  I was thinking that you seem to've forgotten the phrase "separation of church and state."  But the one thing I did forget, was just how divisive and dishonest and distasteful someone like you can be.  "I've sat here today and listened to you pander to these people but you don't actually care about them or you wouldn't be sitting here reinforcing their ignorance and prejudices.  I do not think everyone in America is ignorant, far from it!  But we are today probably the most uneducated, underead and illiterate nation in the western hemisphere; which makes it all the more puzzling to me why the biggest question on your small mind is whether or not little Johnnie is going to recite the Pledge of Allegiance every morning.  I tell you something else Mr. Brickett, I have had it up to here with your phony issues and your yankee doodle yaket.  If you like reciting the Pledge of Allegiance everyday then I think you should do it!  In the car, in the shower, wherever the mood strikes you but don't try to tell me when or where I have to say or do or salute anything because I am an American too and that is what being an American is all about.  And another thing, I am sick and tired of being made to feel that if I'm not a member of a little family with 2.4 children who goes to sister Jerry Fallwell's church and puts their hands over their hearts every morning that I am unreligious, unpatriotic, and un-American.  Because I have news for you Mr. Brickett, all liberals are not kooks anymore than all conservatives are fascists.  And the last time I checked God was neither a Democrat nor a Republican.  And, just for your information, yes I am a liberal but I am also a Christian.  And, I get down on my knees and pray everyday on my own turf, on my own time.  One of the things I pray for Mr. Brickett is that people with power will get good sense and people with good sense will get power and that the rest of us will be blessed with the patience and the strength to survive the people like you in the meantime."

No matter what part of the spectrum you are on, be it conservative or liberal or independent, there must be the one line in this speech that we can all agree on...."One of the things I pray for Mr. Brickett is that people with power will get good sense and people with good sense will get power and that the rest of us will be blessed with the patience and the strength to survive the people like you in the meantime."

That seems to be the most powerful part of the speech.

In our world today we are divided, it can't be avoided so it won't just go away.  We are a nation of arguing about whether patriotism should be compulsory and performed in a certain way.  Yes, I hope all Americans feel patriotism but I don't believe it should be mandated and compulsory in government dictated ways.  

But if we all have a goal of getting people with good sense into power and keep those people in power to have good sense, things will get better.  But just as equally we all need to stop listening to people that pander to us and say things just to make us angry, which will then make us watch their shows and which will then make them more money.  They don't have our best interests at heart and I truly believe most don't believe in what they are saying, they just want the money (greed) that comes from the ratings they get when we watch them.  For these extreme people I encourage us all to 'turn them off, change the channel.'

Please join my blog page and leave a message, I'd like to know what you think of this particular speech.

Bryan W. Rupp