True leader must step up to plate
Don’t you believe it’s time that our president, George W. Bush, steps up to the plate? After all, he is a baseball fan.
He could pick up his bat and rap out two hits – one by bashing together Arafat’s and Sharon’s heads and the other by knocking the collective noggins of our wimpy Congress, a bold, but courageous move that would encourage these foreign warriors to hold a conference in center field, at the pitcher’s mound or at home plate or, come to think of it, since they are on opposite sides, they could meet under the bleachers.
Our elected representatives might then consider the welfare of us common folk rather than rhapsodizing over the holiness of one warrior and the ungodliness of the other.
Of course, George is not likely to wield the bat because he’s thinking of his re-election, and he doesn’t want to alienate the lobbyists for either the Israelis or the Palestinians. And it isn’t so much the loss of the cash his next campaign would suffer as it is the vast amount of money those lobbyists would contribute to his opponent’s campaign – thus, he fears, dooming his second term. Is it possible the politician can become the statesman?
Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and Vice President Cheney, wealthy presidential advisors, and professional politicians, are so anxious to prevent George from undergoing the same fate his father suffered in his own re-election bid that they have perhaps lost sight of what is in the best interest of the American people.
Now, what is it the average American wants? Well, as one of them, an American citizen, a voter and a World War II veteran, I can tell you what I do not want – I do not want my granddaughters and grandsons dying on the battlefield for either the Palestinians or the Israelis. For God’s sake, let’s not let either Arafat or Sharon drag us into such a hell as another global war.
And don’t count on the Congress doing anything except helping both combatants by dishing out more billions of our tax money.
Why will our so-called representatives do that? For the same reason George W. isn’t grabbing the bat. They know that if they refuse to play ball with the lobbyists for their favorite combatant, their future political future is in grave jeopardy. Believe me, they desperately crave to stay on their beloved congressional ball team. A good share of them are multi-millionaires – Democrats and Republicans alike – and they just love politics. The House members are even more nervous than the senators because the former are up for re-election every two years. Think on this when you listen to most of their self-serving synchophantic speeches on how to solve the Mideast crisis.
A true leader is the only one who can get us out of this mess. What we really need is another George Washington, Abraham Lincoln or Harry Truman. Someone who will, regardless of political consequences, shake the dirt from his or her cleats, take a few practice swings, and knock the ball out of the park!
World War III is certainly a possibility, and I plead with our president, basically a good man, to come out swinging hard that bat which is the power of this country to cut off appropriations to the two warring parties. Even the threat of using such a weapon would quickly bring about the amazing sight of both Arafat and Sharon stumbling over one another in a race to the peace conference table.
Richard F. Proud
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