"Slarrow" refers to the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune" from Hamlet's soliloquy. Here are the chronicles of such darts and whatever attempt there may be to take arms against such a sea of troubles.

Location: Ozarks, United States

Monday, November 08, 2004

Change of Pace

A dear friend of mine on the other side of the aisle wrote this as a letter submission to the Washington Post. While I think he falls prey to some of the concerns I've posted, it's still a civil call to work together. I liked it, and he's letting me post it. Enjoy.
Dear President Bush,

Congratulations on your victory. I supported Sen. Kerry, but the
race is over. It is no time to get on with the important bits. Once
again you are taking the reins of a deeply divided nation. In 2000
you ran as a "uniter" platform. Mr. President, now more than ever we
need you to live up to that promise. You will never face another
election, so there is no longer a need to find wedge issues or
shamelessly pander to the fears of Americans. There are too many
problems facing our nation to pursue issues which strike a sour note
to nearly half of the electorate.

America has spoken, and now we need to hear from you. Talk to us
more. Let us ask you questions, and do us the common courtesy of
answering them to the best of your ability. Secrecy in a democracy
does no one any favors. There are many of us who do not trust you,
and what respect we have is for the office of the President, not the
person. You have the ability to lessen the animosity. And it just
doesn't come just from the lunatic fringe, but from a large portion
of the populace. The majority has spoken, but the margin was slim.

Over the course of the next four years, you are going to ask much of
your fellow Americans. You are going to ask us to shoulder a growing
deficit. You are going to ask more of us to join the military. You
are going to ask us to participate in and support at least one more
military action. You are going to ask us to bear rising fuel and
medical costs. Americans are a remarkable group of people, who can
accept most any burden, but we need to have well articulated and
verifiable reasons to do so. FDR got the country to accept the
rationing of just about everything during WWII. He did it, not by
Executive Order and veiled causes, but by convincing the people it
was the right and necessary thing to do. Convince us that the
burdens we are going to have to bear are truly necessary and we will
shoulder them with lessened grumbling. Keep up the current
stonewalling and spin and be ready for the unrest and protests.

For the next four years, I will probably disagree with many of your
policies and positions. That is my right. I'll probably complain a
lot and loudly. Again, my right. But this I promise you, I will at
least think before I react. Please return the favor and don't simply
dismiss the opposition, on occasion we do have some good ideas

During your second term you will be asked to nominate at least one
Supreme Court justice, and ask someone new to step up as Chief. What
the court needs both in new membership and as a leader is moderation
you should not look only for conservative views. Find people who are
middle of the road. Each side of an argument has merit, and neither
side has the monopoly on being right. It is the job of the Supreme
Court to act as a check on both our lawmakers and enforcers. It is
the forum by which citizens have their last chance to argue
unpopular positions, and to try and counter unfair laws and
enforcement policies that may have started with good intentions, but
are now outmoded or have been implemented in a unfair or prejudiced
manner. It is not a place that should be made up of only one point
of view. Think outside the box, if you will, and find candidates
that are fair and believe in freedom and justice, not ones who are
slaves to partisan ideology. All branches of the government must
serve the entire population, not just those that agree with the
dominate party.

As for the rest of the world, an olive branch or two would be
improper. We happen to be the biggest kid on the block, but that
doesn't give us the right to ignore the rest of the world. And our
position at the top did not come from a divine mandate or as a
foregone conclusion. Mighty nations have fallen before, and no one
nation can stand against the world. Find ways to repair our
relations and reputation in the global community. We may not need
the approval of the world to protect ourselves, but we do need them
to buy our goods and services. Mary Poppins said, "A spoonful of
sugar helps the medicine go down." Keep this in mind when dealing
with the rest of the world. Like it or not we cannot fight WWIV by
ourselves. We need friends and willing allies that can and will
provide more than token assistance. Cowboys tend to live and die
alone, where farmers usually are surrounded by friends and family.

Finally, I respect your depth of faith. It is one of the few traits
you have shown that we share. We do not share your religion, or its
beliefs, but we do share the depths to which we believe. I am not
going to try and force my face onto you. Please do the same. It is
the responsibility of our religious communities to instill in us
morality and ethical behavior, not the government. If faith is your
guide, do not let it blind you to other possibilities. No one belief
system has all the answers, there wouldn't be so many if that were
so. But one thing most of the share is the Golden Rule. Treat me how
you want to be treated. Filter your words and actions through that
and you will be pleasantly surprised by the results, I always am.

I am trying very hard not to be a sore loser. There are many places,
Mr. President, that I disagree with your policies and some of your
positions and opinions frankly repulse me. For good or ill you are
again my President. I will support you as I am able. It is your job
to lead, support, and protect all Americans. Over 53,000,000 people
voted for you, it is within your power to turn the rest of us from
the Opposition to the Loyal Opposition. Give cooperation and
toleration a shot; we might all be surprised at the results.

Congratulations again on your victory. You have for more years, use
them with more wisdom and compassion than you did in the first.

Your Fellow American,

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