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Saturday, June 03, 2006

Angels in America


Last Tuesday and Wednesday evenings I watched the American television production of Angels in America. Wow -- what a feast for thought-provoking discussion! It ranks among the best of American television productions for it's substance, it's acting, its direction and everything else.

With the current political movement to table an amendment outlawing gay marriage and the national divide this is bound to create, this production should be compulsary viewing. Because, for one thing, it shows how in one way or another we are all joined at the hip. We must stop using what we cannot understand to re-enforce our ignorance. I do not pretend to be comfortable in the presence of gay couples who are obviously in love. But I do believe that gay people have the right to be in love and to be recognized and that the more recognition there is, the less uncomfortable it will be for those, like me, who are not now. It starts with tolerance and with tolerance comes understanding and with understanding comes 'peace that passeth all understanding.'

The fact is that America promises everything to the healthy and to the ambitious, to those who promote monetary wealth. But it is not a place anymore for the down-trodden, the poor and the ill. It is a land of harsh reality. As a people we cannot together look at our own pain or our own uncertainty. Bonhomie is not love, is not well-being. It is shallow and escapist. As a country that is our reflection and it is what we have become. We want simple answers, black and white talk from our politicians, not depth and understanding. We think that the name of the game is 'hard ball'.

I say 'we' because like it or not that is what our government has become -- and our government is a reflection of ourselves -- If New Orleans was a disaster of incompetence, where did the 'power that be' come from -- the system elected them -- whether mayors or governors or congressmen/women or senators or the President. Blame the Republicans or the Democrats -- we are getting what we are responsible for -- namely politicians that put re-election before leadership.

I do hope that the people of our country will not be fooled into thinking that the most important issue before the nation is this unconscionable, probably unworkable, and sinful legislation. This is not democracy, this is moral and social tyranny.

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