Unlucky in a Lucky Way
A derecho, defined as a widespread, fast moving, straight-line windstorm, devastated the northeast, Labor Day 1998. It lasted only minutes, but in its wake, 115 MPH gusts caused over $130M in damages. Power outages lasted up to ten days, Town of Manlius, NY the most severely impacted. Tall pines fell on neighbors’ roofs, vehicles were crushed. I awakened to a property filled with downed limbs and waist-high piles of leaves, my home untouched. My friend Ellen, the eternal optimist, advised me, “You’re unlucky in a lucky way”. It was her way of saying “As bad as you think something is, look how much worse it could have been.” My take-no-prisoners Mama would have admonished, “Quit your bellyaching, and count your blessings.”
Let’s consider a much more serious situation. On June 14, 2017, Steve Scalise (R-LA, Republican Minority Whip), at a congressional baseball practice in Arlington VA, was shot by James Hodgkinson, a maniac who was targeting Republicans, not Democrats. Rep. Scalise had multiple life-threatening injuries, underwent numerous surgeries and rehab. Through the grace of God, he survived and has recovered. In no way diminishing Rep. Scalise’s situation, he was “unlucky in a lucky way”.
We can all recount ways in which we were unlucky in an lucky way. We live in a nation that, despite its problems, is the best of all possible worlds; yet witness the ingrates who cannot acknowledge this. Our Constitution provides us with protections not existing in many other countries. I watch President Trump’s well-attended rallies, a sea of red hats, their wearers orderly and energized. Outside the stadiums, the mood is one of anger and violence, particularly the October 10, 2019 Minneapolis MN event: the waving of Communist China flags, the bonfires of American flags and MAGA hats, and placards that read “Karl Marx was Right!”.
This is our First Amendment protection at its strongest. Were these protestors to burn an Iranian flag, it would be tantamount to insulting Allah; the penalty, a death sentence. In China, flag burning is considered counter-revolutionary incitement, with a minimum of five years in prison. Burn a Russian flag, and you could be jailed for one year or be mandated to perform community service. Anti-American firebugs, you are lucky to be living in The United States!
How about insulting a head of state? Iran will award you 74 lashes; Lebanon can fine you between $32,000 – $64,000 (USD); Azerbaijan, up to two years “corrective labor”; Venezuela, up to 40 months in prison. Disrespecting a monarch or head of state is referred to as “Lese Majeste” (Fr.). Literally, it means “To do wrong to majesty”. Robert DiNiro, Madonna, Maxine Waters, countless other celebrities and CNN/MSNBC commentators, get the picture? You, also, are lucky to be living in the land of freedom.
Karl Marx was not right.
Donald Trump, not Hillary Clinton, won the presidential election. The electoral college vote 304 – 227. November 6, 2016 goes down in history as a night to remember: Hillary supporters, angry and confused, held protests and “cry-ins”. Some were so distraught they stayed home from work. A new psychiatric disorder was born: Trump Derangement Syndrome. The hard-left media went into a tailspin, from which they have not yet recovered. Are we unlucky to have a president who in spite of – or possibly because of – his demeanor, and the never-ending obstacles thrown in his path by the Democrats, is working to achieve his goals? Consider yourselves unlucky in a lucky way.
The bipartisan Criminal Justice Reform bill was enacted on December 21, 2018, largely due to the efforts of black faith leaders such as Harry Jackson, Darrel Scott and John Gray, who joined President Trump, on April 1, 2019, at the White House, for a Prison Reform Summit. Sullen CNN anchor, Don Lemon, still cannot accept the fact that Donald Trump is president . He informed his guest, Pastor Gray, that evening, “They are using you as a prop, and that is a photo op.” How lamentable, Don, to have legislation that brings a fair shake to the incarcerated minority population.
On October 9, Trump signed two executive orders aimed at increasing transparency regarding interpretation of federal regulations. It declared that “secret or unlawful bureaucratic interpretations of rules” would be forbidden. No future president would endure the antics such as that of the Pelosi-Schiff political theatre. America is lucky to have a leader who is not displaying Schadenfreude.
This is a bipartisan order, yet the Beto-vian, Schumer-esque Greek Chorus chants “J’accuse! Impeach!”
Be the optimist, and “quit your bellyaching, count your blessings.”
The GOP wishes you a Happy Thanksgiving.
Himlin is President of the Kendall County Republican Club.