Waiting for words of comfort and unity

In our short and often tumultuous history, there have been dramatic highs and lows that are often bookended with words as powerful as the moments themselves.

Today, at this moment in 2017, there are dark clouds on the horizon and we are waiting to hear powerful words. The kind of words that give us reassurance when we are confused. The kind that mean something when they are spoken with authenticity and truth.

Future classroom textbooks will tell the history of our time in much of the same way they tell of the civil rights era of the 1960s. Kids will learn about marches. They will see images of passionate people, yelling at each other — I’m right and you’re wrong. Less and less can we understand each other.

There are always two sides and two points of views. But sometimes they are not equal. Not even close. When one side is wearing white hoods and holding symbols that reflect the darkest moments in our history, there is little chance of moral equivalency.

Yes, this is 2017 and there are men in white hoods trying to hold on to relevance. The final remnants of a time in history from which we had forgotten.

Unfortunately for us, the man with the bully pulpit is failing to give us clarity. He is assumed to represent the conscience of a nation, and yet his words are something we don’t understand and to which we often disagree.

We are looking for a Churchill, a Reagan, a Lincoln; with a strong and positive voice. We are looking for a Mother Theresa, a Martin Luther King Jr. A soft and tender tone.

Today we have a loud and consistent drumbeat of absoluteness. The message is not clear. There is no gray and no in-between. Words are losing their meaning.

Olive branches are nowhere in sight. People are not shaking hands or sharing hugs. We all want to stand our ground. Understanding what we don’t know is not so fashionable anymore.

Most of the time we ignore the inside-the-beltway gossip. This time, it’s a drip, drip, drip, and the Potomac River is flowing in all directions, carrying the vitriol and hatred that we expect to come from the kind of places we try to avoid, not the nation’s capital.

Words are powerful tools used by powerful people. The problem today is that we do not hear the kinds of words we expect to hear in challenging times of turmoil. From top to bottom, everyone sounds the same.

People are interesting things. I write about them and what makes them interesting.

People are interesting things. I write about them and what makes them interesting.