I’ve here in mind the fist-pumping variety of politically vocal people, those certain that one side is leading us to another dark ages and the other to a totalitarian state. It appears that for some “left and right” thinking is characterized by black and white thinking. Nuance is lost. And with this loss, so too many other possible perspectives.

I don’t blame fist-pumpers for succumbing to black and white thinking, nor do I think their worries ought to be knee-jerkedly discounted. Sometimes fist-pumpers do us a service by pointing to real problems, sometimes by their dramatic displays motivating others to find solutions. However, fist-pumpers have no more special access to truth than the rest of us, nor to right and wrong, no matter how vigorously they pronounce on each. But it might also be so that they have no less, and their perspectives are duly weighed among the many. And here’s the point I want to emphasize, among the many.

Normal, boring people doing normal boring things rarely make the news. I describe most of us most of the time. Fist-pumpers do make the news, as do the kinds of stories liable to encourage fist-pumping. These stories can be titillating, and being titillating are easily remembered. Coming readily to mind, they’re as handy for lunch room banter as reports about the weather. Get a few fist-pumpers together agreeing on the same issue, and the activity can be a whole lot of fun. For them. But not for everyone. Certainly not for those lunch-companions feeling cowed under the weight of their fists, nor under the volley exchanged with someone voicing an opposing view.

Have heart, I say. Whether you are a fist-pumper or one merely caught in the crossfire. While media reports, lunch room banter, and even Thanksgiving dinners sometimes contribute to an impression of widespread mistrust — characterized by fear and anger — along political lines, the way we, by which I mean most of us most of the time, go about our lives tells another tale. And it’s a tale worth repeating. Why? Some stories become self-fulfilling prophecies.

I hate them!!
They scare me!!

Who are these terrible people, the theys and the thems?

They:
 
Analyze your blood and urine at the lab.
Interpret your scans and x-rays.
Fill prescriptions.
Print instructions.
Issue warnings and contraindications.
Hand out tissues.
Make tea.
Dry the leaves.
Tend the soil.
Plant seeds.
Harvest crops.
Mill the grains.
Bake your daughter’s birthday cake.
They:

Take your order.
Note your allergies.
Prepare your food.
Prepare your bill.
Repair your car.
Check your brakes.
Change your tires. 
Issue recalls.
Design seatbelts. 
Certify car seats.
Sterilize formula.
Inspect toys.
Wipe tears.
Bandage knees.
Teach the ABCs.
Drive a school bus.
Volunteer as crossing guards.
Meals on Wheels.
Fluff pillows.
Scrub Toilets.
Wash floors.
Hold open doors.
They:

Install escalators.
Install elevators.
Make music.
Sit in pews on Sundays.
Dance in clubs on Fridays.
Ride Harleys.
Drive golf carts.
Couch surf.
Fish.
Analyze your drinking water.
Bottle your drinking water.
Plumb. 

They:

Wire lights.
Wire outlets.
Your dryer.
Your stove.
Keep you warm.
Listen to your heart.
Perform heart surgery.
Chemo.
Make wigs.
Donate hair.
Fix your teeth.
Teach the people who fix your teeth.
Teach the people who teach the people who fix your teeth.

They:

Manage your finances.
Manage your retirement fund.
Manage your insurance.
Manage a soup kitchen.
Share a thermos.
Deliver your pizza.
Deliver your baby.
Deliver your mail.
Deliver flowers.
Mow lawns.
Plants trees.
Clear ice and snow.
Pick your elderly mom up off the street when she falls.
Call an ambulance.
Drive the ambulance.

They:

Are paramedics.
Fire fighters.
First aid attendants.
Nurses.
Doctors.
Comedians.
Passersby.
Shoppers.
Check-out clerks.
They carry your bags.
Ferry cars.
Build ferries.
Build stairs.
Build the roof over your head.
Inspect the roof over your head. 
Repair the roof over your head.
And you stand below.
Unafraid.



			

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