Tuesday, June 28, 2005

"Would it have killed these people to say thank you?"

Many of us were appalled last week by the unmitigated tripe run on the New York Times editorial page. OK, that's always the case, but there was something very special last week, a breathless account of an encounter between Fatina Abdrabboh and former VP Al Gore.
I got on a treadmill and started running as hard as I could. As sweat dripped down my face, I reached for my towel, accidentally dropping my keys in the process. It was a small thing, I know, but as they slid down the rolling belt and fell to the carpet, my faith in the United States seemed to fall with them. I did not care to pick them up. I wanted to keep running.

Suddenly a man, out of breath, but still smiling and friendly, tapped me on my shoulder and said, "Ma'am, here are your keys." It was Al Gore, former vice president of the United States. Mr. Gore had gotten off his machine behind me, picked up my keys, handed them to me and then resumed his workout.

It was nothing more than a kind gesture, but at that moment Mr. Gore's act represented all that I yearned for - acceptance and acknowledgment.

Ordinarily I reference articles with comments that you should go read the entire thing, but as short as this piece is, I don't recommend it.

Chris Lynch had an amusing (and appropriately inappropriate) take on it the other day. Well, today, Jonah Goldberg's addressed it in The Goldberg File.
About a month ago, I helped a Muslim woman with her groceries in a supermarket parking lot. She was dealing with her kids and her shopping cart started to roll away from her car with the groceries still inside. As it rolled, I saw a decent society of tolerance and kindness rolling away...Thank goodness I was there.

Thank goodness this country produces heroes like me.

I sprang into action. Walking more than a dozen yards without concern about the parking-lot traffic, heedless of the SUVs barreling along at 5 perhaps even 10 MPH — not even caring about what my fellow Americans might make of me giving aid and comfort to a Muslim woman. I knew that this woman’s faith in the American way of life was on the line! And I was going to do what was necessary! I grabbed that shopping cart and I pushed it through all the fear and bigotry this country has smothered that poor woman with. I pushed that shopping cart back to that woman’s minivan not so much so she could more easily unload her Cocoa Puffs, but because I have a dream. I have a dream that one day little Muslim boys and little Jewish boys, little Arab girls and little Scotch-Irish girls will be able to join hands as sisters and brothers and push that great shopping cart we call “America” together — with their one free hand.

I don't use the word "hero" lightly, but I am the greatest hero in American history. Except, maybe, for Al Gore.

Excellent - read it all...

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