Tuesday, July 1, 2008
This Article Was Also Reprinted In New Media Journal
Rev. Lainie Dowell
When the breaking news came across the airwaves on Saturday, telling us that the “liberal lion” from Massachusetts, Sen. Ted Kennedy, had been stricken and hospitalized, it was the last thing anyone anticipated.
Despite his 76 years, white hair, unbalanced gait, ongoing yo-yo weight, and his family’s life and problems being fair game for all to know about, Kennedy had appeared to be getting along very well.
But let’s not forget that Kennedy has been a leading advocate for the liberal far-left agenda of high taxes, gay marriage, abortion-on-demand, and no warfare to defend our country for the past 45 years.
In Obama years, that is a lifetime! Kennedy has been fighting for the issues he believes in for the same amount of time Obama has been alive. For both young and old people, another person's youthful ideologies and promises sound exciting, because they evoke, for them, their own unrealized youthful hopes, promises, and idealistic dreams of becoming a change-agent but which seems to have eluded them and all but died without fulfillment.
But is that mindset really true?
I have found that people too often take life for granted. An elderly church sister put it this way: "You might dress yourself in the morning but when evening comes you don't know who will be undressing you." A whole lot can happen unexpectedly to change your life between daybreak and nightfall regardless of your age.
Age has its benefits. When you are young, age doesn’t move fast enough. But the older you become, the better you are able to appreciate every second of your life and the wisdom that comes with age. Godly wisdom never dies.
We live in a time when Americans are getting older and living longer. However, instead of being grateful for the experience and hard-earned wisdom older Americans have acquired, many of the young people in our country have not embraced the candidates of experience and age but the empty – and dangerous – platitudes of a presidential candidate like Obama who has not enough life experience, no viable legislative track record and no coherent plan to articulate for further enhancing either our domestic or foreign policies.
Our youth and young adults, instead of being grateful for the examples older people offer, cannot wait to put them away – even their own mothers and fathers! Just put them out of my sight, they seem to say. They are cramping my style. Tuck them away in nursing homes where -- in too many cases -- their "mysterious" black eyes, bruised shoulders, and broken limbs suddenly appear and are explained away by their trustworthy caretakers.
Congressional leaders and their families, on the other hand, have the clout, money, and support to "age gracefully", because of their affordable government health benefit packages and readily available access to excellent healthcare.
As quiet as it is kept, Kennedy's illness has allowed us to now become more aware that he is already much older than Sen. John McCain. Both of them have served honorably together in the U.S. Senate, albeit on different sides of the aisle. However, we have yet to hear the drumbeat of either the news media or the Democrats calling for Kennedy to give up his Senate seat, as they do of McCain to get him out of the 2008 election Presidential race.
Apparently, the Dems and media have made the decision to allow that choice to remain with Kennedy and his family to make. If the naysayers demonstrate such little respect for McCain's age and experience to allow him the same courtesy for his life's ambitions, then how do they think they can sound credible when they shout their commitment to make life better for the nation's elderly, but continue to disregard and discount their voices in the public square?
The media and Democrats have queried McCain about his age and health ad nauseum; and, to his credit, he has responded with a sense of humor. However those questions persist. Why doesn't McCain respond to that age-old question in a way which will decisively put that "old age" question to rest.
How about considering the following statement for the response?
"Today, when we are faced with international warfare, schools failing our children, an elderly population that needs more than health care, leadership approval of murdering infants from the womb, eroding traditional family values; and, given his startling lack of experience, doesn't it appear that Sen. Barack Obama is too young to be President of the United States?"
After all, if it is just a question of McCain's old age and experience vs. Obama's youthful excitement and inexperience -- don't you know that you don’t have to be sick to die and you don't have to be well to live?
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