Watching "Meet the Press" on NBC-TV, with the moderator sitting between former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton was a change in the environment. I personally did not like either of their administrations or either of them personally. But there they were, exchanging cooperative comments about joining them in support of Haiti following that horrible earthquake there. Though differing in their political perspectives, they were able to put that aside for the good of humanity and for the good will of the American people. How absolutely appropriate and examplery was this action. In today's overheated political climate, with political wars swirling all around us, and every single thing dividing Americans in polarizing hatred, one could ponder for one brief moment the possibilities inherent in cooperation. Could it possibly become a catalyst to return to the sanity of politics and government in the U.S.?
On another front, I reminisce about Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in America. I knew him. I knew his father, "Daddy King," better. I met his mother also. In fact, I was asked by Daddy King to speak at their church, Ebenezer Baptist in Atlanta. I sat on Daddy King's front lawn with him one night as he spoke of his son's murder exactly one year ago on that evening. He told me, "I thought that after one year the pain would begin to ease. It hasn't." I had no words. I was emotionally blown away. Someday some author will write a book about the impact of Daddy King on his son's life. It was profound. Someday, perhaps, a movie will be made about the largely untold story of Daddy King, the pastor with the worn-smooth dark blue suit, the humble man, the man of principle, the man of God. His story and influence must be told!
NBC's reporter and sometimes news anchor, Lester Holt, is reporting from Haiti. His reports are very good. He captures the essence of the tragedy and the spirit of the Haitian people. He spoke of sleeping outside one night and surrounded by all the hungry, thirsty, and ravaged people who began to sing in their suffering. Mr. Holt was inspired, but he didn't overplay it. But he did capture the special characteristics of the people of Haiti. The long-suffering people of Haiti, taken advantage of by colonial France and then a succession of cultural rapes by other nations, and also the devious leaders that ruled them. Yet, after a devastating earthquake, here they were tired and hungry and feeling personal tragedy, singing through the night. Those of us who have so much by comparison could learn from those people I hope we do.