Reece Gardner: We need more honest political dialogue in 2019
Have you voted yet?
As you know, the polls are open for one-stop voting now and will remain open until Saturday, April 27. The polls will then reopen Tuesday, April 30, for the primary. This is the contest for the U.S. Congress to fill the remainder of the late Congressman Walter B. Jones’ unexpired term, which runs until January 2021.
Polling places for one-stop voting are located at three sites in Lenoir County:
La Grange Community Building, 410 E. Washington St., La Grange
Cooperative Extension office, 1791 Hwy. 11-55, Kinston
Teachers Memorial Gym, 500 Marcella Dr., Kinston.
They will be open from 7 a.m.-7 p.m., Monday through Friday, and from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturdays.
On April 30, each person will vote at their regular precinct. All the candidates have received and continue to receive significant news coverage, which is refreshingly — for the most part — very unbiased and accurate. I wish we could have that kind of coverage on the national scene in the race for the U.S. Presidency.
I would love to see us go back to the Ronald Reagan era when we had a lot more honest dialogue and where candidates could agree to disagree and do so agreeably. I recall in the 1984 debate with Walter Mondale, Reagan's age — he was then in his mid-70s — had become a campaign issue favoring Mondale.
Reagan was asked about the age issue, and he replied thusly: "I want to make it clear right here and now that in this campaign I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent’s youth and experience!”
We're not in this earthly tenure for a long time folks, so we should try to not take this phase too seriously and to enjoy life more. Life is a gift, so before we say an unkind word, we need to think about those who can't speak; before we complain about the taste of our food, we need think about those who have nothing to eat; before we complain about our companion, we need to think of someone who is crying out to God for a companion.
Today, before we complain about life, we need to think about someone who went too early to heaven.
Before complaining about the distance we have to drive, we need to think of someone who has to walk that distance. And when depressing thoughts get us down, we need to put a smile on our face and think about how blessed we are to still be alive.
We really need to develop less arrogance and more humility. Like the arrogant professor who boarded a plane and got a seat beside an elderly man. Mid-flight, the professor decided to play a game with the old man and prove he was intellectually superior.
So he turned to the man and said, "Hey, would you like to play a little game with me?"
The old gentleman looked at him and said, "Depends. What type of game?"
The professor explained, "Taking turns, we'll ask each other one question at a time. If the other knows the answer, the asker gives him one dollar, and if he doesn't, he gives one dollar to the asker. Want to play?"
The professor grinned, knowing his general knowledge was vastly superior. To his dismay, the old man refused. Determined to get him to agree, the professor raised the stakes for him.
"If I lose, I'll give you two dollars instead of one!"
Desperate, the professor makes one final offer: "If I lose, I'll give you $100, and if you lose you only give me one!" The old man pondered this, then said, "Only if I get to start."
The professor agreed, so the old man asked, "What has five heads, 40 feet and lives inside a bucket?"
The professor turned the riddle around in his head, trying to find anything that would fit that description.
Finally, he gives up. Grumbling, he pulls out his wallet and gives the old man $100. He then wastes no time in asking him, "So what has five heads, 40 feet and lives in a bucket?"
The old man smiled, shrugged, and said, "I have no idea. Here's your dollar!"