Monday, March 24, 2008

'Cuz Sometimes I Don't Wanna Talk About Books

So, I’m watching CBS Sunday Morning on the last day of a ten-day vacation (yes, I’m eighty-six years old), and saw this story by Bill Geist. Bill Geist (who is also eighty-six years old), usually has a funny *offbeat* story as a capper on the program. This week, he visited a church that has a catchphrase. Said nugget of wisdom: ’No Whining’. That’s super. The gist (not the geist) of the church’s idea is that if people can stop complaining, their lives will get better. Or is it that they’ll be happier?

Lives don’t get better due to keeping quiet about problems. And yeah, I might be overly biased against small-town churches, but this looks like "Keep your questions and concerns to yourself. We are a nation of blind faith; unquestioning and devout/patriotic/load-bearing.

If the argument is that people will be happier if they don’t complain, they may have a point. I would probably be happier in life if I never read past the front page of a newspaper, or glued my eyes and ears to ’reality television’ and listened to Toby Keith. I’d also be a gigantic asshole with nothing valuable to contribute to the world, no handle on the problems we face as a planet, and no empathy past what’s convenient.

Let’s hope these parishioners remember to stop complaining about "those damn illegals taking our jobs" or "those godless Communists in Hollywood" and "those traitors who wanna cut and run in Iraq".

Actually, I just hope they stop complaining when Barack Obama is in the White House undoing eight years of dynastic manifest destiny preceded by eight years of ideological gridlock.

Maybe I’ll pray about it.