By James Snyder
Normally (depending on which definition of normal you are using), I am not given to much grumbling. I do admit to every now and then exercising my right to complain a little, but it is not anything to write home about.
If you would inquire with the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage she might have a different opinion altogether. It seems that the only thing we really agree on is that we do not agree on too much. Our biggest disagreement would be in this area of grumbling.
Just the other day I was exercising my First Amendment right when my wife looked at me and said, “Are you grumbling again?”
What is a husband to do? If I answer in the negative, she gives me one of those looks that pierces asunder to the soul. She has done this so much that I can honestly say that I have a holey soul. Then again, if I answer in the affirmative I acknowledge that she is right and I am grumbling.
So I do not know what grumbling really is or if I, like my wife insists, I am the all-time record holding champion of the art of grumbling. As far as I am concerned, I just have an opinion and like sharing that opinion with all and sundry.
To develop the fine art of grumbling there are rules. For example, some things are off limit. I never grumble about my wife’s cooking or keeping the house for the simple reason that she is the immaculate conception of effectiveness when it comes to those household chores and duties. After all, I never complain about someone who prepares my meals and has control of the ingredients that go into my meal.
There is one area that is a completely free-for-all when it comes to grumbling. That area is simply the political arena. Every United States citizen has a free pass when it comes to complaining about politicians. After all, we pay our taxes, usually on time.
This brings me to my first area of grumbling when it comes to politics. Why is it that so many elected to office forget about paying their income tax? I know it only comes once a year, every year and the taxes are deducted on our payroll, but everyone knows how easy it is to forget to pay taxes. I am seriously considering running for some political office, any office will do, just for the benefits; huge salary, enormous retirement benefits, the rest of my life healthcare and I can forget to pay my income tax. What other profession offers so much for so little brainpower?
Another area of grumbling has to do with telling the truth. What other profession is built upon lie after lie after lie. Then when caught in a downright lie, you explain it away by saying, “That was taken out of context.” Or, “I did not have sex with that woman.”
In just about every profession, as far as I can think of, except used-car salesmen and televangelists, there are penalties to pay if you tell a lie. However, in the area of the professional politician you cannot climb the ladder in politics unless you are an expert Liesman. Moreover, you do not have to be that good of a liar. I am thinking about writing a song entitled, “The Washington Liesman,” and have Glen Campbell sing it for us.
This, as far as I can understand, is a bipartisan problem. Both sides of the aisle have developed unparalleled expertise in this area. And the American taxpayer has paid handsomely for this accomplishment.
That is exactly why this is fertile area for professional grumbling. The motto of the Professional Political Grumbler Association is, “I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat, I am simply against anyone in office.”
We are now encroaching the new election cycle. All these election cycles have me in a dizzy frame of mind. I am not sure whom to vote for this time. I am thinking about starting a write in campaign for Mr. Ed, the talking horse. He had more sense in his left hoof than any 97 politicians combined. At least there were periods when Mr. Ed would not talk. Trying to find time when a politician is not talking is about as frustrating as paying your taxes on April 15. No wonder politicians are concerned about climate change. All that hot air in Washington.
The only good thing about any election cycle is that it gives me opportunity to vent some grumbling not associated with my wife.
Looking at my tally sheet for the upcoming midterm elections, my mouth is watering. Never has there been a time in the history of the United States of America when there was more to grumble about in the area politics. This has to be a grumbler’s haven.
This time it is like trying to pick through a barrel of rotten apples. There has to be a good apple somewhere, but Lands O Liberty, by the time you find one it has begun to rot.
I had been thinking about how blessed our nation has been and thought of what the Scripture says. “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.” (Psalms 33:12 KJV).
God’s blessing on our nation is in danger of becoming a footnote in some history book.
The Rev. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, 1471 Pine Road, Ocala, FL 34472. He lives with his wife, Martha, in Silver Springs Shores. Call him at 352-687-4240 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The church web site is www.whatafellowship.com.