Today is Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day. We Americans like to celebrate odd and unusual days, not because we’re just a party people, but because our DNA demands it. The first settlers wouldn’t have made it through their first year on their crops alone. The native population had to show them the bounty of the land. They had a party, the first thanksgiving. We will party at the drop of a hat, and if you aren’t a party person, well, you probably don’t like chocolate either.
I went to our condo Super Bowl Party last night, ate a bunch of home made snacks, and then stayed up late talking to one of my neighbors. I woke up too late to eat ice cream for breakfast, but I might have it for lunch. Who says we have to follow this day as it is written? I’ve already managed my “beauty sleep,” so now this ten o’clock scholar is writing at noon, and I should get down to business.
One of the wonderful aspects of this presidency of drama all the time, versus the past years, and I include most of my long lifetime, is our presidents seem to be above the storms which swirl in this world. Our current occupant seems to be the source of the storm. Yet I always have hope, for the storms of life always pass, and there’s always a limit to the storms concocted by human beings.Yep, I’m celebrating, for today is the anniversary of the ratification of 20th Amendment to the US Constitution. It shortened the time between the old office holders and the new ones coming in. With our modern world and 24 hour news cycles, our politicians are now campaigning as soon as they win, even before they take office. Midterm elections even now could change the face of the Congress: all 435 House seats and 33 Senate seats are up for reelection.
How to celebrate Lame Duck DayLame Duck Day is best celebrated by researching the history of those people you support politically, and find out just how accountable they really are to their constituents.
Have they consistently voted their conscience in the past, have they worked to promote the things they were elected to support?
It is especially important to pay attention to that period following a re-election, a choice to retire, or when their office has been eliminated, it’s this time period where they will most clearly show their true colors.
If they remained true to their principles during this time period (their professed principles, odds are good that they’ll stay true to their constituents when the hammer comes down.
Remember your middle school civics lesson: the American government works on a process of checks and balances, with powers and responsibilities given to Legislative/Congress, the Executive/President, and the Judicial/Courts.
The things you learn at the kitchen table in your family home stick with you for a lifetime. All great leaders have a formal cabinet, but also informal “kitchen cabinets ,” the people they really listen to for advice and moral direction. Information might get provided in this first realm, but the inner circle, the informal and intimate space, this is where the real work is done.
So it is with our hearts and minds: if we don’t retire to a quiet place every so often, we’ll never hear the wisdom of the great counselor in the midst of the storms.
The people’s power is in our voice and our vote. You won’t hear our American churches endorse candidate, for we enjoy benefits for being out of the political fray. You will hear our churches speak up for the needs of the weakest and most vulnerable among us, and for the stranger who seeks to sojourn among us. Welcome to America, eat some ice cream and be glad!