I watched the movie The Blindside on cable on-demand with my mother yesterday and she enjoyed the first football film of her eighty years on earth. Watching a movie was a welcomed departure from the political campaign ads but that movie still had me thinking about election season 2010 which is more like the movie The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.
Moms understands football blocking and protecting the quarterback now. Big Mike’s Crusaders football team seems like the Democrats and that would make either President Obama or Rep. Sanford Bishop the quarterback.
The massive, quiet and undeveloped talent of Big Mike brings to mind Obama supporters. While we are in the proverbial fourth quarter and the clock is ticking, the gentle-natured giant that is the Democrat base needs to get aggressive and start blocking. In sports, few things are more gruesome than watching an unsuspecting quarterback get hit on his blindside. Rather than staying in the pocket, his first inclination is to start running up field alone. As the rapper rhymed in “Walk it Out,” even Jesus had twelve disciples and don’t start that Obama Messiah talk again. But, it does seem like that gospel song that say “must Jesus bear the cross alone and all the world go free…there is a cross for everyone…there is a cross for me.” Mr. Luke could raise that hymn at St. Johns in Poulan, Georgia, during my childhood. My point is everyone needs help.
The coach and the quarterback can only do so much; they need blocking and play execution or the game is over. While continuing the football parallel, we must acknowledge the tenacity and determination of the other team. As we say in the South, it isn’t the size of the dog in the fight; it’s the size of fight in the dog. The GOP and their injection of adrenaline/steroids known as the Tea Party is undersized but hard-working and crafty.
About size, it burns my britches to hear Tea Party folks (some of whom are my friends) say, “All I hear is this,” “everyone I know thinks this” or “Obama and the Democrats never listen to people because I told them what to do and they didn’t do it.” Do you hear yourself? Like Sandra Bullock’s character in that movie ,they seem to be living in a bubble on one side of town with zero knowledge about the existence of other parts of town. But for God’s grace and mercy, Big Mike could have been any of us.
Big Mike’s tutor (Kathy Bates) was the only Democrat the Tuohy family knew. When Michael saw that famous Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving painting, he wanted to have a family holiday dinner for the first time. I couldn’t help but think that some people realize the painting isn’t realistic because an old woman couldn’t hold a turkey that size at that angle without falling over. We should leave a tender moment alone because the same type ugly people who point out that turkey fact are the type people who spent November 2008 saying “it won’t work….America can never come together…I hope the young president fails with this hope and change crap.” Norman Rockwell would have enjoyed the Blindside and likely voted for President Obama because the social progressiveness in his art is legendary. From that old lady to Obama supporters, we should never underestimate our strength.
As President Obama repeatedly says, the Tea Party Movement Republicans have valid concerns about the size and role of government but I share the president’s concern with the TPM’s” my way or the highway” mentality. They seem to ignore the people who voted for the other guys and want officeholders to do the same. Okay, the ugliness of the TPM seems like the loudmouth football player that Big Mike eventually blocked off the field and into the stands.
We have two weeks to start blocking for the Democrat quarterbacks or it’s game over. I have always favored political teams and groups that look like a microcosm of America or my southern state. Ask yourself if the TPM protest looked like Georgia. While they are acting sweet and nice now, they showed they natural -sses during that healthcare debate and it seemed like 1968 all over again. Oh regular Republicans like Senator Isakson and Austin Scott have a variety of supporters across the state but most of these TPM candidates listen and learn from people in their circle of friends and associates only.
In The Blindside, that family and Michael learned about different ways of life and everyone grew. That situation is similar to the positive energy that catapulted President Obama into the White House. We were hopeful after lifetimes of ugliness, division and bitterness. What kinds of people thrive on bitterness and smirk at every little misstep someone makes. Is that really how someone wants to live life? Who wants to carry rage and anger constantly in their hearts? I know the national debt is too large and owing China keeps me up at night but did Democrats go crazy when Bush 43 made costly decisions about Iraq. I, for one, respected the president and I would appreciate the same courtesy from my friends on the Right now. (And people in hell want ice water but they are not going to get it.)
That family in The Blindside must have been thinking about the benefits of developing that gentle giant; we shouldn’t be naïve. President Obama, Roy Barnes, Sanford Bishop and other high-profile Democrats will be okay personally but I am more concerned with regular people like me who want to see our South move forward with positive energy rather than falling back into that classic “us reverse them” mindset. President Obama sought counsel from the conservatives in congress when he took office but few would break ranks and enter a dialogue.
I know for a fact that Rep. Bishop has always cultivated relationships with every type southerner. While some aren’t watching the congressman’s blindside, many still have his back because he has had their backs during decades of public service. You might get knocked down but just don’t stay down.
At this point in the game, we can’t blame the other team or the referees. It’s time to collect ourselves, focus and start blocking for our team—play your position and the rest will take care of itself. In football and in life, size and raw talent can be defeated by a determined and focus smaller opponent. Winning at football and at this political game also requires good coaching, a little cheerleading and some motivational pep rallies. Hell, Obama must quarterback, block, cheer and drive the team bus. If we lose, we deserve it because we didn’t do our parts.
Some old friends recently started the facebook page Georgia TruthSquad and we will be having a few pep rallies—better later than never. Sandra Bullock’s character has nothing on the lady who create GTS because she simply refuses to have her hometown represented by a TPM congressman. I know too well that the coach of the GTS has no problem “motivating” the team.
Sidenote: I wrote the blog post below during the healthcare debate protest in the summer of 2009. I turns out that I was wrong about the GOP creating a moderate section to balance the Blue Dogs. That protest movement know as the Tea Party actually took over the GOP and they might win next month (if unchecked) by using time proven techniques. It’s called winning ugly. My daddy took a train from Macon, Georgia, to study agriculture and play football at North Carolina A&T in the 1930s when one of the best ag schools in the nation was just up the road in Athens. He had to attend grad school years later at Tuskegee when one of the best ag schools was just up the road in Athens. Oh, we have been down this road before and we are heading back to the future. He was proud of Sanford Bishop but he never would have imagine Barrack Obama in 2008 or our complacency in 2010.