As I was getting ready to celebrate my 25th Anniversary with a KICK ASS PARTY I though about what had gone down the previous week.
Last week we saw how dissimilar appeals to our better and lesser angels look. For the former, there was Jimmy Carter’s grace-filled press conference on Thursday revealing that cancer has spread to his brain. Having lost my mother in law this spring to brain cancer I was heart broken. Carter was the first US President I really remember. In the press conference he reflected proudly on the work of his Carter Center, which, among many other things, has nearly eradicated the misery-causing guinea worm disease. I remember a story he told when he went into Sierra- Leone and needed access to interior to fight this disease. When the government balked, he said that they were going to change the name of the disease to “Sierra-Leone Worm Disease” the government let them in.
The week began very differently, as Donald Trump released an immigration plan that would end birthright citizenship, a proposal that would involve reverting to before the 14th amendment, ratified in 1868 to grant freed slaves citizenship in the wake of the shameful Dred Scott decision. Quite a vision for the future. Meanwhile, Jeb Bush said he disagreed with Trump, but made sure to get in on the xenophobia with the term “anchor babies.” It was a week that gave us two very different examples of statesmanship and what America can stand for.