cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
“In the eye of the beholder” is an old phrase that is often used when one of us talks of something another sees as beautiful while we fail to comprehend that ‘beauty’. It strikes me that there is plenty of opportunity for each of us to use that phrase, or to at least think of using that phrase, in our daily routines.
An auto that is painted in a color I think is ugly was apparently something other than ugly to that person’s eye…or the person might be colorblind. Some flowers just don’t appear to me to be pretty or something I’d like in my presence. I used to have what was called my ‘watermelon’ suit since it reminded me and others of a watermelon given the assortment of colors. That obviously was a case of me exercising that ‘eye of the beholder’ thing but I wore it many times and never felt awkward when doing so. Enough of the personal confessions!
As I read the various political charges and counter-charges, and as I see the various political advertisements, and as I encounter the various charges made by a person of a persuasion not shared by me, I am sometimes reminded that there is something to the ‘eye of the beholder’ phrase that must apply.
For example, Sen. Reid’s, to me, ridiculous statement about being tipped by several people that Romney hasn’t paid taxes in ten years has seemingly quite a few believers. That has to be one of the ‘eye of the beholder’ things. It is about as blatant a prevaricated statement as I have heard all this political season and it is something that I thought/hoped would’ve been thoroughly challenged by our media types (my naiveté is showing again).
The continued ‘debate’ about the President’s citizenship is another of those ‘eye of the beholder’ things. The various charges and counter-charges in our Wisconsin Republican Senate candidates’ statements about each other are either made knowingly to be lies/half-truths or must be of the ‘eye of the beholder’ variety when it seems obvious to many there is no evidence to support the charge.
The claim that the economy is doing well or going down the tubes, depending upon political persuasion, is an example of something seen through the ‘eye of the beholder’.
The Chick-fil-A squabble is another example of ‘eye of the beholder’, and on and on and on.
In some cases, we are rightly able to view something through the prism that is unique to us. Yet, in other things there is the need to put on our blinders in order to use the ‘eye of the beholder’ excuse since there are things that are untrue and that we know are untrue just on their face. I have to believe that not all of the political innuendo is out there innocently. Considering that to be true, there then have to be people who are knowingly supporting accusations only because of their political persuasion even though they know in their heart-of-hearts that they are being dishonest.
We have been conditioned to believe that stretching the truth is not ‘outright lying’ and that stretching the truth is okay for politicians. Let’s call it what it is: lying. There is no ‘eye of the beholder’ defense for some of what passes as political campaign rhetoric, and that applies to both sides of the aisle and all the shades in between.
That we give our politicians ‘special dispensation’ for their lies (from little ‘white’ lies to big old, ugly fat lies) is sickening to me. These ought to be people whom we can look to as people we would wish to emulate in our daily lives. Quite frankly, there are not nearly enough in the 435 member House and the 100 member Senate who would qualify to be capable of being looked to as people whom we would emulate.
Unfortunately, seeing them through the convenient prism of the ‘eye of the beholder’ has meant that we are culpable for their lies every time we vote them back into office. It simply is not okay for a Republican to lie if one is a Republican, nor is it okay for a Democrat to lie if one is a Democrat.
It is high time that we step up and take responsibility for restoring truthfulness to our political world. I know it will be seen as naïve of me to make such a simple black or white statement, but it has to be up to each of us if this is ever to be changed. You and I are not afforded the ‘gray’ spectrum when it comes to our daily bout with truth. At least we should not use that excuse.