Of inestimable value to me, both as a source of pure enjoyment and as a considerable fount of spiritual and practical enlightenment, has been my lifelong close association with ministers of the Gospel. With preachers. With gifted preachers. With preachers so moved by the Holy Ghost that a snippet of scripture, once only cold, dry markings, illuminates into such revelation that in the strike of a gleaming moment Truth is unveiled. Imagery. Imagery of such clarity as are raven words on glinting screen, and more so, for somehow the story is told, and its back-story is understood, the precept, the principle.
Now while I admit to these certain advantages, I’m quite convinced it does not require living around preachers to understand and appreciate imagery and its power. Thus, I was shocked to hear the recent words of President Obama when on Monday he delivered the following at the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence, R.I. According to the Associated Press he said,
“…Now that progress has been made, we can’t have special interests sitting shotgun. We gotta have middle class families up in front. We don’t mind the Republicans joining us. They can come for the ride, but they gotta sit in back.”
It is shocking that President Obama, our first African-American president, would make such an obvious reference to that
dismal period of our history when black people were required to sit in the back of the bus. It is shameful. It is regrettable. It is a slap in the face of Rosa Parks
, who that December day in 1955 changed the course of American history. When told to move to the back of the bus, she said in essence, “Not today.”
We need leaders of other ilk than that recently demonstrated. We need leaders who will rise above pettiness and smallness. We need leaders in every branch of government and in every party who will forever cast aside the garments of racism and all its disgracefulness and malignant thought. We NEED LEADERS. We need eagles.
Eagles have always been representative of high calibre leaders. They don’t flock like geese but rather fly solo. While this may rob them of the ability to draft from each other, it provides them with some crucial advantages that are essential for vision development, maintenance, and casting. Here are two:
One, an eagle and a turkey react very differently to the threat of a storm. A turkey runs under the barn, hoping the storm won’t come near. The eagle, on the other hand, leaves the security of its nest and spreads its wings to ride the air currents of the approaching storm, knowing they will carry it higher than it could soar on its own.
Two, when an eagle is attacked by a pack of crows it doesn’t fight back. All it does is simply fly higher and higher, knowing that pretty soon the crows won’t be able to fly any higher. The eagle plays smart rather than lose its sensibility in the mindless games of small-thinking crows.
Of imagery. Of eagles and crows. Of buses and cars. The back. Of Rosa Parks, resolute and unflinching. Of courageous and soaring leadership.