We all put our trust in so many people. Just thinking about it can make me jittery. How do you or I know that those we need are being careful and responsible. That they’re being mature and performing their jobs the way we need them to?
I’m thinking about lots of different folks. How about the airline pilot? Is he sober? Is he suicidal? Did he get enough rest? Is he well prepared to be calm in an emergency? Is he fundamentally intelligent enough to deal with the unexpected? Does he think, when he enters his aircraft, that there are so many precious passenger lives dependent on his skillset, and that those lives branch out to the lives of those who love them, those who are not aboard the plane?
I’m thinking about the doctors who provide health care to my family and me. Do they keep up with the literature? Do they practice evidence based medicine? Do they care, really care, whether or not we thrive? Do they understand that our very lives are in their hands and that a misdiagnosis or failure to be astute can cost us those very lives?
How about the school bus driver who daily drives my grandchildren to school? Is she careful? Is she high on drugs? Can she handle the distractions of noisy children and texting drivers without losing her cool, and maintain her ability to respond to emergencies exactly as she should.
How about the waitperson in the restaurant? Does she stick her finger in her mouth to tear off the check, sharing the contents of her mouth with the contents of mine? Does she wash her hands after using the restroom?
And what about the people in the restaurant kitchen? Do they taste their creations without washing the spoon after each taste? Do they make sure the food is kept at the proper temperature? Do they throw out food that is no longer fresh?
And the babysitter? Does she get angry or frustrated with childcare and take it out on the child? Can she be neglectful when no one is looking? Is she always careful and mindful of her incredible responsibility?
And the nurses who wear gloves but don’t wash their hands before they put them on?
And the bakery salesperson who sneezes onto his hands and then waits on the next customer?
And the teacher who puts the school play ahead of the needs of the children?
If this were a game we could all think of endless categories.
How about the future head of the free world who spends his nights, like a bird? He twitters all night about nonsense. Cheep. Cheep. Cheep. He is surrounded by decadent gilt, not an ounce of refinement to be seen. The Palace of Versailles brought tastelessly to roost in a Manhattan apartment. And he chirps about who or what has offended him…..as if he had nothing else to do. As if those who voted him into power have only one concern, his self esteem. And one day soon he will ascend to the highest position in the land with a crew of Rasputins to puppet him, writing his words, but never capturing his thoughts. His thoughts will be only on his power and those who offend him. He aspires to greatness without a great thought. He aspires to history without a hint of understanding it. He dreams of people revering him, worshiping him and adoring him. He does not dream of how to make America great. He does not dream of ways to make a more peaceful world. This too gives me the jitters.