Saturday, August 19, 2006

Lunch with the President

No, that is not just a catchy header to get your attention. I really was invited to have lunch with the President this month. And yes, I mean the President of the United States.

It came as a surprise at first. I read the email subject from one of my senators and thought, "Wow, it's amazing that I was among those chosen out of all his constituents." I am at a slight disadvantage when someone sends me an email which is an image because my email client does not display images without my consent. This was one of those emails, so I did not know anything about what was in the message except the subject at first. While clicking the button to display the message, I thought that it must be because I had recently corresponded with this senator to express my views on some current bills in the senate. How else would he have picked my name out of a hat.

Display the image and . . . it's from the committee to re-elect. Although I disagree with this senator and do not wish to have him re-elected I would still like to go - for a chance to say "hi" to the President.

Scan to the bottom of the image and it's only going to cost me $500 a seat to accept this invitation. I'm so flattered. They even offer me a great group rate of $4000 for a table of eight. Okay, I'm not going to spend $500 that will help elect a man I don't want elected - not even to meet the President. I'm not sure I could find $500 to meet the President and help elect someone I want elected (although I did recently find $503 to pay for new tires on my car - I still don't know how the checkbook balanced this month after the tires).

So why write about this - I'm not going to the lunch and I was "chosen" because they hoped I'd cough up $500 like I did for my tires. I've been thinking about this since I got the email and considering my reaction to the possibility of meeting the President.

Some may assume that I am a fan of the President. The reason I'm writing is because I realized that my reaction to the possibility of meeting the President, or even a former President, would be the same whether I liked him or not. There is something about getting to meet people in positions of importance. I would love to meet the Pope even though I have already clearly stated that I am not Catholic. What it really comes down to is that I respect the office. I love this country and what it is supposed to stand for. Certainly there are times and places where it becomes a symbol of things which it should not stand for, but that is the exception and not the rule.

I just hope, and will always do what I can to ensure, that our country and the man who leads it at any given time, are worthy of our respect and deserving of our support, even if there is need for some dissent over some issues. I'd hate to see the day when I could no longer be comfortable being identified as a citizen of the United States, or meeting the President.

No comments: