Angry Old Men
There is an Alternative

My previous essay dealt with the importance of education. It is critical to me and should be to everyone that education is essential. Education is the only way we can, as a people, advance as we coexist on this pale blue dot out in the middle of the vast cosmos.

Without education, we will retreat to a 21st century version of a cave-like existence. Others have seen the importance of educating humanity long before me. Two and a half centuries ago, Thomas Jefferson warned us, “An educated citizenry is a vital requisite for our survival as a free people.”

Nevertheless, there are people out there who attempt to re-educate people like Trump. He deems himself as a teacher. He said that he “would qualify as not smart, but genius...and a very stable genius at that!” Well, Trump claims that global warming is a hoax of the Chinese.

Donald the Dumb seems a bit out of sorts.

Then there is the King of Ditto Heads, King Limbaugh, who teaches his minions his rewrite of racism: “Columbus saved the Indians from themselves.” His lesson on sexism, “Feminism was established to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream.” Regarding education: “Screw the world. Do you really think we ought to govern ourselves based on what the world thinks of us?”

“I is mad.” That you are Rush.

However, Limbaugh disses science, “There is no conclusive proof that nicotine’s addictive...and the same thing with cigarettes causing emphysema, lung cancer, heart disease.” Guess who smokes and has lung cancer?

…and there is no conclusive proof about smoking causing lung cancer? Rest in peace.

I have made my point about the importance of education. Without education, we will all be dead in the water. However, there is also the issue of teaching by example. Students can merely watch the teachers teach. Observing behavior of the instructor teaches a great deal. This is where Bernie Sanders enters the picture.

An Angry Old Man

Allow me to get all my cards out on the table and have them all facing up. If you wrote down a list of ten critical issues that are important and have me rank all the Democratic candidates with whom I strongly agree, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren would out rank all the others by far. I would consider voting for him if I could change three things about Bernie.

1. I would want to make him 30-years younger. If he was elected president in November, he would be the oldest person to have ever served as president. He is nearly a decade older than Trump.

2. I would deal with his heart issues. If I could make him 30-years younger, that would greatly reduce his coronary problems. Nevertheless, I am not some deity with restorative abilities.

3. Having said that, there is one thing that Sanders could work on, which might also help lessen another heart attack. He shares one thing with both his nemeses, Trump and Limbaugh. Sanders acts like both of those angry old men.

As I mentioned in my previous essay, I look for teaching moments. Whenever I find one, I’ll act. This is one. Bernie needs to read William Wordsworth, the English Romantic poet. Incidentally, Wordsworth died a couple of weeks after reaching his 80th birthday. Had he been unfortunate to have died 16 days earlier, he would have been the same age as Bernie.

Now, back to my central point about Wordsworth. He wrote a poem when he was in his mid-30s about Lord Nelson who died in his mid-40s due to being shot during a battle at sea. Nelson took on the combined fleets of the Spanish and French at the Battle of Trafalgar, which was located just off Cape Trafalgar, in the southwest corner of Spain.

Since we are dealing with an English poet, Bernie need to familiarize himself with the British artist, Joseph Mallord William Turner. This is a painting by Turner of Lord Nelson’s ship, the HMS Victory.

This is Turner’s painting of Nelson’s Victory where he was killed.

In addition, Turner also painted The Fighting Téméraire, which was the ship second in line behind Victory during the Battle of Trafalgar. Having taught art history for years, Turner’s The Fighting Téméraire is my favorite painting.

The Fighting Téméraire

Wordsworth entitled his tribute to Nelson, Character of the Happy Warrior. Bernie needs to learn from Wordsworth poem about being happy. Now, my doctorate wasn’t in medicine, but it seems logical to me that being happy is important to longevity. I’ve danced with death twice…successfully. I am happy about still being alive. I’m happy about my families here and in Myanmar. I’m happy that Ginger, my Irish Setter, is alive and well.

Finally, I will celebrate two things on January 20, 2021. The first is my 78th birthday, and the second is that America has a new president…a happy warrior. Hip hip hooray.