An Ode to Dad

August 15, 2012

I am lucky to have my Dad. He taught me a lot, and he was honest in his teachings. This was perhaps the most important aspect. Now, he wasn’t perfect, no one is; I know for sure I am not a perfect father, or a perfect husband… But he answered all of my questions, and he did so with a hint of truth that spoke louder then the actual answer itself.

I remember when I started with politics. It was around 2003, and I was delivering pizzas. I became sick and tired of music, so I switched to talk radio. Living in S. Louisiana (Lafayette, LA to be EXACT), I only had access to one point of view: the FOX News one. Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Bill O’Reilly became my instant political teachers. They introduced me into the public discourse in a unhinged, perverted and sub-verse sort of way. Listening to them for any extended period of time raised all sorts of questions that I knew in my gut to not be true, but here were national stars spitting into their microphones so there must be a hint of truth to them, right? Why else would they do what they do?

So, like any good college aged misled male would do, I asked my Dad.

To his credit, Dad never tried to steer me to any certain way of thinking. He simply corrected things that were factually wrong, and spoke through them. We talked and talked and talked. Here I cry a bit, looking back at the past with rose colored glasses. We covered topics such as the ACLU (be careful here, not quite the “left wing radical organization” I heard so much about from Bill), Social Security (remember our grandmother, Armo Spears Burrow, who would not have had a life of dignity without such a program), Medicare, Medicaid, Homosexual rights, and many, many other things. We simply talked, and I loved him for that.

I came to find myself, through conversation, to disagree with virtually everything I was hearing over the air.

Here I am today, the left-wing liberal lunatic which I get called on almost a daily basis by my critics, and I am proud of it. I may be Republican, or perhaps even conservative, but because I tend to go against the grain (just like my old man), I am painted in another light— a light that speaks truth to power, even at the expense of my family and friends, because my father has taught me to hold on to truth as if it were gold itself.

Through this, I have learned another valuable lesson: Speak the truth, even if your voice trembles.

Dad, you did well, in everything you did.

Thank you.

-Mad Mike

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