I think John McCain used to be a somewhat decent person. He wasn't born with a malformed soul like Dick Cheney or anything, but he certainly acted like a Dick during this past campaign. I bring it up because his concession speech last week made me think McCain wants to be decent again.
At my regular poker game, we have a little sign that says "Don't Be A Dick." If it gets passed to you, it means you've crossed some line and need to check your attitude. Sometimes one of us knows they're going to say something Cheneyish, so they just say it and put out their hand to receive the Dick sign. Is that what McCain was doing? Does he expect to get off with a simple "Don't Be A Dick" sign that he can pass off five minutes later?
Sometimes one Dick move can ruin your reputation forever. If you expose your inner Dick at the wrong place or time, you could lose friends, get dumped, or get fired from your job at the children's theater. We've all had (or been) a friend who went through a tough period where perhaps they weren't being their usual nice selves. Maybe they started being really negative, or fooled around with someone they shouldn't have, or authorized the torture of thousands of innocent abductees. If they don't get punched or ditched altogether, they can at least expect a good talking to. "It seems like something's on your mind lately," a good friend might say to them. "You're not yourself." Or, "You're dragging the free world into an avoidable apocalypse, and even the devil-spawn Karl Rove said you've gone too far. Should we get some chai lattes and talk?"
So how much slack should we cut John McCain for his recent behavior? How big of a Dick is too big to forgive? Is Dick size even the determining factor, or is it the length? For a man of his age, McCain certainly kept it up for a while.
Different people have different takes on this question. If America was a high school, we'd need to shave his head or video-tape him making out with an ugly chick to knock him down a peg. Then maybe he'd have a chance at redemption after we all took a summer vacation to cool off. But, for example, if we were using reality TV standards, then he was clearly just voted out of the house. Some countries punish traitors in cruel and unusual ways. In England, the sentence is life in England.
Also, does his time as a prisoner of war buy John McCain some leeway? Does having undergone a horrible experience give him a blank check to then spread lies and hatred around the country he'd previously been fighting for? Does one wrong make another wrong right? Is that why Nelson Mandela wrote the Sopranos finale?
I'd like to know your thoughts, because I want to find the most compassionate solution, if possible. Please use the comment space below to tell me and America whether we should embrace John McCain like an apologetic grandpa after a drunken Thanksgiving episode, or shun him like an opportunistic sellout who tried to murder our freedom. I'll stay neutral in order to maintain the high journalistic standards of Funny Or Die's blogspace.
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