Robert A. Teegarden's Blog

June 28, 2012

In Lieu of Flowers, please send your gift to my political campaign

Filed under: Uncategorized — by Robert @ 9:53 pm
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Can you imagine your local politician requesting that any gifts you might give to another should be redirected to a political campaign?  Absurd?  Bizarre?  Well, it happened this past week.  This unprecedented and rather crass request borders on the absurd when you think about it.  In fact, I cannot imagine how this effort could raise any money at all.  Think about it.

When do you give gifts? At the birth of a newborn or a birthday, at a wedding, for Christmas, Hanukkah, at a Baptism, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, for a graduation,  as a house warming, for Baby Showers, for an Anniversary, and for the funeral of a family member, friend, or acquaintance.  These are times when gifts are given to another to mark an event that is special in their life and no one else’s.  Yet, our politician wants to include all these events into his political statement!  It’s almost as if our politician is saying, “These people are mine.  What’s theirs is mine. They ought to be thinking of me.”  Those arguments echo from a pretty shallow stage.  How low can you go?

It’s difficult to imagine the temerity of the soul that would suggest such a thing in the first place, let alone that anyone would take this offer seriously.  It’s almost a strange and nefarious joke.  Gifts are given because of a relationship, a relationship with the intended, the recipient/s.  Our politician inserts himself into those relationships and scolds, “Don’t forget me.” My God, how lonely and empty this person must be.  It’s as if he has no identity, no reality, without a political position.  Without this role he’s nothing.  Well, it’s all dust and unto dust you shall return.

I don’t believe there will be many in lieu birthday gifts. Imagine ten or twelve classmates around you at your sixth birthday.  You’re hoping mom and dad remembered your love of Tonka trucks or Barbi dolls. There you are in the middle of your friends ripping through the giftwrap that surrounds your present.   You tear off the ribbon, shread the balloon-decorated wrapping, open the box and discover a small card inside.  “Dearest Son/Daughter,” the note begins, “instead of that Tonka truck (or Barbie doll) we decided to donate those monies to the political campaign of Mr. B.S.” Gee, thanks mom/dad.  If it were a gift from your friends, you’d know that they did do the picking, it was their parents.  Now you’re going to have to find a whole new cadre of friends before next year’s party.  And since our candidate doesn’t believe in the sanctity of life anyway, these life-affirming events like birthdays will probably go by the wayside.  Our politician’s own daughters can’t wait for their in lieu donations coming up this year. I see a new custom is in the offing.  Instead of a birthday cake and blowing out the candles, they get to lick the stamp that forwards their contribution.  I can remember wanting to lick the spoon after mom made the icing for my cake.  Now the kids get to lick the stamp.

We noted that the advertisement didn’t include religious events like Christmas, Hanukkah, a Baptism, Bar/Bat Mitzvah or even Kwanza.  These were implied but not stated because our politician’s so-called “religious” associations are only of convenience and those he does frequent border on a cult whose purpose is destroy the former anyway.  So much for religious gifts.

Now imagine you’re the bride or groom, just starting out in life and you receive an in lieu wedding present.  What if you didn’t want to direct those funds to begin with?  What if you don’t agree?  What if you got too many?  At which of the government offices do you go to make an exchange?  Now that would be an interesting line to observe.  But because our candidate also doesn’t believe in the sanctity of marriage, the notion of a bridal registry doesn’t even make sense.  Maybe they could exchange their honeymoon plans and costs for a contribution instead.  That would be a fascinating.  Instead of a week on Pago Pago, we’re going to donate to…

Graduation gifts range from the simple and sublime to the ridiculous.  In lieu graduation gifts definitely fall in the latter category.  Instead of a new pen set, a summer trip to Europe, maybe even a new car, an in lieu gift arrives.  The new wave pre-school and Kindergarten graduations just don’t make any sense to begin with, let alone giving an in lieu gift to these kids. But to suggest such a gift to a high school or college graduate would seem to negate the work that was just celebrated in the graduation ceremony.  After all that studying and discovering that politics is one of the lowest forms of occupation and one fraught with duplicity, deceit and raw power,  someone gives you the political gift that supposedly “keeps on giving.”  What it gives they didn’t say.  Check your boots, buddy boy!

There could be a problem with gifts received by someone who didn’t register accordingly.  Maybe this won’t be a problem in the future because the Card Check program will obviate everyone’s political position and gifts will flow (or not) appropriate to those union tactics.

It would seem that anniversaries wouldn’t matter because of the tendency for married couples to cancel out each other’s political persuasion.  And it couldn’t happen in families where mom and pop see things similarly. Giving that gift would exercise unnecessary power over one’s other in a relationship that is supposed to be give and take.

Finally we come to funerals. “In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to…” The shear number of people turning over in their graves would be tantamount to the Second Coming.  Oops, I forgot. That’s a religious reference and… wait a moment, here.  There’s a counter clause from the scriptures, isn’t there?  “Leave the dead to bury the dead,” but send your in lieu contribution to…


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