We love them, so energetic, vital, imaginative and free. We even enjoy their mischief, saying with a smile, “Boys will be boys.”
We don’t usually expect boys to lead, except on the playground in a game of Cops and Robbers—the eternal bad guys versus good guys, a boy’s way of seeing the world.
Now we have elected a boy to be our president, and we are going to have to help him to grow. Probably he won’t accept our help, but we still have an obligation to try.
Here are some ideas:
- Learn to say, “I’m sorry.” This is very hard for boys to do; there are always lots of excuses from “The dog ate my homework” to “She was asking for it.” Saying the two words may be too much to expect, but there are equivocations that are better than nothing: “I misjudged the situation,” “I thought she wanted it” and so forth, but not “She was so cute and sexy in that short skirt I couldn’t help myself.”
- Learn to recognize the pain your win has caused many people, men and woman, in this country. Your father might have told you that after you beat a boy up, it was appropriate to notice how badly hurt he was—not to apologize, not to accept responsibility, but simply to notice. There have been many tears shed after your triumph. You can afford to notice.
- Explain the connection, or lack of it, between your words and your actions. Maybe we took your words too literally. Maybe all the bluster was for show, and now that you have your hands on power, you will not need to shock verbally. You will be free to shock in other ways.
- Explain to us what you mean by “hero”—we don’t expect you to expand that to a definition of “heroine.” Is a hero a man who never fails? Possibly you could develop a range of heroes: half-a-hero could be defined as a man wounded in action. One-third-a-hero could be said of a man captured by the enemy and put into an internment camp. Along the way, please explain to us your brilliant strategy to avoid public service. A lot of us could learn that from you.
- Explain, in simple terms, another brilliant strategy: how you avoided paying taxes for years. Remember, though, that most of us do not have your access to smart lawyers and huge amounts of loss, so you will have to scale your strategy down to the many people in this country trying to get by on minimum wage. They would like to avoid paying taxes, too.
- Making amends is a foreign concept to boys, but you might be able to take a pass at it by telling us that you like cripples (a while back, it would have been Negros), and maybe naming a name. Then you could pose for the news cameras with this friendly cripple. Don’t pay any attention when some doofus suggests that you call this friend “differently abled.” These examples of political correctness are just ridiculous. Everyone knows a cripple when he sees one, or a lay-about black woman (she used to be called a Welfare Queen) or a rapist immigrant, or an immigrant murderer. They all share a certain look. You know it when you see it.
- It will be harder for you to backtrack on what you have said about women. Nobody wants to hear you get into menstruation again. Once was enough—we all recognize the nastiness of that particular bodily function—but going on with it might be too much. Besides, the topic makes boys, as well as girls, squirm, and that’s not good for your image.
Now, all this is a tall order, and we will understand if you ignore our suggestions. They are just suggestions, made in the spirit of friendship, the same suggestions, or at least some of them, we’ve made to our sons and grandsons.
Maybe at least you would agree to stay off menstruation.
your heartbroken fellow citizens