News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Opinion

November 9, 2012

READERS’ FORUM: November 9, 2012

Finding truth

in the fables


While browsing in the library, I happened upon an esteemed work dating back 2,500 years. Many are familiar with “Aesop’s Fables,” those wonderful tales that culminate in moral edification via narratives involving animals. Most are familiar, for example, with the race between the tortoise and the hare. Many others have inspired illustrators as well as the Disney Studios and other animation filmmakers.

The ancient Greek historian Herodous alluded to Aesop’s work that was written by a slave in the 5th century B.C. According to legend, he cleverly freed himself and became an adviser to kings and city-states. Other famous Greeks, such as Aristophanes and Plato, were also aware of his work. Plato in his “Phaedo” writes of Socrates, awaiting execution while in prison (399 B.C.), whiling away his time changing Aesop’s tales into verse.

One of the fables that gave me pause was simply titled, “Mittzie the Chameleon.” Unhappily, this poor creature did not fit in with the mainstream species (the “Common Chameleon”) because of his religion. But he wanted to. Badly. So after ingratiating himself with the locals sufficiently enough to get elected to the Provincial Council, he bodaciously decided he would run for the job of Commander-in-Chief Chameleon. But, alas, he had one problem. He was given to wearing an expensive and rather ornate garment that concealed his natural-born epidermis.

Sad to say, it led to a bitter defeat after a quite contentious campaign. By trying to cloak the fact that he was just a garden-variety chameleon, given to taking on the color of his surroundings, he was rejected by the electorate.

The moral: Be true to who you are. Do not try to deny your congenital nature, lest you be seen as a hypocrite.

— Saul Rosenthal

Terre Haute


A confusing

contradiction


I continue to be baffled by how Indiana voters contradict themselves.

Case in point: The overwhelming defeat of Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett should tell us that the majority of the state didn’t like the direction he was taking. However, with Mike Pence winning the governorship just as easily, it is obvious that many of the people who voted against Bennett voted for Pence.

Pence and Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma have both stated they plan to go full steam ahead with Bennett’s education reforms, regardless of the constituents’ disapproval.

Here lies my confusion with the voters of Indiana. This is but one example of many over the years. I ask, as I have done so many times, why do the people of  Indiana vote against their own best interests?

— Ben Brower

Clinton

Correction

Ben Franklin Elementary’s fundraising effort for the USO will be today at the school from 7 to 10 a.m. A letter to Readers’ Forum published Thursday stated the event would be on Saturday.

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