Jay Janner / Austin American-Statesman by way of AP
Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021 | 2 a.m.
Although a few of my happier-go-luckier pals would disagree, throughout this pandemic it appears a few of us have an excessive amount of idle time on our palms.
I’m constrained to plead responsible to a cost of utilizing this further time to think about points and themes that in regular instances most individuals wouldn’t have the curiosity nor the inclination to pursue. But the plea comes with an evidence.
You see, I’m an optimist, which is a situation that as of late might show figuratively deadly. Or, at the very least, approach out of contact with society’s fringes.
Being optimistic signifies that in 2021 an individual should look previous the craziness, the inanity, the hypocrisy, the mean-spiritedness and the downright malevolence that appear to outline who and the place we’re if we’re to examine all that’s, can and needs to be good about this nice nation.
This is a good distance of claiming that perspective in at present’s world is crucial for a frame of mind that’s wanted to see our approach into a greater tomorrow. I’ve at all times drawn on the motion pictures and leisure — artwork, if you’ll— to think about life as I want it might be.
For instance, I considered one among my favourite motion pictures the different day when the U.S. Senate voted to acquit Donald Trump of inciting an revolt at the U.S. Capitol. Actually, a bipartisan majority (a rarity as of late) voted to convict Trump.
The 57-vote whole included “The Magnificent Seven” Republicans who did the proper factor however — in at present’s timid world — did not get credit score for being brave.
The unique film was a couple of bunch of gunslingers who gave their lives to save lots of a village of individuals unable to defend themselves. It was an act of the Aristocracy. And much more brave than only a vote to convict, in case you ask me.
Another basic, kind of, was “Dumb and Dumber.”
It doesn’t matter what the film was about as a result of I exploit it solely to outline Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who’s the “dumb” half and the remainder of America — all of us, if Abbott convinces us he’s telling it straight — are the “dumber “ part.
Texas is facing two major disasters. The first was a snow and ice storm the likes of which few people could have contemplated before global warming and the resulting climate change. Few people in Texas, that is.
Most of the rest of America has long understood that climate change is real. Texas represents a sort of throwback in today’s world that thinks denying reality is smart and sane and safe. Well, it ain’t and now far too many people are suffering as a result.
And the second disaster is Abbott’s effort to avoid responsibility for the devastation committed against the lives of millions of Texans by taking a page from the Donald Trump playbook that reads: “Lie until you’re caught and, then, lie until you can’t.”
Texas has at all times believed it didn’t should be instructed the right way to distribute electrical energy over the nationwide grid — that’s the federal authorities’s plan to offer redundancy in case of a once-in-a-lifetime snow and ice storm. Surprise!
So, as a substitute, Texans function their very own grid. The sort that makes them wholly dependent solely upon themselves.
There is a saying in the Lone Star State: “Don’t mess with Texas.” Well, Mother Nature and Texas-size hubris have made an enormous mess of far too many individuals’s lives and there’s no one else responsible. Despite what Gov. Abbott would have us consider, he’s accountable for what has simply messed with Texas.
He type of jogs my memory of Bud Abbott from the well-known comedy duo. Except as a straight man for the very humorous Lou Costello, Bud was proficient and entertaining. And plausible.
Texas’ Abbott is none of these issues and he isn’t one bit humorous. Just ask the thousands and thousands of people that went with out warmth or water or meals or another of the customary comforts of dwelling in the best nation in the world!
And that brings me to one among my all time favourite motion pictures, “Coming to America.” As a lot as I loved the film, it’s only the title I must make a degree.
Electrical grids, freeway methods, bridges, tunnels and railroads in America are all in want of restore and important upgrades. If what we’re witnessing in Texas is an indication of what’s going to come — and it most assuredly is — then now could be the time to get cracking on an infrastructure invoice in Congress.
Wouldn’t all of us wish to see high-speed rail, Twenty first-century sensible, redundant electrical grids, roads and highways constructed to deal with automated driving, tunnels and bridges designed to final one other century and the remainder of our nation’s infrastructure designed or upgraded to steer the world and never path it from far behind?
President Joe Biden needs to do all of that. He needs us all to consider the United States is “Coming to America.”
Brian Greenspun is editor, writer and proprietor of the Sun.