, Newburyport, MA


December 7, 2013

Reflecting on Mandela's life


“Hear me out,” Freddy said.

“History making is on fast forward, but if TV had been around and got wind of there being three Wise Men traveling as far as they did to pay homage to the birth of a baby boy named Jesus, that would have made the evening news and talk shows big time.”

“And even bigger coverage when he was crucified,” I said. “But what has to do with Mandela? It took more than most of his lifetime to turn things around.”

“Without losing his life for one thing, and not trying to get even while doing it once he was free,” Freddy said. “Think about it. Ghandi loses his. So does Lincoln.”

“But Mandela lives to a great age — more than a quarter of it spent in a cell smaller than a bath room, but he succeeds by accepting what he couldn’t change while hanging tough for turning things around.”

“Well, he certainly is one for the ages,” I said.

“Not only for what he accomplished, but by the way he accepted reality and didn’t try to get even,” Freddy said.

“Too bad there’s not more of that going around in Washington,” I said.

“And spoil all the fun everyone’s having?,” Freddy said. “Perish the thought.”

Bill Plante is a a Newbury resident and staff columnist.

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