Sunday, February 24, 2013
Right Versus Left
I keep writing that I have great friends and I really do. Well, sometimes they come together in the most amazing ways.
Recently I had dinner with the two in the picture. The honorable Richard J. Riordan, former mayor of Los Angeles, and Julie Butcher, a senior union official at SEIU, one of the nation's largest unions. The two have made the media with their battles (to the death) regarding the local pension challenges here in Los Angeles. I took the picture early in the evening to cut the daggers (that lay aside for the rest of the dinner so my ploy worked).
We had a really amazing dinner, despite the recent political sparring and what I, a civilian, would term ill will.
Because right and left very often aren't that far apart and putting people together in a room brings out the willingness to talk, engage and reach consensus. Few people are radicals but many disagree on which road is the best chosen.
As I watched these two disagree, but both focused on the good of the city from the perspective as they saw it, I felt heartened. Not at Washington DC which to me it a mess. But rather that those with widely divergent opinions and even in the midst of a public disagreement could break bread and find a way to work together.
No one opinion is any less important, it might just have less support or appeal. But listening and reaching across the table does earn dividends.
I learned so much watching these two. Mostly I learned that to believe passionately in your cause gives life meaning beyond the mundane and basics of existence. What a fun and rewarding dinner. Thank you Dick and Julie.
Megan Lisa Jones