You few, you proud, you readers of my memoir, Lighting the Fire (Miniver Press 2020), might remember how, in the mid-fifties, I discovered a trunk full of old issues of Reader’s Digest. I attacked the magazines by my usual method: front to back. Some of what I learned from the contents of that trunk sticks with me in my elder years.
I noticed for the first time that natural disasters like tornadoes, floods, or pandemics do not hunt up bad people to kill. They kill anybody they can reach.
I learned that a condensed book is to a book as condensed soup is to soup.
Relevant to today’s sermon, I caught an anecdote about Queen Elizabeth II that drags me smack into the middle Joe Biden’s inauguration. In 1952, the article claimed, Princess Elizabeth became Queen Elizabeth at age 25, and the running joke she played on her security detail got less funny.
During World War II, lots of women learned to drive who had not felt the necessity before. All of the British royals of appropriate age had military roles, and Princess Elizabeth trained as an ambulance driver. She liked driving, and when private cars were available again, she got one.
I do not remember the make, but I would guess the Aston-Martin DB series that would later be famous as James Bond’s ride. Bond drove a DB5; the series began with the DB2 in 1950. “DB” stood for David Brown, the British businessman who expanded Aston-Martin from a boutique brand to something ordinary Brits could buy….ordinary Brits who were filthy rich, that is.
The young princess was fond of driving fast on twisty country roads and she considered evading her security detail a challenge. After her coronation in 1952, this would not do.
The Reader’s Digest piece was a lengthy brag on how a British royal did not need to fear “her people.” At the time of the coronation, Stalin was still running the Soviet Union, and the point was that the British had injected enough democracy into government that the monarchy did not rule by force.
What this has to do with the U.S. should be obvious. Assuming the British brag is correct, what does that say about Joe Biden needing 20,000 National Guard troops to protect his inauguration?
I do not intend to suggest Joe Biden is a tyrant or has aspirations to be one like Donald John Trump plainly does. I mean to say that my country — our country — is in danger of watching our experiment in democracy perish from terminal dumbass.