We, the people

Gustav lost steam as he found his way to shoreline. The people, they got their butts out, like the mayor said. The wet-headed reporters, they stayed, bracing their microphones against gale-force winds. When the rains die down, the people, they will come home. Again. They, the people, have been shown mercy. Much mercy. And the proper response to mercy? Gratitude. The Big Easy got off easy.

With Gustav not living up to expectations, the reporters, they sniffed for blood and found her. She's 17 and pregnant and not married and calls Sarah Palin Mom. The blond-haired reporter with the short skirt, she took to the streets to hear what people thought. A teen, sitting on a stoop, she said with the bravado of youth, If she can't control her family, how can she lead the nation? A fellow Alaskan with a trail-running face and mother of two, she said, You just know something's falling through the cracks at home. What? What did I just hear? Dear God in heaven, help us. The blond-haired reporter, she seemed pleased at hearing the absence of mercy in their voices; she licked her blood-red lips, as if to say: yes, yes, this is what we need; no mercy. The voice of family-focused James Dobson, his words are heard a few moments later, applauding the Palin family for doing the right thing. But his words have the hollow ring of stoop-stuck teens and Alaskan trail-running mothers; no mercy.

The boy, his cries for mercy are heard from a room away. The boy, my son, sheds tears because he's stopped up and it's hard to breathe. I help him arrange his pillows so his head is propped up and we crack the window to let the night air enter. Allergies and our dry climate do this to you at night. The boy, my son, my only son, calms in the bed as I place my hand on his chest. Thank you for helping me, Dad. Gratitude. Where's a blond-haired reporter when you need one? Cover this story, lady. Please. And make sure that teenager sees your report and emphasize this content to that mother of two. And send an email describing it to Focus on the Family. A child could lead them.

We have been shown mercy. He, God, delays his coming so that one more might be shown mercy. Yet we sniff and bite and chew and judge and speak with the bravado of gods against one another while the babies grow inside our unmarried daughters. His fury dies down and instead of saying Thank You we wonder what fell through the cracks at home. Who can "lead" a people like us? Who can "president" an ungrateful people? If we cannot govern ourselves, it doesn't matter who gets elected or who has the most experience.

Forgive us, Father, for we know what we do and we keep doing it. Have mercy on us. We know better.


  1. This post is so stinkin' true, I can hardly stand it.

  2. Hey John! Wading off into the politics of "mercy" huh? There is no mercy to be found in politics, religion, or media coverage. Agendas are too hidden, money is more paramount, and rampant naivete abounds. Mercy does not sell nor convince, it only underlines someone's soft side and that is a point of weakness these days. But, I like your point of strength here. Mercy does matter. I will say, mercy must run in multiple directions for it to achieve its lasting end, not just to the ends we desire. Thanks for a shout out for mercy, much needed these days no doubt.

  3. Aw, Mark, you know me; that's the stuff I swim in. We all cringed at W's boast and swagger on the deck of that carrier and then we turn around and do the same in different ways. It's plum sad.

    But yes, I agree mercy must go in many and varied directions. If not, then it's just soft.

  4. John,

    I came across your blog by accident and thought can this be the same John Blase that I grew up with at Highland Park oh so many years ago? After reading several of your postings I concluded that you were indeed The John David that I looked up to so much. I was much younger than you so I'm sure my presence was never noticed, but yours definitely was. I always enjoyed hearing you sing. You stood so straight and tall, towering above your friends, Gary and Bobby. Anyway, I've enjoyed reading your blog. Having been raised SB, attending Ouachita and graduating from Southwestern and now married to a pastor, I understand and relate to so many of the issues you bring up in your writing. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and I look forward to reading them more often and being challenged.

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  6. Where would I be without mercy?