Thursday, February 25, 2010

A Time to 'Kill-It'

I woke up from a unique dream last night on the eve of Barack Obama's Health Care Summit:

Remember the John Grisham novel that spurred the 1996 movie 'A Time to Kill?' And how Samuel L. Jackson portrayed the character Carl Lee Hailey - the man who shot and killed two White Supremacists in the courtroom after they allegedly brutally raped his 10-year-old daughter and left her for dead?

And how Matthew McConaughey played Carl's good friend and lawyer - Jake Tyler Brigance?

Well picture Obama at the HC Summit with the select few invitees sitting around the now-renowned square-shaped table in Blair House. With C-Span cameras rolling, and millions of Americans watching, Obama walks into the center of the arranged tables and asks everyone to please close their eyes. And in his best Obama dead-pan, instructs the cavalry of media: " guys too," pointing to the reporters, "you're all part of this...close your eyes." After some curious looks and some rustling amongst the crowd, Obama presciently and meticulously launches into his best Jake Brigance impersonation and tells the narrative of America, with its broken down health care system.

The president puts a human face on the story. He is able to smash preconceived notions and peel away the many ridiculous partisan innuendo that clouds the narrative. Everyone is listening intently, to his every word. He has a captive audience - a national captive audience at that.

And on cue, the main stream media breaks in from their regular broadcasting schedule for this palpable moment. Obama continues with his story, sounding like Morgan Freeman narrating a Pyrrhic Victory, and explains all that is fundamentally wrong with the system and does it in a way that crashes through the partisan bickering.

Soon thereafter, Congress, sullen from this awakening, promises to have a "come-to-Jesus meeting" and resolves to pass a bipartisan bill that will put the people first.

Fiction and Hollywood, I know, but one can only dream.

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