Can't we all just get along?
But that is not so. Those of us of a certain age recall the deeply-held personal beliefs that tore a generation apart, pitting brother against brother, friend against friend. The 1960s were far worse, my children -- I was there. I remember.
I'm not talking about the war in Viet Nam, or the abiding question of whether Nixon was Satan incarnate (or merely a senior demon), but something far more important. Far more revealing of who you were. A conflict involving the entire male population of America, and a considerable chunk of the rest of the world. Because the world was divided into two kinds of men. More correctly two kinds of boys (no age restrictions need apply).
There were those who, given the opportunity, would opt to be stranded on a desert island with Ginger. And then there were those of us with the good sense to know that Mary Ann was the obvious choice: Which would likely run off with the next smooth-talking Amway distributor? Which would instead pitch in and help chop the firewood? I knew you'd understand.
It's hard to believe that Gilligan's Island was only on for three or four years, so great a cultural impact did it make. But then James Dean died young, did he not?
I tremble for my country when I perceive that we are on the verge of a similar nation-tearing conflict. Again, nothing so trivial as a Supreme Court nomination, or the War on Terror. I'm talking, of course, about Daisy Duke. Which is the real Daisy?
There are we originalists, who will insist with our dying breath that the only real Daisy is Catherine Bach. And then there are the revisionists, the modernists, those who will demand that Daisy is a living, evolving icon, and throw in their lot with Jessica Simpson. But consider which you would trust to drive the General Lee. I thought so.
I'm calling now for a reasoned, polite and respectful debate of this important issue. With tolerance and understanding, we can perhaps make our way to the promised land of a multi-Daisy society, where all opinions are treated with the dignity that they deserve.
And if we can do that, then maybe, just maybe, we will be better able to consider and resolve the other important questions dividing us. Such as THIS ONE.