Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Little Blue Car

Tommy and I played together after school, mostly with small, metal cars. Tommy let me play with all of his cars except one, a pretty little blue car. That car was Tommy's favorite; no one else got to play with it. It was special, the most prized, and what I wanted more than anything else in the world. Life would be perfect if I could just play with the little blue car. But it was Tommy's, and I'd never have it or one like it.

Tommy and I are now grown up and grown old, and I've long since lost contact with him. But I've since known a lot of Tommys.  A generation ago it was "you can't eat in my restaurant, join my club, live in my neighborhood because of your skin color." Now it's "you homosexuals can't marry because that would cheapen my heterosexual marriage," or "you can't have affordable medical care because that would give you something I have earned with my successes."

The truth is, "I'm not special if you have what I have." Greed is nothing more than The Little Blue Car.


  1. There is a lot of wisdom squeezed into that one paragraph. What is the point of a toy - or whatever - if it can't be shared and enjoyed. there are very few things indeed that are best enjoyed in splendid isolation.

  2. How sad it is. You are right, we need to feel ‘superior’, being equal means that our little blue car is the same as everyone else’s and that must never be.

  3. You're being hard on little Tommy. If you were playing with his car then he was deprived of it for a short time. I sort of understand that. But all the other (allegedly grown-up) people you mention are deprived of nothing whatever by sharing with others; they can still eat in the restaurant, get married, live in the neighbourhood etc. etc. I don't understand that. At all.

  4. Good analogy -- and most good parents attempt to teach their children to share -- as do most religions.