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My friend is not from the USA. He periodically asks me about life in America.

Raj: I read that a lot of Americans want the government to provide health care for everyone.

Me: I've heard that, too.

Raj: I don't' get it. Why would you want health care from the same government that created the Katrina fiasco? The same government that took three months to give me a simple passport?

Me: Good question.

Raj: What do you know about global warming? Al Gore keeps telling everyone to reduce energy usage. Claims we're creating greenhouse gases that drive up the world's temperatures. Yet, he flies around in private jets, rides in limousines and SUVs and his house uses the energy of 20 average houses.

Me: Mr. Gore claims to be carbon neutral. He buys pollution credits that offset the pollution that he generates. Of course, he's part owner of the company that he buys the credits from. So he's making money on the operation.

Raj: So if I donate money to Mothers against Drunk Driving, I can get hammered after work and not have to worry about getting a DUI? Or if I donate to the police department, can I go murder someone?

Me: You'd better see a lawyer about that. Anything else?

Raj: What's this I hear that women in America only get paid 77 percent to 80 percent of what men get paid?

Me: Just keep in mind that not everyone is convinced that women are actively discriminated against.

Raj: OK. But if it's true, why doesn't every business fire male workers and hire females as replacements? There must be some mistake in the study. I could open my own businesses and undercut the competition by 20 percent. I'd make a killing!

ME: You might want to get two lawyers.

David Henson

Bloomington

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