I am reading an interesting story set in 1960’s Louisiana, USA, on the political race for Governor of Louisiana. The central figure of the story is an ambitious woman who aims to attain wealth, power and status at any cost. Ambition is perhaps, the secondary driving force for her push to fame, fortune and power, as her main objective is to ‘get-back’ at those who have humiliated, insulted and overall belittled her in the past. This book was published in 1960, but its relevance to today’s dog-eat-dog social environment is so apt, I can’t help but relate to and identify with it.The story is presented through the eyes of people who knew her well on her climb up to the pinnacle of her ambition and begins at the end i.e. her funeral. As I have not yet come to the end of that story, I will not say more about it, but must put down the thoughts it has inspired so far.
The political intrigue, wheeling and dealing to grasp position and power necessitates the doing or commission of certain deeds. These may look magnanimous and generous on the face of it but really work out to the detriment of others. Gossip is a weapon in every politician’s arsenal to undermine by means fair or foul, any opponent. Moreover, to back up gossip and rumor-mongering, evidence may be fabricated and what is true is cut and pulled to fit the gossip mold, and is commonly done by many vying to be in the driving-seat.
Despite the prevalence of half-truths and general non-truths, well-meaning sincerity may reign in some peoples’ hearts. These worthies may want change for the better but often are in the minority and are inevitably beaten down by the more wily candidates. However, the path chosen yields its own consequences. There’s always a come-back on whatever we do to others or for others. Deeds, kind or cruel, are like homing pigeons, they come home to roost sooner or later.
Yet, the years may blur out our memories of deeds done that may have affected others in a big or small way. Sometimes, we don’t realize that the deeds we consider small are big to others. We never know when the consequences of our actions may fly in our faces, they may come as a pleasant surprise or a tight slap when least expected. For some, the shock of the come-back may be so overwhelming as to end in their own demise. Bear in mind that there is always a price to pay for what we want and the path we decide to beat. Are we prepared for the consequences of our own actions? There’s a lot to think about, even if we don’t want to think about it.
This may be cold consolation to some of us, but is still a phenomena which may save us even considering vengeance as an option when we’ve been burnt by deliberate humiliation, being soft targets or threats to the ambitions of some. I have abandoned the ‘rat-race’ having realized the futility of it and the golden cage that awaits those willing to further climb the ladder of success at any cost.
My vote is for freedom of spirit, mind and heart, beating my own path, and being responsible for the consequences of my choice. My self-determination.