I am an op-ed. And I’m going to address an issue. Now call me controversial, but I’m here to speak out against something that’s wrong, because I happen to believe that it’s wrong to be wrong. And none of the opinions I express will be sugarcoated because sugarcoating is a sign of weakness, and may lead to diabetes.
Truth be told, the problem in question has grown 32% worse in the last year, though some claim 29% is the more accurate figure. But whatever the case, almost all of the leading experts warn that the issue at hand, if left unchecked, could grow 21% worse next year, give or take. And in case you’re skeptical about this data, it’s readily traceable to the most reliable source of information ever invented, namely the internet.
The conundrum under debate will affect not only everyday Americans but also those who function on a weekly or even monthly basis. Nor is this an ivory-tower thesis. Rather, it originated in a humble split-level Colonial on a quarter-acre plot with a hint of crabgrass around the edges. Indeed, for me the matter at hand is personal. I embody this issue. Or, as my wife frequently reminds me, I am, in fact, the issue.
Now, certain parties may disagree with me, and disagree they most certainly shall. But I say those parties should either be rescheduled or canceled outright, especially since nobody invited me in the first place, nor bothered to tell me what time to show up or how to dress, and they were probably going to be much too loud and crowded anyway.
But make no mistake: This issue carries implications for our future. And those implications promise to be dire, the worst possible kind of implications known to science. I could cite those implications ad infinitum — that’s Latin, by the way, for “please shut up already” — but that would take me beyond my 700-word limit here.
Granted, when it comes to this particular issue, we’re inching toward progress. But we still have our work cut out for us, thanks to some handy scissors we have nearby. So needless to say — and that’s probably why I’m saying it — we must take action. Preferably we’ll take the sort of action that speaks louder than words, at least 40 to 50 decibels louder. And we should take this action sooner rather than later, too, if only because given all of my other commitments, anything further ahead than a week from Tuesday is no good for me.
Besides, let’s face it: The clock is ticking, and that’s strange, because it’s digital.
Accordingly, I propose a bold, forward-looking solution. Say hello to my 279-point blueprint, single-spaced and handsomely punctuated. And that’s just my outline. It’s obviously much more ambitious than the 186-point plan that a prestigious Washington think tank issued the other day, if you do the math. My version urges Congress to do something — anything, really, if only as a change of pace. Ditto the White House, the International Monetary Fund and the World Wrestling Federation. Anybody will do, provided someone does something, because someone must do something.
So let’s commit to carrying out this crusade together. Let’s double down, even triple and quadruple down. Only then can we ever do what it is incumbent on us to do. Only then can we shift the paradigm, not to mention redefine the rules of engagement and even change the equation.
I am an op-ed. And that’s my opinion. It’s past time to acknowledge that fact.
Bob Brody is an executive and essayist. He is the author of the memoir “Playing Catch with Strangers: A Family Guy (Reluctantly) Comes Of Age.”