Poop On the Playground

August 10, 2021
Vika Strawberrika D Gw Lxz Fu G Zo Unsplash

A public servant in our state is unusually outspoken. While most politicians refuse to answer questions directly, equivocating about their positions on crucial issues and trying their darndest not to offend anyone, this one addresses every issue with startling frankness.

Many citizens find such candor to be a breath of fresh air, but there are those who would rather feel a gust of hot wind than listen to cold, hard facts.

Knowing a friend of mine usually stands on the opposite side of the political fence as this statesman, I asked him before the last election if he intended to vote for him. I wasn’t surprised when he said no, but that wasn’t enough for me. I wanted to know what burning issue irked him enough to withhold his vote from a qualified candidate.

Was it the candidate’s strident tone? No, said my friend, that wasn’t it. Was it his constant negative (but highly accurate) remarks about the dismal condition of our state’s finances? Perhaps it was placing blame on the incumbent party for their failure to make headway against impending financial disaster?

No, my friend said, noting that he did not materially disagree with the candidate’s facts and figures, disheartening as they might be.

If not the candidate’s focus on fiscal policy, is it that you disagree with his stand on social issues?

He has taken strong positions on the role of public education in our society and doesn’t hesitate to weigh in on local and national issues as well as statewide education funding and policy. May I presume that you disagree with one of his positions?

No, my friend really didn’t have a problem with the candidate’s positions on education. In fact, my friend really wasn’t all that familiar with the details of the candidate’s opinion on these issues.

That leaves military service and involvement in foreign wars. While many candidates for statewide office hide their positions on issues of national importance, our candidate is fiercely outspoken. Does that bother you?

No, my friend noted, these issues weren’t the problem.

Well for goodness’ sake, why aren’t you going to vote for this candidate?

“He lives next door to my son’s school.” True, but what does that have to do with anything?

“He lets his dogs out at night. They poop on the ball fields in the schoolyard, and the candidate doesn’t clean up the poop.”

There you have it, my friends. A lifetime dedicated to public service, countless hours spent analyzing issues, nearly limitless devotion by an army of volunteers, yet an election was being derailed by some dog poo on a playground. 

What a shame. How about you? You offer great quality, terrific service and competitive prices, yet some prospects still won’t work with you. Perhaps it was that political post on your salesman’s Facebook page, or maybe that rude and unhelpful clerk in accounting who answers your phone when the operator goes to lunch. Maybe your shipping cartons are environmentally unfriendly, or just not labelled the way the prospect likes.

Are you planning to buy some expensive new equipment? Maybe you are considering entering hot new markets, selling products and services you’ve never offered before in the hopes that it will revitalize your sales.

Great, but before you embark on your company’s next big thing, pick up a bag and a shovel. You might want to clean up your poop.