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12 Apr

Throughout the 19th and 20th Centuries, several versions of this children’s story were published by different authors.  They were considered examples of folklore that made light of paranoia and mass hysteria.

But first, let me remind you a bit about the story. Henny Penny, also called Chicken Little, is terrified and convinced that “the sky is falling” when an acorn falls on her head.  The chick decides to go to the King and on her way meets other animals who join in the parade to tell him that “the sky is falling” because they now, too, believe it.  Names of these other characters in the story include Cocky Locky, Turkey Lurkey, Goosey Loosey, Ducky Lucky, Foxy Woxy and Henny Penny.

The moral of the story depends on the version you read.  If the version has a happy ending, the moral to be drawn from it is not to be a “Chicken” but rather to have courage.  In other versions, where in the end the birds are eaten by a fox, the story interpretation serves as a warning not to believe everything one is told.

While the news each day seems as if the sky is falling, it’s not.  We hear the peculiar nicknames of various characters who make the news such as Crying Chuck, Little Rocket Man, Pocahontas, Lamb the Sham, Dickie Durbin, Liddle Bob Corker and Sloppy Steve.  We hear or read daily doses of allegations and accusations that question credibility.  Adding to that, we are all subjected to a rise in scaremongering through social media and journalism.  Fear of chemical warfare and retaliation, trade war with China, nuclear war with North Korea, stock market fluctuations, impeachment and other hot topics are enough to make it seem as if the sky is falling.

In my version of the story, though, the King already knows what’s going on!   My daily reminder of that belief is by reading a wall hanging of an angel in our hallway that is inscribed “If in doubt, look up!”

It takes time for leaders to get together and talk about achieving fairness in trade practices. It takes time to turn the hearts of dictators to put down their weapons to join the rest of the world in providing freedom and choice to their nation’s citizens.  Denuclearization is tedious.  Long standing bitter relationships and differences of opinions take years of hard work on the part of both parties to mend and work together for the good.  History cannot be erased.  But the way forward happens one small step at a time.

So if each day seems as if hysteria and paranoia is taking over and “the sky is falling”…….just look up. And, like Chicken Little and all the other characters in the parade, have courage and just keep walking to the King.



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Gramma Golden

Gramma Golden