DY: In Just a Few Words (#124)
The G.O.A.T. of all G.O.A.T.s.
The term G.O.A.T. is used all the time in sports journalism. Tom Brady is the greatest of all time in football. Who is the G.O.A.T. in basketball? Michael or LeBron? Daily, we read and hear this discussed as it ranks right up there with war and peace as important issues in our time.
A different G.O.A.T. is in home hospice right now in the hardscrabble community of Plains, Georgia. I don’t know anybody who would say Jimmy Carter was the greatest American President. On the other hand, may I suggest history will judge him to have been the Greatest American ex-President.
Jimmy Carter has actually been a public servant all his adult life, beginning with graduating from the United States Naval Academy followed by his active military duty.
His post-Presidential commitment to public service should serve as the role model for how those who have held our highest office can continue to make a real difference, not just exploit the celebrity and visibility of the presidency in pursuit of the almighty dollar. To that end, the work of the Carter Center has received universal recognition for advancing democracy, standing up for human rights and improving global health. It is no accident he received the Nobel Peace Prize several years ago in recognition of his lifetime of good deeds.
No discussion of Jimmy Carter is complete without reference to the fact that he and his one-time political opponent Gerald Ford became best friends. Can you imagine that today - two adversaries finding common ground in the heat of political battle rather than demonizing their opponent?
And, lest we not forget that Jimmy Carter never forgot where he came from. He’s been teaching Sunday School in his small church for more than 40 years and working as a Habitat for Humanity volunteer, building houses since he left politics.
No, Jimmy Carter won’t be at Mt. Rushmore with our great Presidents, but you will find him on any short list of ex-President G.O.A.T.s. As he awaits meeting his maker, much more will be made of his genuine humanity than his Presidency.
Thank you Jimmy Carter for showing us what real class and dignity are all about.
DY: In Just a Few Words is a blog that comes out when something needs to be said or every Tuesday - whichever comes first. Davis Young is a communications professional who adds 50+ years of experience and perspective to issues of the day. His emphasis in DY: In Just a Few Words will be humor (a touch of sarcasm here, a pinch of facetiousness there...). Once in a while, he will touch on something a bit more serious - but hopefully not too deep or depressing.
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