Going Home

He said to them in effect:

“That’s Fine.  You made your point.  The thing is I can go home, you have to live with each other when I leave.”

Yes, they had been living in that same land for nigh 400 years:  Fighting.

How was it working for them?

Not        very        well.

Both sides could protest the appointment of George as mediator, walk out with big fan fare.  Heck, they could strut like battling Peacocks for another 400 years  — pride a’ struting.  Not listening and talking over each other.  Power parading and violent protesting.  George would just go home, where he belongs, back to America —  just as my namesake ancestor had done about 300 years ago.

What goes up must come down
Spinnin’ wheel, got to go round
Talkin’ ’bout your troubles, it’s a cryin’ sin
Ride a painted pony, let the spinnin’ wheel spin

You got no money, you got no home
Spinnin’ wheel, all alone
Talkin’ ’bout your troubles and you, you never learn
Ride a painted pony, let the spinnin’ wheel turn
— Blood, Sweat, and Tears

Or — enough with the violence and the peacocking.  The world is moving out, if their people can’t get down to business — the business of living, get with the business of dying.

If it’s peace you find in dying, when dying time is here,
— Laura Nyro

They had publically walked out on him. But George called them afterwards: he was still here, he would provide mediation between the two sides…

“WHEN I BEGAN THE NEGOTIATIONS IN NORTHERN IRELAND I WAS THE CHAIRMAN BY THE REQUEST OF THE BRITISH AND IRISH GOVERNMENT. IT WAS QUITE VOCAL OPPOSITION TO MY SERVING IN THAT POSITION BY SEVERAL OF THE PARTIES WHO WALKED OUT WHEN I CAME IN TO TAKE THE CHAIRMAN’S SEAT. IT WAS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT AND WE HAD A VERY CONTROVERSIAL AND STORMY BEGINNING. I CALLED A MEETING FOR LATER THAT DAY AND AFTER THE MEETING FINISHED I TELEPHONED THE LEADERS OF THE PARTIES WHO HAD WALKED OUT OF THE TALKS. I SAID LOOK, YOU MADE YOUR POINT. ALL KINDS OF PUBLICITY, YELLING AT ME AND SO FORTH. WHY DON’T YOU GUYS COME BACK NOW.”

George Mitchell, Provider Guardian, was there to serve.

Highly cooperative themselves, Providers are skilled in maintaining teamwork among their helpers, and are also tireless in their attention to the details of furnishing goods and services. Wherever they go, Providers happily give their time and energy to make sure that the needs of others are met, and that social functions are a success. [Please Understand Me II]

George John Mitchell, Jr. (born August 20, 1933) is an American lawyer, businessman and politician. A Democrat, Mitchell served as a United States Senator from Maine from 1980 to 1995 and as Senate Majority Leader from 1989 to 1995.

Since retiring from the Senate, Mitchell has taken up a variety of positions in politics and business. He has taken a leading role in negotiations for peace in Northern Ireland and the Middle East, being specifically appointed United States Special Envoy for Northern Ireland (1995–2001) by President Clinton and as United States Special Envoy for Middle East Peace (2009–2011) by President Obama. He was a primary architect of the 1996 Mitchell Principles and the 1998 Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland, and was the main investigator in two “Mitchell Reports”, one on the Arab–Israeli conflict (2001) and one on the use of performance enhancing drugs in baseball (2007)

The Troubles, called by locals of Northern Ireland, were brought to an uneasy end by a peace process that included the declaration of ceasefires by most paramilitary organisations, the complete decommissioning of the IRA’s weapons, the reform of the police, and the corresponding withdrawal of the British Army from the streets and sensitive border areas such as South Armagh and Fermanagh, as agreed by the signatories to the Belfast Agreement. The agreement reiterated the long-held British position, which successive Irish governments have not fully acknowledged, that Northern Ireland would remain within the United Kingdom, unless a majority of Northern Irish vote otherwise.

The British government recognised for the first time the principle that the people of the island of Ireland as a whole have the right, without any outside interference, to solve the issues between North and South by mutual consent. The latter statement was key to winning support for the agreement from both nationalists and republicans. It also established a devolved power-sharing government within Northern Ireland (which was suspended from 14 October 2002 until 8 May 2007), wherein the government must consist of both unionist and nationalist parties.

Although the number of active participants was relatively small, the Troubles touched the lives of many in Northern Ireland on a daily basis, sometimes spreading into England, the Republic of Ireland, and, occasionally, parts of mainland Europe.

The Disputes in the Middle East continue.  Nobody has been able to mediate a peace in that region, including George, despite his yeoman efforts.  It will probably another hundred years before all the power parties exhaust themselves and their victims.

Guardians pride themselves on being dependable, helpful, and hard-working.  Family is everything.

“From my parents, I learned a very strong work ethic, and all of my brothers and sisters all worked from the earliest days of life right through to the present time.”

George Mitchell was born in Waterville, Maine. His father, George John Mitchell, Sr. (born Joseph Kilroy), was of ethnic Irish descent but was adopted by a Lebanese family when he was orphaned.  Mitchell’s father was a janitor at Colby College in Waterville, where Mitchell was raised. Mitchell’s mother, Mary (née Saad), who emigrated to the United States in 1920 from Bkassine, Lebanon, at the age of eighteen.

George talked about his mother’s experience.

“… USUALLY AROUND THE KITCHEN TABLE, WE TALK ABOUT LEBANON OFTEN WITH MIST IN HER EYES. IT’S SO BEAUTIFUL AND THE AIR IS CLEAR.

AND AFTER ARRIVING IN THE UNITED STATES AT THE AGE OF 18 YEARS OLD, SHE RETURNED TO LEBANON ONLY ONCE LATE IN HER LIFE AFTER HER FATHER DIED.  SHE RETURNED TO THE VILLAGE WHERE SHE GREW UP WITH FRIENDS IN THE HOUSE IN WHICH SHE HAD BEEN RAISED. AND THAT IS WHERE MY MOTHER STOOD AND PAUSED AND WITH THE GREAT EMOTION AND SAID THEY SHOULD SEE AMERICA.  AND IT’S SO BEAUTIFUL. THE AIR IS PURE IN THE AIR IS PURE, THE AIR IS GOOD.

OH, AMERICA, MY AMERICA.

SHE HAD LITTLE FORMAL EDUCATION, SHE COULD NOT WRITE ENGLISH, SHE SPOKE WITH AN ACCENT AND SHE WORKED IN A TEXTILE MILL. SHE WAS GENEROUS AND LOVING AND STRONG AND WISE. AND SHE UNDERSTOOD CLEARLY THE MEANING OF AMERICA.

AND TO ME, NO ONE HAS EVER SAID IT BETTER. OH, AMERICA, MY AMERICA.”

Other Provider Guardians:  Don KeoughHuell HouserRoger EbertPat SummerallStuds Terkel, Manci Dirac, Denis Mukwege, Andy Griffith, Dick Clark, Tim Tebow, and President William Howard Taft

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