The Ant and the Grasshopper

Guest Post by Michael Chambers
We all are familiar with Aesop’s fable of the ant and the grasshopper. Both creatures ostensibly had the same goal in life – to survive the oncoming winter. The ant worked during the warm weather and gathered enough food to carry him through the winter months, while the grasshopper talked about how he would gather food stores but procrastinated and let the world move on as the days got shorter. Winter came early that year and caught the grasshopper by surprise while the ant was safe and secure because of his attention to detail and prepared for hard weather. The ant achieved his goal but the grasshopper did not plan for his future because he thought he had more time, but his predictions were erroneous at best.

So what has this got to do with Charlestown? Well, during the past election, the CCA and the CDTC both claimed that they were against gaming facilities of any sort within the town limits. Both claimed that they would work to keep this promise to the taxpayers of Charlestown. Now we see there is an opportunity for Congress to vote on what has been termed the Carcieri Fix. The CCA continues to oppose the legislation, whereas some members of the CDTC think that, because many Native American tribes may be adversely affected by not adopting the Carcieri Fix, the people of Charlestown should look the other way and let whatever happens happen. These people will wait until the clock is at 11:59 pm before they would take action. This approach is much like the attitude of the grasshopper who trusted that he knew the future and didn’t have to make plans to reach his goal. What harm does writing to one’s representative in Congress and to the Governor do? If you promise the residents of Charlestown that you will do everything possible to oppose actions and legislation that could possibly result in gaming facilities in town, then to keep that promise you do what is necessary and not make excuses. A promise made that is dependent upon unpredictable circumstance is not a promise at all.

It may be just a difference in mindset between the two political groups that determines how they react to issues facing the town. Based on the results of the election and referendums, it seems to me that the voters prefer the mindset of the ant and not the grasshopper.