Once upon a time in the Kingdom of the Maple Leaf…
A child was born to two foreigners, Lucy and Ricardo.
According to the law of the Maple Leaf land, the parents of this child who they named Little Rafael were required to declare which country their baby would claim as his: Maple Land? The Land of Stars and Stripes? Or Island of the Tribes of Castro and Batista? For it was also known that Little Rafael’s daddy came from the a place where the customs of the island decreed that as was the citizenship of the father, also was the citizenship of the child.
At that time, the law of the Maple Leaf Kingdom decreed that a baby born on Maple Land soil of foreign parents would not be allowed citizenship of TWO countries. And in Baby Rafael’s family, the choice was tripled!
So the infant Rafael’s mommy and daddy had a very big decision to make.
Legend tells that after careful consideration, Little Rafael’s parents chose to make him a Maple Leaf, in honor of the land in which they now made their home. After all, they agreed, they lived under the Maple leaf flag, and it just made sense.
But unbeknownst to them, in time their decision would haunt Little Rafael, for by choosing to make Little Rafael a Maple Leafer, his mommy gave up Little Rafael’s rights ever to be president in the Land of Stars and Stripes.
How could she have known that her little baby would one day desire to be the leader of a country in which he did not hold citizenship? How could she have known that the people of the Stars and Stripes realm were protective of traditions that determined who could be their president, and even wrote it down on a piece of paper they proudly called “The Constitution.”
As time went on, Little Rafael’s mommy and daddy made a new life for themselves and Little Rafael. There were opportunities in the Land of Stars and Stripes, and they crossed the border that separated it from Maple Leaf and found a new place to live and work and enjoy freedom.
The days passed, and Little Rafael grew to be big and smart, ambitious and clever, with many opportunities everywhere, even for a Maple Leaf boy.
He daydreamed of being a lawyer arguing before the High Tribunal. He dreamed of one day becoming a member of the august body known as “The Senate”. Why, he even dreamed of becoming the leader of his new home, the Land of Stars and Stripes!
He studied hard and learned all there was about important official decrees of the land. He memorized precious documents, including the Declaration of Independence. He even memorized “The Constitution!” Little Rafael was a smart boy, quick with words, constructing Olde English sentences like those he read in The Federalist papers and such. And he could out-debate the brightest children among him.
As time went on and Little Rafael became a man, his dreams became more real, and he pursued them with diligence and determination. But he also knew (because he had studied hard), that the way to the White House meant that he had to be born on this soil of parents who themselves were citizens of the Land of Stars and Stripes.
If he was to lead the people in the Land of Stars and Stripes, he would have to pretend he was one of them. For Little Rafael, that wasn’t difficult. He convinced himself that his birthright in the Land of the Maple Leaf was not important.
One day, Little Rafael set his cap for a big job! He would compete to be the Senator of the Big Lone State at the nation’s Capitol, where he would plot and plan and strategize the steps he would take to get from there to the best place in the land – the White House!
But first, how to hide his Maple Leaf citizenship? Little Rafael was smart enough to know that would prevent him from getting there, because he read and learned it in “The Constitution.”
Little Rafael thought, and he thought, and he thought. Like a chess player, he puzzled out every move, until finally one day it came to him! He would go to the Land of the Maple Leaf and tell them he no longer wanted to be their citizen! He would relinquish his ties to the land of his birth!
Thereafter, he signed his name on a very official looking piece of paper with a gold Maple Leaf emblem and gave away his Maple Leaf citizenship. Satisfied, Little Rafael returned to the Land of Stars and Stripes, confident now that the path was clear and he’d be elected.
But there was something Little Rafael overlooked. Something big. Something YUGE. And it occurred to him in a moment of blinding brilliance. Little Rafael realized with a jolt that he wasn’t a citizen anymore anywhere. He was truly a man without a country!
Little Rafael looked around, his eyes darting to and fro. What to do? If he went to the Land of Stars and Stripes authorities to request citizenship, everyone would know he wasn’t already. Though he didn’t lie about it to the people whose votes he counted on, he never told them the truth either. He let them think he was one of them, born on this soil. And what was worse, the people would know he didn’t really love “The Constitution” because he wasn’t eligible to be their president according to their official document. He was abusing and violating the very “Constitution” he professed to love and defend!
He thought and he thought. He almost fainted from thinking so hard. Little Rafael was really in a quandary. How could he fix this without anyone finding out? He asked his trusted advisors for advice. “What should I do? I want to be president very badly, but if I try, my enemies will know and tell the world, and the people will learn of my secret!”
They told him, “Find a crooked judge who will keep your secret, who will swear you in as a US citizen on the Bible that you, Little Rafael, carry with you everywhere you go.”
And so it was decided. Little Rafael hurried to find a judge who had secrets of his own and who could be counted on to keep Rafael’s secret. One who would look the other way and gladly take as payment a bundle hay to put in his own Augean stable.
Lo and behold, it didn’t take long to find one. Before long, Little Rafael placed his hand on his Bible and repeated the words of Judge Crooke that would give him a country to call his own!
Rafael was relieved! Now no one could say he wasn’t a citizen. He was! He was!
Little Rafael changed his name to celebrate. From henceforth he would be called “TrusTed the Great, Keeper of the Founders’ Constitution and the Word of God.”
And with the help of all his advisors who knew his secret, TrusTed pretended to be all that he wanted the people to believe him to be.
But the relief did not last. Before long came the Giant of Orange Hair who bellowed at TrusTed, “Show me proof that you are one of US!”
“Show me proof that you obey “The Constitution” of this Land! Show me your YUGE document that proves you are who you say you are and not a charlatan from another land!” the Giant of Orange Hair challenged.
TrusTed was nervous. How could he produce such a thing? He had none to show! He was panicked. Again he turned to his advisors, many of whom had invested heavily in TrusTed and his dreams (for they had dreams of their own), and asked them, “What shall I do? The giant is breathing fire at me and I haven’t anywhere to turn. I’ve treated my friends and colleagues poorly and no one will rise to defend me. Oh woe!”
TrusTed’s advisors, who had much to lose if TrusTed’s secret were to become public, came up with a plan. One of them knew of a scurrilous villain who dragged with him a soiled and bulging bag of dirty tricks. “That’s it!” cried one of them. “We shall hire this villain to work his black magic, and all will be well again!” So TrusTed hired the disreputable schemer whose name was RutRoe and of whom it is said knew how to handle such things using lies and treachery.
“I am a citizen!” TrusTed continued insisting, knowing in his heart that he was telling a half truth.
“Therefore, I am eligible! I am a citizen!” lied TrusTed, whose claim and reputation depended on his avowed allegiance to the Constitution that he professed to defend and hold high all its principles.
Many of the townspeople repeated his claim. “Baaaa! Baaaa!” they bleated, for they loved TrusTed and believed everything he said. After all, they reasoned, why would a man such as he lie to them? He who spoke so eloquently about God’s word, the Bible and The Constitution, and professed to defend and love both?
“Baaaa! Baaaa!” they bleated to anyone who dared challenge TrusTed. “Baaa, baaaa!”
But the Giant of Orange Hair persisted and soon many townspeople with corrected vision, hearing aids, and little grey cells also began wondering why TrusTed didn’t provide proof that he was one of them.
Day after day, the Giant would bellow, “Show us your proof!” as more and more people agreed, cheering like Trumpets. Until one day, the Giant of Orange Hair won a contest over TrusTed in the town square.
“I will be a better president than TrusTed!” he harrumphed. “I too shall run for the highest post in the land, because I AM a US Citizen, and I speak the truth even though many do not have ears to hear!” the Giant promised.
“Even though many who feed at the public’s trough are afraid of what I shall do when I am King!” he boasted.
TrusTed worried. The townspeople seemed to like the Giant of Orange Hair more than they liked him. TrusTed turned to his hired schemer RutRoe and asked again, “What shall we do?”
The treacherous liar RutRoe said, “Leave it to me, sire. I know what must be done. We shall steal votes from Gentle Doc Who Fixes Children’s Brains, and because of his inherent goodness, will never suspect such foulness. We will take his votes and use them to our advantage.”
“Brilliant!” exclaimed TrusTed, as he gleefully rubbed his hands together.
The following day, RutRoe the Schemer did indeed steal votes from Gentle Doc Who Fixes Children’s Brains. But unbeknownst to RutRoe the Schemer, many of the townspeople saw what happened and reported it to the Giant.
“ROAR!” said the Giant. “You cheat!” he said, pointing an accusing finger at TrusTed. “You are NOT to be trusted!”
And the townspeople Trumpets cheered. But not all. For many still loved TrusTed and believed in all that emanated from his lips.
But they who are with little grey cells would watch closely from then on, watching TrusTed who they knew could not be trusted.
To be continued…