I am sure that many readers are familiar with the story “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” by Hans Christian Andersen (1805-75, Denmark), but I will still give a brief summary of the tale: Two weavers promise “a vain emperor who cares about nothing except wearing and displaying clothes” that they will weave a suit of clothes for him that is “invisible to those who are unfit for their positions, stupid or incompetent.

The emperor’s subjects are therefore afraid to say that the emperor is actually not wearing any clothes when he parades in front of them. Only a child – innocent, untainted – cries out and declares that the emperor is not wearing anything.

During several discussions about the negative/unsettling/threatening statements and actions (drama) of the current U.S.A. President/Cabinet members/political parties/citizens and the ongoing follow-up to gloss-over/cover-up/retract/deny the U.S.A. drama, one person suggested that this drama was similar to the pretense/allegations/lies/denials that take place in “The Emperor’s New Clothes.”

Another person had a much darker, more macabre analogy of the U.S.A. drama and its follow-up, saying that the continued citizen support and approval of the U.S.A. drama-and-follow-up reminded her of the Jim Jones (James Warren Jones, 1931-78; American; founder and leader of the People’s Temple cult) massacre, in which people unwittingly or wittingly drank poison in deference to cultist Jim Jones, whom they perceived as a messiah and whose rationale for suicide they accepted.

My stomach dropped.

As scary as our current U.S.A. political situation may be or threatens to be, I certainly do not want to think that it will drive people to the Jim-Jones type of self-destruction.

We can only try to do what the Reverend Jesse Jackson (b., 1941; African American; Baptist minister; civil rights and political activist) has said, “Keep hope alive.”