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Lions Roar : September 2007
SHAMBHALA SUN SEPTEMBER 2007 28 politics—to try to lift the standards and reality of life. In The Third Freedom, your 2001 book about hunger, you call for America to take the lead in ending hunger worldwide. In what other ways should America interact with the world? As the Constitution refers to it, and the Declaration of Inde- pendence, we ought to have a decent respect for the opinions of mankind. In the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson wrote of “a decent respect to the opinions of mankind.” We’ve lost sight of that. We just don’t seem to give a damn what the rest of the world thinks. What can the next president do to improve America’s reputation around the world? Obey the Constitution. That’s the only pledge that you take when you enter high office. You don’t swear to uphold your platform. Most people hope you won’t [chuckles]. What they want is for you to uphold the Constitution of the United States. The day we do that we will have a better country, and we will once again become admired by every country in the world. Right now we are one of the least-admired countries, and it’s because of the bad leadership and bad values of this present administration. At a partisan political level we see change taking place, with the Democrats taking both houses of Congress. Do you sense a parallel change in American society as a whole? I think change is coming. It is taking longer than I had hoped for, but I do think that more Americans realize now than was the case a few years ago that we are on the wrong track. There has to be a more humane and compassionate approach to pub- lic problems. What gives you hope that change is coming? Isaac Newton’s third law, which teaches us that to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. We have now swung so far to the right, that if Isaac Newton is correct, it’s going to trigger an equal and opposite reaction. I’m counting on science not deserting us at this crucial time. Your wife, Eleanor, died recently. May I ask how her death has affected your view of life? She was a wonderful person. I consider myself the luckiest human being on the face of the earth because I had this wonderful woman in my life for sixty-five years—two years as a girlfriend and sixty- three years as my wife. So I don’t go around depressed or weeping; I’m just grateful for my good fortune. And it makes me treasure all the more the relationships with my daughters and my son. I’m giving a little more time to the family, including all the grandchil- dren, than I did before. ♦ www.hayhouse.com® Paartttneerrshhippp See Gary Zukav and Linda Francis LIVE! TOUR SEPT 18-35.indd 28 SEPT 18-35.indd 28 6/25/07 4:47:31 PM 6/25/07 4:47:31 PM