Horton Hears a Ghost

“Would you read a Dr. Seuss story to start off our vacation bible school this year?”
“Sure. Tell me when and where.”

It started off innocently enough. Nine o’clock on a weekday would not cost me much time and I liked reading to children.

The time came. The timing was unbelievably bad. There had to be at least sixty of them sitting in the pews.  I was glad that there were two teachers with copies of the book, showing the pictures while I read.

I could not believe that he was dead.  He deserved to be dead. Many deserve to be dead.  All will be dead in time. Should we not wait for God’s time?

“And then Horton heard a who.” I was maintaining eye contact and articulating clearly to help keep the children’s attention. It was also one of my favorite childhood stories. I wished that I could concentrate better.

He had been dead for only an hour.  Gone from this world. Good riddance.  It was by my hand as much as anybody's.

“A person’s a person, no matter how small.” Horton was maintaining his defense of the tiny speck of dust containing the whole Who city. The children were chiming in with “A person’s a person, no matter how small.”

He was the smallest person I had ever had to think about. Anyone who would kill almost two hundred people in order to protest violating peoples rights had to small, and sick, very, sick.  He wasn’t sick now.  He was dead.

Horton’s case was being heard before a court of animals that believed that he was crazy. If they could not hear the Who’s, the dust speck would be destroyed. They would all die if the entire Who town did not make a loud enough noise.

 What if I had made noise? Did I write my congressman on this one?  No I didn’t. “Out of the night that covers me, black is the pit from pole to pole.” The arrogant little shit had recited Invictus.  

“A person’s a person, no matter how small,” they all chimed in.  The mayor found one last little Who child that was not making noise and had gotten him to help. The entire group of animals heard the Who’s.  Horton was a hero.  The Who’s were saved

All I could think of was that there was no one smaller than Timothy McVeigh. “A person’s a person no matter how small,” over and over again in my head, unending.
“Let’s thank Mr. Bratton for reading us this story,” Cheers, applause, smiles. I was smiling.  I was also crying.  I was never so glad to leave anywhere in my life.  “A person’s a person, no matter how small.”