"Alright Rogers, you got the floor."

It's 1969. Mister Rogers (yes, that Mister Rogers) is testifying before Congress. Nixon wants to cut the PBS budget. If he succeeds, the country will save $20 million, but lose the voice of Mister Rogers each day.

The Congress guy (Chairman John Pastore) starts off by saying, in a cynical New York accent, "Alright Rogers, you got the floor."

In less than six minutes, this quiet man from Western Pennsylvania does a masterful job of explaining why what he does is important, and convincing that tough guy to reinstate the budget.

As Mr. Rogers quotes the song (that he wrote) about what to do when you're mad (hint: it's about control and owning your feelings and choices), I couldn't help but think again about what happened in Florida last week. This world really, really misses that quiet voice.

"Alright, you got the floor."

I have "the floor" in my own life. When my words can help, not hurt. Be useful, not flippant. Why can't I try to be more like Mister Rogers? Insecurity, I guess. Cynicism.

God, I need to be.

You have the floor, too. 

Mike Vayda1 Comment