If I had a patron saint —

If I had a patron saint, it would be — that’s not easy to say. My desktop calendar often lists historical events and trivial facts, and the patron saints turn up now and then.

St. Timothy is the protector for those with intestinal ailments. My entire family could fall into that category more often than not.

St. Francis de Sales is the Patron Saint of authors, teachers, and (are you ready for this?) the deaf. Bloggers don’t have a Patron Saint – yet – so I’ll stick to Sales.

Given the current political climate in Wisconsin, the “divide and conquer” philosophy in the Governor’s mansion, I wondered (in my own liberal and ecumenical fashion) – could there be a patron saint of politicians? According to a less than scientific Internet search, I came up with St. Thomas More. Thomas studied law at Oxford and eventually became Lord Chancellor of England. Cool, eh? Sir Thomas More is also known as the patron saint of lawyers. In that vein, we should note that he was tried and convicted of treason and beheaded in July of 1535.

A more complicated search revealed that government workers, those falling victim to the “Divide and Conquer” tactics, have a multitude of patron saints assigned to intercede on their behalf. Behalfs? I was raised Presbyterian; I don’t know the grammar of a patron saint. St. Homobonus, he who looks out for business people, joins St. Thomas More again in a reference to taking care of government employees and civil service workers.

I find it interesting that good ole’ Thomas shares responsibility for both government employees and the politicians who ultimately oversee them. If we Wisconsin workers had to look for divine intervention, St. Thomas More might be too conflicted to help. He wouldn’t know whether to divide or unite, conquer or compromise. Would he carry a protest sign, join the overpass light brigade, or install metal detectors at the Capitol to keep the cowbells out? Would he sign a recall petition, contribute to a campaign, or sponsor a television commercial? And how would someone with these responsibilities ultimately vote?

With so many decisions to make, it’s no wonder Sir Thomas More lost his head.

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