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Happy 100th Birthday to Henry Kissinger (And Some News About Chocolate?)

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

As I sat down to write a tribute to former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who turns 100 this week, I was distracted by "very disturbing" news I will address at the end of this article (it's not about Kissinger).

It would be difficult to find any living American who has had a greater impact on world events over an ever-growing period - stretching decades - than Kissinger.

In my Forrest Gump-like life, I had the high honor of getting to know Dr. Kissinger during the 1990s. After my successful campaign for Congress, I was left with a sizeable campaign debt. Then-Vice President Dan Quayle and Kissinger were the first to call to offer help with retiring that debt. They were each featured speakers at fundraising events. Kissinger and I became friends.

Kissinger repeated his support for my other campaigns as well, including when I ran for the Senate eight years later.

Besides always being able to draw a paying crowd, I learned a great deal from this statesman. As a lover of history, I could sit and listen to Kissinger for hours. Where do you start? The Vietnam War, opening doors to China, former President Richard Nixon's resignation, I could go on.

This week marks the 50th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War and the return of American POWs. We all honor these veterans and others for their sacrifice and courage this Memorial Day weekend.

Kissinger's counsel with Nixon in his latter days in office were pivotal in allowing America to transition smoothly from Nixon to President Gerald Ford. Kissinger was secretary of state to both presidents.

He arranged for doors of trade and diplomacy to mutually open between China and the United States, which was historic as it has truly set the world on a new course involving the new superpower to be, China.

And, as important as the aforementioned achievements, Kissinger shared valuable advice with numerous presidents who sought his counsel. As he turns 100, it gives me immense joy to say happy birthday, Dr. Kissinger.

Wait. I cannot believe what I just heard on the news. Now they have "done did it!" In the past, I have spoken out against what I have deemed errors and bad judgment of the Biden administration. Some of these errors, one could argue, have contributed toward dividing America with the race baiting and constant cries against the so-called "deplorables" or now they are called "the MAGA people" - I lose track. Let us just say "those people," you know, those who would never and have never voted for our current president.

But now the Biden Administration has gone too far. It has attacked chocolate - chocolate milk to be exact. Did President Joe Biden not learn from Oprah Winfrey when she dared to "go after" beef with an off-the-cuff comment on one of her shows? We all know how that ended. Not good.

But chocolate? Full disclosure, I worked for several years for Peter Paul Cadbury, which at the time was part of Cadbury Schweppes (the British would call it a "confectionery" business). In the U.S. it was simply chocolate - like Almond Joy and Mounds. The products are now owned and sold by the Hershey company. Yes, shameless plugs. But I love chocolate.

The Biden administration is planning to eliminate chocolate milk from school meal programs, affecting millions of children. Wait, I thought Democrats were "pro-choice?" Well, I guess that does not apply to children, our future leaders. If this is part of "woke" ideology, please spare me, and put me back to sleep. I am sure there is not an amusement park in the country, even in Florida, which would deprive folks of chocolate milk.

All milk in school should not be just white.

Chocolate lovers must stand up! How about more time in gym class instead, you know, as an offset for the increased calories? I am sure that would make students "upset."


How about this for a compromise? Schools could provide chocolate syrup dispensers. This would give every child the ability to add chocolate to their milk if they so choose. And presto - they could make their own chocolate milk the old fashion way, the way their mom would prepare it in the kitchen. Packaging specialists will have to make room in the milk carton for the chocolate syrup to fit the container. Children will need instructions on how to neatly shake the container to turn the white milk into - yes - chocolate bliss!

Really Mr. Biden? Is this really necessary? Here is a "new" idea. Let us form a commission to study the "elimination of chocolate milk in schools." In the tradition of "commissions," this would allow the current generation of children to outlast any definitive decision on the issue.

Plus, there must be other matters you need to decide on - like the debt ceiling, securing our borders, or maybe the war in Ukraine?

We also know that as long as Biden is in the White House, ice cream of all flavors will be safe. And I am good with that.

But I digress. I meant no disrespect to Dr. Kissinger on his birthday, but I am sure he would understand my outrage.

Enjoy your birthday Dr. Kissinger! You have given us all so much as a 20th and 21st-century American statesman.



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