Letters to the Editor

Experiment shows why Congress needs replacing

Start with a cage containing five monkeys. Hang a banana on a string. Place stairs under the banana. Soon a monkey will try to get the banana.

As soon as the monkey touches the stairs, spray the other monkeys with cold water. After a while, another monkey makes an attempt, with the same result. Soon, when a monkey tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will try to prevent it.

Now, put the water away.

Substitute one monkey from the cage with a new monkey. This monkey sees the banana and attempts to climb the stairs. To his shock, all of the other monkeys beat the devil out of him. After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs, he will be assaulted.

Remove another of the original five monkeys, replacing it with a new one. It goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer participates with enthusiasm because he is now part of the "team."

Replace a third original monkey with a new one, then a fourth, then a fifth. Every time the newest monkey takes to the stairs, he is attacked.

Having replaced the original monkeys, none of the remaining monkeys has been sprayed, but none will climb the stairs or understand why they are beating up the newest monkeys. Why? Because in their minds, it's always been that way.

This is how Congress operates and why, from time to time, all the monkeys must be replaced at the same time.

Earle Everett

Hilton Head Island