Over the last two weeks, time and again we have heard or read the phrase "...we are taking the high road on this" from leaders of JAFI, JDC and The Federations of North America so often that the organizations they represented kind of bled into each other. (What an idea, huh?) Everybody is on that "high road" which, of course, means only one thing -- ain't no one on the low road. This merely proves, at least to me, that too few know what (or where) the road is.
JDC thinks it "took the high road" by stating its intent to go it alone, to refuse to consummate the agreement it had already reached with JAFI. JAFI "took the no road" by telling The Jewish Federations of North America that the issues with JDC were JFNA's problem. And The Jewish Federations of North America "took the high road" by letting JDC and JAFI know that unless those two organizations reached agreement on how non-designated federation allocations were to be divided, the funds would be distributed to the two partners according to their prior agreement.
So here's how I see it: JDC -- "low road"; JAFI -- "no road"; and The Jewish Feds of N.A. -- "really high road." And the issues raised by JDC -- ignored. Of course, the facts suggest that the JAFI/JDC contract issue could have and should have been resolved many months ago when the parties first reached agreement. Then, the parties themselves had reached agreement on every issue in an agreement with a five year term. On their review, what I have heard was that a single major federation objected to the length of the agreement -- thought a five year term agreed to by the affected parties too long. And from there...we are here. Why did that single federation substitute its judgment for the parties? We will probably never know. I'll speculate that it was purely a power play, an act of hubris. Probably believe that they (or was it just "he"?) were "taking the high road." Doesn't everyone?
And, then there is the road least taken -- the road that one takes a chance on in order to succeed. The one that requires risk but offers the potential for incredible rewards. Who is taking that one?
And, from there, we are here. To the high road, to the low road, to the no road. I think it was my philosopher-in-chief, Yogi Berra, who observed "if you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there." Wanna bet?