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In the Parliamentary system of government, there are coalitions, parties in which even rival groups find some areas of agreement. However, in America, an alliance between our political parties now seems to be a foreign concept.

My suggestion for a VEGGIE party has been criticized by a rival party, sometimes called the BEEGOOD party, which has proposed a compromise. In my zeal, I seem to have overlooked the contribution that bees, particularly honeybees, make to all flowering vegetables. My critics point out that “without bees, Veggies don’t have a chance,” although this seems somewhat overstated. Some vegetables, like people, never blossom and spend a good part of their life underground. They don’t need bees and are happy with worms.

Nevertheless, based upon my opposing party’s contention that “The world has not been kind to bees,” I called a virtual meeting (via both Boom and Scrape) with some of the most prominent vegetables of the world: Cabbage Head, Carrot Top, and Bean Pole.

I asked them how they felt about another political party—one that featured bees—sharing our platform and plank. Should Vegecrats, as we are sometimes called, oppose the BeeGood party, even if we had not always been satisfactorily pollinated by them? Our discussion, as you shall see, eventually led to suggestions of a compromise and, perhaps, coalition.

Mr. Cabbage Head was somewhat worried about bees. “They buzz our patch regularly and have been known to sting our raw offspring—get rid of them.” Mr. Carrot Top was a little more condescending: “We could see some real benefit of bees, although they seldom stop long enough to enjoy our sucrose and glucose.” Mr. Bean Pole was the most inviting: “We have had insects harm us for a long time, but honeybees are different—thy hum tunes and transfer our pollen—there should be no stigma attached to befriending a bee.”

I was unsure of what to do next but, fortunately, my friend Mr. Maybee, as spokesbee for his party came up with an idea, one now seldom discussed amongst ruling political parties. His suggestion: “Why don’t we compromise, form a joint party, something like a BEE-VEGGIE party?” I again consulted my top veggies again to see what they thought of the idea.

“Not unless we call it VEGGIE-BEE,” said Mr Cabbage Head. “We were here first. Nobody wants to be last, or even second.” I didn’t want to argue so again went to Mr Carrot Top. He had a bee in his bonnet and was worried about the Queen bee. “I have been told,” he said, “that she just lies around and has thousands of drones—slave bees—working for her.” Last of all, I turned to Mr. Bean Pole for his take on the matter. “I think I like the idea. My wife calls me ‘honey’ and that seems to show respect and suggests that we should be as busy as the bees.”

So, Mr. Maybee, it looks like there is the possibility of a coalition and that we can buzz along with the idea. However, we will need to put the bite or sting on someone if we are going to raise money for the adventure. However, based on your experience, you may know just the right honey trap we need.

You have suggested a beehive for the party headquarters and with these promises:

1. Every pollinating bee will wear a bonnet with the inscription “Make honey sweet again,” surrounded by sweet pea images

2. Every bee with stripes will not assault vegetables--three stripes, and they are out

3. Not to allow formerly incarcerated bumblebees and honeybees to pollinate small vegetables, like radishes and pickles

4. To pollinate pumpkins, squash, and gourds, even if they smell bad

5. That no bee will sit on a flower for more than 30 seconds

6. The utmost care in pollinating lettuce, cabbage, and other leafy vegetables

7. The Queen will occasionally leave her Brood box and visit flowering vegetables

8. Debris on the bottom of the hive will be used for compost

9. All honeycombs will be regularly waxed

With those promises in mind, I again consulted the Inner Ring of vegetables, this time including Ms. Onion.

Mr. Cabbage Head was agreeable, with certain conditions, particularly that no stingers be left behind. Mr. Carrot Top was less worried, noting that bees love orange and that his brood might benefit from visits. Mr. Bean Pole was excited about the possibility of regular visits. Some of its flowers have never been pollinated in the past because of their height. With bees that can fly to the top of the poles, he thought that they would have bumper crops of beans. Ms. Onion was somewhat ecstatic, allowing that the compromise proposal would be appealing to other vegetables, causing them to shed tears of joy.

It seems like the possibility of a compromise and coalition is off to a flying start. Nevertheless, the exact name is yet to be determined.

In the meantime, float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.

The VEGGIE-BEE (aka BEE-VEGGIE) coalition committee


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