Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Prophetetic Andy Griffith Show

It was just before my first Birthday in November of 1961 when "Opie's Hobo Friend" aired on The Andy Griffith Show. Watching this clip gives us a glimpse back into a time when people not only knew the difference between right and wrong, but understood the importance of keeping those two separated and straight in their own thinking, and the thinking of their children. Who would have thought then that the Hobo's relativistic worldview, as depicted in this clip, would be mainstream in just a few short years?

To set it up, Opie had made friends with a Hobo named Mr. Dave (Buddy Ebsen) who was a petty thief and was teaching Opie the tricks of his trade. A fishing lure symbolizing the hooks that hide in the otherwise glittery temptations of life had been given to Opie as a gift by the Hobo. Through Opie's description of his lunch with Mr. Dave, Andy had determined that he was the thief of a missing pie and a roasting chicken. Andy headed down to the railroad yard to send Mr. Dave packing.

I have transcribed here the meat of their conversation. The video is below.


"Well there seems to be something wrong with his thinking. He’s gotten a little twisted on things lately, like being able to tell the difference between right and wrong. Not that that’s an easy thing; lot of grown ups still struggling with that same problem, but its especially difficult for a youngster, because things rub off on em so easy."

Mr Dave

"Well Sheriff, maybe I do look at things differently than other people; is that wrong? I live by my wits, I’m not above bending the law now and then… to keep clothes on my back, or food in my stomach… I live the kind of life that other people would just love to live if they only had the courage. Who’s to say that the boy would be happier your way or mine? Why not let him decide?"


No I’m afraid it don’t work that way. You can’t let a youngun decide for himself; he’ll grab at the first flashy thing with shinny ribbons on it. Then when he finds out there’s a hook in it it’s too late. Wrong ideas come packaged with so much glitter it’s hard to convince them that other things might be better in the long run. All a parent can do is say wait, trust me, and try and keep temptation away.


Kristi said...

Oh, how I love Andy Griffith. Simpler times, people with morals...

Stan said...

Look how far we've come! Ah, progress.

Elizabeth said...

We love Andy Griffith! This is a great episode. Way too many parents think that a child should "choose for himself."

Anonymous said...

I thank the Lord for men like Andy Griffith (and there were many in T.V. at one time)who did things like this to entertain, but in a way that taught adults and children what it means to be human, in the best sense of the word.

Kathy said...

It's amazing how the depth and simplicty of the truth is so much clearer just seeing the printed word. All the fluff, and feeling sorry for the guy bumming off every one is somewhat gone, because we're simply looking at the words.....the ones that do and don't hold water.

Christinewjc said...

The good ole' days when T.V. shows portrayed the morals and values that God would have us follow.

Today's culture never talks about sin and temptation as being wrong.

The youth of today could learn a thing or two from watching re-runs of this show!

Mark said...

Then there's the other lesson to be learned:

Justice tempered with mercy.

A lesson straight from God.

Dan said...


Thanks for dropping by. Justice tempered with mercy, Thank God for both.