WASHINGTON—Stressing the numerous benefits of letting bygones be bygones, acting Surgeon General Boris Lushniak announced at a press conference Wednesday his strong recommendation that U.S. citizens patch things up with their father-in-law.

Lushniak, the nation’s top public health official, stated that it was vitally important for Americans to swallow their pride and make a concerted effort to bury the hatchet, addressing the critical need for the U.S. populace to let go of all the resentment and finally move on with their lives, and advising that doing so would be best for all parties involved.

“After carefully evaluating the evidence, we found that the population’s current relationship with their father-in-law is having a serious and negative impact on themselves and the whole family,” said Lushniak, noting that Americans frequently locking horns with their father-in-law has caused a lot of unneeded stress and made holidays and family gatherings practically unbearable. “Therefore, it is the recommendation of the Office of the Surgeon General that you and Kurt wipe the slate clean by implementing the official five-point ‘Put Things In The Past’ initiative.”

“He’s going to be in your life no matter what, so you might as well make the most of it,” Lushniak continued. “Water under the bridge, you know?”

Lushniak, who spent most of the press conference outlining the blueprint for action, said that the first step, “Starting Off On The Right Foot,” would require the American people to pay a one-on-one visit to their father-in-law with a six-pack of Labatt Blue—his favorite beer. The second step, “Meeting Halfway,” health officials confirmed, consists of apologizing for certain things that were said at last year’s Fourth of July barbecue, with Lushniak noting that the American people “know exactly what [they] said” at the gathering.

The third course of action, “Hashing It Out,” necessitates that U.S. citizens calmly voice their own frustrations in a considerate way, pointing out that even though they might not be making the kind of salary Kurt expects, he, more than anyone, should appreciate the sacrifices that have been made to ensure his daughter is comfortable. The surgeon general explained that the fourth step, “Getting Over It,” requires each and every American to discontinue fixating on their father-in-law’s previous derogatory comments about their physical appearance and their habit of taking the family car into the shop when, by Kurt’s estimate, they could perform basic maintenance for a quarter of the cost if they just learned to do it for themselves.

Finally, the fifth measure for developing a healthy relationship, “Biting Your Tongue,” recommends that the U.S. populace avoid uttering any defensive, hostile, or disrespectful remarks, particularly about his tightness with money, which could potentially get on their father-in-law’s nerves.

“To create a healthier nation, Americans must commit to changes that promote the putting aside of differences with their father-in-law in order to deal with this ongoing spat head-on,” said the surgeon general. “Following the effective strategies of the ‘Put Things In The Past’ proposal assures that the nation lays the groundwork for eventually mending fences with Kurt, and maybe even one day getting back to helping him finish the basement like you said you would.”

“Of course, it is the opinion of this office that the challenge will be daunting, especially since both Kurt and the U.S. populace have real short fuses,” Lushniak added.

The surgeon general cautioned that if the American people and their father-in-law failed to reverse the recent trends and continued to be at each other’s throats, then the concurrent epidemics of disrespect and pigheadedness would threaten to further drive a wedge between loved ones. Additionally, Lushniak predicted that if the nation didn’t step up and make things right now, the next decade would be marked by repeated occurrences of storming out of the room, raising voices, and making huge scenes in the middle of crowded restaurants.

Acknowledging it was unrealistic to expect that the American people would see eye-to-eye with their father-in-law on every issue, the surgeon general reminded the 317 million U.S. citizens that they actually had a lot in common with Kurt.

“Extensive research shows that Kurt may be set in his ways and tends to get bent out of shape over trivial matters, but his intentions are good, and it is indisputable that, like the U.S. populace, he deeply loves and cares for Hannah,” said Lushniak, adding that the American people and their father-in-law both continue to play very important roles in Hannah’s life. “But it hurts her to see you guys acting this way. If anything, why not just make amends so that she’ll be happy?”

“And your father-in-law would never admit it, but he wants to bury the hatchet on this one, too,” Lushniak continued. “So, what do you say?”

At press time, the American populace’s father-in-law angrily declared that he had a major bone to pick with the U.S. surgeon general about minding his own goddamn business.