Thursday, May 31, 2018

Samantha Bee demonstrates why all the Left's bellyaching about Trump's behavior tends to fall on deaf ears

Here.  It's the usual type of discourse we've heard from the Left for decades.  She called Trump's daughter a Feckless C[whoops]t in response to a picture of Ivanka and her toddler.  Of course the appeal will be that Bee's ostensibly a woman and can call a woman who dares blaspheme the political Left anything she wants, just as women who dare stray from the Left are often called stupid, whores and losers, among other things.

Of course men can call a woman who dares blaspheme the political Left anything they want.  Just like we can call blacks, Hispanics, Jews, Muslims or any other minorities who dare blaspheme the political Left anything we want.  As long as it is in service to the political Left, it matters not.  Not only will you get a pass, there's a good chance you'll be high-fived, invited to the best parties, and receive all manner of awards and accolades!

Again, my boys said it best when listening to the Left - the Left! - cry and whine about Trump's vulgarities, insults and rank and disgusting behavior:  It's like a nation of football fans who hate rugby for being such a violent sport.  Truly history has seen few more obvious examples of rank hypocrisy than in the machinations of the modern Left.

Why was Trump elected?  Because enough Americans were tired of the Left's little game of 'We'll only play Monopoly if we start the game with all the properties, all the money and all the hotels!'  There comes a time when enough is enough.

UPDATE:  It appears Ms. Bee has apologized, as damn well she should.  That she still has a show just demonstrates the lack of consistency and common values we have as a society.  Apparently there was backlash, and there should have been.  But her show is still on the air, and she will continue.  A country without a common set of values, but one that changes values to fit the situation, will ultimately have a difficult time insisting people follow a certain set of values.  Nonetheless, Ms. Bee apologized, did the right thing in doing so, and that's that. I leave this post up as an example to compare and contrast other times in the past and future when things are said that shouldn't be.

Good news

An elderly woman is struggling to get up a flight of stairs.  A young boy of eight years old jumps out to help.   It shouldn't be news.  To be honest, it really isn't.  This sort of thing happens all the time.  We're just conditioned to forget that as we're pitted against each other by our media and societal elites.  Always remember that, in the real world, this is what people do more often than what we see in our media on a day to day basis.

Hat tip to the young man.  The hug at the end of the clip is golden. 

Don't blame Trump for Roseanne's Tweet

Please.  Just stop.  Stop with this whole 'Trump made our society vulgar and rude, sexist and bigoted.'   Here, here and here.  To name just a few.

The Democrats, in bed with the press and Hollywood, played the Good Cop/Bad Cop for decades.  Let the comedians, entertainers and pundits crawl in the dirt and get rude, vulgar - heck even racist and sexist.   Drop all the F-Bombs, genital humor, vulgarities, racist and sexist insults you can muster, while we take the high road!  The Democrats, while willing to socialize and high-five those bastions of bathroom humor and bigotry, nonetheless took the high road under that classic proverb 'the buck never got here.'

That's why so many went ahead and voted for Trump.  Trump was nothing other than our society had become.  There is nothing Trump has done or said that we hadn't heard cheered on and laughed about for years.  The idea that it's only wrong when it doesn't benefit liberalism is something many felt had passed its sell by date. So they voted for a man who was as bad as the worst that was thrown at them for decades.  If conservatives weren't better than Jesus, the press would rip into them and tear them to pieces.   But the Good Cop/Bad Cop and 'here today, gone later today' approach of the Left allowed anything and everything to be said against those who don't conform to the Left, no matter how rude, vulgar and even bigoted.

I'm not saying I agree with the decision to fight fire with fire. To me, the only thing that happens there is that we all get burned.  Nonetheless, please stop with the stupid, lying, wrong, false, unreal fantasy world in which America was a nation of polite and mature discourse until Donald Trump made everything bad.  For better or worse, Trump merely caught up with what modern liberal America had declared hilariously appropriate for decades.  He just aimed it back at the Left and its defenders - hence the outrage.

Immigration policies and abortion are not the same

My thoughts on immigration aren't at the forefront of my priority list since I don't live along the borders and am not directly impacted.  Years ago, liberal Democrats were all about controlling legal immigration and curbing illegal immigration.  That was back when I identified as a liberal, if not a Democrat.  Seemed logical to me.

That's changed of course.  Somewhere, in the early 00s, suddenly the Democrats became the party of open borders in all but name, the Catholic Church either paved the way or jumped on board, and that's been the only acceptable approach ever since.  To oppose their particular policies and approaches meant you were nothing but racist or hated babies from other countries or whatever.

Now, on the whole, my thoughts are pretty simple.  Fix the immigration laws so that people can obey them easier than they can nowadays.  Even if our country is pretty open compared to many, there is always room for improvement.  Meantime, do our best to accommodate and help those who have come here by divers and sundry means, but don't say the law doesn't apply based on your skin color or national origins.  Likewise, if concerns about children are brought up, make sure we care about the least of these coming into our lands, as well as the least of these currently in our lands.  That was one reason why the Democrats used to be so tough on illegal immigration, because of the strain it put on our ability to help our own 'least of these'.  As far as I know, we still have our own least of these, and attempts to dismiss or downplay their concerns are no better than pulling a child from a parent and hauling him back home.

In a nutshell, the best immigration policy makes sure we don't rob Peter to pay Paul, that we take into account those on both sides of the border, and we ensure that we're not laying the groundwork for future problems by suggesting that laws no longer matter, based on what you look like or where you're from.

Given the tenor of the debate over the last 15 years or so, I must admit that most seem to have failed on these simplest of standards.  Oh, they'll insist they care about everyone or whatnot.  But taken as a whole, you'd be hard pressed to believe it - and that includes both sides, not just the side that can go too far with telling people to stay out of our country no matter what.

One more thing.  I write all this because I notice as many Christians on the Left come out into the sunshine to deal with the Ireland vote, some are appealing to immigration in a sort of 'Gotcha!' way.  How can you possibly be pro-life and allow this to happen!   Care for the least of these  (on both sides of the borders) is, of course, the Christian way.  But there can be disagreements as to how we achieve this.  Neither side may be altogether correct, or perhaps there is a third option that hasn't been thought of.  But whatever, your belief in which political policy approach is best is not - repeat, NOT - equal to aborting the unborn.  That is an intrinsic evil.  You cannot excuse it, allow it, defend it, or downplay it.  It is a sin that cries out to heaven for vengeance.

Yes, if people want the young and helpless among immigrants to suffer and die, that too is a sin that cries out to heaven for vengeance.  Likewise, if people say they don't give a damn if Americans or their kids suffer since they have no right to complain, that too would be a sin that cries out to heaven for vengeance.

But between those extremes can be honest disagreements over how to achieve the best for the most people.  Between those two extremes is where good Christians in good faith can come together and discuss possible solutions.  There is no good faith disagreement over allowing babies to be aborted.  So don't compare the two.  Keep the two separate, and don't try to wiggle a decidedly political, and perhaps flawed, solution to the immigration problem onto the same tier as abortion.  That misuses doctrine and makes a mockery of the slaughter of the innocent that is abortion, as well as setting up for future problems if all of your polices are followed, and yet the least of these continue to suffer on one side of the border or the other.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

This is no galaxy for white men

So the Solo Star Wars movie didn't do as well as Disney hoped.  The reviews are so-so.  Despite making a zillion dollars, many are calling it a flop.  Go figure.

Of course theories abound as to why it under-performed, not the least of which was what I heard leading up to the movie: the actor didn't look like Harrison Ford, act like Harrison Ford, or in any way appear to be what would eventually become Harrison Ford.  Plus, as with all 'prequels', you know how it ends.  Unless the producers decided to go crazy and kill off the lead character, you know where the story ultimately goes.

Nonetheless, there is a disturbing undercurrent, talked about here at Forbes, but also in other outlets, that suggest the big problem with the movie was that it was too white, and too male.  The time of white men being in the driver's seat?  Over.  The time in which white men can be anything other than a sidekick or comedy relief at best?  Over.   It's time for anyone to be at the head of a blockbuster, as long as they aren't white, and/or aren't men.

Imagine saying that about, well, anyone but white men.  Imagine saying 'problem with this movie is it was too black', or 'problem was women.'  When the dismal remake of Ghostbusters bombed, feminists screamed sexism.  Even though most critics insisted it had nothing to do with replacing the originals with an all female cast, charges flew that the negative reviews were all because the movie going audience hates women.  So imagine someone saying the problem was 'too many women' and think of what the reaction would have been!

This is why Jordan Peterson is popular.  He actually tells men - even white ones - that they don't deserve to be thrown on the ground, kicked, beaten, mocked, dismissed, spat upon and told they can roll up in a big ball and die.  Unfortunately, he is a small voice crying in a big wilderness.  Right now, it's enough that trashing people who have white skin and certain genitalia will get you invited to the best parties, get you the highest accolades from our fine institutions of higher learning, and of course get you wining and dining with all the cultural elites.  Just like trashing people with different skin color or ethnic backgrounds or gender would have gotten you the same generations ago.

There truly is nothing new under the sun.  The only thing that's worth watching is how many believers will jump up and join the latest march into Hell.

What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun. 
                                      Ecclesiastes 1.9

Rosanne got what she had coming

There has been much scuttlebutt about people getting canned here lately, often for doing nothing other than having an opinion.  Now, I'm the first to say that the modern witch hunt, whereby we dig up the past, looking for any scrap with which we can destroy a person, is getting a bit creepy.  We're talking serious Salem vibes here.  Also the notion that we can hunt down someone's private contributions to a cause, or find some personal or internal memo sent to individuals and have them fired for wrong think is, IMHO, a little too Orwellian for my tastes.

Still, I do think companies have the right to protect their brand.  I find nothing at all wrong with the NFL telling its players not to walk out and flip the bird to millions of its paying customers.  Likewise, I have no problem with ABC canning the Rosanne thing because of her utterly tasteless and racist tweet.  Not only does it breech what I consider acceptable standards, but by my thinking, it was purposefully race baiting, almost as if Rosanne was saying 'This is the type of fan I have now!'.

Nope.  Her contempt for her fanbase, that she thinks this is the type of humor they would appreciate, is enough for me to say sayonara.  I never cared for her first show, and I wasn't going to waste my time with this one.  But beyond my opinion, an employer has a right to police its public image, as I've been told time and again by individuals who support a company's right to insist its employees cannot speak out against things like abortion rights or gay marriage.  Fair is fair.  Consistency is consistency, and all that jazz.

The Handmaid's Joke

Made funnier by the author of that silly thing.  When thinking of the threats to women - who are quickly overtaking men in a growing number of areas in modern life - the person we need to worry about is?  Guess.  Mike Pence!

Mike Pence?  As one liberal pro-feminist man after another is accused of assault and sexual harassment, we need to worry about Mister 'Treat Women with old-fashioned dignity and grace' Pence?  The Handmaid's Tale is leftist feminist dribble; a dystopian warning against a world in which women aren't the dominant force, putting their desires above all other considerations, and holding the very definition of life and death in their hands as they see fit.  Men to grovel and debase themselves accordingly.

The Dying West is, of course, dying.  That's why it's called the Dying West.  Equality for women was always a noble goal.  But it has been corrupted and perverted, as have so many contributions that the West brought to the table.

As the West dies, I wonder how many other civilizations will decide to jettison everything the West brought to the world - including notions of equality, liberty, Democracy and freedom.  After all, as the West goes out and shoots itself in the head, those civilizations could be forgiven for not distinguishing between the more noble contributions of the West, and the ghastly perversions and insanity that came to infect them.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

The right way to honor the country

Courtesy of a high school softball game in Fresno.  Donald McClarey has the lowdown.  That's the way we do it. There is a movement that would have America be gone.  Resist by insisting the old America was the good America - for all its woes and failures - and we're not about to throw the baby out with the bathwater.  It might only be the National Anthem, but it speaks volumes.

The wrong way, of course, is demonstrated by Mark Shea, who uses the opportunity of Memorial Day to score points against what he calls the Alt Right  (not, it should be noted, including the Alt-Left).  Mark now openly admits he will vote for and support the pro-abortion/assisted suicide/gay marriage/embryonic stem cell research/compromise religious liberty for contraception/punish those Christians who dissent from liberalism party.  But apparently it only jeopardizes one's salvation when you support a party that advocates intrinsic evils when it isn't the Democratic Party.

In following this course, Mark embraces the same attitude hoisted by the modern Left, and demonstrated by those like Colin Kaepernick,   There is no such thing as Our country, there sure as hell is no such thing as Your evil country, there's only My country when it finally lives up to my lofty standards.  The way we tell the difference is not over religious or ethnic or national origin, but over failure to conform to a particular political-social agenda.

Sorry, I'll take the Fresno model.  That way I don't have to be perfect to justify the demands for perfection that I put on my own nation.  I simply join hands with fellow Americans and work to love our country, though we might disagree on different issues - even passionately.  Democrats, liberals, atheists - this is our country.  And as long as they don't seek to divide and destroy the nation that gave us the right to rise up and protest, I'll be happy to find common cause with all who seek to build our nation and not tear it down.  And that, Charlie Brown, is what National Anthems are for.

Don't ever trust liberalism

Ever.  So it turns out one of the most respected, admired, beloved and celebrated actors of the modern era - Morgan Freeman - has fallen to the Handmaid's Inquisition.  At a time when women are overtaking men in almost every category, never have they presented themselves more strongly as hapless victims whose accusation is law, sentencing to commence immediately.

If the story is accurate, Mr. Freeman is guilty of doing - what everyone was doing decades ago, complements of liberalism's bold tearing down of old, stale puritanical notions of sex.  It was grab and grope everyone!  Girls, too.  I remember a female student my freshman year of college who had this serious fetish for running around and grabbing guys in the back of their fronts.  That doesn't count what I heard girls and women talk about over the years in ways that would make George Carlin blush.  It was the thing.  No respect, no rules, no manners.  Those are for losers.  We're about the drugs, the sex, the parties, the groping, the porn, the jokes, the humor, the orgies - anything we wanted.

Well, that was so yesterday's liberalism.  Just like women accusing men of sexual harassment were heroic victims, or lying whores and trailer park trash, or heroic victims again.  You just can't keep up with liberalism.  As I've said before, liberalism has a definite 'here today, gone later today' approach to almost every ethic or moral standard.  Conform to it at your own risk.  Tomorrow, you might be the next target of the liberal witch hunt.  Not because you didn't follow liberalism's latest enlightened principles, but because you did follow them.

The Irish Abortion vote and the New Pro-Life Movement's Awful silence

Yes, it's true.  The primary job of the Christian New Prolife Movement is to run right tackle for the Left's vaunted Culture of Death.  The Left, in desperation after a series of political setbacks, has kicked its push for state mandated extermination and euthanasia, along with late term abortion, post-term abortion, and a suicide culture, into high gear.  In addition to sifting through those faithful who might not be fully committed to the cause, it continues to maintain that promise that human life is only sacred when convenient for me.

The New Pro-Life Movement, which is merely a euphemism for Christians committed to the Political Left, is in a bind.  New Pro-Life Christians are not liberal Christians.  Liberal Christians were never hard to recognize.  Doggedly devoted to following the myth of infallible progress, wherever the secular Left went, liberal Christians were sure to tag along. If it meant denying the divinity of Christ, the Holy Trinity, the Incarnation, the Resurrection, the existence of a personal God - it mattered not.  Christian liberalism would jettison anything it took in order to keep up with the Jones's latest.

But New Pro-Life Christians are often doctrinally traditional, sometimes from the evaporating Christian conservatism, sometimes they are simply those who wish to avoid the Religious Right.  They confess a bodily Resurrection, believe in the Trinitarian God, and if Catholic, the Real Presence.  They officially reject gay marriage, abortion, assisted suicide, and of course anything that denies the belief in God as revealed by Jesus Christ.

And yet, they have aligned with a movement founded on the idea that religion is above all things inspired, not revealed.  That is, religion is mostly - if not entirely - an invention of human imagination.  If God exists at all, it's nothing but an abstract concept by which we measure our pain (St. John Lennon 3:16).  The majority of stories, doctrines, teachings are nothing but human constructs.

From there, that movement reduces humans to their lowest animal denominator.  It dangles promises of hedonism, narcissism, debauchery and decadence in return for enslavement to those who have deemed themselves worthy of controlling our lives.  It assures us that it will use the crushing gauntlet of the government to eradicate them - whoever them is - but never us.  It gave us trophies when we lost and let us retake exams until we passed because we're awesome.  It will never be us.  We're awesome and we come first.  And it does all this while promoting heresies, allowing blasphemies, and legalizing sins that cry out to heaven for vengeance.

This is the side that the New Prolife Movement has chosen to ally with.  Because, unlike liberal Christians, they still hold against many things advocated by this partner in crime, they do the only thing they can do - and that's ignore.  Sometimes it's deflection.  Sometimes attack.  Not attack those on their own team advocating the evils, but attack those who refuse to join the team.  But never will they make opposition to the cherished sins of the Left their main focus.  That is why abortion now barely ranks as an issue worth mentioning much, if it's mentioned at all.

NOTE: I have no links, because I have found no proud 'New Prolife Movement' advocates who have mentioned the vote.  I'm sure they're out there, but the ones I'm aware of have been, as I said, awfully silent.

UPDATEMark Shea has jumped on board with a typical post-war liberal interpretation of the Irish Vote.  The abortion vote happened because socioeconomic forces made it possible for women to have no other choice but use what little power they had to attack the weakest of those that the socioeconomic forces of Ireland had deemed unworthy.   In Mark's, as in the modern Left's, appraisal, it is all about the Bourgeoisie vs. the Proletariat.  Those can be different groups of course: native born vs. immigrants, white vs. black, gay vs. straight, religious vs. secular, right vs. left, red vs. blue, male vs. female, young vs. old, rich vs. poor and on and on.  But the important thing is that it is always about one group giving another group no choice but to do what the Church calls sin.  That group must then, logically, be eliminated.

Ireland's vote, in Mark's appraisal, has nothing to do with it abandoning the Gospel for the gospel of the Secular Left (which is has done).  No, it's the economy stupid.  And in this case, Ireland did the right thing by ending laws that discriminated against women (whatever they were), while not doing the same for the children.  Women being victimized by whatever Bourgeois forces were out there then did the logical, albeit sad, thing and turned to aborting those even weaker than them. 

This is how Marxism, not how Christianity, appraises the sins that cry out to heaven for vengeance.  In the modern Left, heavily Marxist influenced, there is no sin, only corrupt and unjust systems and oppressors who force people into unfortunate positions of breaking laws imposed upon them by the wealthy and the powerful.  While the Scriptural witness was never kind to those who wielded the power and wealth, it never let those off the hook who nonetheless had nothing yet turned their backs on God. 

Yes, Mark mentions that the Gospel could have helped, but it was the priest abuse scandal and corruption that made it difficult for the good people of Ireland to find the Gospel.  Nonetheless, that Gospel sounds awfully dependent, not on the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and the guidance of the Church toward all Truth, as much as dependent on popular economic and political policies as enunciated by the modern Left.  I'm afraid that won't help, since it's the purveyors of those same policies who also insist that religion is fraud, humans are animals, and only our narcissism and hedonism matter.  Per my friends from Ireland, it's a message that the good people of Ireland have been following for many years now.  Long before there was a Trump or a neo-conservative movement.  This is merely the same logical step that has been taken by other formerly Christian societies who have embraced the doctrine of the Left, rather than the doctrine of the Least of These.

Our children are our future

Teach them well and let them lead the way.

The Left has done it.  Seizing educational establishments, the press and the entertainment industries, it is free to convince 66% of the population that squares are, and always have been, round.

The earlier in life, of course, the better.  So a nine year old drag queen is all the rage.  Children as laboratory rats for the latest Leftist social experiment is only made better when we can hit them early and hit them hard.  The earlier, the better.  Eventually we'll get those five and even four year olds to hit the runway in drag.  For now, nine years old will do it.

Monday, May 28, 2018

A Memorial Day Reflection

From the first settlers and immigrants who had to fight and die to lay the bedrock for what would be our nation, to those over the last couple centuries who have died in service to this fledgling experiment, Memorial Day is their day.  It is the day we set aside to somberly reflect on those who paid the ultimate price so that we could enjoy more freedom, more prosperity, more opportunities to give to others out of our own abundance, and more chances to look at people based only on character, not by accident of birth, than any other in history - present day included. 

But we're not here by accident, luck, or blind coincidence.  Yes, we might be heading toward becoming the latest in a long line of harlots of Babylon.  But right now, and for our history, as flawed as it could be, we were always striving for the best, and doing so because of those willing to go out and give their lives so the rest of us could continue forward.

On this Memorial Day, reading this piece by Robert O'Neill, might be worth the time.  He reminds us that Memorial Day is not just the next great shopping day that kicks off Summer. Rather, it is a time to stop the cookouts, the races, the games, the get togethers, and think of those who are no longer able to do such things.  Not because they were victims of circumstance, but because they chose to go into harm's way.

At such times, turning to God and thanking Him for the abundant blessings we've been given, and those who died so that we might make the best use of them, is the appropriate thing to do.  When I think of those who died, or those who served so that I might be free, I can't help but imagine they are better than me.  Nonetheless, by God's grace, I might be able to keep the torch handed to me in such a way that future generations will know at least what I've known of the blessings that come from being an American. 

Friday, May 25, 2018

Memorial Day

In it all, we try to remember what memorial day is for.  Being from a family of veterans, with every major conflict of the 20th century well represented, we keep in mind the meaning behind this weekend.  For all the fun and frivolity we're hoping for, we will always take a bit of time to visit those who gave that last full measure of devotion.  After all, it is their sacrifice that allows us to spend time with silly pursuits, family pursuits and even serious pursuits.

As I said, this will promise to be fun since the three older boys managed (somehow) to get the weekend off - including Memorial Day proper.  So I will probably not be back until next week.  Tuesday at earliest.  At that point we plunge forward, grading papers, submitting paperwork, and getting ready for our third graduation.  Since it's homeschool, it's a family affair.  But it is also through a private school for an actual accredited diploma, so we have to abide by their requirements as well.

So between now and the next couple weeks, it will be hit and a miss.  But this weekend it will be a miss as we seek to pay our respects, reflect, and answer compelling questions, such as will I finally get to watch the classic movie Sergeant York?  What other traditional movies will we be able to fit in?  What will Napoleon do on the Rhine?  Is US mechanized infantry enough against a German panzer company?  Will the weather hold out for some hiking and grilling?  Will we finally be able to make our spareribs as tender as they are in restaurants?  Will my new organizational system in the kitchen survive its first big test?

All of these and more should be answered by next week.  In the meantime, praise God for the county we've been born into - the greatest political experiment in history.  Spend time with those who matter.  Enjoy the festivities, fun and frolicking.  And above all, take time to remember not only those who died to make it all possible, but the God who made it possible for us to do so. 

See you next week.  In the meantime, God bless and TTFN.

Cultural Appropriation hysteria is the stupidest development in over a decade of stupid developments

So a woman who must be known to someone adopted a cultural tattoo of the culture from which her husband is descended.  That would be like, you know, trying to become one with her husband's life and people.  Sounds sweet to me, especially since tattoos don't do much for me.  I would consider it quite the sacrifice.  A nice gesture.  A wonderful display of love and acceptance of one's spouse.

But not so in the age of madness brought to us by the modern Left!  Those who would hate Jordan Peterson because he insists women and men are different, would raise a lynch mob against a woman with one skin color for trying something that doesn't belong to her own racial skin color heritage.

Sometimes I pity comedians.  How can they be funny today?  If Mel Brooks was making movies, how would he make his points?  No crooning rail gang or Jewish Indian chiefs could outdo what passes for rational debate and reasoned objections nowadays.  In fact, if what you see in the news on most days would have been put in a Brooks movie all those years ago, most would have considered it too stupid, even for a Brooks movie.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Life in the American Soviet

So it looks like a professor at Washington and Lee University was pushed over the edge when a book about Robert E. Lee's horse was seen in a book store.  A children's book about his horse, I should say.  A demand was made for it to be removed because it dared present the Old South in a sympathetic light.

Yep.  I mean, it's like a Mel Brook's parody of Nazi and Soviet style censorship.  Like cornering the frozen orange juice market in Trading Places, or the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man in Ghostbusters,  it's something so ludicrous, so over the top stupid, it makes for great comedy.

Alas, it is also what our country now teaches, endorses, and mandates as a form of good citizenship.  A person reacts as if they have been pushed to the brink of a complete psychological and emotional breakdown because there exists something that offends them.  Instead of suggesting counseling, we instead move to eradicate, to ban, to destroy all offending materials.  At least materials that are offensive to designated groups who matter (another fine contribution of 20th century totalitarian states).

The question is, as homicides overall decrease, why is there an uptick in school shootings and other similar crimes? Could it be that we're telling people that the world should only exist to affirm their personal realities, and any deviation from affirming them and making them feel cozy and safe should be eliminated?  And those kids who have learned this, who don't have power or say or control in society, must then take it upon themselves to eliminate the offending parties?  Just wondering.

Thankfully, per the story, it looks like sanity prevailed and our country dodged yet another bullet on its long way down the road to oblivion.  On an even brighter note, the forces of censorship were unable to convince a commission to remove Lee's name from the university.  Score two for the sides of light, goodness and the Christian virtues of forgiveness and reconciliation.

HT to Donald McClarey for keeping one eye on the forces of insanity in this present darkness

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

A frabjous day!

Callooh!  Callay!

It's getting toward that time: late school year, exams coming around.  Our third son is poised to graduate from school.  The older two are busy with school concerns and job concerns as always.  And yet  they managed to pull Memorial Day weekend off, the three of them!  For old times' sake, they'd like to dust off some old games, get ready for festivities, and hang with the family.  Preparations to commence presently.

Even when dating, they'll tell the girls in question that they must have at least one day a week to be with the family, often adding days to make sure they have time with their youngest (as they did the other Saturday in order to be at his last game).  As a result, despite being nine years younger than our third son, and a whopping fourteen years away from our oldest, our youngest just sees himself as 25% of the Griffey boys.

So it's with great anticipation that this weekend, before everyone hunkers down for that blitz through exams, grading and end of year brouhaha, including graduation, they are going to take a weekend and spend it with us for cookouts, outdoor fun, probably visiting the cemetery, and of course playing some old games from years gone by.  All is right with the world.

Most plans are still in the making, but here is a taste of a couple pastimes, one in the running on a weekly basis, one just dusted off and brought out of mothball, and the others we are hoping for pending weather.  Here are a few images to whet our appetite:

First up, our wargaming itch will be dealt with.  This is our three youngest sons' German armored column. Properly, those would be Panzer IV Ausf. J series, with 'Elefant' tank destroyers in the background (which won't be deployed owing to the theater in question). 

In response, the oldest and I have a US mechanized infantry company ready to go.
Those are from miniature war gaming, my old preference to fantasy and sci-fi genres.  I posted on this hobby some years ago, but it's been a bit since we played that, times being what they are.

Meanwhile, our ongoing hobby-get-together-boys' night of the week game continues apace.  Called 'a flawed masterpiece', it is the definitive Napoleonic era war game (though we have played others).  As long as you have permanent space and infinite time, Empires in Arms is a great play.  Plus these games can be opportunities for learning in the glorious setting of homeschool.  After all, how many eight year olds can not only locate and explain the importance of Sevastopol, but also pronounce it correctly!

Don't look now, but I think something is getting ready to go down along the Rhine
Depending on weather, we'll try to get out for some hiking, visiting the cemeteries, have cookouts and enjoy our very long awaited dose of spring.  Since the only thing to watch in sports is whether or not the press can hoist LeBron to the position of sports god, there's not much sporting to gather around.

If the creek don't rise, one of our favorite local haunts for hiking, general nature loving and tree hugging

Our local cemetery and location of many a ghost run over the years.  During Memorial Day, July 4 and Veterans day, however,  we get a bit more somber as we visit veterans' graves and pay our respects. 
I think, whatever the weather and whatever we get to do, time with the boys will more than suffice.  We consider ourselves fortunate that we have young men who put a premium on including their family in their social calendars.  It's been all the world to their youngest, and it hasn't done my wife and me that much harm either.

The myth, the legend, the boys.

Monday, May 21, 2018

It's time for Pope Francis to clarify - again

So the news hit a few days ago.  At first it was just some blogs and a couple smaller outlets.  But now it's picking up steam and everyone is saying it: according to an abuse victim, Pope Francis has confessed the Gospel of Lady Gaga. That is, if you're gay, it's because you were born this way.  That is, God made you this way.  That is, your desire to have sex with that person of the same gender is straight from God.

Of course this is a no win situation - unless you want the Catholic Church to jettison its doctrine.  If you say born this way, then God made it happen.  If you insist homosexual sex is wrong, then God made you desire something sinful.  You had no choice.  God made it happen.  Which goes against the old doctrine that God doesn't tempt us (or, as Pope Francis lamented, lead us into temptation).  God doesn't just tempt, in the Gagagospel, He makes us desire the sin.

Or you stop calling it sin.  You say sex with a person of the same gender is no longer sin.  At which point, of course, it no longer makes sense to forbid same sex marriage.  Which is where the majority of American Catholics want to go, and not a few Catholic leaders.  Whether that is where Pope Francis is going or not, remains to be seen. 

According to the latest news cast (which is joyfully reporting that the Church could be on the verge of changing its 2000 year old teaching), the Vatican is saying it doesn't speak to private conversations.  Well buster browns, you had best speak, because silence in this case will be taken as affirmation.  And if this turns out to be true, then the Church is done for a season.  Sure, it will survive in ages to come.  But for the short term, including the lives of many generations, it will have apostatized itself in order to conform to the winds of the world.  And I fear who we get to have sex with will only be the beginning.

Another naked assault on religious liberty

In the form of California AB 2943.  Essentially this bill would make it unlawful to market the idea that homosexuals can change their desires.  Slaves to the flesh I guess.  But then, who you desire to have sex with is as physiological as your lungs and gall bladder. It's your gender that has nothing to do with your physical body.  Thus post-modernity.

Of course it's none of the sort.  Go to any bona fide science/ to the Q&A section, look up 'why are people gay?', and you'll see variations on 'We don't know, seems they think they can't help it, that's good enough for us.'  From a mental health counseling POV (if I may dust off my old licence and cert. for counseling from my pastor days), that's akin to saying 'he seems to think he's Napoleon, that's good enough for me.'

Any thinking person can tell there are likely many reasons different people have same sex attraction.  They could be predisposed, they were raised that way, external factors, cultural, they just can't get lucky with someone of the opposite sex, whatever.  The thought that all with same sex attraction are clones of each other therefore can't change is as wrong as the thought that all men are rapists and can't stop.  This idea that Lady Gaga was the final, definitive statement on the subject, and it's time to legally punish anyone who disagrees, is one more travesty in a long list of travesties that the modern Left has hoisted on society.

When watching the teachers walk out in North Carolina

Remember one thing:
The average salary for a North Carolina teacher has increased to more than $50,000 a year for the first time. Recently released figures from the state Department of Public Instruction put the average salary for a North Carolina public school teacher at $51,214 this school year.
Actually, remember one more thing:
Workers in North Carolina earn an average salary that ranks toward the bottom half of the nation. The average annual pay in the Tar Heel State was $41,250 in 2011, according to an On Numbers analysis of newly released figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
See that?

Teachers, on average in North Carolina, make about 20% more than the average North Carolinian.

I know, teachers on the news explain that they have to spend their own money for the classes.   I can't account for North Carolina, but here in the Buckeye state, parents have to pay, too.  When I was in school, I was expected to have a tablet of notebook paper and two No. 2 pencils.  That was it.  Any other activities? Free of charge.

Now?  Even when my boys were still in school, we were paying hundreds of dollars for basic supplies and fees.  If they wanted to do extracurricular activities, it could add up to hundreds more.  And we were lucky.  There were other school districts where total expenses for parents could end up in the thousands.

That would be those parents who, on average, make far less than the teachers who are being asked, through taxes, to pay the teachers more.  See the issue?  Like I said here, this is a case where the teachers are not putting it in perspective.  When I hear teachers interviewed on news stories, I can tell they're trying to buttress  their case.  They have to realize  that people know they're doing far, far better than teachers of yesterday, and far, far better than many parents in their school districts today.

Remember what I said about revolutions that never admit they won?  Same with people who always protest for more, even when they are getting more, and more, and more than those who are called on to pay them.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Jimmy Kimmel and the problem with Gun Control advocacy in the wake of Santa Fe High

Unless there is something missing in the evidence we've been exposed to, nothing Kimmel or any mainstream gun control advocates have proposed would have stopped the shooting in Santa Fe.  The shooter had no red flags.  He used shotguns and handguns that are not being discussed by most Gun Control advocates.  His father legally owned the guns.  Nothing that gun control advocates repeatably propose would have prevented this.

Did that stop political pundit and activists Jimmy Kimmel from repeating bumper sticker slogans that are demonstrably wrong?  Did it stop him from attacking those who wouldn't support his proposals that wouldn't have made a difference? Not a bit:

I give you the glaring problem in the gun debate today.  So many gun control activists seem to think nothing about actual facts, data, truth or reality.  They vomit the same talking points whether the talking points apply or not, and then use carefully edited attack pieces to exploit the latest tragedy for political gain, almost as if to deflect from the glaring fact that all of their proposals wouldn't have stopped the shooting.

Shame on Mr. Kimmel, and all who won't admit the issue is bigger than legislation that would not have made a difference in the very tragedy he is referencing.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Resist heresy in the wake of the Santa Fe shooting

Keep focused on prayers and mourning.  Seek what you can do to change.  Do not get sucked into the hate and the partisanship that sees this tragic evil as a chance to advance agendas.   Do not fail to look at the heart and soul of the nation that has brought this on our children.   And for the love of God, do not join the world's mockery of God and prayer by suggesting that your prayer is worthless unless you conform to this or that political agenda.

It is not through horses and chariots - even liberal ones - that we will stop the evil we see.  It is through turning to God through Christ.  Christians who have embraced the heretical notion that prayer's efficacy and God's governance are contingent upon the dictates of political activism apostatize themselves.  Do not follow them, even if they are the majority and are cheered by the movers and shakers of our nation who get invited to all the best parties. 

It is through God, by Christ, that we can reverse this horrible trend.  Policies can be dealt with in time.  But do not be fooled.  It is heresy to suggest our trust should be placed in our politics rather than God.

Some trust in chariots, and some in horses, but we will remember the name of the LORD our God.   Psalm 20.7.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.   Ephesians 6.12

And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away."  Revelation 21.3-4

Friday, May 18, 2018

May we come together to pray for the victims of the Santa Fe High School shooting

Reports are just coming in.  We know nothing of the details.  Sadly we know that eight so far have died.  There are others who were wounded.  The suspect, according to the news, is in custody.  There is nothing more, so there is nothing to propose.

There is only to pray for those killed and the horror that their loved ones will endure.  We may pray that we, as a nation, come together to fix what has gone horribly wrong in our society that such terrible crimes are becoming far too common.  We may pray for unity of purpose, and a desire to look into ourselves and see where we all might change for the common good.

But at this time, lifting up the victims, their loved ones, and all whose lives will be forever changed is the Christian, if not the human, is our main priority.

God bless and keep those who have been struck by such evil.  Give them peace, strength and an assurance of your grace and sovereignty in the weeks and months to come.  It is beyond our knowledge how, but we pray you can bring good out of even the worst of all darkness and death.  Into your hands, we present this prayer. 

Be anxious for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Amen.

The New York Times does Jordan Peterson

And shows the continued inability of the Left to engage in meaningful dialogue.  Right from the start, the editorial's tagline is this:
"He says there’s a crisis in masculinity. Why won’t women — all these wives and witches — just behave?"
It goes down from there.  The Left's insistence that if you don't conform to leftist same-think, you're either a moron or a Nazi is one of the most poisonous developments in recent years.  It has injected vitriol and hate into social interactions at almost unprecedented levels, at least in modern times.  I mean, people will go to the mattresses over almost anything today.  The slightest deviation from Leftist dogmas, the smallest disagreement, becomes a conflict between good and evil, light and darkness, Luke and Vader.  Because when everything is nothing other than hero (me) vs. villain (you), what other choice do I have?

Of course Peterson, as far as I know, never calls women witches or says they 'must behave'.  In an example of another Leftist trait, that's what we call projection.  Because the Left, riding the wave of post-modern feminism, has already convinced us that it's OK for women to tell men to sit down, shut up and suck on it.  After all, it's enough that a woman accuses a man, must we struggle with evidence and presumption of innocence?  They're rapist men after all!  And men grovel and say 'Amen!'. 

But the Left ever looks in the mirror and concludes the image must be someone else.  Plus, why bother with debate when we can label anyone who dare blaspheme the gospel of the political Left as a misogynistic-psycho-Nazi?  Just go to almost any leftist blog at Patheos and you'll see the same.  Start with assumptions of intellectual superiority, move to childish insults and name calling, and then when all else fails, plunge forward with grave accusations of hate and evil, bigotry and sexism.  It's the modern playbook for debate across the Leftist landscape.

Forshame Gray Lady, you do your reputation, what little is left, a disservice with this sort of infantile twattle.

The war for the Catholic soul

Rod Dreher looks at one little skirmish

That is the crux, the essence, of what the Church - and I could also say the Christian Faith as a whole - is dealing with.  Must the Church continue to conform to the world, or is it time to insist the world conform to the Faith?

Much of the Catholic approach in recent years, even decades (no, it didn't begin with Pope Francis, or even Vatican II), has been to accept the premises of the latest the world has to offer.  Do we try to  be like the world?  After all, everything we call traditional was new once, or so the argument goes.  Or is it more difficult than that?

They say the fasted growing denomination in America is former Catholic.  We certainly haven't been following the 'hold fast and return to what worked' approach during this time.  Perhaps it's worth looking at the results - or the fruits, to use Biblespeak - of what has happened.  Just a thought.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Blacks need to stay out of white churches

It is, after all the most segregated hour in America. 

Oh, lest you fuss, that is from a church sign.  A church sign belonging to a black congregation.

As long as we continue to judge people and react to people based on the color of their skin, we'll continue to judge people and react to people based on the color of their skin.  Get it? I really don't know if, since the time of Jim Crow, we've ever been a nation so proactively focused on race and skin color as we are today. 

I fear every day that goes by, Martin Luther King, Jr., becomes more and more a mythical figurehead than anyone who had anything important to say to our modern age.  Perhaps it's because the emerging generations are learning just how useful racism can be.

The Necessity of Chivalry

By C.S.Lewis.

There's not much more to add.  If Lewis's time seemed on the brink of insanity, our modern age is stark raving mad.  We literally have plunged into an Orwellian daydream in ways that Orwell never could have imagined.  We almost act as if we're itching to put into practice everything the last century warned us about through its own follies and atrocities.  And we do it based on a suffocating level of hubris.

One of my sons once quipped that the universe has to be infinite.  Otherwise it wouldn't be large enough to contain the space needed between the arrogance of the modern generations, and their utter worthlessness in terms of lack of accomplishment.

I'm not saying medieval chivalry is the way to go.  But for a society unraveling in a world unraveling faster, it offers at its worst more than the best we are producing today.

HT John C. Wright.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

What happened at the Gaza border

I don't know.  Clashes, protests, threats, violence.  That is what usually happens.  Israel is a small island in a hostile ocean.  Many of its neighbors simply want it gone.  Likewise, like a person holed up in a militia encampment, Israel sometimes reacts with a 'head for an eye' retaliation.   It's highly likely that Hamas, nobody's fool, knows this.  Whipping people into a frenzy so that they storm the fences, knowing Israel will respond with live ammo, and the world will condemn Israel, is as old a Hamas tactic as the dust trod on by Nebuchadnezzar.

I know my heart is broken.  This has defined the Middle East for most of my lifetime.  The current tensions are decades old, and trace back to the late 90s, well before the 9/11 attacks.  I also get that they go back far longer than that.  From those who only care about the violence Israel does, to those who don't care about the violence Israel does, I know neither is exactly the way of Christ.

For me, prayers for peace.  I doubt any 'side' of the issue is exactly spot on, as is usually the case.  But God's side is on the side of peace and life.  So prayers in that direction are appropriate.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Jonah Goldberg does it better

Goldberg is a Never Trumper all the way.  Like most Never Trumpers, he works overtime to make sure anything Trump should get credit for is tempered by the fact that it's Trump.  Sometimes he goes a bit far, throwing traditional and conservative and common sense views under the bus, as can happen when you become obsessed about something like distancing yourself from the sitting president.

On the whole, however, he manages to keep things more balanced than the previously mentioned Ross Douthat or George Will.  Here, he takes up both the Kanye West and Handmaid's hysteria, and does so nicely.

For what it's worth, the whole idea that even as women overtake men in more and more areas of society, they're still one step away from vagina death camps, reminds me of what a historian from S. America once told me.  We were at a conference together.  While talking about several topics, including the blessings we have in our Founding Fathers, he mentioned something about revolutions.  Being from S. America, he considered himself somewhat of an expert.

He said the revolution that can be trusted in the one that admits it won.  Like ours.  Once the dust settled and the treaties were drafted, the Founding Fathers moved on to form this more perfect union.  But the nasty revolutions never admit victory.  They always find some way of insisting the revolution must continue.  Either the evil hasn't been eradicated enough, or the goal is still eluding them, or the heroes haven't been able to plant the real flag, or they've found a new bourgeoisie, or something.  They keep the revolution perpetuated, often in the form of increased tyranny, slaughter, terror and what has been typical in most revolutions over the last couple centuries.

Just food for thought as we see women, blacks, and others continue to act as if the last 70 years never happened, and what we can see when we walk down the street and turn on the television must not exist.

On the Kanye West brouhaha, Goldberg echoes my sentiment, that West has the right to an opinion, but I won't rest too much on it.  Though if anyone - even Bill Maher - says something that is true, then it's true.  Same with West.

Nonetheless, Goldberg sees the evils of the backlash against him, mostly in the racist diatribe by The Atlantic's Ta-Nehisi Coates.  Of course it's not called racist by well known journalists who want to keep their jobs.  But I can say it.  It's nothing other than what my son said all those years ago during the Duke LaCrosse scandal, that the racism du jour is that 'you can always tell a racist by the color of his skin.'  It's racism.  A blind man can see it.  Yet like all evils of history, it's acceptable because the people with the power and influence in our society today say it's acceptable.

Kudos to Goldberg, BTW, for noticing the Marxist influence in identity politics, where no matter who we are dealing with, all must be divided into either the proletariat or the bourgeoisie.  It can be black vs. white, man vs. woman, gay vs. straight, "cis" vs. trans, right vs. left, climate change supporter vs. climate change critics - why the list is endless!  The important thing is to remember that once the dust settles, this old world ain't big enough for the two groups.  One must be eliminated.  No forgiveness, mercy, reconciliation, pity, humility.  Just eliminate.  And then, of course, find a new set of groups to set against each other.  See the 20th century record of Marxist influence for examples.

Also it was nice to see someone - anyone - actually bother to look at the complexities surrounding the history of America's slave trade, and the subsequent development of racism to justify the institution.   To hear many lecturers of American history today, you'd think the Founders personally invented slavery just to satisfy their racist ways.  That the early years of slavery in North America looked entirely different than the later years, with entirely different justifications, is lost on many today.  More lost is that the Islamic world had already ventured down a more 'racist' defense for its robust African slave trade well before Christopher Columbus's parents decided to go on their first date.

So while Goldberg will keep the Right and Trump and the GOP at arms length, and sometimes not without good reason, he hasn't chucked the basics, the truths, and common sense, the reality and the morality that traditional conservatism stood upon even as we enter the dark times in which  we now find ourselves.  For that reason alone he's worth the read.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Why Trump wins

Sigh.  How does someone like Donald Trump continue to defy all odds and win?  Easy.  First, we have the Clear Opposition:

Yep.  That's actually a Mothers Day ad by a liberal Super-Pac.  It's real.  It is not a parody concocted by right wingers to make the Left look bad.  It's actually supposed to scare you mothers out there, lest yours sons become one of ... one of ... them.  I mean, this is so blind to how actual people think, it's beyond imagining:

On the other hand, you have the Never Trumpers.  These folks increasingly sound like the very people who pushed many conservatives and Republicans into the arms of Trump in the first place.

Basically, the GOP had become filled with pols and pundits who appeared to view conservatism on, shall we say, unique lines.  They held to big business issues that helped the top earners and money makers.  They were just conservative enough, but not so much that they wouldn't be invited to all the best liberal parties in Manhattan and Washington D.C..  Every couple years, they would flimflam the yokels between the coasts, convincing them that they cared about such stupid things as abortion or sexual deviance or encroachment on basic liberties or the erosion of traditional Judeo-Christian foundations of our society.   Once the elections were over, it was back to champagne and caviar with the beautiful people at the latest party, to hell with the yokels.

And so they continue.  The latest has been to marginalize Kanye West and Candace Owens.  Granted, I know little of Ms. Owens, other than she forcefully calls out some of the most sacred cows of modern, liberal race theory and narratives.  I know even less about Kanye West.  I just know he's known to provoke with goofy opinions, as many rappers do, and that I probably wouldn't hang too much on his opinion, other than acknowledge he is allowed to have an opinion.

I certainly note the Left's hysterics and its need to keep the minority herds in the pen.  I likewise caution conservatives about chasing after the latest cultural icon who happens to say something remotely positive about Trump, the GOP, or anything not leftist.  I'm thinking Rosanne here.

Nonetheless, they're free to speak, and should represent at least an alternative to the very tight narrative controlled by the Left with its monopoly in the press, educational institutions and popular culture.  They should be heard, if not taken too seriously.  Just as anyone should be heard (and that includes those who represent majority opinions).  Perhaps the truth will end up being somewhere in between.

But not so for the Never Trumper!  Ross Douthat demonstrates.  Like George Will, I've become somewhat disappointed in Mr. Douthat. Mr. Douthat, like Will, has become more Never Trumper than conservative, finding any way to tear down, to marginalize, or deflect from a net positive that could somehow find its way back the the Trump White House.  As one who didn't vote for Donald Trump, I can say that's no different than being a liberal Democrat.

Here he demonstrates this in flying colors.  His entire piece can be summed up this way.  Basically, while the Kanye kerfuffle is worth a giggle, on the whole he and Ms. Owns are race bating hacks and likely frauds.  Only by accepting 95% of the leftist, Multi-Cultural, PC, Identity Politics narrative can conservatives have a chance.  Only by assuming America as nothing but a racist nation defined by racism, filled with racists doing nothing on a daily basis than being racist, and the unparalleled daily suffering of African Americans in this most racist of all nations, can conservative hope to appeal to a multi-ethnic voting base.

I doubt it.  What he doesn't know about America, race and identity politics appears to be what he does know about the Catholic Church.  That is, you can't take almost everything from forces diametrically opposed to you, declare them true, and then slap one little modicum of dissension on it and call it a compromise.  If you throw a clean washcloth in a mud puddle, chances are the mud puddle won't get cleaner.  He rightly points out that every time a Western monotheistic faith has attempted to compromise with liberalism, it has failed, withered, and died.  Why he can't figure that the same goes for compromising politically on fundamental premises, I don't know.

But like too many NTs, he appears to see accepting the premises, narratives, priorities, templates and assumptions of the modern Left regarding issues like racism and America's identity as the only real way to help the GOP.  We even accept some of the Left's basic solutions.  It's just that somewhere along the line, we don't just go all Leftist and we ought to do something different somewhere, and that will make all the difference.   That the issue of racism, while real, historical, and a problem to be overcome is hardly a thing to be denied, simply taking the Left's entire book on the subject at face value, while changing one tiny part of the cover, is hardly the solution.  It will likely continue to result, not in greater racial harmony, but as we've seen in the last decade or so, far less.  And I don't think we'll see waves of ethnic minorities storming the GOP Convention as a result.

Congratulation Mr. Douthat, you've just joined Tom Steyer in helping to make sure that Donald Trump will never go away.

George Will rips Mike Pence

And I mean rips.  Speaking of civility in our current level of political discourse.

Mike Pence, not Trump, is hated.  Loathed.  Despised.  The American Left not only hates, but fears Pence.  For Pence is all that Trump is not.  And they know it.  Each time it looked like Trump might be run out of office, the pages were filled with editorials reminding us that Trump is just a clown who can't be expected to be any better than he is.  But Pence.  Ah, there is the true misogynistic Nazi deplorable who threatens all mankind!

George Will, who basically is a moderate commentator who only looked conservative because he sat with hardcore liberals for a living, has unleashed a toxic broadside at Pence.  I mean, wow.  Every adjective, every modifier oozes with a disdain and loathing that can barely be contained.  I've seen Mao described more charitably.

If you ever wanted to read a poisonous, noxious, partisan screed from a hardcore, conservative hating Leftist, you couldn't do much better than reading Will's piece for the Washington Post.

File #9935234 under why Trump owes his presidency to the Establishment.  Oh, and bonus for knowing why all the screams about civility in discourse tend to fall on deaf ears.

BTW, none of this is to say I agree with Pence on everything, or think Arpaio shouldn't be dealt with differently.  It is to say that Will's piece reeks of a hatred and contempt, not just for Pence and Trump, but for all who fail to run with the champagne and caviar set who get invited to all the best liberal parties in Manhattan, whatever their party affiliation happens to be.

An answer for Mark Shea

Yes, Mark, he was likely concerned, even if he didn't feel threatened.

Mark Shea, in typical form, grabbed onto this story:

Here is the story.  Now, I won't get into the case itself.  I have no clue what happened.  I'm still old-fashioned enough to believe that we hear from all sides, and seek evidence, before rendering a verdict.  If they investigate and find out he was in the wrong, he should be disciplined.  I'm OK with that.  If he feels he was wrongly suspended, let's see what happens.  I'm OK with that.  Call me silly and stupid and a white racist Nazi sexist, but I still find comfort in a society that values presumption of innocence, due process, the need for evidence, hearing all sides of a story, and basic justice for all.

No, I'll touch on Mark's quips based on something I've learned as one of my sons trains for work as a police officer (instead of going to school to be an accountant).  I didn't know this, but according to the officers who are training him, traffic stops are the most unnerving thing you do.

Why?  Because you have no clue what you're getting into, that's why.  Unlike anything else, it is a blank slate.  As the officers training him explained, when you get called to do almost anything else you have an idea what you're getting into.  Bank robbery?  Domestic troubles?  Guarding the stadium on game day?  Entertaining a birthday party? Terrorist attack?  You know what you're up against and you prepare accordingly.

But traffic stops are the worst of all worlds.  Often you are on your own, alone, and away from backup.  You have no clue who is in the car or what is happening.  It could be a woman in labor, a teenager with a new license, an elderly man, a drug smuggler, an arms dealer, a fugitive, a serial murderer, or someone looking for pancakes house. It could be a 65 old grandmother with diabetes.  Or it could be a 65 year old grandmother with diabetes who has her 24 year old armed fugitive son in the back seat.  You don't know.  And you have no way of knowing until you arrive at the side of the car.  That, apparently, is the most unnerving moment of any cop's day: That point right before you arrive at the side of the car during a traffic stop.  Which is why they have exact procedures for how the cops are to approach the car, all aimed at their safety.  Ultimately, you have only the driver's cooperation and good will to hope for.

Even then you don't know, since anything can happen.  Just because a person seems normal, calm, rational, or harmless, doesn't mean they don't have a .45 sitting under the seat.  It doesn't mean that they're not up to something.  Criminals come in all shapes and sizes and behaviors.  Sometimes they're not criminals.  Sometimes they're just people who lose control, just as cops can lose control.  You don't know.

But guess what?  A funny thing about those cops?  They're actually human beings.  I realize the Left has done a bang up job with the whole 'Sanctity of life stops dead when it no longer benefits the Left' shtick.  But a consistent life ethic means consistency.  It doesn't just mean 'Life is beautiful ... whenever the Left says so'.  People should, you know, listen to the police officer, and do what he says.  Duh. And that includes not assuming he's a psychoNazi racist murderer who deserves no respect, who can be ignored in kind, and had best let Greedo shoot first before he responds.

In a sane world of morals, principles, values, truth, common sense, justice, and civility founded on the Judeo-Christian ethic, the person does what my Dad did when he was mistaken for a fugitive years ago: comply with the cops.  Even though they swarmed his car, guns out, yelling for him to keep his hands visible, he decided to go crazy and ... do what they said.  Know what happened then?  They checked, found out he was the wrong person, apologized, my Dad said they were just doing their job, he drove on to work, they continued their search, and that was it!  Wow.  It's like crazy decent and sensible.  Heck, it's almost respectful!  Thank goodness we're done with that era.  Can't have any of that in a Leftist paradise.

So Mark, the answer to your question is yes.  If that officer had any brains, he was worried.  Perhaps he felt threatened.  Perhaps he overreacted.  Real people in the real world get it.  I fear we've created a generation of armchair messiahs who can't help but ponder how others can be so weak and flawed and imperfect.

Oh, and I get why a demographic told daily that their country hates them and wants them dead would be nervous, too.  None of this is to ignore the travesty of the Left's manipulation and exploitation of the African American community that has no doubt left many blacks in America quite shaken.  It's just a perspective from a parent who can't help but wish accounting was in his son's future, rather than police work in the age of:

Of even:

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Of Mothers Day and Soccer Games

When the oldest boys were young and our youngest hadn't blessed us yet
My Mom now lives with us.  Diagnosed with moderate dementia, she now needs constant care.  And as if our economic fortunes weren't enough, that has fallen on me.   Let me tell you, being a caregiver while raising sons and jumping one step ahead of the bill collector is not easy.  But I would have it no other way. After all, she's Mom.  She gave me life.  I never considered my parents to be perfect, and Lord knows I would have them do things different if I could go back in time, but they loved us, and they did what they thought was best - for us.  And that covers a multitude of sins, as love always does.

She doesn't always get out now, and sometimes will resist going out and doing things, including going to our youngest's soccer games.  Nonetheless, on this Mothers Day weekend, she mustered herself and went out to see him play.

I'd be a fibber if I said our youngest is the best on the field.  At his best, he's not the worst.  He's somewhat smallish and of a more gentle disposition, not lending itself to getting in there and fighting with the best of them.  But he tries, and when he tries, he doesn't do badly.  Usually he's of the 'could have made the goal', rather than 'should have made the goal' level of play.

But she got him on one of his better games, and he ended up being quite the asset for the team.  Mostly on defense, the other team never scored while he was on the field.  And today, we'll have more fun, will spend some time, have dinner, and generally enjoy the time we have together.  The boys took the weekend off, and exams are still a few weeks away.  So the family will be together, Moms will be celebrated, and thankfulness will be proclaimed.

Thanks Mom.  I owe you, well, everything.

Humidity steamed up the lens, but that's  Mom with the family, ready for the game

In one of his better plays, he gets the ball and takes it down to - almost make a goal

I like.  They give certificates to all participants - but not trophies if they didn't win.

Not a big fan of getting his picture taken

Future gourmet chef and police officer - you figure which is which

When the free press becomes the greatest threat to freedom

Rod Dreher shudders, as do I.  Was a time when freedom meant the freedom to be, well, a nasty, rotten, lousy, no-good wretch of a person. As long as you didn't actually do, or provoke, violence against someone, you were free to be obnoxious and wrong.  You were certainly free to have opinions, though a sense of common decency, long since dismantled by American liberalism, kept public debate on a mature, respectful plane.

Nonetheless, the emergent Left wants none of it.  It wants freedom and liberty dismantled.  The Constitution?  Bah.  The Leftist meme is that the whole thing was just a big pitch for slavery and racism (racism officially being the unforgivable sin, though I'm sure the list of unforgivable sins that preclude mercy will grow).

The funny thing?  When I was in the College of Education, c. late 1980s, the big movement was 'Schools should have nothing to do with our private lives!'  Of course by that they meant teachers or students who indulged in gay sex, group sex, living together, smoking pot, enjoying porn and all the yummy carrots that the Left dangles before the population.   In fairness, they never said this included punishing wrong-think, private or otherwise.

But that's the miracle of the emergent Left.  Principles? Standards?  Morality? Ethics?  Truth?  Even facts?  Why, here today, gone later today.  The emergent Left is almost rushing toward a 20th century unfree society of thought control and oppression, and doing so proudly. It is almost a carbon copy of everything liberalism condemned in the later half of the 20th century.

Mr. Dreher notices the obvious warning flags, bells, whistles, and anything else that sane and mature and decent and common sense people who want a free society based on equality, liberty and the common good notices.  He also sees the glaring problem in our nation today, and that's the sad fact that the institutions that should be protecting us and our freedoms are, in many ways, the ones that are threatening them the most.