Category Archives: politics

An Open Letter to President Obama

Dear Mr. President,

On July 19, 2013, after George Zimmerman was acquitted by a jury of his peers of the charges of second-degree murder and manslaughter relating to the death of Trayvon Martin, you said this:

You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago. And when you think about why, in the African American community at least, there’s a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it’s important to recognize that the African American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that doesn’t go away.

There are very few African American men in this country who haven’t had the experience of being followed when they were shopping in a department store. That includes me. There are very few African American men who haven’t had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars. That happens to me — at least before I was a senator. There are very few African Americans who haven’t had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off. That happens often.

Mr. President, with all due respect, the life Trayvon Martin led, like the life that Michael Brown led, are nothing like the super-privileged, star-studded, hyper-protected lives your daughters lead. Although you and your wife rightly keep your young girls from the public eye, it is no secret that the First Daughters attend a private school with a tuition to rival that of most universities, rub elbows with celebrities, and take luxurious vacations the likes of which the rest of us can only dream. No, Mr. President, if you had a son, that is the kind of life he would lead.

There are other parents out there, though. Parents who can point to the blood on the ground, Mr. President, look you in the eye, and say “This! This is my child, my son! Where is your outrage now, Mr. President? Where are your protests? Where is my son’s justice? Where is our peace?” These are the parents, the siblings, the husbands and the wives, the coworkers who, when you and your political hacks walk by will slowly but surely to a man, turn their backs on you.

On January 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation was signed, freeing the slaves. Between 1860 and 1865, 596,670 soldiers were wounded, captured, went missing, or were killed to prove that all men have the right to be free, regardless of their skin color. Constitutional Amendments 13, 14, 15, 19, 24, and 26 all acted together to level the playing field when it came to citizenship and voting rights for all, regardless of race, skin color, or sex.  Jim Crow laws were abolished fully with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

No, Mr. President, right now, in this country, the biggest problem you have is not a couple of teenage thugs who, most unfortunately, ended up on the wrong side of the law. It is not an extremely obese man who got caught selling loose cigarettes, resisted arrest, and died of the complications thereof. Were their deaths necessary? Of course not. As has been said so often in the last few days, life is precious, no matter whose it is. Mr. President, you have been complicit in inciting riot across these fruited plains, together with your soon-to-be-former attorney general, Eric Holder, and professional race-baiting lap dog, Al Sharpton, even in your silence:

Obama added that he “institutionally” could not say whether he thinks the grand juries should have indicted the police officers, because his comments may compromise ongoing federal investigations. (Huffington Post, 12/08/14)

“It is clear that I think that acts of violence threaten to drown out those who have legitimate voices, legitimate demonstrators, and those acts of violence, cannot and will not be condoned,” (Eric Holder, 11/25/14)

“What do we want? Dead cops! When do we want them? Now!” (Protesters at an Al Sharpton march, 12/13/14)

Well, Mr. Sharpton. You have gotten your wish. On Saturday, December 21, two members of the NYPD were assassinated while sitting in their squad car in Brooklyn. Their murderer took the coward’s way out and committed suicide before he could be arrested. Yesterday, a Florida officer responding to a noise complaint was shot and run over. In less than 72 hours, Mr. President, seven children are left fatherless. Three families will have to deal with an empty chair at their Christmas table. Where are the marches for their families? The protests? Those two policemen in New York were both of minority races – will you send Mr. Sharpton to eulogize and professionally mourn their deaths? The deaths that he called for?

Every day, those who walk that thin blue line go in knowing they might not come home. It is a thought they merely push to the back of their heads, as they will do what needs to be done, no matter what. Each of them chose to walk that line for a different reason. For some, yes, it’s a way to get back at the people who treated them like crap growing up. For others, it’s a true desire to protect and serve. For others, it’s a legacy, that thin blue line a family crest. Whatever the reason, they will step in front of a bullet, literally, for a stranger.

Mr. President, so often you speak of “hope” and “change”. You, sir, are the leader of this country. The change needs to start with you and your administration. Take them to task. No more words, sir. No backhanded support while communities burn themselves down. No more blanket condolences while allowing Dr. King’s dreams to come apart at the seams. No more silently condoning a return to “separate, but equal”. Start by looking at your Secret Service. They are your first line of defense. The local police are ours. They are MY family. MY brothers. MY friends.

Don’t let your ego or your legacy kill any more of them.

thin blue line

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Missed it by *that* much…

I work in the public school system. (I know, I know…). In the People’s Republic of New England, as well as across the United States, there is apparently a new thing this year that requires schools to collect racial and ethnic data on every student in the building. This is not optional. Don’t worry, assures the paper, all information will be kept confidential.

Given the current flux of people moving around in this country, legal or not, I suppose I can see why, from a statistical standpoint, why that data might be wanted now rather than waiting until the next census is taken. Here’s my problem, though. In post-racial America*, the only racial/ethnic data that the government is interested in is whether or not a student is or is not Hispanic. If the student is not Hispanic, they would like to know if he is of Asian, African-American, American-Indian or Alaskan Native, or Pacific Islander descent. For all others, please just check “white”, because, well, screw you, Europe. As I’m going through these sheets, some parents have checked off multiple ethnicities and races because, well, again, post-racial America, y’all. The problem is that the computer only accepts one answer for each student. So when I’m staring at a kid’s sheet that looks like a multiple choice test, it’s been suggested that I look at the kid’s picture, decide what race/ethnicity he best represents, and go with that. (Though being the federal government, I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest if it turns out the schools get more money for having more minority students.)

Here’s the kicker. Go back to the “about” page and take a good look at that photograph. Blonde hair, hazel eyes… gotta be some brand of European, right? certainly couldn’t check off any of those boxes indicating I was a racial minority. Well, except, I could. Enter Exhibits A and B:

emma and molly

These are my cousins, and for privacy’s sake, even though they gave me permission to use this photo and I blocked their faces, we’ll call them Sandy and Olivia. Sandy and Olivia are sisters, and they are the closest thing to blood sisters that I have. Our fathers are brothers, and our mothers are sisters. Yes, brothers married sisters. It’s not nearly as confusing as it sounds. We’re talking pretty much same exact gene pool. Anyway, Sandy looks like me, with the blonde hair and dark eyes. Just like our mothers’ side of the family. Olivia on the other hand… well, face it. Anyone could, and understandably would, look at her and think she’s Latina. Nope. Half-Polish, quarter Slovak, and a quarter Scots and Irish. Ever hear of the black Irish? Yup. Bunch of Spanish traders come up the western European coast, decide Ireland is as nice a place as any to settle down (or at least find a warm bed on land for a night or two), and voila! The black Irish are born. You can find us in Scotland, too. Olivia is living proof of that.

Technically, then, I could just as easily mark “Hispanic” on my own theoretical ethnic/racial sheet as I can “white”. Not even “Caucasian”. Just “white”. I have Spanish ancestry, after all. We melanin-challenged individuals are so discriminated against.

 

*If we’re in a “post-racial America” as was much hailed with the election of the first half-black president, why are we even wasting trees on all this? And trust me, it’s a lot of trees, judging by the stacks of paper on my desk.

 

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Fighting Microaggression

…also known as, cry me a river, build me a bridge and get over it.

The following video is from Andrew Klavan on “The Revolting Truth” over at YouTube. Special thanks to The Matt Walsh Blog for posting the video to his site first. (Seriously. Go read Matt’s blog if you don’t already. He’s awesome.)

 

First world problems, y’all.

Of the major news networks, current headlines are generally tuned into the Scottish independence vote, but the more national ones:

CNN: “Where is this missing UVA student?”
NBC: “Bachelorette party mom feels ‘lucky’ to be home”
ABC: “Lawmakers propose overhaul to federal black lung program”
FOX: Fox News seems to be the only MSM to buck the trend by having its front page banner focused on ISIS rather than our kilted friends and makers of fine whisky. FOX’s home page reads “Congress OKs key plank of Obama’s ISIS strategy [Editor’s note: glad to hear his staff figured one out] in bipartisan vote.” and their US news page follows up with “Mystery man reportedly seen walking with missing UVA student night of disappearance”
BBC: Obviously, they’re a bit busy tonight (nearly dawn, now, and it looks like Scotland is staying. Sorry, Prince Tearlach. You’re still bonny, even if, by history, you were a sot and really quite a failure, the ’45 notwithstanding. Slainte mhath.) so most of their coverage is devoted to what the north is up to, but their US and Canada page is headlined: “Eight dead in Florida house shooting”.

Thankfully, NBC seems to be the only washout tonight, and really, what can you expect with MSNBC dragging at their heels? No wonder Rush calls that crew PMSNBC.

Sorry, that must have been a bit aggressive, there.

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A New Era of Revolution

Seeing my own country’s flag: the Stars and Stripes, Old Glory, the Star Spangled Banner – the American flag- always fills me with a sort of quiet pride, knowing the history of our nation. Knowing, academically in many cases, the many men and women that fought the world over to keep that flag flying. The more famous photographs and paintings – the original Old Glory, waving o’er Ft. McHenry, black-and-flag draped coffin of Abraham Lincoln, the raising of the flag at Iwo Jima, on the moon, at the rubble of the World Trade Center. Heck, even on the cover of Springsteen’s “Born in the USA” album.

Fighting for independence, one country breaking ties from another, is oft seen as an American venture. Far from it. Today, that notion of sovereignty is as important as it was in 1776.

Today, Scotland is voting on a referendum that will tie or sever its 307-year union with Great Britain.

2014 less 307 is 1707.

Those who have watched “Braveheart” know the the part William Wallace, the Highland laird who first led resistance to English rule in the 1300s after the original Royal Scottish line died out. After some success, he was captured, hanged, drawn, and quartered. In 1306, after Wallace’s death, the throne was taken by the eighth Robert the Bruce (Generally just known as “Robert the Bruce”). England met Bruce with no mercy and the two countries fought a series of battles which culminated in 1314 when the troops of Edward II were crushed.

In 1320, a letter, written in Latin and addressed to the Pope, was sent to declare Scotland’s independence as a sovereign state and confirm its right to defend itself when unjustly attacked.

…as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom – for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.

Sound a bit familiar? The American Declaration of Independence wasn’t written, of course, until 1776. This, the Declaration of Arbroath, was written in 1325. In 1328, England renounced overlordship Scotland and confirmed Robert the Bruce as King.

Things were tentatively okay with Scotland’s southern neighbors until the death of James IV at the Battle of Flodden. His granddaughter, Mary, Queen of Scots, was sent to be reared in France with her mother’s family (Mary was twice-royal; her mother was Marie de Guise.) Problems arose when she became of age and returned to Scotland – a 15 year old Catholic girl suddenly had the Protestant Reformation on her hands. That very schism of religions, Catholic Mary in the north and Protestant Elizabeth I in the south had the British Islands in an uproar. Elizabeth, seeing her cousin Mary as her rival, had her imprisoned in the Tower and as plots swirled on both sides, Mary was executed in 1586.

Elizabeth died in 1607, and the crown went by default to Mary’s son, King James VI of Scotland, who was now also James I of England, thus uniting the two crowns after centuries of just-barely contained hostilities. A century later in 1707, Acts of Union formally joined Scotland to Great Britain. This came after a brief period of upheaval between the parliaments of Scotland and England. Following this, James II of Scotland was exiled, and the nations were linked. This did not stop periodic revolutions such as the one in 1715, an ill-gained attempted at regaining Scottish independence, nor the famed ’45, with James II son, Charles, (“Bonnie Prince Charlie”), which although saw initial strong success, ended in slaughter on Culloden Field. So angered were the English troops that for years they ravaged the Highlands, killing and imprisoning. Famine struck the land, and many chose to leave their homes for new lives in France or the colonies.

Despite atrocities against Scottish culture in the years that followed including the Diskilting Act of 1746 which made ownership of arms and the wearing of Highland dress illegal, the Scots have never given up on hopes of one day regaining national sovereignty. In 1934, the Scottish National Party (SNP) was formed and made an Independent Scotland its primary goal. 1997 saw a referendum that kept Scotland part of the United Kingdom, but gave it control over its own education, health care, and finally, a Parliament.

Seven years ago, the SNP won a brilliant upset against the incumbant Labour Party. This exchange in party power led to the vote we are seeing today.

It is this writer’s opinion that despite the official documentation, Scotland’s independence died with the Stuart cause on Drumossie moor that cold, raining, awful April morning in 1746. The spirit of Scotland never did.

scotpols.net_

Alba gu bràth.

 

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Is racism really the issue here?

A brief look at race relations in America. Please answer the following questions to yourself:

  1. Should reparations be made to African-Americans by the American federal government or the state governments of any Confederate or border state to make up in some way for the crime of slavery?
  2. In your opinion, is it fair that African-American musicians, sports figures, and the community in general have a sort of stranglehold on the term “nigger”, which has long been accepted as derogatory? Why or why not?
  3. In light of high-profile cases like those of Rodney King, George Zimmerman, and Michael Brown, is it understandable for African-Americans living in the United States today to fear or hate white people?
  4.  In terms of race relations and crime, which is a bigger problem today – white-on-black crime, black-on-white crime, white-on-white crime, or black-on-black crime?
  5. Should a person’s age, sex, sexual orientation, race, color, or creed have any weight or bearing when it comes to being admitted to college or hired for a job?
  6. Is racism in any way, shape, or form ever okay?
  7. Do you feel that any of these questions were “leading”, that is, suggesting that you give a certain opinion, thought, or idea?

In the days since I last visited the events going on in Ferguson, MO, I would like to say that things have improved. Since I can’t, and since I’ve been accused of being too out of touch because of my “white privilege” to know “what it’s like”, I decided to take a step back and poke the bear again because, why not? As if being a lilly-white blonde and writing the word “nigger” without all sorts of asterisks or “- word” type quotes wasn’t enough.

The MSM (main-stream media), Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, and Eric Holder would have us believing that incidents like this happen All. The Time. That young black men are routinely getting gunned down by gun-happy, racist white cops simply because they’re black. I doubt it. If that were the case, Ferguson would not be limited to Ferguson. People from other towns and cities would not be flocking to this suburb of St. Louis to cause mischief and mayhem – they would be busy causing it in their own backyard. No, the Brown case is rare, which is precisely why it is national news.

Think about it. What’s a typical story in your local paper? I’ll pick a happy one from mine. Local Senior Commits to Play Division I Baseball at State University. You’re not going to see this kid’s name in the New York Times, or HuffPo. Rush Limbaugh, The Daily Show, and Rachel Maddow won’t be discussing him for a week and a half, analyzing his batting average, his RBIs, ERAs, or his pitching speeds. He won’t be a hot topic on ESPN, and he won’t be showing up in a RE2PECT commercial. Why?

It’s not rare. It’s not unusual. It’s not significant. Outside our little local sphere, no one cares.

Outside our little local sphere…

If black people were getting gunned down by white cops daily, there’d be a national outcry.

Black people are gunned down by other black people by the dozen on a weekly basis in Chicago and even Chicago barely blinks.

There aren’t. And there isn’t. That’s why the likes of those race-baiters listed above are all free to converge on Ferguson.

So here’s what I would suggest: If they (meaning the MSM and the Powers that Be) are so certain that black people and white people can’t get along, why don’t we take each individual town, draw a line down the middle of it, and we’ll have the blacks live on one side and the whites live on the other. There can be “blacks-only” and “whites-only” schools, restaurants, libraries, stores, you name it. Each side can elect a white mayor and a black mayor, a white city council and a black city council, we’ll have white churches and black churches and everything will be —

What? We can’t have that, you say? Segregation is illegal? But I’ve heard that very thing suggested! Hire black cops, because apparently black people only understand black people! (I was pretty sure that we all spoke English, but maybe I was wrong.) Elect a black president! A black attorney general! White people just don’t get it. They have their white privilege, after all.

Yet… we have a black president, a black attorney general. A Congressional Black Caucus. Al Sharpton himself has descended upon Ferguson. Black people from all over have come to celebrate the life of Michael Brown… by looting, destroying, and burning.

racism: a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race
2
:  racial prejudice or discrimination

Still, the leaders of the black community blame white people. We have become so poisoned by the liberals’ historical narrative that we only recognize racism when couched in terms of whites vs. blacks. We completely miss, or make attempts to justify, “reverse” racism, which is the same. A rose by any other name may still smell sweet… or like tear gas, as the case may be of late.

I may make myself a marked woman for this, but the truth must be said. Look around. We’ve elected a liberal black president (twice) and the country is in the gutters. We are surrounded by liberal black leaders, who are in turn surrounded by liberal white leaders.

Racism is their means of staying in power. Racism is not the problem.

Liberalism is.

Vote conservative.

I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality…. I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word. – Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

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Don’t Bring a Knife to a Gunfight

“I was watching the Weather Channel because I was going to fly down south when Hurricane Floyd was out in the Caribbean and so this is what they said, the information: Hurricane Floyd would be hitting the coast of the United States in five days and that it would hit somewhere, somewhere between Miami and New England. Why did they bother… why the f*** open your mouth? Why not just say Hurricane Floyd is coming… we’re going to go to a commercial.” -Lewis Black

If you have a statement to make, what’s the best way to go about it? Do you throw a temper tantrum, complete with curing, kicking, and shrieking like a ban-sidhe to get your point across? Or do you calmly present your points, provide examples and counter examples, to win your opponents over to your way of thinking? In an argument, which type or person would you rather deal with?

Last Saturday, 9 August 2014, two young men in Ferguson, Missouri were stopped by police. A scuffle ensued, during which eighteen-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by a police officer. At the time of the incident, those were the only facts that anyone -media, family and friends of the deceased knew for certain. As such, those should have been the only facts reported on.

However, the media chose to seize on the fact that the deceased was black and the officer who shot him was white. Despite living in a post-racial utopian society brought forth by the election of B. H. Obama, a candlelight vigil for the deceased rapidly turned into a violent free-for-all in which many citizens felt free to riot in the streets and loot and destroy local businesses in the name of “justice”.

Ferguson-riots-USA

 

Riots-in-Ferguson-mikebrown3

In case anyone had forgotten, rioting and looting are crimes. Yes, we have a Constitutional right to protest, but it must be done peacefully. I’m failing to see anything peaceful about arson, robbery, destruction of private property, et cetera. The gentleman pictured above must have an inkling of that as well, as he has covered his face from the security camera. The police responded in kind, using smoke canisters and tear gas to push back the crowds.

Here is the very, very simple reason why this post is entitled “You Don’t Bring a Knife to a Gunfight”. Ferguson is burning. These people, and for the ones doing the rioting and looting, I am using that term very, very loosely, are out for blood. We saw this in 1992 with the Los Angeles/Rodney King riots, and we saw it again in California in the 1990s when a group of bank robbers out-gunned local police departments. The robbers had Kevlar vests, AK-47s, grenades, mortars, you name it. The PDs had their regular side-arms and… that was it. They were hopelessly out-gunned by these bank-robbers. They were screwed. It took hours to get them properly armed. They needed that riot-gear, those heavier weapons, the armored vehicles. Those cops, because the local populace was afraid of their cops carrying an unnecessary show of force, were in serious danger when the bad guys (who don’t give a damn about unnecessary shows of force) showed up with a rather impressive show of force.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

I started this with a quote from comedian Lewis Black. It illustrates the absurdity of the news these days. Even when there is nothing to report on, they will report on it, often whipping the populace up into a frenzy. That is exactly what happened in Ferguson. Various news sources took what little information they had, added every rumor they’d heard and a few they just made up, and spit it out for public consumption. A week later, we have everyone from the POTUS to Al Sharpton playing the race card (again), two police units that are having a very hard time getting their job done, and a city aflame.

One can’t help but wonder if all this couldn’t have been avoided if the news media hadn’t just reported on the basic facts and let the police departments do their job?

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Words Have Meanings

This may come as a surprise to some, but words have meanings. Some words have very broad definitions and can be used in any number of circumstances. In my neck of the woods, the word “wicked” is such a one. “Wicked” may be used as an adjective to mean “evil” (The Wicked Witch of the West tried to hurt Dorothy and her friends.); it can be used as an interjection (“Kids, we’re going to the new water park today.”  “Wicked!”); and in true Bostonian fashion (which is really a general Massachusetts thing), a modifying adverb or compound adjective (“wicked awesome”, “wickedly brutal”, etc.) Wicked is neither good nor bad in this last case; it just demonstrates something is “more”. Sort of like “good, better, best”. After “best”, there is “wicked”.

Where am I going with this? One of the most popular phrases today is “war on women”, as it relates to pretty much anything the Democrat party says blocks “free” contraception and abortion-on-demand. A quick Google search for the term brings back 363,000,000 hits. Allow me to paint another picture of the “war one women”, with some help from our good friends over at Merriam-Webster:

war:
a state of usually open and declared armed hostile conflict between states or nations (2) :  a period of such armed conflict (3) :  state of war

Hmm. I like to think that of all things, my dictionary at least won’t lie to me. While tensions in the hallowed halls of the Capitol building can get pretty hostile, I don’t think any real brawls have broken out since  1858* or so. As arguing over who should pay for a woman’s birth control is really more of a philosophical difference than an issue akin to those that caused the American Revolution, the War Between the States, WWI, WWII, etc., I’m going to go ahead and say that the current “War on Women” is more hyperbole than anything else.

If we’d like to discuss a real war on women, let us turn our heads to Iraq right now, where a full-blown genocide is taking place. Oh yes, genocide. Everyone is probably tired of that word, since we heard it bandied about so much in conjunction with Rwanda (and no one seemed very interested then) and if we throw Iraq into the mix, people will just be even more disinterested. After all, haven’t we dealt enough with Bush and his mess**?

However, if even MSNBC is calling the ISIS and Sunni violence against Iraqi Christians a genocide, then there is a problem. MSNBC is among the least watched and trusted of all the mainstream news sources and definitely left-leaning, so if they are even jumping on the “Baghdad, we have a problem” wagon, I’ll go ahead and say there’s a problem.

Would you like to know what a real war on women looks like?

It’s watching your child get beheaded, and his head stuck on a pike in a park because his parents are Christians.

It’s being forced to give birth with your legs shackled to the stone floor of your jail cell while your toddler looked on because you would not renounce Jesus and convert to Islam.

It’s watching your husband hanged because he would not give up his Christian faith.

It’s being gang-raped, beaten, and left to starve for no other reason than the fact you are a woman.

It’s having to be covered from head-to-toe, because you are a woman.

It’s not having any control in whom you marry, because you are a woman. The men in your life – your father, brothers, and husband – make all your decisions, because some other man once decreed that women are only half as smart as men.***

It’s submitting to domestic violence, because your religion says that wife-beating is okay, even necessary.

It’s giving yourself or your daughter to a pedophile, because your prophet took a child-bride.

It’s not being allowed an education, or risking your life for one, because your are a woman.

It’s having your clitoris and labia cut off and the wound sewn shut, allowing only a tiny hole for menstrual blood and urine, for no reason other than to control your sexual behavior.

That is a war on women.

Let’s remember the true meaning of war and what our sisters and brothers on the other side of the world are going through right now. The next time you hear someone mention that idiotic phrase, be sure to tell them what a war on women really looks like.

 

*1858: the caning of Charles Sumner. There have been a few fistfights in state legislatures and maybe one or two in Congress, but none as epic as this one.
** I need a sarcasm font.
***http://www.answering-islam.org/Authors/Arlandson/women_top_ten.htm

 

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Obama’s Motorcade Trumps Woman in Labor

America, we have hit a new low. According to the LA Times, a woman in labor was prevented from crossing a street in order to get to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center because President Obama’s motorcade would be passing through.

His Imperialness was on his way to another fundraiser with the Hollywood Elite.

Let that sink in a moment. A young woman in black yoga pants and a white tank top sitting on a backless bench at what could be a bus stop. One arm wrapped protectively around her belly, the other braced on the bench. Her body, which has been working on forming this new little human inside of her for the last nine months, has kicked things into high gear and said, “Ok, it’s go time.” She’s having contractions. She’s in pain. She is right across the street from the hospital, and unnamed “authorities” are preventing her from entering, even on foot, because the POTUS will be driving by at some point on his way to rub elbows with Kerry Washington and quip about how Usher put him to shame on the dance floor.

“If it weren’t for my horse, I wouldn’t have spent that year in college.”  -Lewis Black

Whenever I feel like my mind might explode from the sheer stupidity of the world, I think of that line. It’s from his White album, and while I highly recommend it, it’s NSFW, children, and other delicate ears.

Have we really sunk so far? That not a single person would take action? In a land where people protest capitalism on Wall Street, not one man or woman would do the right thing, push past the cops or Secret Service or whoever, and get that woman to the hospital? They would take pictures and tweet about her plight, but no one would help her. Just as sadly, the “authorities” (it wasn’t specified if they were LAPD or Secret Service or military) would not do the right thing either.

I’ve mentioned before that my brothers are cops. They come from a long line. Uncles, a grandfather, cousins… I cannot imagine any of them putting up with this sort of nonsense, be it because of the president or the Queen of England. I can’t imagine this happening because of any other president, either. Pick any president who ever took part in a motorcade. Any of them. I think they’d be furious to hear that this happened because they were in town. Obama probably won’t even notice.

Not many things are completely unbelievable in this day and age. This though? Wow.

 

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Yes, God is Love, and So Much More

I may be going out on a limb here, and maybe I’m in the minority, but I highly dislike when God is pulled into political arguments to make a “point” by people who really have, to be blunt, no clue what they are talking about. These people usually try to pigeonhole the Lord into two categories – love and vengeance. They focus on very narrow parts of the Bible, mostly “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you” and then will pick and choose various parts of Leviticus and Deuteronomy to show how most of the Old Testament isn’t relevant anymore and can be conveniently ignored since we are cool with divorce and eating shellfish.

Theologian, I am not, but I do pay attention to the world around me, have been blessed to have friends willing to engage in spiritual and religious discussions, and I know some truly wonderful people who have dedicated their lives to God, both lay and religious. I know people who consider themselves “spiritual but not religious” and others who have cast away whatever religious upbringing they might have had and consider themselves agnostic or atheistic. Others may have no spiritual or religious guidance and float from church to church still seeking something, and they themselves are not sure what it is. None of them deny that human beings are made not only of mind and body, but spirit as well. Perhaps this is why it irks me so much when people try to use God, and it is always the Judeo-Christian God, to serve their own political ends. We must accept gay “marriage”, because Jesus said we must love everyone. We must not judge the woman who has an abortion, because Jesus said, “Judge not, less ye be judged”. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone used the story of Jesus stopping the crowd from stoning the prostitute to defend the hook-up culture*.

The problem with only using these few verses or passages is that there are 73 books in the Catholic Bible. Protestant versions vary; the King James version, for example, has 80. Out of these books, there are countless verses, as each verse is only a sentence or two. So yes, Jesus did say, “Do unto others whatever you would have them do unto you. This is the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 7:12) but a few verses later He followed that with “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in Heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name? Did we not drive out demons in your name? Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’ Then I will declare to them solemnly, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.'” (Matthew 7:21-23) In Matthew alone, Jesus speaks of punishment for wrongdoing at least as much as he preaches love and forgiveness. Indeed, he often speaks of ways to avoid sin, to give up material world goods in order to bring oneself closer to His Father. Does your hand or eye cause you to sin? Pluck it out or chop it off. Better to lose a hand or an eye than to suffer eternal damnation in the fires of Hell. Men, stop oogling women. He who hath looked at a woman with lust in his heart has committed adultery with her already. That’s a two-fer right there, with the 9th Commandment (adultery) and one of the Seven Deadly Sins (lust). Moses permitted divorce, but Jesus spoke against the practice, again saying that it forced women to commit adultery.

Here’s the long and short of it. People sin. We do bad things, we hurt others. We make mistakes, we falter. We tell little white lies, and we tell big whoppers. We mess up. Big time. God knew that 2000+ years ago, and Jesus came down to take the heat for us. Instead of us suffering eternal damnation with no hope of Heaven, He took the punishment. We’re not entirely off the hook though. Like a parent, God is looking out for our best interests. He will comfort us when we’re sad, rejoice with us when we’re happy, and when we screw up, as we will do inevitably, we will be punished in some way. A child who was allowed to run roughshod over his parents is a child who will grow up to be a spoilt pain in the butt. Any parent of a toddler knows the benefits of a time-out. Yes, God DOES love us, more than anything, because like we create our children, God created us in His image. Like we reprimand children when they misbehave, so must we be reprimanded. It’s the consequence of having free will. Catholics call that place of “eternal-yet-temporary” time-out Purgatory. It is, from accounts I’ve read, definitely a place of punishment, and not in the “sit here and think about what you did” type, but bearable because souls there know that it is temporary and one day we will be reunited with Christ.

Beyond that? God is God. The Alpha and the Omega. The beginning and the end. He cannot fit into any little political idea. He cannot be narrowed into one, concise statement like “God is love” fluff. That’s just the first sentence. God just IS. In fact, He summed it all up quite nicely Himself, without any help from us.

I am.

*For what it’s worth, His last words to the prostitute were, “Go forth, and sin no more.”

EDIT: I found this blog post over at the Matt Walsh Blog. It’s one of my favorite blogs, and Matt pretty much summed up what I said above, just better. 🙂 I hope he won’t mind that I’m linking to it from here. Please read it.
http://themattwalshblog.com/2014/04/07/jesus-didnt-care-about-being-nice-or-tolerant-and-neither-should-you/

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