A news story from yesterday (Angry trucker puts up flag at truck stop, only to watch it come down Tells of a trucker (David Ray Thornburg) who, while passing a business in Denton, Texas on Memorial Day, noticed a flag pole at a business that was not flying an American flag. So incensed was Thornburg at this businesses lack of patriotism, he went to a nearby Walmart, got a flag and proceeded to climb the flagpole and attach the flag (see the video of his ‘heroic’ effort in the above news story).
What never occurred to Thornburg was: all of the military men and women to whom Memorial Day day is dedicated died to preserve our freedom — which includes the freedom to NOT fly a flag on Memorial Day and the freedom of a business or individual to limit access to their private property.
David Ray Thornburg actually broke the law on Memorial day because his patriotism did not allow his brain to function properly — in his mind flying American Flag became the sole reason for Memorial Day not the sacrifices of our military or the sanctity of private property they died to protect.
Patriotism operates on an emotional level and virtually every human is challenged on a daily basis to make our emotional reactions subservient to logic, common sense and legal responsibility.
This is especially true of those who are devoted to a religious ideology. All too often religious fevor, intentionally or not, ignores the rights of those who do not practice that religion or believe as the followers of that religion believe. It’s not nearly as bad now as it was in the days of Spanish Inquisition but a similar fervor drives religious zealots today.
I guess I’ve been in my cave too long because when I crawled out yesterday, looking for a movie to watch on NetFlix(r), I discovered TED — and TED, I find out, has been around since 1985.
In ’85 TED was in the form of a series of annual conferences but somewhere between then and now the TED Talks video site came into being and it is totally fascinating!
TED is an acronym that stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design. That knowledge, in itself, tells you nothing about what goes on at TED. Right now TED Talks has over 1100 videos (and it’s growing every day); each video is a presentation by an expert in the subject field.
As you might know, if you’ve followed by writings here at My View from the Center you can guess that I eventually started exploring talk on the subjects of politics, religion and social issues — but that’s me!
If you’ve just crawled out of a cave near mine and know nothing about TED and want to learn something new, what you need to do is go to either the TED Talks video site or the TED Home Page, type virtually any topic of interest to you into the search box and see what comes up.
Alternately, if you are the type who will go to the Google Search Site and click on the button that says “I’m feeling Lucky” you may enjoy the similar feature at TED; go to the TED Home Page and find the “Surprise Me” button (about half-way down the page) which will allow you to watch a random selection of videos on various topics. You may agree or disagree with the speakers but, either way, you will most likely learn something new.
TED is a fascinating concept that has evolved into a series of websites that allow you to participate (if you choose) as well as just watch and listen.
I’m sure glad I came out of my intellectual hibernation yesterday morning.
The chairman of the Republican National Committee, Reince (pronounced: Rence) Priebus stated on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday:
“I think that most Americans agree that in this country, the legal and historic and the religious union marriage has to have the definition of one man and one woman.”
It seems to me that Mr. Priebus is being misled by his own prejudices and is misleading the Republican Party with those prejudices.
Obviously the legal definition of marriage does not HAVE to be one man and one woman. Several states have now proved that to be the case: States that allow Gay Marriage or some form of legal domestic partnerships.
This, of course, knocks the “historic” argument out of the box unless you don’t consider recent history to be part of history.
Even the “religious union marriage” argument is specious. Many religions and most individual churches have come to the unspoken understanding that marriage is not about procreation; if it was, post-menopausal woman and men with low or nonexistent sperm counts would not be able to get a church wedding. I’ve never yet heard of a church requiring a physicians certificate that states that the couple being married are ABLE to have children. Aside from that, basing marriage on the ability to bring a new life into the world discounts the fact that love and caring are actually the cornerstones of all successful marriages. That alone should be the deciding factor behind every church sanctioned marriage ceremony.
What Mr. Priebus is really saying is that HE doesn’t support gay marriage. That is, of course, his right and feeling like that, HE should never enter into a gay marriage; and if he has any children who turn out to be gay, it would be far better for he, she or them to be sent to live with a more understanding substitute parent; if not, they will be subject to a life of loneliness.
Gay is not a disease, not a disability, not a curse, not “curable” and not abnormal. Gay is the way that some people ARE and they can never be any other way! They were created by the same “force” (call it “God” if you like) that created everyone else. To deny a gay couple the right to marry and deny them the legal rights that go with marriage can be considered nothing but cruel.
Forty-seven years ago Mitt Romney was apparently a very bad boy!
The incident described in a Politics Now article published today, recounts a situation where Romney, as a teenager, behaved very badly toward a student who was glaringly different from the majority of the students at the Cranbrook School in Michigan where Romney attended high school.
That incident does not reflect well upon Mitt Romney the teen aged bully but, and the Washington Post will never admit it, it says nothing about Mitt Romney the man, 47 years later.
This shows the desperation of the Obama supporters but it is, quite honestly, also typical of presidential politics in both parties during an election cycle. Millions of dollars are wasted digging up dirt from an opponent’s past and making the very disingenuous case that people never learn . . . never change.
The stories of how people misbehaved decades ago may seem relevant to the moment, but they rarely are. People do grow! People do learn! Real bullys usually wind up as inmates, not as Governors. It would not be a stretch to imply that there are singular events in every one of our younger lives that we now, as adults, regret. This may not, however, include Robin Abcarian, the author of the Politics Now article, who was, no doubt, overjoyed to be able to depict Mitt Romney as a savage bully. We can be sure that Robin was a perfect angel in high school!
It would be refreshing to see the Obama reelection campaign forget about character assassination and focus on issues that are important. Of course it is highly unlikely that you will see that happening in this campaign. We have a president who has a practically indefensible record as president and, as a result, all he and his supporters have to rely on are ‘gutter politics.’
President Obama has “evolved” to the view that everyone really IS equal — including gay people who fall in love. I can understand why Americans would have to “evolve” to that position — the majority of Americans have been brainwashed by various religious institutions to believe in their irrational teachings. It takes something special (like a run for reelection) to clear their head.
The Christian bible has approximately 7 passages spread out between a few different “books” that seem to condemn homosexual relations. I could go into the arguments used to refute these apparent condemnations but there is no need to waste my or your time beating a dead horse. People who believe that homosexuals are inherently bad people who made a bad “choice” (the “choice” to be gay) are incapable of thinking anything else and are too brainwashed to understand that gay is not a choice or a disease or a mental disorder.
If there is anyone out there reading this who is capable of facing facts, here’s a documentary to watch: Fish Out Of Water; Fish Out Of Water is available at Netflix(R) (www.netflix.com/; just type the movie title in the search box and press the ENTER key). Fish out of Water is a partially animated documentary that interviews theologians, and ordinary people, refutes the biblical condemnations and, most interestingly, points out that the ‘Apostle Paul’ was the author of every passage that condemns homosexuality.
Since most (not all) homophobes are suppressing their own homosexual tendencies, one might conclude that Paul fits into that category … one just MIGHT conclude that!
CNN Politics: Obama announces he supports same-sex marriage
Fish Out Of Water: A documentary film by director Ky Dickens.
CBSNews.com is running an Associated Press article today titled Who’s who? Obama, Romney projecting mirror image” . The article focuses on campaign rhetoric and accusations and actually states that Obama and Romney are “two cautious candidates with more traits in common than their disparate early biographies would suggest.”
The press (in this case the Associated Press) along with the Democratic Party would just love to have us believe that the differences between a second Obama term and a first Romney term would be so insignificant that we might as well go with the status quo.
Unfortunately there are some who will actually believe that! These are the same people who believe in redistributing wealth (leveling the playing field) and who believe that the federal government is still not large or powerful enough. They believe, as Obama does, that success should be punished and not rewarded. What is most chilling is that they believe that the United States is no better or worse than any other country.
I can only hope that, in November, the majority of Americans will be able to see through this Liberal obfuscation and understand that voting Obama out of office is the beginning of the “real change” that this country needs — but just the beginning. What follows has to be the dismantling of the ‘Obama years.’
During the past 3-1/2 years we’ve seen a federal government that lusts after power over the population; a federal government that has ignored the fact that this country is a republic, not a monarchy; a federal government that too often forgets that the governing document for the United States is it’s Constitution — not Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals.”
Consider the enormity of the situation and consider the fact that Mitt Romney has the Republican nomination for President all but signed, sealed and delivered; considering those two facts one would think that Rick Santorum could stop being a pompous, pious ass long enough to throw his full support behind Mitt Romney and actively campaign for him.
But NO! Pompous, pious asses typically refuse to see beyond their own desires, prejudices and wounded pride until it’s too late.
Wake up Rick!! The future of the entire United States is at stake and that’s a hell of a lot more important than Rick Santorum’s homophobia or his interests in denying choice to pregnant women.
Lick your wounds later Rick, and by the way you too Newt — this is the most important election in either of your lifetimes — either do everything you can to help Mitt Romney win it and to preserve what’s left of our freedom or take a long vacation from public life until at least 2013.
Reuters: There’s a chill in the air as Romney, Santorum talk