Aug 18 2017

How Shall We then Respond?

Flower Power, 1967, photographed by Bernie Boston on October 21, 1967, while he was sitting on the wall of the Mall Entrance of the Pentagon

On this day in 1587, Virginia Dare, granddaughter of Governor John White of the Colony of Roanoke, becomes the first English child born in the Americas.

We didn’t make it to Roanoke Island this summer, so I can’t really tell you what happened to The Lost Colony. But the history, both real and speculative, is fascinating.

When we’re at the Outer Banks we love visiting the island for downtown Manteo, for the aquarium, and occasionally for the dolphin tours.

Mug Shots
(click the pic)

Not to worry. We’ll be back. Just perhaps not soon enough.

It’s Friday and we’re still struggling with the events of last weekend. We will continue to struggle as the debates and rhetoric and, yes, hate, continue to fly.

All I will say is that we should all, and that means all, look beyond the hysteria before responding.

If we can’t respond without anger, and finger-pointing, and hate, then we should either not respond, or wait until we can.

How we respond is up to each of us. But in figuring out just what my response should be, I am reminded of the words of Holocaust survivor, Corrie Ten Boom. Ten Boom and her family hid Jews from the Nazis until she, her father, and her sister were captured and sent to concentration camps. Corrie Ten Boom survived. Her father and sister did not.

But in her book The Hiding Place, she recounts the time she encountered a former Nazi guard.

She wrote:

“Even as the angry vengeful thoughts boiled through me, I saw the sin of them. Jesus Christ had died for this man; was I going to ask for more? Lord Jesus, I prayed, forgive me and help me to forgive him….Jesus, I cannot forgive him. Give me your forgiveness….And so I discovered that it is not on our forgiveness any more than on our goodness that the world’s healing hinges, but on His. When He tells us to love our enemies, He gives along with the command, the love itself.”

Ponder upon that this weekend.

If you’ve been bouncing around the Interwebz talking about how love trumps hate, interspersed with comments about what you’re going to do to the $%@#$ing Nazis, or applauding those who are vandalizing statues, or reminding us how much you hate Donald Trump…then you might want to think about what Corrie Ten Boom said.

I can’t answer that for you. I can’t make your decisions.

But you should.

I really haven’t meant to dwell on this subject over the past few days, but it’s hard to let it go. Hopefully next week we can get back to your regularly scheduled snarkiness and brilliance.

This weekend, I’ll be writing, and working at the park, and maybe even mowing the lawn.

Plenty of time to think.


Statement on Confederate Memorials: Confronting Difficult History
National Trust for Historic Preservation
We should always remember the past, but we do not necessarily need to revere it. As communities work to determine the appropriate balance, we hope they move forward in a transparent, deliberative, and inclusive way that embraces the complexity here, examines many possible alternatives, and allows for a thoughtful community dialogue that gives all sides a chance to be heard.

Trump Spoke Truth About ‘Both Sides’ In Charlottesville, And The Media Lost Their Minds
The Federalist
The media’s responsibility, if it even cares anymore, is to learn how to tell the difference between the things he does right, the small mistakes he makes, and the big blunders he commits. Currently the media are apparently incapable of telling the difference between all three: it’s one and the same to them, no matter what he does, no matter what he says.

The time for Ed Gillespie’s ‘Buckley moment’ has arrived
Norm Leahy in The Washington Post
Gillespie should follow the good professor’s lead and write Stewart and his cynicism out of the Virginia GOP, and he should do it as soon as possible.

Un-American activities
The Washington Post
Communists, neo-Nazis, neo-Confederates — I can’t stand them. They are supporters of ideologies of slavery and murder. They are losers, who lost for very good reason. But their speech should be protected, I think; and the cases for stripping protection from such speech have always been very similar.

Secret Service investigating Mo. state senator over Facebook post hoping for Trump’s assassination
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
The U.S. Secret Service is investigating a Facebook post from Missouri state Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, in which she stated: “I hope Trump is assassinated!”


This, because I love Virginia, for many reasons.


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Aug 17 2017

YOLO, She said


You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.

American actress, playwright, and screenwriter, Mae West, was born on this day in 1893 (died 1980)

Oh, Mae, I never did get up to see ya.

But no regrets if you do it right the first time…I mean right?

No matter how old we are, or are not, we all have those moments in our lives that we’d like to do differently.

Mug Shots
(click the pic)

I’m not sharing mine, and you don’t have to share yours (but do share my posts).

It’s simple, the past is for remembering, not for reliving.

It is also not for forgetting.

And while I’m endeavoring to move on, I’m just going to drop this quote right here.

“Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.”

From 1984 by George Orwell

If you’ve not read the book, you should. Maybe more than once.

I can’t tell you what to think.

I can, however, tell you that you do, indeed, need to think.

So, as has been my practice for a few weeks now, I’ll include some links at the bottom that you really should take a look at.

And don’t forget to consider the “Verse of the Day.”

But, back to what Mae said, I’m working to get things right.

I’ve been taking care of my health, and my finances, and my writing, and my forty-three jobs.

I may have exaggerated there. You’ll recall that last week I mentioned the resignation of Richard Nixon. That happened after I took my last math class.

Trust me, I got that one right.

So, whilst I’ve been working on things, and have made some progress, I’m certainly not done.

The script is ready, even though I keep reading it over and over. I now have a complete cast of readers for my September debut with the Richmond Playwright’s Forum. I am both excited, and nervous.

I’ve also made progress on the upcoming newsletter. I’ve identified the service I’ll be using. It’s coming. In September. You’ll be amongst the first to know.

It does feel as if the summer is getting away from us. The Mrs. starts her new job as a teacher on Monday. Truth is, she’s already been working on it with meetings and classroom plans and things, but that’s the first official day of reporting.

That means the 17-year-old has two more weeks of freedom before he’s back for his senior year. We did senior pictures earlier this week.

My day job is on an even keel right now, but I really need to have a conversation with the person in charge of the September calendar.

It ain’t pretty.

Yet still we struggle on, because that’s what we do.

The news isn’t going to get any better. It’s just not.

Trust me, I made the mistake of reading some headlines in the midst of writing this.

So, we plan for fall. I do hate to see summer go. I’m not sure I did this one exactly right.

But I did get my closet cleaned out and I am reminded that I really look good in sweaters.

Well, maybe not as good as Mae…


Brian W. Schoeneman column: In Charlottesville: The tragic impact of political theater
Richmond Times-Dispatch
Legislatures are also more than happy to cave to the demands of a clamoring public, knowing that the courts — which are largely shielded from political factors in Virginia — will save them from the consequences of a bad decision.

Thoughts on Virginia’s Historical Monuments
Ed Gillespie for Governor
There is a balance that can be struck here, one that recognizes the outsized role Virginia has played in our history, while acknowledging that we have not always been on its right side.

Fed Officials Confront New Reality: Low Inflation and Low Unemployment
The New York Times
Federal Reserve officials are struggling to make sense of a new economic reality in which low inflation and low unemployment are persisting side by side.

Trump Follows Obama’s Example of Moral Equivalence
The Wall Street Journal
President Trump sees himself as the antithesis of President Obama, and that’s true in ways large and small. Both men, however, share a fondness for the identity politics that continue to poison U.S. race relations.

There Are Still More Than 700 Confederate Monuments In The U.S.
There are currently more than 700 monuments to the Confederacy in public places, located predominantly in the South. Only a tiny fraction of them have been removed so far. And as this weekend’s protests showed, efforts to take the monuments down — or even to relocate them to less prominent locations — often encounter vocal opposition.


Let’s not fool ourselves
The Write Side of My Brain
Getting rid of the Confederate flag will not stop the next racially motivated attack. We are naive to think that it might.


Nothing meant by this…it’s here just because…


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