Sunday, November 30, 2014
How would you feel if you got what you wanted? You hate abortion. You succeed in helping to make it illegal. How do you feel? You think we need to change the way we choose our leaders ... namely we need impartial control of the drawing of congressional districts. You fight hard for it and it happens. How do you feel? If everyone in this country is free to marry whomever they want without having to make any sacrifices to do so, I would be immensely happy and I would not feel the slightest twinge of regret. We would be stopping some folks from imposing their religious beliefs on others, allowing many people to simply live their lives and enjoy them, and not suffering much in the way of negative consequences. I would not feel guilt about imposing my views on someone else's life, I would feel as if I had addressed the root of the problem. I would feel really good, and so would a lot of other people. No anger. No vengeance. No guilt. The question is, can you say the same about the causes you are fighting for. Can you consider the facts, logic, reason, the feelings of others ... and still feel satisfied and content with victory? It's an important question, that will not always be answered with a yes.
Saturday, November 29, 2014
If you live alone in the wilderness you are free and you aren't free. When you live in society you are free and you aren't free. The parameters and constraints are different, but the fundamental reality is the same. You are never completely free. So, you choose your freedom. I choose the freedom of food on my table and people sitting with me to share it. I choose the freedom of nighttime strolls and toes in the sand at low tide. I choose the freedom of books and questions. I choose freedom from and with you and yours. I choose to give you a choice. What do you choose?
Thursday, November 27, 2014
Today, are you thankful for being able to be with the people you love? Are you thankful for the opportunity you had to pursue an education? Are you thankful for the quiet safe street you live on? Are you thankful for the roof over your head. Think others might want to be thankful for these things too? I'd be thankful if more people thought so, and acted like it.
Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Monday, November 24, 2014
If American citizenship is to be at all meaningful, American citizens need to recognize the importance of equality of opportunity, accept some responsibility for achieving it, and start demanding that our elected leaders start trying harder to provide it. Right now, the idea of equality of opportunity is, in this country at least, little more than an idea. We don't even have free and fair elections (elections with id requirements meant to keep certain voters away from the polls and districts constructed to insure the control of the House of Representatives by one party (to name just two problems with our elections) can not possible be free and fair). Many folks do not have access to a quality education. Children grow up without a roof over their heads or food on their tables. Government benefits are not available to folks based on their sexual orientation. As long as these, and many other barriers to equal opportunity, exist ... American citizenship is not meaningful and American democracy is a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing,.
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Sunday, November 9, 2014
Today I listened to the neatest and most internally consistent sermon I have ever heard. It stood out in stark relief to the sermons I usually listen to ... complicated and sometimes convoluted attempts by self proclaimed liberal Christians to reconcile the Bible with reason, logic, science, and modern understanding. It was simple, neat, and clean. I can certainly see the attraction of such a sermon. I love it when things neatly fit together, like the pieces of a 24 piece puzzle. If only the world could fit into twenty four pieces without sacrificing ... well, just about everything. If only the satisfaction I felt with such neat, clean, and simple illusions was more lasting. If only the I didn't actually enjoy the messiness and struggle that comes with reason, logic, and a clear view of the circumstances in which we live.