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I have always been a big fan of NASA space research and exploration. I can remember as a kid watching Walter Cronkite telecasting the latest Apollo missions to the moon and being just fascinated.  It always made me wonder what life would look like if it was actually discovered elsewhere. All sorts of images of aliens from literature and movies and television come to mind but I am doubtful that’s what life will look like from other worlds. 
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More likely life on nearby planets say like Mars will resemble one of Earth’s extremophiles .  These organisms because of some fluke in nature or by intelligent design, you pick, survive and thrive. Simply put because of the lack of atmosphere, water, and extreme cold conditions beyond Earth, life resembling humans or even the family dog is near impossible.
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That is why in some not too distant future if NASA scientists should stumble across some single celled organism or giant tube worms  “out there” that discovery would immediately capture the world’s attention. The headlines across the web and every printed page would say something like “Life found on Mars”.  The atheists would say, see there is no God, it was just all a cosmic accident. The religious would refute their claims saying why of course God created the alien life as he created everything else. The point however is no one would doubt that what the scientists discovered was life. It might be a simple life but in the context of science it would be treated as life. I would go so far as to say that if NASA decided to bring this “life form” back to Earth they would keep it alive as best they could to study it and it would be treasured.
This brings me to my topic, choice. There are those, the same that would openly accept a single celled organism discovered on another planet as life but openly reject the idea that a viable human embryo inside a mother’s womb is not life. This seems hypocritical to me and just an excuse to justify terminating human life that for whatever reason is not wanted.
I’m sorry but I am not prepared to accept the idea that a human baby inside its mother’s womb is not alive. We would readily accept a Martian single celled organism as being alive and worthy of study but not a human baby? Come on.. This embryo might just grow up to be the next Einstein and help us achieve our goals of exploring new worlds, seeking out new civilizations and boldly going where no one has gone before. Who knows? I doubt a tube worm or some other simple life form would be so interesting or beneficial.
Nowhere in our society is murder acceptable yet if a woman cries that she must have the choice whether to kill a baby or not, it’s suddenly acceptable? Rubbish..What about the baby’s choice to be born and live?  And please don’t argue that the Supreme Court said its okay so I should just live with that. That’s rubbish too. The high court has gotten it wrong in many cases, ie Slavery, Prohibition, Obamacare, to name just a few examples. The law should be changed. It we were an ethical, moral and just society we would overturn Roe vs Wade.  To use the bumper slogan which I think has merit: “Choose life, your mother did”.
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It seems to me that a woman has lots of choices when it comes to the moments before conception. Afterwards the only legal and moral choice she should have is to protect the life of that baby until term. There are a few exceptions that I think should be addressed and discussed fully in the public arena like cases of incest, severe mental retardation or serious health risks to the mother but I am talking about the majority of cases where young healthy women become pregnant and then want to abort their baby.
There are many choices a woman has that don’t involve taking another human being’s life. A woman can choose the company she keeps which will directly impact the chances of sexual contact.  She can also choose where she physically is, which again can influence directly whether unwanted conception occurs. Is she walking home alone or in a dark alley? Does she know how to protect herself physically or does she carry a concealed weapon or means to protect herself?  Is she distracted and oblivious to her surroundings which might have some nefarious cretins hanging around? Please don’t misunderstand me. I am not saying that only women are responsible for the bad things that can happen to them. I am just saying that she bears some responsiblity for the choices she makes. For example, Is she out with friends at a movie or pizza parlor or did she choose to be at a party where males are intoxicated and/or high?  Is she choosing to leave a bar where she just met a guy and agrees to go to his place for the night or somewhere else without really getting to know the man first or setting up a second or third date? Choices, choices..
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She can choose to be sober instead of intoxicated, high, or otherwise greatly distracted like on pain meds.  She can practice abstinence instead of promiscuity. What a concept, it’s been around for thousands of years and still works.  Am I being a prude? No, practical.   Agreeing to have sex is agreeing to take the risk of having to be responsible for another human being until they are mature enough to survive on their own, which could be somewhere in their mid 20’s these days if my own daughter is any example.
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Teenagers with no job prospects, no education and no means to support themselves should choose to be abstinent and if not they should choose to be protected. Similarly an out of work adult women with limited education, and/or low income should choose to be protected. Abortion is not a birth control method. Society needs to do a better job educating people on this.
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 A woman can choose to wear clothes more suitable for girls her age and maturity. Too often I see young teenagers wearing clothes that could best be described as “come have sex with me tonight” or “I’m easy” or “slutty”. This is a cultural issue.  I have seen girls that look not more than 14 years old like this.  Hello Mom & Dad this is where you’re supposed to speak up and just say “NO, you’re definitely not wearing that”. Be firm. It’s been said that males have only one thing on their mind most of the time. Why tempt fate?  I never understood those people who let their children dress “sexy”. For what purpose are they doing this, to procreate? To just have sex, really a child? A child dress sexy, why on earth would you tolerate that? If it’s to get attention, that is really sad. There are better ways to get attention. You can be attractive without being sexual suggestive. I understand that humans need to have sex. I understand it’s basic however a human being has to be mature enough to accept the responsibilities that go with having sex.

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A woman has lots of choices leading up to conception of a child but perhaps none more important than the personal choice of being responsible for their own actions and accepting the consequences of those choices they have made. Regardless of how difficult or distasteful those consequences might be they have to be responsible. This is a failure in our society as we abhor personal responsibility these days.  Human society thousands of years ago decided that murder is not ethical or legal.  Abortion is not a birth control method it is murder. By the way, paying for birth control is a woman’s personal choice too, not society’s responsibility regardless what Sandra Fluke and her supporters might think.
I can just hear some of you now, well people don’t always make good choices especially young people and if you don’t allow them to legally abort their babies then they will go to back rooms or alleys and have unsafe abortions. I would argue society needs to be a little less “tolerant” and a little more old-fashioned. Parents need to be parents and encourage or admonish their young when it comes to being responsible, and society too needs to check its prurient interests. I haven’t even discussed the choices available to a mother once a baby that is unwanted is born that do not involve the selfish killing of their child. Choice isn’t the problem.
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 Just as today’s politically correct agenda specifies that we should live in a green world and that if we don’t recycle or use sustainable resources we should be chastised.  So too could society choose to criticize behavior that leads to bad personal choices which lead to unwanted pregnancies. Sadly it doesn’t do enough. If it takes a village to raise a child does it take a village to abort them too?  We have a choice.

A society lacking grace and afraid of intimacy spells trouble


I was waiting at the traffic light today to take our daughter to the doctor’s office and there in front of me was a jacked up pick-up truck with a twenty-something guy wearing a cowboy hat. Country music could be heard coming from his speakers and there pasted on his back window in prominent view of everyone was the message “Porn…It’s cheaper than dating.”  I suppose he thought it was funny. My daughter was unfazed by it, but frankly I was embarrassed and more than a little annoyed muttering “loser” a little too loud perhaps. Cowboys of legend and John Wayne must be rolling in their graves, if this guy is the epitome of the modern cowboy.

I suppose some will say this bumper sticker is tame by today’s standards; however I would argue there are no standards and that is indeed the problem. In society’s rush to tolerate and accept everything and everybody, good taste and decency have been thrown under the bus and replaced by the most shocking, crude, prurient communication dreamed up. Nothing apparently gets censored anymore. Everything gets a pass; all is acceptable for consumption. When did this happen?  Will this  young man a few years from now feel the same way about exercising his first amendment right to free speech when his eight or ten year old daughter asks him what is Porn. I wonder will she already know what Porn is? Will she already be influenced by it at some level as the culture reaches new levels of depravity? Just how decadent can American society become if we put our minds to it?

Maybe this “cowboy” truly believes dating’s only purpose is to get physically intimate. “Hooking up” is what some people are calling it these days but that is definitely not dating. Porn maybe offers him an easy short cut to self-gratification. The trouble is Porn never satisfies. How incredibly sad it must be for him, if dating is only about self-gratification. What about taking an interest in your fellow human being that you’re attracted to. Why not try and get to know them intimately through conversation first and time well spent together. That’s what the purpose of dating is supposed to be, and that takes a lot of effort, but most relationships of value do take effort. A human being has to invest in a person physically, emotionally, spiritually, and monetarily if they are going to love them. It’s going “all in” as they say in poker. That’s risky and requires patience but it’s worth it. My marriage of twenty-four years is proof of that.

Like every other electronic gadget and gizmo that has dehumanized society these days, Porn is now very high tech and I guess to some socially & sexually hungry human beings its promise of a quick fix is not unlike a drug that creates addiction. I would argue it’s cheating them of the true pleasure and romance in dating and creating instead intimacy problems for them in the future.

Don’t judge me man. That’s what I hear some of you reading this are saying. That’s what my kids tell me too when I have a critical comment to make about the clothes they wear, their appearance or manners. Don’t judge, really? This is the message being taught to the youth today. Well guess what, the world does judge you and me and everyone else. Whether you like it or not, whether you think it’s fair or not, it’s a fact of life and the older you get the more you realize that prejudices and judgments exist.  Everyday human beings make first impressions with their fellow human beings, and things like physical attractiveness, clothes, smells, grooming, speech, intelligence all play a role in making that first impression.

If you don’t think people judge you by appearance or actions, or you say well I’m not a judgmental person, think again and be honest. Ask yourself what you would think of a daycare provider who was watching kiddie Porn on their computer the moment you walked in to leave your kids with them. Or perhaps you need a good lawyer because your wife is divorcing you because you believe Porn is cheaper than paying attention to her. When you get to the lawyer’s office he’s dressed in pajamas sitting on his desk smoking a doobie, with a Twinkie in his other hand. Are you going to hire him? Don’t tell me you don’t judge people. We all do. It is human nature and we are hard wired to be discerning.

So why then if impressions do count and we know people judge us, do some continue to flaunt their dark side in public. Do they just simply not care or do they just not know any better? Those from the generation whose motto was “if it feels good, do it” must really be proud. For feeling good seems to be what their offspring are into these days. More and more of American society seems to exhibit this kind of detachment from their fellow human beings. Crude and rude behavior toward others is becoming more the norm instead of the rare occasion. Texting has substituted physical conversation. In person office communication to address concerns is avoided and replaced by electronic mail communication. Intimacy is replaced with pornography. Marriage is replaced with live in arrangements or “friendship with benefits”. Recognize the trend?

Just how prepared do you think this coming generation is for the tough times ahead of us if they are afraid of criticism, refuse to be held accountable or judged by their actions, and are afraid of physical human interaction and true intimacy ? How easily will they be manipulated by a government that tracks all of their electronic communication now?

Today’s American society lacks social grace and has definite intimacy issues. People of the baby boomer and my generation “the x generation”, I think have failed the youth of today in their responsibilities with their selfishness, and complacent attitudes. We failed to model that which our fathers and grandfathers did without even trying. We all can and should do a better job at being fathers and mothers, business people and leaders of our families and communities. It all starts with the man in the mirror.

Excellence is a…

Excellence is an art won by training and habituation.
We do not act rightly because we have virtue or
excellence, but we rather have those because we have
acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do.
Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.
Aristotle (384 BC – 322 BC)

America is suffering from a case of multiple personality disorder

I had a discussion the other day with someone who identified themselves as Libertarian and was promoting the idea of legalizing marijuana nationwide. While I identify with many Libertarian viewpoints I draw a line when it comes to their views on social issues and I took issue with my friend’s points. When you get down to it both Libertarians as well as those from the left of the political center embrace the idea that man is inherently good and that if only the right set of laws were put in place or the elimination of laws as in the case of Libertarians man would be happy place and be able to live in harmony or paradise on Earth. Conservatives by contrast and particularly Christian ones do not believe in the inherent goodness of man. Instead they recognize that man is corruptible from the moment of birth. I identify more I think with this belief and accept as our founders did that with great freedom comes great responsibility. Men are not angels and so laws are needed in some cases to govern human beings whose very nature is corruptible.

The libertarian mantra that everyone should be able to do whatever they want whenever they want to, and believe whatever they want to, so long as it does not hurt others is often being preached these days. We see them more and more in social networking circles and increasingly in the political arena. Like their left wing political rivals they believe that truth is subjective and changing, and morality can best be described as relative. This idea is gaining traction now too as more public schools are teaching young people to accept everyone and every culture and giving equal merit to all beliefs all the while ridiculing the Bible’s interpretation of creation and man’s purpose on Earth.

The conflict as I see it or some would say the “cultural war” is the fact that America’s heritage is not based on moral relativity; multi-culturalism; multi-lingualism; worship of the State, or hedonism. American culture, laws and customs have their roots in the Judeo-Christian experience and the belief in one true God; the acceptance of absolute truth and the natural laws of men. John Adams said “Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other”.  I agree.  It was expected from the outset that citizenship should be taken seriously. It was hoped that citizens would be honest in their dealing with one another; sober; informed and able to exercise sound judgment and fiscal and social responsibility. These things were deemed necessary in order to maintain self-governance. However, fast forward to today’s society and what you have is a population of people addicted to their own passions and pleasures, ignoring their responsibilities and increasingly reliant upon government to provide for them. An increasing number of Americans reject or ignore their heritage and common language English; and millions of immigrants now are permitted to enter the country without ever being required to assimilate to the American culture but are willing to take from  American sustenance. It is not sustainable, to use the language of the political left. Rome and many other empires of antiquity were destroyed in this way.

America does not have a state religion but if it did it most certainly would be Christian, as in poll after poll a majority of Americans still identify themselves as Christian. The numbers depending upon the polls hover around 75%.  What can be said of a population that stands for and is tolerant of everything? Are they not by default then really standing for nothing?  Furthermore what can be said of American society that claims to be Christian but increasingly is silent to pop culture’s embrace of moral relativity and secular humanism?

Increasingly the country is divided because of these issues and I believe is losing its national identity and suffering from what can be described as a multiple personality disorder. It remains to be seen what dominant if any personality emerges over time, but so far I’m not liking what I’m seeing



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