NomDebPlume's 2½ Cents

Because I have an opinion about everything…

Archive for the category “Values”

Nice Guys Finish Last

2-runners1

It has been reported that John McCain considered certain aspects of Obama’s life and behavior to be “off-limits” during the campaign, even though they would make Obama look bad – and, conversely, make McCain look good.  Everyone has heard that McCain had passed a “No Jeremiah Wright” edict, considering this absurd long-term association of Obama and his family with this hate-preaching ‘pastor’ something he didn’t want to help illuminate for the American people.  I’m guessing it was because it had to do with church, but… Come on!

In addition, some of the other firm boundaries set by Mr. McCain were:

  • No Michelle Obama attacks
  • No attacking Obama for his lack of service in the Military
  • No using children to depict Obama being soft on crime
  • And absolutely no ad of a black man busting a move with a lesbian!

 ellen-and-bama-bust-a-move-smaller2

    The idea is that this last one would be too provocative, but it’s more likely that it would have led to liberals belly-aching and whining about how McCain and conservatives are intolerant racists and bigots (see “The View” for an example of said belly-aching and whining).  So, perhaps it was a shrewd mood in such a malicious and hyper-critical environment.

Obviously, I agree with leaving Mrs. Obama alone, just as the Obama campaign should have left Mrs. McCain alone. But we are talking about two totally different standards here; which man was it who put out an ad that accused the other of being so old and out of touch that he can’t even use the internet? But in reality, it is a war injury that keeps Senator McCain from using his arms comfortably enough to utilize the internet regularly. Yes, two different standards, indeed… or perhaps it’s a lack of standards at times.

By the way, what do you suppose Ellen thinks of the vocal and violent opponents of Prop 8 who are defacing churches, harassing church-goers, hurting dissenting grandmothers, stomping on crosses, intimidating those who voted against them by threatening their jobs (or eliminating them) and wreaking havoc as they take to the streets in an effort to get California’s Supreme Court to reverse this entirely fair VOTE of the people (that they agreed to abide by beforehand)? 
phyllis-burgess1

Woman in yellow is grandmother being harrassed - after having her cross trampled.

We know she donated money in an effort to defeat the proposition, has she – or any of the other highly visible/celebrity opponents – denounced this horrendous behavior or the religious persecution taking place in our very own country? 
All I’ve seen is the likes of Drew Barrymore fighting back a flood of tears as she yelled her support into a bullhorn for a battle that is not hers. 

barrymore-prop-81

Actors just love being the center of attention…

But I digress…  Or perhaps not.  Why must “nice guys finish last”?  And will they again in this whole Prop 8 debacle?  Will the tantrums of a raucous, disorderly and disobedient ultra-minority force activist judges to undo the will of the people as demonstrated by an election?
 
Is this how we want to herald the history of Mr. Obama’s arrival?
 
obama-senate-swearing2
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“Success is not final, failure is not fatal:

 

…it is the courage to continue that counts.”  

– Sir Winston Churchill

  

There is little that is final about Mr. Obama’s success, since he now needs to live up to all the promises he made, but will be nearly impossible to keep.  The watch begins…

 

I thought these other Churchill quotes were also quite notable:

 

“If you’re not a liberal at twenty you have no heart, if you’re not a conservative at forty you have no brain.”

(Well, doesn’t THIS explain a lot? :-)

 

 

“The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter.”

 

…Or, in this case, a 2½ minute conversation:

 

 

 

“Tell me who you stay with…

 

Wright:

Newsweek.com

Courtesy: Newsweek.com

 

Khalidi:

Courtesy: liberalvaluesblog.com/ibloga.blogspot.com

 

Pfleger:

cbsnews.com

Courtesy: cbsnews.com

 

Rezko:

http://www.achicagoblog.com

Courtesy: achicagoblog.com

 

Ayers-Dohrn:

 

…and I’ll tell you who you are.”

I Married a Democrat

Love Conquers All

Love Conquers All

 

No, I did not just realize he was a democrat after four months of marriage. This is not something that has reared its ugly head during the last few weeks of a heated and critically important presidential election. It is something that other people find interesting about us and our long relationship, wondering how we are able to ‘get along’ so well. We met in a republican chat room during a previous presidential election when he came in to instigate arguments, but he didn’t know *I* would be there to argue back :-) And neither of us could have guessed that heated political dialogue would someday lead to marriage.

So here I am many years later with my liberal honey, whom I love dearly and whose opinions have helped shape some of mine over the years. And after the Clinton and Bush years, amazingly, we find ourselves on the same political page – and somewhat disoriented! While he is still a liberal, he is not, nor has he ever been, stupid, so it is as obvious to him as it is to me that Barack Obama is miserably and frighteningly inexperienced for the job of Postmaster General. Oops… I mean, President of the United States. (Personally, I would not want him for either job, but that’s another story).

It concerns me that he is the least experienced candidate in history, how he also has less experience than Sarah Palin (who is number two on the republican ticket, despite how the democrats vilify and dismiss her), how he is a blatant opportunist, how his social/political associations speak to the matter of his character – as does his behavior, causes, and what he has allowed his children to listen to in church every Sunday. I find the prospect of an Obama presidency off-putting, to say the least. Lying is nothing new in Washington, but media substantiated lying and having one’s own party cleaning up behind a candidate like the sweeper behind an elephant in the circus, is something I don’t remember witnessing before, or certainly, not to this degree.

Personally, the best thing about this election cycle is that my husband has finally seen for himself what I have been trying to get him to see for years: that media bias DOES exist. It’s really something when someone has a ‘light bulb moment’, when they see what you were never able to explain. Of course, with the majority of the media in the tank for Obama, one would have to be Helen Keller to miss it, but still…

It would be difficult to narrow down the worst thing about this election cycle to just one. On the personal side, though, it may just be the very thing that has always been so good (and entertaining) about previous elections: the fact that my husband can’t vote because he is a citizen of The Netherlands. It was always nice that he could not “cancel my vote”, but this year he would actually have voted for John McCain.

It’s just part of that irony I’ve experienced with this election – like when I found myself supporting a Clinton during the primary.

What Would Make an Educator Do This to a Student?

A Man referred to as “Principal”, no less?

ZV Injuries 1

This is a picture of my son, Zachary… 16-years-old (at the time), 120 pounds soaking wet, and all of about 5 feet 6 inches tall.  The picture was taken the day he was assaulted by a principal in his high school, who looks to be at least 250 pounds, as Zachary tried to leave the building after the bell rang.  Apparently, this principal decided Zachary should wait, go sit in another principal’s office and miss his ride home.  Why?  The principal was under the impression that Zachary did not have permission to be in the hallway 5 minutes prior to the bell ringing, which he DID (indisputable). 

Even though Zachary had permission to be in the hall, he had begun his walk to the office as instructed prior to the bell ringing, but once the dismissal bell rang, he turned around and headed toward a classroom to meet a friend on his way out, and this time, was cornered by the teacher who put him in a choke-hold and wrestled him to the ground because Zachary was “disobedient”.  Once on the ground, the teacher put ALL his weight on my son, preventing him from breathing and causing him to struggle to break free just to try to get some air.  Ultimately, Zachary’s body went limp (lack of oxygen) and the principal released his grip.

Zachary Injuries 2

As evidenced in the above picture, petechial hemorrhaging is visible beneath Zachary’s eye, indicative of asphyxia, or strangulation.  A visit to our doctor immediately after being detained by the police (where Zachary was charged with Disorderly Conduct), showed that Zachary had, indeed, been deprived of oxygen to his brain.  The doctors, nurses and everyone who saw him for the next week were appalled by the marks on him, and that they had been caused by a teacher/principal at his school.  Everyone except the faculty at the school and the police, that is. 

Whatever story the faculty was offering – and they had offered me 3 different versions to prepare me for what I was about to see before allowing me in the room with my son – none of them sounded anything like, “Zachary came into school with a shotgun and was about to kill innocent people”.  To me, that certainly would have warranted such a violent take down.  No, ultimately, they put their heads together and agreed on a version that sounded like: “Zachary was in the hallway and when told to go to the office (after the dismissal bell rang and everyone else is allowed to go home), he pushed Mr. Principal, began flailing his arms and needed to be restrained.” 

Now, while my son is no angel and not an ‘A’ student, he has never had an incidence of violence against a student, and definitely never against a teacher.  His flailing began when he was being choked and that was in an effort to breathe, but, unfortunately, Mr. Principal was standing out in the hallway with a friend of his, Mr. Teacher (conversing outside of a classroom, instead of teaching), and his friend parroted every word he said in the “official” report.  As a result, the police wouldn’t even allow me to file assault charges against this man.  Neither Mr. Principal, nor his friend had any bruising, petechial hemorrhaging – not even a scratch – on them as a result of all the pushing and flailing Zachary did that needed such violent measures of restraint, coincidentally.

ZV Injuries 3

These are not scratches on my son’s shoulder in this picture – they are crease marks from his clothing, indented into his skin from the principal’s full weight and pressure on top of him after he pushed him to the ground and while he held his neck in a choke-hold, preventing him from breathing. 

[Reminder: Zachary was charged with a crime, not Mr. Principal.]

 


Why am I writing all of this?  Out of sheer frustration.  I can accomplish nothing toward achieving any semblance of justice and it just eats away at me.  Nearly 10 months have passed since this incident took place and my son is a ‘marked man’ at the school, being picked on by those in power because I dared to hire an attorney and not just silently accept our punishment.  Although my son is now in a trade school for his senior year of high school in order to avoid contact with the original principal who assaulted him, I am about 5 months behind in paying the attorney who made this arrangement possible for him – and still, we must continue to deal with the same school district, where our infamy precedes us.  

But beyond contending with the issues of the school, the disrespect shown to me and to my son, the fabrications invented by one member of the faculty – then sworn to by another – that continue to cause trouble for him and great stress for me, I am haunted by bigger problems.  Where does forgiveness come into the picture?  I believe I have forgiven this man for what he did to my son, to the extent I am humanly able.  But my question is this: Is seeking justice a sign of unforgiveness?  Ten months have passed with little action on my part for two reasons, 1-because I have wrestled with this moral dilemma, and 2-because I have learned that most people get as much justice as they can afford… and I can’t afford all that much. 

So I share this story via my blog, accepting opinions from wherever they may come.  It will probably come as no surprise that the story has been somewhat condensed, but the pertinent facts are most definitely included… except for one.  In the interest of full disclosure, I will add that Zachary did have a knife in his pocket during this entire episode, yet this was not known to anyone and he voluntarily offered it to a different principal after being assaulted.  Naturally, I was appalled to find this out, but his excuse is, and has always been, “fear”.  He has been bullied since grade school, since right after his father died when he was in fourth grade and began showing his emotions in school.  Combined with his slight build, he was an easy target.  Although the school district was no help to me in that situation, either (“Isn’t he over his father’s death YET?”), and he never used the knife, to me, this is still no excuse for carrying it… regardless of how much “safer” it made him feel.

 Please feel free to share your opinion or offer advice.  The stress from this situation is literally making me sick by exacerbating the illnesses I suffer from (Fibromyalgia and Crohn’s disease) and I need to figure out what to do.  It has been suggested to me that I just let it go and forget about the whole thing, to accept the injustice and go on with my life.  But it’s not just my life, it is my son who was victimized and it is I who must stand up for him and show that I am his advocate.  When he’s wrong, I throw the book at him, but when something like this happens, well….

Thanks for reading,

Debi

Merry Christmas… to everyone


Merry Christmas to those of you who visit this blog.  May this year be extra special in ways you’ve not experienced before. 

Merry Christmas to my children, to the man I love and to my family.
Merry Christmas to my friends and to my neighbors.
Merry Christmas to my Children’s teachers, and to all teachers.
To the salespeople who have been nice and helpful to me while Christmas shopping: Merry Christmas. 
To the rude people in the mall during this Season: Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas to the man who yelled, “Bush sucks” at me while stopped at a red light in response to my bumper sticker.
And Merry Christmas to the man who was driving in front of me with the bumper sticker that says: 

                            HeartSatan

Merry Christmas to those who are hurting this Christmas, and to those dealing with illness.
To those who have allowed their sadness to turn to anger and then try to make everyone around them miserable: Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas to those whose hearts have become so cold.

To those in our government who try and succeed: Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas to those who try and fail.
To those in the media who don’t try hard enough: Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas to Jon Stewart, John Kerry, Al Franken and Nancy Pelosi.

To the people who make our country great: Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas to our brave and selfless heroes in the military.
To the people who constantly complain that our nation isn’t great enough: Merry Christmas.
To those who want to destroy us: Merry Christmas.
Merry Christmas to the Taliban, to Al Qaeda and to Osama bin Laden.

Merry Christmas to everyone

Christmas is a gift of love not given based on the merits of the recipient.   God gave His Son to be born on this day so that He could one day die and provide the ultimate gift: forgiveness of our sin.

Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Romans 5:7-8
The Holy Bible

Chicago – Not MY Kind of Town

The Mayor’s Office of Special Events Nixes “The Nativity Story” Movie Display at Chicago’s Annual Christmas Celebration for Fear of offending non-Christians.

Yes, read it again… that’s what it says.  It brings absurdity to an entirely new level and provides an even more ridiculous category for political correctness. And the name of this annual Christmas celebration?  It’s the German Christkindlmarket – yet the movie chronicling the birth of Christ is not welcome. 

Somehow, though, the grand Nativity display that has been a part of the Celebration since its inception is perfectly o.k. and not considered “insensitive to the many people of different faiths who come to enjoy the market for its food and unique gifts,” in the words of Jim Law of the Mayor’s Office of Special Events.  By the way, among the “unique gifts” is a vendor advertised as follows on the official Christkindlmarket website:

Bethlehem Nativity Products – From the Holy Land –
Nativity scenes, praying hands & religious symbols

Christkindlmarket Nativity

According to Natalie Martinez of NBC5 in Chicago, the movie was listed on the city Web site as a sponsor of the city’s largest Christmas celebration at Daley Plaza until recently.  Even though the city claims they “never threatened to withdraw their support” of New Line Cinema’s movie, a statement by New Line expresses their frustration: “We don’t understand why our sponsorship would be rejected for religious reasons, particularly considering the fact that our film details the story that inspired the holiday season that Christkindlmarket was created to celebrate.”

Only after this story drew national attention did the City of Chicago amend their stance to include any mention of advertising standards.  Apparently, the City’s problem with New Line Cinema is now under the heading of “aggressive marketing tactics”.  Interesting.  What heading, pray tell, would this fall under:

2Travel Show

*I* found it advertised on the official Christkindlmarket website under 2006 Program Highlights… right after “Grand Opening”. 

I’m sorry, but I’m getting mixed messages here, people.  If the underwriters of the Christmas festival participate in blatant commercialism, it’s o.k., but if a company produces a movie about the birth of Christ, they can’t pay to display the trailer for that movie?

As long as I understand… :-/

How about everyone just gets used to the idea that Christmas actually IS Christ’s birthday?  It IS a Federal Holiday… we all have a day off to honor Christ’s birth and for no other reason. Why not stop the bickering, political hair-splitting, ACLU-ing and try to find out what the day actually means?

“I Love It When a Plan Comes Together”

 

You may remember a TV show from the 80’s called The A-Team – the show that pretty much made “Mr.T” a household name.  At some point during the show, when the team was in the process of successfully completing their dangerous mission, many times the Hannibal character (played by George Peppard) would say, “I love it when a plan comes together,” with a cigar hanging out of his mouth and a wry grin.

Somehow, those words… that voice… and that grin are exactly what played in my head this morning after learning the results of yesterday’s election – sans the cigar, of course, since it’s 2006 and we’re talking about Democrats with their worship of all things politically correct.  But kudos to Rahm Emanuel for a well-planned strategy to deliver Congress to the Dems, and to his pal, Chuck Schumer, who worked to deliver the Senate.  They both knew their only chance at victory would be to choose candidates who resembled Republicans, the so-called “Blue-dog Democrats”.  In so doing, the “choice for change” was that much easier for disgruntled Americans impatient with the war. 

The choice was basically: “same” or “different” and, at least in my opinion, many people just want something – anything – different than war.  It matters not that the Democrats have yet to articulate a plan for Iraq, we have been promised that it will be different… and, apparently, for the slimmest of majorities, that was enough.  Hardly a mandate, by anyone’s standards. 

For me, I look forward to watching the Democrats try to accomplish all they have promised, AND within the timeframe they have promised to do it.  The onus of performance is on them from now on and they will be under a microscope.  No longer do they have the luxury of whining, complaining, pointing fingers, calling names and claiming they can do things better… it’s game time, boys and girls.

Nancy Pelosi has been quoted as expressing her desire to “drain the swamp” once she becomes Speaker after more than a decade of a Republican controlled Congress, with a hefty list of goals for her party to accomplish in their first hundred hours. According to an AP interview published in WashingtonPost.com, this is how she has broken it down:

  • Day One: Put new rules in place to “break the link between lobbyists and legislation.”
  • Day Two: Enact all the recommendations made by the commission that investigated the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
  • Time remaining until 100 hours:
    – Raise the minimum wage to $7.25 an hour, maybe in one step.
    – Cut the interest rate on student loans in half.
    – Allow the government to negotiate directly with the pharmaceutical companies for lower drug prices for Medicare patients.
    – Broaden the types of stem cell research allowed with federal funds, “I hope with a veto-proof majority.”

I will wait with bated breath. 

In the meantime, chances are, “Ms. P” may become as much of a household name as Mr. T.  My guess is that the many people who did not really know who Nancy Pelosi was prior to voting, who allowed their emotions to dictate their decision, those who “voted for change” will be quite surprised at just what type of change they ended up getting.

It’s Only Funny Until We Vote

3Dems

Why do so many people think they’ve got this election figured out?  I’m so tired of hearing pollsters quote their findings: “29% of people say this,” “58% of people say that,” “it doesn’t look good for Republicans.”  (What people?)  To listen to the bevy of clairvoyant pundits who shoot their mouths off every opportunity they are graciously given by our ever-accommodating media, one would think they are reading from their own “wish books”, not offering impartial analyses as the professionals they claim to be. 

They call it “news”, and it certainly is news to me.  As someone who falls into the category of “Values Voter” and is a Christian Conservative, I have learned that “I am so turned off by the Foley – and other – scandals that I will probably just stay home and not vote in November”.  Reeeeally?  Well, have I got news for them: The terms “Values Voter” (or whatever else you want to call it) and Conservative Christian does not mean that I am STUPID. 

I cannot speak for all Conservative Christians, for Evangelicals, or for the “Far Right”, but I can tell you what the people I know think and what makes sense to us.  Mark Foley obviously did something wrong and is now in the process of paying the consequences.   He is not being punished for being gay, nor should he be.  He is NOT the entire Republican Party, or a symbol of it.  We have local elections all around the country of major importance where Mark Foley is not running (Duh :-/ ). 

The division of Congress hangs in the balance and this cannot be taken lightly. Not voting would be the same as a voting for a Democrat, and while the media may look down upon us as a group, I guess we only look stupid.  We realize that allowing the Democrats to win would be putting Nancy Pelosi in the #3 seat for the Presidency.  This, of course, is unacceptable.

It’s not like Conservative Christians think they’re perfect, we just “vote our values” when others may vote based on taxes or social issues, for example.  We also realize there is a certain amount of pragmatism involved in the election process.  It’s a give and take kind of thing, an imperfect system.  After all, Jesus isn’t on the ballot… :-/

Bottom line?  To preserve the values and the standard of morality that is important to us, we must prevent liberals from taking office, taking over Congress or taking the third chair.  So, no… we won’t be staying home.

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