copyright © 2008 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
It was February 14, 2008, Valentine's Day. Love was in the air. However, the expressions of appreciation offered were mournful. Doctors informed the family and his friends, Lawrence King, 15, was removed from life support. Two days earlier, young Larry was in the computer lab at E. O. Green Junior High in Oxnard, California. He sat with 24 other students when Brandon McInerney walked into the room with a gun. The armed classmate, fourteen-years of age, approached Lawrence with intent. Brandon aimed his weapon, pulled the trigger, and shot Lawrence in the head. Without hesitation, the shooter ran from the building. Circumstances led observers and police officers to conclude the act was intentional, calculated, and a conscious choice. Brandon committed what is commonly defined as a "hate crime."
copyright © 2007 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
Americans each have taxied to the dark side in recent years. Vice President Cheney, with the blessings of George W. Bush, was our guide. We were the followers. Citizens of the United States claim to care. Yet, collectively, we allow an Administration to torture detainees in Guantanamo Bay and at Abu Ghraib prison. Our fellow countrymen once honored the Rules of the Geneva Convention. This standards are now thought quaint. Americans no longer subscribe to the theory that intentional physical and psychological torment is a abhorrent. Violations of human dignity are accepted, even endorsed.
copyright © 2007 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
'Twas October 18 and Congress was a twitter. Senators and Representatives fought and they flittered. Some thought society must provide for the children. Others maintained only parents need be responsible for their wards. Congressional Democrats discussed and debated. For them Health Care for the little ones, that was the issue. When suddenly they realized this pursuit was not viable. A few thought if they built a coalition, designed a compromise all would be well. Thus, a proposal was submitted. Funds for the children in the form of Abstinence Education, surely, that would fly; health insurance went bye-bye.
As Congress deliberated and did few deeds, parents congregated and presumed a great need. In the corners of Portland, Maine parents chattered and prattled. Could we, should we, would we give our Middle School students a prescription. Might contraceptives and condoms cure societal ills? For these fine citizens sex was the subject. Who might the teacher be?
© copyright 2007 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
This tiny introductory treatise is written as an apology. Belatedly, I was informed that, unintentionally, and might I add unknowingly, I penned a persuasive piece that advances the cause of an "applied religious philosophy." After viewing the most glorious video presentation, I inscribed what was thought to be a global truth; "We all have rights, equally." I still endorse that message; however, I do not embrace the practices or philosophies of an organization that on occasions is divisive. Sadly, I experience most assemblages are.
I recall when I was younger, and still, the same today, women would say 'I am looking for a man with a sense of humor.' Perhaps, I do not have one for the possibility bores me. In truth, it concerns me. I think it offensive to laugh at others, or at the expense of others. Sadly, more often than not, these are the dynamics involved in what people think hilarious.
I want to share with serious spirits, persons of substance. I long for a reciprocal reverence. Rarely, what passes for humor is an homage to humankind. The sacrifice of any entity, I believe scars the soul. Thus, on this the day of April 1 I offer no jest. I share what for me is profound. It is not that I object to laughter. I subscribe to the words of Horace Walpole.
"The truth is incontrovertible; malice may attack it,
ignorance my deride it, but in the end, there it is."
~ Winston Churchill [Statesman, Author, Prime Minister 1874-1965]
A glimpse into the younger years of Baby Bush's life speaks volumes. Without a deep desire, few of us ever change. We may leave old habits behind. Those behaviors take a toll on our physical well-being. our psychological transgressions might also cause us to pause. We may wish to tweak our choices. Nevertheless, the substance of who we are lingers and often looms larger.
There are exceptions. Some totally transform themselves; still these individuals are few and far between. The need must be stark. When a person is born with a silver spoon is his mouth and is handed many more, he can and often does continue to do as he has done. The past is often the present and we see ample evidence of this. Consider this character . . .
Once you label me, you negate me.
~ Soren Kierkegaard [Danish Philosopher]
An article in the New York Times grabbed my attention instantly. It appeared in the health section. The title, One Spoonful at a Time. This writing was heartfelt. Author, Harriet Brown tells a gripping tale. It took me to memories of my own struggle with anorexia and bulimia and how these affected my family. In this exposé, the dilemma of how to treat the condition was thoroughly discussed. I wish to share my response to this situation and story. My personal experience of this is vast. I hope my thoughts, realizations, and rejoinders on this topic will be helpful to those grappling with similar issues. I trust that the effects of anorexia and bulimia are trials and tribulations for all those afflicted by these.
The subject of weight alone is a sensitive probing. An individual need not starve, binge, or purge in wrestling with weight. On the same day another New York Times essay loomed large entitled "Big People on Campus." This commentary contemplated the plight of being "fat." I was once that too. Many may muse in this moment, all anorexics believe they are chubby, and while that may or may not be true, I actually was at times in my life. My weight rarely was stable; nor was I when reflecting upon it. However, my weight was never the issue; it was a distraction, a symptom of what was within.
I have been working on a project, for what feels like forever. I am attempting to expand my Hyper Text Markup Language [html] horizons. I am working to broaden my comprehension of Cascading Style Sheets. Though I have heard many say, learning to create a wed page is easy, as I broached the construction, I did as I do, I freaked. When stretching beyond my own limits I often feel paralyzed. Each time I begin a novel endeavor I quietly and subtly panic. I live in fear though few would ever know this.
I suspect we all do. When the common utterance is stated, “We are all our own worst critic,” we substantiate that humans are insecure. They [we, I] question their achievements and their limitations. They [we, I] ask are they [we, I] worthy, wonderful, or weak.