Sunday, December 29, 2019

California Wildfires

Over the past year, the nightly news featured stories of massive fires destroying homes in California.  Wildfires some man originated others spread by high winds.  The fires spread out of control taking lives as it spread.

After awhile it seemed as if the location of the fires was centered in affluent areas.  The homes of the wealthy and well off were being destroyed.  Locations that may never have been meant for widespread habitation.  As I watched the television coverage I wondered why were these people suffering?  Why was the land driving them out?

Then I thought about the people who originally inhabited the land.  They too were driven off their land.  Their land taken away by people who may have looked like the people now being driven off by the wildfires.  It seemed ironic and almost biblical in nature.  Was nature dispensing early forms of justice in preparation for the massive events to come one day?  A fatal payback for crimes committed against the original settlers?  Or is it just the natural side effects of people populating land not meant to be populated?

Man often attempts to conquer nature and other men.  This time nature could not be controlled.  Death and destruction fueled by elements of nature conquered man.  This may just be an inkling of what awaits us in the future

Sunday, December 22, 2019

We Need a President Who Can Manage The Chaos - The God Factor

I have not listened to every speech by each remaining candidate for President of the United States.  Nor have I browsed through the websites of the candidates to read about their positions on the myriad of "issues".

Impeachment of the President is the current focus of our Congressional legislators.  Lost in the bickering, name calling, and finger pointing is one major point.  We need a President who can manage the chaos of the Federal bureaucracy.

We pay our taxes so that the government in return will efficiently and effectively manage our collective  resources.  We only want the funds used to provide us essential services.  Has any candidate committed themselves to ensuring our tax money is spent properly?  I don't think so.  We have been distracted by appeals to specific issues and causes.  Health Care, Gun Control, Immigration, Climate Control are among the major contenders for our interest.

Each issue requires a candidate develop an answer or position on how to "solve" the problem.  The only problem is, there are no man made solutions to man's problems.  Mankind has become so tuned in to thinking we can do anything, we really believe WE are the answers to problems we have created.

This stems from not acknowledging that there is a God who created us whom we are, or should be, responsible to.  So each day we set off on our human journeys thinking it's all about what we do.  But our time is already counting down to the end of our existence.

What should we do?  For our governmental institutions we need to put people "in control" who can  manage the chaotic institutions and practices we have created.

We need a President who starts from a foundation of believing in God.  From that center would come the ability to manage the chaos of our political institutions.  An effective President would know that only God can provide the true answers.  The answer does not mean that a human issue will be solved.

It's time to put the candidates on the record regarding their views of God.  If they do not acknowledge God, we don't need that candidate as  the leader of our government.  Even if they have a portfolio of "solutions" to man made problems.  Any solution that does not take into account God is a flawed solution.

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

A Clear and Present Danger - Domestic Terrorism

A Clear and Present Danger. That is Donald Trump. For that reason alone he should be removed from the office of the President of the United States. His arrogance, the pattern of lies and deception are dangerous in a political institution. He is not bringing healing to this country. Instead he brings continued division. In 1974 I watched on television the proceedings that were leading to the impeachment of President Nixon. Thankfully, Nixon recognized he had done wrong and resigned from office. Trump accepts no responsibility for any of his actions. He defines himself as being perfect. A Clear and Present Danger. I recall the year 1968 when tensions in this country were so great that the President could not speak in public without a threat of violence. The divisiveness in this country is at that level. If Congress does not work to bring accountability, frustrated individuals feeling dis enfranchised will take actions clearly outside the system to protect themselves from domestic terrorism. Don't think people will just stand by and let their loved ones be frightened and attacked by those who think they are superior and supreme.  This situation is why gun control will never occur in the United States.  This country hides behind a false principle that free speech protects "hate" groups from being outlawed.  It is time to outlaw hate.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Orlando Internationlal Outlet Mall Charges $10 to park??

On two recent trips to the Orlando, Florida area I saw first hand the greed that exists among some businesses.  In Orlando off I-4 the Simon Group has the Orlando International Outlet Mall which charges customers $10 to park in the nearest public lot near the mall stores.  Yes, that is $10 to park in spaces that previously were free to park in.  What do you get for your $10?  Absolutely nothing.  The Simon Group somehow has allowed the mall to reap in thousands of dollars per week by ripping off customers who want to park close to the mall area.  The parking spaces were never intended to be paid parking spots.  Most malls offer free parking because they understand that the customers are coming to the mall to spend money on items other than parking.

I was outraged to see the mall charging for parking.  We arrived early enough the first time to avoid the parking fee.  They had yet to block off all the parking lanes and put up the $10 fee notice.  The second time we shopped at the mall I avoided the area on purpose when I saw they already had the $10 fee signs posted.  There is nothing special about the parking spots other than that they are the closest ones to the shops.  Normally a first come, first park policy is in effect for most stores/malls.  But apparently the Simon Group believes that the first person with $10 to pay should have first right to the parking spots.  Yes, it's all about greed and making money any way you can.

I suggest people refuse to pay the fee and leave all the spots empty.  Then Simon will see how stupid it looks to charge people $10 to park in the parking lot nearest to the mall.  There is another lot right across from the "greedy lot" which is where we parked the second time.

Boycott the $10 lot and show Simon Group how stupid and greedy this practice should stop immediately.  #boycottOrlandointernationalmallparking

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Gay Batwoman Character

Sunday morning.  I'm preparing to get ready to drive to Sunday morning church services.  The television is on in the background to the sounds of the morning news, weather and sports.  A commercial comes out and features an upcoming series about Batwoman.  I see that Batwoman is in the bed and appears to be kissing or hugging another woman.

This is the state of television in the year 2019.  We are constantly being bombarded with images of people in gay relationships as if this is the new normal.  We are told to accept these images as they are part of the new normal life for human beings.

But what they don't tell you that it was not the intent of our Creator, God for us to indulge in homosexual relations.  But mankind does what mankind wants to do.  It's always been this way since the days of Adam and Eve.  Even through God oversaw the  destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah for the rebellious life of humans to include homosexuality, people have continued to do what they want to do.

I cringe when I see these advertisements featuring gay characters.  I shake my head when a story line for a TV series or even a movie feels the need to  promote the character as being gay.  These are the images we promote to our children as being normal behavior and Godly behavior?  There seems to be an inordinate number of TV series that cater to children that promotes gay relationships.  For those of us who believe in Christianity we know this is part of the behavior that will eventually lead to the Last Days of mankind on Earth.  All we can do is point to the bible and God's plan for how we are to live our lives on Earth.  It is clear that the homosexual lifestyle is not what God intended for us.

People need to reject the promotion of gay relationships.  These images  are promoting the plan of Satan to support anything that runs contrary to God's plan.  What's next, a story about a human having a sexual relationship with an animal?

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Something Is Wrong With This Picture!

Over a week ago I was watching the Saint Louis Cardinals playing Atlanta in the National League baseball playoffs.  The game was in Atlanta, Georgia.  The nickname of the Atlanta team is “Braves”.  One of the traditions the team has is that during a rally by the home team the stadium music plays what is supposedly some type of Native American war chant.  During this game the 30,000 plus fans take the Styrofoam hatchets/tomahawks they have either been given or purchased and raise and lower them in a stereotypical fashion they assume Native Americans did years ago.  I thought to myself, “there is something offensive about what they are doing.”  Some 200 plus years after the final decimation of the Native American culture, European Americans still are insensitive to other cultures.

So what kind of chant can minorities do to get European Americans to understand the pain that some of their rituals bring out in us?  Maybe we can name a professional sports team, the European American Land Grabbers?  Then during a rally the fans to the sounds of Joe Tex’s classic song, “I Gotcha” can pretend they are taking land from a Native American or a newly freed slave.  Or option 2 is to name the team the “EnSlavers” and during rallies pretend that they are raping the wife of one of the opposing team players.  Even better would be a professional team named the “Lynch Mob”.  During rallies fans could lift up nooses that were distributed to them as they entered the stadium and point them at the opposing team’s dugout!  

There really is no need for European Americans, or those of us taught to think like European Americans, to continue to give sports teams names that are related to Native Americans.  Why do we do so?  Only because we can and don’t really know the true history of Native Americans that would give us second thoughts to doing so.  One player on the Saint Louis Cardinals team did express his displeasure with the chant, music, and tomahawk antics of the fans as supported by the team.  Then the Atlanta Braves management reduced the antics some.  But, the chant will return and the team name will continue because the Atlanta team will use the rationale of “tradition” to continue the offensive antics.

Yes, there are other professional sports teams with names related to Native Americans.  Some schools over the years have done away with such names, but others continue the madness, only because they can.  So why do those in authority and who control the name of a sports team continue with the politically incorrect naming convention?  Only because they can.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

China, Daryl Morey, and the NBA

Daryl Morey.  Thank you for bringing into the light some of the hypocrisy that exist in the government and other institutions in the United States of America.  Instead of engaging in dialogue about the past transgressions and terrorism inflicted on Native Americans and African Americans in this country, Morey chose to point a righteous finger at social issues in China.  How did that work out for you Daryl?

 Why didn't you look within this country first and initiate a discussion about the history of lynching of black people in this country with no one brought to justice; the massacre of black people in Elaine, Arkansas in 1919; the burning down of a prosperous black neighborhood (black Wall Street) near Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1921; the murder of 14 year old Emmit Till in Mississippi in 1955; and the other numerous atrocities committed against African Americans all under the banner of the American institution of racism.  And let's not even get into the American institution of slavery.  What do you think about that period in American history Daryl?  What about that discussion Daryl?

No.  Instead your mouth opens and you talk about social conditions in China??  Now look what you have done with the relationship the NBA had with China.  Your freedom of speech?  Excuse me Adam Silver, but it's more like the ignorance and insensitive nature of those who live a life of wealth and prestige.  Daryl, once you spend some time helping to improve conditions in poor areas and helping those who do not have what you have.....maybe then you can exercise your privileged "free speech".

But for the time being, in areas of social justice please keep your opinions to yourself.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Fishers, Indiana Library Actually purchases a "Black" book!

Chapter 3 in my ongoing exchanges with the Hamilton East Fishers, Indiana Library.  I was pleasantly surprised to see that the Fishers Library actually expended someone's funds to purchase the book "Soaring on the Wings of A Dream" by Ed Dwight the first black astronaut.  Normally when I do a search request  and see that the library does not have a book by a black author or on a topic related to black people, the library has resulted to getting the book for me via interlibrary loan rather than going out and buying the book for their holdings.  I am currently reading  "Before the Mayflower" by Lerone Bennett, Jr. courtesy of a loan from Grace College to the Hamilton East library.  The college and theological seminar is located in Winona Lake, Indiana.  I admit I had no idea the college existed prior to receiving the book.

Once I saw the library had purchased Ed Dwight's book, I did wonder why Hamilton East could not have purchased "Before The Mayflower".  I am halfway through Bennett's book and it is very educational regarding the experience of black people in this country from the early days of the 1600s on forward.  So why would Hamilton East want to deprive the citizens of Hamilton County of such knowledge?  Well it might be because some of the information in the book does not present European Americans in a very positive manner. For example, I never heard of  the Fort Pillow massacre where Confederate troops slaughtered black troops who had surrendered at Fort Pillow, Tennessee during the Civil War.  I don't think there would be much celebration of the Confederate flag if stories such as what happened at Fort Pillow were part of the history told in the American educational system.  Well, I take that back.  There might be more celebrating!

So congratulations to the Hamilton East Library for doing your part to keep purity of actions as the false landscape of European American history.  I am enjoying Bennett's book and am thankful that Grace College had the courage to purchase the book for it's holdings and was willing to loan it to the resource rich Hamilton East library.

As I come across more titles and topics by minority authors, I will be nominating the books for purchase by the Hamilton East library.  European Americans need to be given the opportunity to learn the truth about racial issues in this country.  Keeping such books away from white Americans only maintains the status quo of ignorance towards other races and their experiences in these United States of America.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Is the FBI Doing enough to combat domestic terrorism?

Twelve and counting.  That is the number of mass shootings which have occurred in these United States of America in 2019.  Somewhere, a person is planning to eclipse the carnage of October 1, 2017 when 58 people were killed and 422 others injured in one incident in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation.  The FBI.  The vision of the "Bureau" is "Ahead of the threat through leadership, agility, and integration".

The priorities of the FBI:
- Protect the United States from terrorism attack;
- Combat significant violent crime;
- Protect civil rights

Based on the continued incidents of mass shootings, how well do you think the FBI is doing in fulfilling both their vision and priorities?  Is the FBI doing enough to gather information to paint a profile on the type of person most likely to commit these acts of domestic terrorism and then take proactive action to prevent them from occurring?

Most of these incidents have been committed by white males.  Most of these incidents have been related to use of weapons of mass destruction.  The American favorite, the assault weapon.  The assault weapon sold in the country with the self proclaimed best armed forces in the world.  An armed forces designed to protect us from attack by our external enemies.  But the armed forces is not designed to protect us from our neighbors.

That is where the FBI comes in.  The priorities of the FBI need to be redefined and clarified.  Protecting the United States from terrorist attack should be expanded and clarified to include acts of domestic terrorism.  In the 1960s and 1970s the FBI actively profiled, followed, and spied on civil rights activists, Native American activists, and members of the Black Panthers.  The redefined terrorists are now those who look like the  majority of FBI agents.  White and male.  Many of these domestic terrorists have an affinity to hate groups.  Hate groups consist of people who hide behind the United States banner of freedom of speech.  That same freedom of speech that condones and allows for hate, biases, and prejudice.

Now is the time for the FBI to have their priorities reset and their vision clarified.  Their is a serious domestic terrorism problem in the United States.  Regardless of whether the incidents are based on mental illness of the attacker, action must be taken to preempt the actions of would be mass shooters.

No, we should not take our eye off the prospect that a foreign terrorist act still can occur.  But, we now have ample evidence that our own citizens can cause more collective harm over a period of time than one foreign terrorist incident.  Our government needs to take action.  The FBI and our Department of Homeland Security need to revamp the approach to ensuring our safety.

We need protection now.  Otherwise just tell us that we are on our own.

Sunday, September 1, 2019

National Anthem Directions and Instructions

I was at a high school football game this past Friday. It was a decent late summer evening.  Not too muggy and warm. I had just finished watching the pre game team warm ups when it was that fateful time.  Time for the national anthem.  The stadium announcer directed us to stand and pay respect to our country and flag.  Instructed us to remove our hats if we had one.  At that point it struck me that we are being told what to do as if we had no choice. "You will stand, you will take off your cap, you will respect the flag and the country!"  This direction and instruction in the land of the free.

I thought to myself "why do you have to direct and command us on what to do? "  If we really respect the flag and all it is supposed to represent, we would not need anyone's directions and instructions when the anthem played.  We would simply stand once we heard the opening melody of the anthem.  The fact that we have to be told what to do seems to infer that we really don't respect the flag and the country.  Respect is being demanded from us.  We are complying because we don't have a choice but to comply.

What would happen if standing for the national anthem became optional?  How many of you would remain seated?  Why is it necessary to play an anthem anyway?  Is it to reinforce a false security in our allegiance to themes we really do not believe in?

A second thought came to mind as I robotically complied and stood looking aimlessly around the stadium. I saw one gentlemen walking out of the bleachers to an area behind the bleachers wearing a hat in the process.  I thought to myself, "now he had the right idea!"  Instead of standing via command I should have escorted myself out of the stands and stood somewhere out of sight while the anthem was being played.  Or I should have just stayed seated with my hat on, waiting for all the patriotic stuff to end.

Lastly came the thought why can't we just stand or sit quietly and say a prayer to ourselves to our Creator?  Why does allegiance to a country that supported enslaving people for hundreds of years have priority over praying to our Creator in whatever way we individually want to pray?

It all comes down to man made rituals and customs that have been forced upon us.  Forced upon us in schools.  Forced upon us in the military.  Forced upon us at sporting events.  Sporting events which are supposed to be a distraction for us from all the serious parts of daily life.  What happened to freedom of choice?  Why are you compelling me to stand for a flag and an anthem which supports a country that dehumanized my ancestors for hundreds of years?

I need to follow the direction of that gentlemen I saw at the football game.  Take a stroll to the rest room or to a hallway and say a prayer.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Fishers, Indiana - Public Library With Limited Books by Black Authors - Part 2

Approximately a year ago, I commented on the lack of  books related to African Americans and the experiences of African Americans in the United States.  Well not much has changed in a year.

I recently sought to find the book "Before The Mayflower" by Lerone Bennett Jr.  in the Fishers, Indiana library system.  My search request came back with the results that the book was not in the holdings of the Fishers, Indiana library system.  I queried several other books by black authors with "no results" being the result when I pressed "search".  This prompted me to write a letter to the head of the library as follows:

Hello, Over the past year I have periodically sought books either by African American authors or on topics related to African Americans. On several occasions the library obtained the materials for me via an inter library loan.  I'm thankful for those efforts. Recently I did several searches for the following materials:
1.  The book "Before the Mayflower" by  Lerone Bennett Jr. 2. The book "Blood in their Eyes" by Grif Stickley and 3.  Looked up a book on Ed Dwight the first candidate to become a black astronaut.
On each occasion the search turned up no results.  So I am concerned that the library's offerings are not as diverse as it could be under the published guidelines.  I understand the community does not have a large African American population, but the information available in the books are a source of knowledge to help educate other races and cultures regarding the experience of African American's in this country.
I did comparable searches under such topics as "Ku Klux Klan", "White nationalism" etc. and offerings immediately appeared.  I would like this matter brought to the attention of those responsible for procuring materials for the library.  If needed a resource from the African American community should be contacted to see what are the basic offerings the library lacks regarding the African American experience and interests.  The Board of Trustees appears to suffer from a lack of diversity to fully understand the need for diverse materials.
I also noticed a reference that a group called Friends of the Library also contributes  funds to library operations?
Thank You
Mr. Arnell Hill
The response I received said the following:
Dear Mr. Hill:

I appreciate that you have taken the time to provide this feedback.  It is very valuable.  I will share your concerns and suggestions with our Resource and Access Services staff who are tasked with developing our collections.  It is important to us that our collections are current and reflect the interests and needs of our patrons. 

Do I expect the collection of the library to change?  Nope.  Fishers, Indiana is definitely a majority European American based community.  Diversity is not a strong point of Fishers, Indiana.  Of course Fishers will occasionally feature a black music group at some activities and events.  Also an athlete is always welcomed for display.  That is the reality of some European Americans.  African American athletes and entertainers matter.  Ensuring books by African Americans exist in a library's collection, does not matter.  In terms of a welcoming environment, Fishers really doesn't have a lot to offer an African American family interested in African American culture.  

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

ICE immigration raids versus LAECE education raids

The United States government is sponsoring raids of households.  Not raids in foreign countries.  These are raids of homes and businesses within the United States.  The goal is to find and detain “immigrants” who will then be sent back to their country of origin.  Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security is the government organization tasked with the purging of these United States of  immigrants deemed as not having the right to be in this country.

If we have ICE, I think we also need to have LAECE (Locating Ancestors of Ethnic Cleansing and Enslavement).  The mission of LAECE would be to locate the descendants of people who committed atrocities against Native Americans and/or who enslaved people from Africa.  Once located those descendants would be informed of the actions of their ancestors.  Then they would have to appear at a public press conference and make comments regarding the actions of their ancestors. Lastly the descendants would be asked that knowing the truth what do they propose to do in the present to remove the stain of their ancestors?  As part of the process, the informing of the family would be video taped and shown as “news”.

There are many white, European American households in the United States.  Some of these households may be economically well off based on actions taken many years ago by their ancestors during the early years of the United States.  Do white, European American, families know that their ancestors may be responsible for stealing land formerly inhabited by Native Americans?  Some of their ancestors may have participated in the mistreatment, cheating, or slaughtering of Native Americans.  Do white, European American, families discuss at family reunions that they have ancestors who enslaved African American people?  Do these same families discuss how the lighter complexioned black people in the United States are based on the sexual assault/rape of African American women by possibly one or more of their ancestors?  Several of the white, European American, candidates for President have acknowledged that enslavement of African people was done by one or more of their ancestors.  Do these discussions regarding the truth happen at the family reunions of white/European American people?  If not why not?

Imagine agents of LAECE coming to the homes of white people in exclusive gated neighborhoods, the board rooms of corporations, construction sites populated by well paid white construction workers, at concerts with 20,000 plus people watching their favorite rock star, and the halls of the Congress and Senate of these United States of America.  Their purpose as agents of LAECE simply being to reveal and expose the past actions of your ancestors who enslaved people or participated in actions that forcefully removed Native Americans from their land.  The LAECE agents would provide the clear and brutal details on the actions of your ancestors.  The facts that you need to hear.  The facts you never wanted to know about.  The facts your ancestors never wanted discussed in the history lessons you were taught in school.

Just as today’s immigrants may be living in fear of a visit from agents of ICE, you also should be living in fear of a visit from agents of LAECE.  How would you feel once the story of your ancestors’ mistreatment of people is publicized and you become the target of jokes and your children bullied for being slave owners or ethnic cleansers?  Maybe that is just what this country needs.  More of the truth about the past so the racist mistakes of the present are no longer continued.  Maybe some of you already know the truth about your families past and just want the truth to remain buried?

How many millionaires have come forward and “confessed” that their ancestors enslaved people? How many owners of those downtown condominiums and million dollar homes in the suburbs have confessed that their wealth is partly due to an inheritance based on the enslavement of black people or theft of Native American lands?

Next time a white person starts a conversation with you, ask them if any of their ancestors enslaved people?  Ask them if any of their ancestors took land that was formerly possessed by Native Americans?  You are now an agent of LAECE.  Watch their facial reaction.  It’s likely the same reaction on the face of an immigrant being confronted by agents of ICE.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Land of the Free Since 1865!

It just occurred to me that the ending of the United States national anthem should be amended to "...and the land of the free, since 1865."  Plus all those references and advertisements also need correcting to add the clarifier "...since 1865".  Because that is when the United States institution of legalized slavery ended.  Of course all that has transpired in the 154 years since has not been land of the free activities for black and other people of color in this land.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Driving through the Storms When the Detour route does not work

When planning a return drive from a family reunion in Arkansas, I found myself constructing a journey analogous to real life situations.  I saw a weather report about bad storms north of our location.  I would be driving north and would likely encounter the storms on the route I planned to take.  In life we often know of bad situations and conditions that are not good for us and we have to decide whether to put ourselves into that situation or condition. 

In the instance of the storm north of us, I had the opportunity to try to avoid the weather by detouring to another route.  I would change direction to avoid the storms.  The same applies to our lives.  We often have to change direction in either our behaviors or thoughts to avoid situations that are against the Word of God or that may result in physically harm to us.

So I planned the detour route that I thought would keep us away from the storms.  In real life we make decisions to keep ourselves "out of trouble".  We try to avoid breaking religious and man made rules/laws.  During the course of my detour route, I periodically would check the weather ahead of us using the technology in the car I was driving.  It showed that even though I had adjusted my route, my route was still taking us too far north to avoid the storms.  As in real life, dangerous conditions and temptations just don't go away.  Some may even follow you!

Seeing that I would still be driving into the storm, I again adjusted our route.  The new route showed a better chance of avoiding the storm.  In real life we constantly make decisions and adjustments to avoid problems and situations.  Who likes to purposely move yourself into danger?

The new route was going well.  There was no rain or storms in sight.  Then I noticed that in checking the weather map in the car, a smaller storm was still headed our way and would cross our path.  All my planning and detours would not keep us totally out of the storms.  Just as in life we can try to avoid trouble, but trouble will often find us anyway.  Or a situation you purposely made a decision to avoid suddenly reappears in your life.

So the storm caught us.  I found myself just having to drive carefully through the storm.  I had to become more aware of my surroundings and prepare myself to make quick decisions.  Some drivers ahead of me were turning on the car's warning lights. The environment got stressful, but I found myself driving calmly knowing that nothing bad would happen to us.  I had done what I could to avoid the storm.  Now that I found us in the storm, I needed to calmly deal with the situation and drive us out of the storm.  The storm was temporary.  I didn't pull over and stop the car to wait the storm out.  I kept moving and purposely moved through the storm seeing clear skies ahead.

This is the same as in our daily lives.  We encounter problems and situations that present challenges to our religious beliefs.  We have to then make decisions on whether to drive through those challenges or to pull over to the side or the road and succumb to the power of the storm.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Abortion - State Laws Roll Back Man's Life or Death Decision

I have heard bits and pieces about two states in these United States of America, making a move to outlaw abortion except under one or two conditions.  That's the price I pay for not focusing on knowing every tidbit about human activity in this country and this world.

I must admit that I found the news refreshing.  Abortion is man's solution to being unable to control the sexual nature of ourselves.  We often engage in sex for pleasure and if birth control is not practiced the result is a life is conceived.  Unfortunately during some sexual acts conceiving a life is not what we had in mind.  The goal was sexual pleasure, not to conceive a son or daughter.  Then a decision has to be made on what about the coming child?  That decision often is made by the woman as it is within her body that the child is developing.

Sometime during the 1960s the "women's liberation" movement resulted in many women vocally expressing the view that they had a right to manage their bodies.  This "body management" included the right to terminate a pregnancy within their body.  This decision often was made in a situation where the father of the coming child did not want the child either and may have left the woman's life after the sex act.

Abortion was man's solution to what happens when through the act of sex for pleasure an unwanted child is conceived.  We have taken the gift of conception that God gave us and have created the "man" option where we can kill a life before it leaves the women's womb.

People do what  people want to do.  Just because we can.  I have yet to find a reference in the bible that God delegated to man the right to decide which life is allowed to live and which must die.  If you find that reference please send me the reference citation.  The root cause of unwanted pregnancies is with the actions of men and women.  Practicing birth control and understanding what may happen if you engage in sex (the conception of life) should be in the forefront.  We should not reduce the importance of God's gift by creating a process where we can abort the pregnancy because a human law says we can!

I'm hoping and praying that many other states over turn laws that make having an abortion a "right" of people.  It's time to return to the principles of life our Creator intended for us to follow.

Monday, May 13, 2019

The Era of TV Displaying Homosexual Relationships Continues

I made the mistake of joining my wife to watch a new CBS drama, titled "The Red Line".   The story line allegedly revolves around what happens when a white police man shoots and kills a black man n a store.  There are several sub plots.  One being the fact that the black man shot, was a gay man in a relationship with a white man.  Yes, the TV industry continues to push gay relationships out for us to view.  The scenes often have scenes where same sex partners are kissing or engaging in sexual acts that can be shown on TV.  This was the case in the "Red Line" on Sunday.  A scene of two male characters kissing was prominently displayed.

The past 5 years have featured a number of shows that felt obliged to show the sex life of the characters as an important feature to display visually.  The scenes are not necessary to the plot.  So why are they being shown?  Do producers and executives really believe that the mass public wants to see same sex relationships on TV with partners kissing and having sex?  Do they believe our youth need to see these images on TV shows? If it were up to me I would cancel our cable TV subscription and invest that money in a certificate of deposit and earn at least 2% interest per quarter.

I understand we are going through an entertainment phase where TV shows are going to have numerous scenes and plots involving homosexual characters.  I just choose not to watch them. People do what people want to do.  There are several places in the Bible where it specifically says that God did not intend for people to have homosexual relationships.  I know some people say they were born Gay, but many people are making a conscious decision to lead a gay lifestyle only because they can.  We do not need television to put the idea into the mind of people, especially our youth.  People are well equipped already to make bad decisions on our own.

Enough is enough. I told my wife I  was tired of seeing these gay lifestyle TV shows.  She can watch them by herself.  I pray Hollywood reverses this entertainment trend and gets us back to showing images that depict how God wanted us to behave.  Or is that too hard to do?

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Mother's Day from an African American Perspective

Mother's Day.  A day to honor mothers of the present.  It's also a time to remember and honor the mothers of the past.  For me it's especially a time to think about and reflect on those African American and African mothers of the past in my family.

The African mothers.  Imagine that first expression on their faces as they gave birth to their children.  Compare that expression to the facial expression when told that slave traders had taken that child, now much older away from Africa into enslavement.  They would never see that child again.

The early years of African American mothers in these United States of America was not a joyous time.  The years when black people were enslaved in the United States meant that the child of an enslaved black woman could and many times was taken away and sold into slavery far away from the mother.  That black mother never had the opportunity to watch that child develop.  That mother did not have time to nurture that child into adulthood.  She lost contact with that child, forever.

We should never forget what those mothers went through emotionally seeing their children snatched away from them.  So as you look your mother in the eye and give her a kiss and hug, sometime today think about those original African mothers, and African American mothers whose mother hood was ruined by the American institution of slavery.

Friday, May 10, 2019

When Your Advice is Not Desired - Move on

After many attempts to offer help to family members and to offer my time in volunteer activities, I have come to the conclusion that it is better to have people approach me for help.  My initiatives to offer help to family members were often met with silence and no response.  I think people truly believe they do not need help or that they did not value my offer or felt I could not help them.  Such is life.  I recall when I was young I rarely sought help also.  It must be in our human make up to think that we can solve all of our own problems.

I have learned that the experiences of others and the knowledge of others can benefit me.  I know I do not know everything about life to be able to address all of my concerns.  Having someone to turn to for advice, whether it be a friend or mentor is a bonus.  As a black male I often find myself with no one who looks like me to turn to.  So I continue making decisions by myself..

Instead of pouting about my inability to be of use to someone else, I have decided to move on and just enjoy life to its fullest.  Maybe in my adventures I will come across someone who will seek my advice. Reaching out to organizations or specific family members is no longer on my agenda.  It it is meant to be they will find me.  Until life continues.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Black Fathers Generational Differences

I realized two days ago that there are some significant generational differences between black fathers of today and the period when I was raising my 2 sons.  I made the mistake of posting a viewpoint on a social media outlet about a scenario I was encountering as a father.  The comments I received back were very argumentative, judgmental and disrespectful.  I could tell that they were comments of fathers who were likely at least 15 to 20 years my junior.

It is my belief that the values of these black fathers are not the same as the values that I learned and tried to apply as a father.  These fathers seemed to support t!he disrespectful antics of their grown adult children as being allowable because the kids are now grown.  Their viewpoint seemed to be that once a child reaches the adult hood age a parent does not have a right to give that adult child any more advice or opinions!  For them parent hood ends when the child becomes an adult. 

I did not know parents were allowed to wipe their hands of their children's behavior once they turned 18 or 21.  It seems like today's generation believes parents only have limited rights to speak up and that time period covers only 18 to 21 years old.

My point to these dysfunctional fathers was that if we as parents have information or opinions that can help, don't feel you can't talk to your children just because they are grown.  Especially in the area of  finances if the child can learn from good or bad financial decisions you make.

After that incident I voluntarily left the social media platform I had been interacting with and left all the social media groups I had signed into.  I was looking for like minded people or people who wanted to dialogue thoughtfully about an issue.  I found neither of those on social media.  I just hope the majority of black fathers do not have the opinions and values I read that day!

Friday, April 26, 2019

Black Families - Find the truth

Some black families still suffer from the ravages of the American institution of slavery that was legal in these United States up until 1865. An organized method to transition black people from being enslaved to being independent, educated, and economically free was never put into place. Individual families continue to try to find a way out of poverty, disorganization, and chaos. Many of the new generation of black people do not know where we came from and what those before them went through so that they can enjoy the life they have now. So they embrace lifestyles that European Americans push out to them as being normal. Society tries hard to push God out of your life and human choices as a replacement. Understand that there is a God. Next, learn your family history.

Monday, April 8, 2019

The Man Made "Immigration Crisis"

The United States of America.  The self proclaimed bastion of Freedom and Opportunity.  The same country where European Americans massively immigrated to a land hundreds of years ago then inhabited by Native Americans.  Native Americans did not have a formal "immigration policy" designed to keep European Americans from becoming settlers.  No wall was built on the East coast to ward off the European newcomers.  There may have been forced attempts to keep European Americans from becoming "citizens" in the "new" land.  But for the most part European Americans were free to enter what was to become the United States of America.

That entry soon turned into a massive takeover of lands previously claimed by Native Americans.  Native Americans were uprooted, forced off their property, and diseases spread by European Americans that resulted in numerous deaths to the Native American population.  The triple threat of disease, political trickery, and forced removal effectively cleared the way for European Americans to take over what had been Native American territory.

European Americans then found themselves with a massive country to build from the ground up.  Cities and transportation systems were developed along with all that was needed to support the European American ideas of civilization.  Unable or unwilling to do the hard work needed to build the country into their image, European Americans turned to enslaving free people from the continent of Africa.  Forced immigration under the name "slavery" was the European American solution.

During those years of forced slavery, fellow free European Americans continued to flow into the United States.  Opportunity for European Americans existed and there was no immigration crisis.

Now we move forward some 500 plus years.  As the percentage of people with Hispanic heritage grows in the United States comes the news that we have an "immigration crisis".  Our safety is now in danger!  A wall on the southern border of the United States needs to be built!  The purpose of the wall?  To keep "those people" out.  Even the President of the United States has declared that we have enough immigrants. Time to close the door.

We all know where the decision came from.  It is based in an economic/racially charged emotional decision.  People who do not look like European Americans are not wanted by a large segment of the population.  Forgotten are the open door policies of the past where people looking for opportunity to prosper and lead a "good" life were welcomed with open arms and few restrictions.

We all know that we are in more danger from the people already in the United States.  Few of the mass killings that have occurred in the past years are due to a failed immigration policy.  Many of the mass killings were done by European American males who suffered from mental instability or who were just filled with hate.  Changing the immigration policy will not stem the number of deaths occurring from domestic terrorist acts, no matter what you are told to the contrary.

Politicians and culture haters have created the immigration crisis.  Yes, there may be a need to refine the rules of how and when immigrants can enter the United States.  This has been done in the past. But, many politicians have turned the faults in the system into an emotional campaign of fear and hate.  Playing to the emotions of people continues to be an effective way to garner and develop emotional hate towards an issue.

Maybe in this coming round of Presidential campaign politics, common sense and respect will rise to the top of the pile of human emotions.  There is no immigration crisis.  There is a need to refine and reconstruct the administrative system of managing entry into the United States.

European Americans know that they gained all of the wealth they have today based on Native Americans not having the same views that European Americans have today towards "immigrants".  Is that why immigration raises such a fear in some circles?  Do you fear that what happened to the Native Americans may one day happen to you? Is that why the notion of gun control will never happen?  People who fear the unthinkable will always want a means to protect themselves having learned from the policies of the past.

Discussion and action on the issue of immigration must occur now.

Saturday, April 6, 2019

My Annual "Escape from the Worldly News"

It is that time again.  The pronouncements on television news shows regarding "Breaking News" has once again gotten on my nerves.  It's a reminder that someone somewhere has decided to bombard me with video and audio of events in the world they have decided I need to see and hear about.  From among the hundreds of thousands of events occurring in the world, someone has digested those into 13-20 stories I am forcefully being fed.  That is if I consent to sit in my chair and allow the TV to bombard me.  But, I have chosen not to be bombarded.

I have served notice to my spouse that the only thing I want to know is the weather forecast; if there is an escaped criminal in the area I should be aware of; and if there are any food recalls or other health emergencies.  Other wise why do I need some stranger bestowed with a title of importance to tell me what is the latest "news"?  If I want to find out the news I'll seek the info from the variety of internet sites and then determine if what they are showing is truly news or just human gossip or human interest stories.

If I don't watch the news what am I truly missing?  Apparently not much because each day I survive without hearing about the myriad of ridiculous events, crimes, and misdemeanors happening around me or in the world.  Yes, many are tragic stories.  But the fact is there is nothing that will change in my life based on most of the stories I see and hear. So why bother to watch the news?  Go out and make your own news.  But make sure your news has a positive outcome.  Don't go out to adversely impact the lives of someone.  Do a good deed.  Help someone overcome a problem.

Sure you are going to miss out on hearing about the antics of people, and the absurdity of what people can do.  Ask yourself what have you lost in not hearing what you already know about the nature of people?  We are violent, we suffer from bouts where we can't control our emotions.  We use artificial substances for a variety of "pleasures" only because we can.  What benefit are you receiving by hearing about the same events day after day after day?

I saw no benefit to the regurgitation of daily non sense especially in the political arena.  I don't need to know that another person is running for the office of President of the United States.  I only need to read about the viewpoints and ideas of that person when it is time for me to decide who to support.

Save yourself from the "news" that really is not news.  It's just drama packaged into 30 minutes because for years that was the forum to tell you what people want you to know.  Go for a walk, read a chapter in a book, go to a movie for real pretend drama that is made to entertain you.

Take at least a month off then check back in to see if you really missed "the news".

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Sports Fiasco - Robert Kraft/Anthony Davis

New England Patriots owner Kraft caught in a human trafficking sting.  NBA player Anthony Davis playing 20 minutes a game as the NBA condones his team pretty much throwing games. 

A player for the Kansas City Chiefs, a running back, lost his job based on a video that showed him pushing around a female.  The violence displayed against a woman and the NFL's no tolerance rule was the reason for his dismissal from the team.  That player recently received an offer from a team to hire him back for one year.

With that in mind, what should happen to Kraft for supporting human trafficking through his actions?  Should he be suspended for a year or more until he does some form of restitution?  He surely can't continue to be the owner of an NFL team?  Is supporting human trafficking not as evil as violently pushing a woman around?  We will see what type of punishment the commissioner of the NFL gives the owner.

Next up.  The New Orleans Pelicans in what they claim is an attempt to protect their "property", Anthony Davis, only play him approximately 20-25 minutes a game, regardless if playing him longer would give them a chance to win a game.  This is telling fans, "yeah, we know you paid $140 for a ticket to a game with the hope of seeing him play the whole game.  But forget about it!"  Anthony is our property, our slave, and we need to ensure he is in prime condition when he goes on the slave market after the season!

I thought about going to see Davis play when his team came to town. But, then I thought, why spend $130 plus to see somebody play a restricted game of 20 minutes or less?  Is the NBA stupid or what?  What is the NBA commissioner thinking?  The NBA just instituted rules to govern the "resting" of players that teams were doing, depriving again fans of seeing star players when they came to town.  Now the NBA condones teams behaving like slave masters and keeping property under control?

Fans!  Be smart and don't just throw your money at the NBA.  If teams hold back players, just watch the game on TV.  Don't spend your money on NBA tickets.  Go out and have a nice dinner.  $130 can buy a family of 3 to 4 a good meal.  Even better, it will buy a nice meal for two people paying $130 a ticket!

Sports often time reflects society.  In the case of Kraft and Davis, it is showing how hypocritical sports can be.  Let your opinion speak with how you spend your money in supporting these sports.  If they don't give you what you expect, give them nothing.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Zion Williamson Injury - a Humbling event for us all!

Those of us who intended on watching the newest college basketball sensation, (the list exists every year) were humbled last night some 40 seconds into the North Carolina vs. Duke game.  Zion Williamson was injured last night as one of his basketball shoes self destructed while he was making  a basketball move on the court.  Ironically the Nike brand shoe in question was related to Paul George who himself endured and recovered from a serious leg injury a few summers ago.

The media hype surrounding the game was that a ticket to the game rivaled the prices people had paid for recent major events such as the recent NBA all star game.  So it was truly justice that we were all reminded who was in charge.  Some people allegedly had paid $2,000 for one ticket.  When I heard that price I did think to myself that kind of money could feed a lot of people!  This was supposed to be the biggest game of the college season so far.  I could only laugh out loud thinking how all of us who had turned to watched the game were being taught a lesson.  What is the importance of a basketball game in relation to other events in life?  We were given the answer less than one minute into the game.

There are more important things.  Yes, games are a distraction from the harsh realities of this life.  But, we need to remind ourselves and continuously put things in perspective.  Even an ex President of the United States fell for the hype and was present to watch the game!  We all hope Zion will recover quickly and that his career will continue into the professional ranks.  If we were all placing college basketball into the realm of idol worship, we were taught not to do so last night.

Thanks for the reminder.  I am re grounded and ready to move forward.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

The bible: Discussion on Genesis in the Old Testament

Genesis 12 begins coverage of Abram.  My cryptic notes in Genesis 14 were, "Descendants of Noah created "Kings" Why?"  "When did this King role begin?"  It also reads about tribes and clans being developed. Again I wonder how people became so unfocused after an event when the world was destroyed and people from Noah's family had to repopulate.  Did Noah's early descendants not pass on the lesson's learned from the flood and God's destruction of life based on his disappointment in how we had turned out?  Why did God allow the concept of "Kings" to develop?

Genesis 14 seems to address the concept of tithing.  Giving one tenth of everything.  There is also a reference to not depending on man to make you rich.  Genesis 15:13-16 mentions that those enslaved will come out with great possessions!  Although this was meant directly for people in those times, I look to it as a forecast of the future for those enslaved from Africa from 1619 to the 1800s.

Genesis 16 mentions an early method of parents having a child through another host.  The notion of a surrogate parent has been around for awhile!  Genesis 16 also discusses Ishmael being cursed.  He had no choice in his development.  That does not seem fair and adds to the notion that life is not fair.   We have been put into a system by our Creator where we sometimes have no choice in what happens in our lives.

Genesis 17 goes into a discussion of circumcision.  It states that those not circumcised will be cut off from his people.

Genesis 19 goes into another destructive act of God.  Our creator routinely seemed to turn to violence as a way to make corrections.  It is no shock in how we his people also turn to violence so often.  The traits of the creator passed on to us. Homosexuality is mentioned in Genesis 19.  This behavior and lifestyle choice has been around for thousands of years.  Sodom and Gomorrah were both destroyed along with all of their inhabitants.  True to His agreement the entire world was not destroyed again, and the destruction of the 2 cities was not by flood.  Genesis 19 also mentions incest and the misuse  of alcohol.

My general impression from reading Genesis up to chapter 19, is that human beings were a flawed creation.  A violent, misguided people were created by God.  We seemed to wander for many years with no direction to correct our behavior.  Unchecked behavior leads to non Godly actions.  Even destruction of the world through a reboot, did not correct the true nature of Mankind.  The lapse of time without Godly intervention makes it seem as though God lost interest in us and went away to focus on another species maybe.  Then He returns and through his methods attempts to lay some seeds to help people he has identified as leading the way in the future?

The future gift of God's Son awaits us and opens doors to new hope with guidance given us on how to reach our fullest potential.  On the surface, Genesis is a depressing, morbid tale of our early years as a species on Earth.  Some of the issues of today, homosexuality etc. existed early on in our existence.  The violent nature of the world today mirrors the violent actions and conflicts mentioned in Genesis.  One cannot blame the current generation from not turning to religion.  The documented actions in the Old Testament are not inspiring by any means.  An explanation of the Old Testament and how God moved us into the doctrine of the New Testament is essential for a better understanding of how to apply the Bible to our daily lives, and how to interpret and apply the bible period.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Continuing the dialogue on Genesis

Genesis 9.  From Noah's sons came the people who would repopulate the Earth and continue God's creation, Man and Woman.  Noah's life span was 950 years.  Noah's descendants developed into various named clans and tribes.  It appears as if the continuity of God's message through Noah was being lost. Their is no indication that God's message is being passed on to guide the lives of these descendants.  Different spoken languages developed, placing another barrier to effective communication between people.

Then in Genesis 11, apparently after some passage of time, the people in the world somehow began to speak one language.  Where was the direction to follow God during this period? It seems strange that after God saved Noah's family, none of the story of God's destruction of all life on Earth, except Noah and his family was passed on to Noah's descendants to guide them to correct behavior in God's eyes?  If they had known about the prior destruction of life by God would misbehavior and people idolizing themselves, not God, have followed?

At this point the need for guidance was critical.  God's response in Genesis 11:7 is to confuse the people so they no longer speak the same language and can't effectively communicate with each other?  People were then scattered all over the world.  My reaction to this passage was how is this method effective in teaching the people the principles  God wanted us to follow?  How was this method effective in bringing the people closer to God?

What follows in Genesis 11 seems to be a period where people seemed to be wandering, with lack of effective guidance.  We were back to our own means, which meant progress into what God wanted us to be was hopeless.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Genesis: The Flood and the Reboot of Earth

Genesis 6:11 states that the Earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence.  What had Adam and Eve and their descendants passed on to people in terms of knowledge about God?  Whatever was passed on was not enough to keep the entire world from becoming corrupted.  Imagine if everyone today were doomed to be destroyed due to widespread corruption and violence.  God had decided to destroy all people and whatever walked on the Earth.  Among all the people was the family of Noah who he decided were worthy of saving and leaving on the destroyed Earth to restart what God had begun with Adam and Eve.  But, God did decide to save the animals that existed on Earth by having Noah collect every kind of animal for storage on the Ark that God directed Noah to have built.  Since the Earth was to be flooded with water there was no need to save the creatures in the seas, oceans and other watered areas on Earth.  Their lives would continue.

The flood waters came and every living thing on Earth except those protected in the Ark perished.  After the flood and when the waters receded Noah, his family and all the animals in the Ark were released back onto the Earth.  It was an Earth which had been purged of all evil, supposedly. In Genesis 8:21 God acknowledged that every inclination of human heart is evil from childhood.  But he promised to never destroy all living creatures by a flood again.  God did not say he would use other forms of destruction at His means.

This was God’s first attempt to correct the deficiency in His creation, Mankind.  But as history has shown that deficiency appears to be permanent.  Nothing can be done to save Man from our ultimate fate.  The repetitions of human acts of violence and the atrocities we create are part of what we are.  Yes, we are capable of performing great acts of kindness.  But nowhere in Genesis prior to the flood is there any mention of the kinder gentler side of Man that impressed our Creator enough to not destroy 99.9% of the people on Earth.

The comparison of the actions of God and those of his son Jesus Christ does show that God evolved over the years.  It seems as though a way for Man to improve and correct his nature was developed.  The old covenants of Genesis and the old testament, were replaced via the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Genesis does not present a sense of hope for mankind.  It creates the view that we as people are hopeless and raises the question why would God want to continue our existence?

Sunday, January 27, 2019

A dialogue on Genesis: Genesis 5 and 6. The Reboot of Planet Earth

Genesis 5.  Let’s pause.  Genesis 1 brought on the promise of new life, new beginnings.  The Creator made “creations” on Earth.  Animals, vegetation and someone in His image, man.  Then man is given a helpmate to assist man in taking care of the Garden in which they are to be the caretakers.  What could go wrong?  Adam and Eve were given the perfect living conditions from the Creator.  But somehow Eve and Adam do exactly what they were told not to do.  The repercussions were disastrous.  God did not give them a second chance to stay in the Garden.  Adam and Eve were evicted and they and their descendants sentenced to a life of hardship.  A life opposite from what the Creator wanted for them to have.  Something inherent in man and woman doomed us to the future and present we live in now.  The first murder in human history happens among the first born of Adam and Eve.  We know that three of the first human beings created, Adam, Eve, and Cain are flawed.

Now we move into the descendants of Adam and Eve.  Adam lives 930 years before he dies.  Other male descendants also live more than 800 plus years.  Curiously there is no mention of the lifespan of the women.  How long did Eve live?  I wonder how each generation was taught about God and the fall of man from Grace?  Apparently whatever they taught wasn’t effective as each generation seemed to be testing God’s patience as referenced by God’s comment in Genesis 6.  The reference is to God giving a 120 year lifespan to humans.  Some interpret that to have meant God was giving people in the time of Noah, 120 years to change their sinful ways.  I never have imagined God as being impatient or giving up, so that statement is somewhat shocking if God was truly giving mankind 120 years before it would be time for our Creator to take another action.

Genesis 6:5 indicates that there was widespread wickedness being performed by humans and it was consistently and totally evil.  So evil that God was sorry he had ever made humans and put them on the Earth that he created.  Can you imagine the total disappointment of seeing something you create become a vehicle of evil and wickedness?  Some of us see that in the development of the children we create.  Imagine that feeling multiplied by the hundreds of thousands.  In Genesis 6, God decides to destroy on Earth all that he has created.  God will perform the first reboot.  When an electronic device such as a computer does not work as it should, the last option is to turn it off and then turn it back on.  Earth 1.1 would reappear in the form of Noah and his family in Earth 2.1.  The bible speaks of God destroying all the animals that inhabit the ground.   Does this mean that all the animals in the seas and in the watered areas on Earth were not impacted by the coming flood of the Earth that destroyed everything on land?  If so is there any special significance that should be given today to the seas and oceans and all the life forms that inhabit them?

From reading the first 6 and a half chapters of Genesis, there is a sense of negativity surrounding the creation and development of life for humans on Earth.  Now comes the reboot designed to clean the slate and give mankind another new start.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Dialogue on Genesis 3 and 4

Genesis 3.  One would hope that Adam and Eve spent many years in the Garden of Eden before Eve fell for the temptation to eat the fruit which was on the tree in the middle of the Garden.  Like a good wife she shared the fruit with Adam, damning mankind to the life we have today on Earth.  Whatever this fruit was (maybe some is still on Earth) it appears to have taken away immediately the innocence that Adam and Eve had.  God quickly moved Adam and Eve out of the rent free caretaker role to the role of workers who had to work the land outside the Garden of Eden to sustain them.  The fun times of life were gone.  Banished from the Garden, Adam and Eve also became the first de facto Immigrants.  Genesis 3 references the Garden being guarded by cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth that guards the way to the tree of life.  Are the cherubim and flaming sword still there today awaiting some curious explorer?

It is clear that God did not want His creation to live forever which the tree of life apparently would do for Adam.  It seems that one bite of the fruit wasn’t enough to place man in the “living forever” category.

Genesis 4.  The first parents!  Another role for Adam and Eve.  Again, it is not clear if the fall from Grace gave Adam the desire to procreate with Eve.  If they were not sexually active before the Fall Genesis 4 shows they were now and the result was Eve becoming pregnant.  Adam and Eve as the first parents must have been trial by error.  They were not prepared to become parents.  Outside of God, who was there to instruct them on how to be good parents?  If God left them on their own to figure it out that established the cycle of parents being unprepared for fatherhood and mother hood. 

How did Adam and Eve teach Abel and Cain to be good children and brothers?  What was the relationship between Abel and Cain as they grew up?  How did Adam and Eve create good family dynamics?  The results tend to speak for themselves.  Adam winds up being killed by his brother Cain.  Did God expect people to behave based on the fact that He created them and thus they would be perfect?  The first parents, the first children, and then the first murder.  The creation of human beings was not going well.

Adam and Eve are said to have had other children.  The sequence of all those births is not covered in Genesis.  Those children apparently married one another to help populate the Earth.  Genesis infers that Cain married one of those descendants of Adam and Eve’s other children.  From there other generations of people developed.  Genesis 4 does not address how Adam and Eve’s descendants were taught about God.  After making the biggest mistake in Earthly history one would think that Adam and Eve would have made sure to pass on the tale of how they ruined their lives via one act of disobedience.  If not, why didn’t they share the story with their children?

Genesis 4 closes with the statement that Adam made love to Eve again and she gave birth to a son they named Seth.  It is stated that Seth was granted to Adam in place of the murdered/deceased Abel.  The close of Genesis 4 recounts that Seth had a son named Enosh.  Then all of a sudden people began to call on the name of the Lord?  Why not before then?  What role did the punished Adam and Eve have in people not calling on the Lord before then?  What were Adam and Eve’s descendants taught about God and the creation of mankind?

Monday, January 21, 2019

Dialogue on Genesis 2 and 3

Genesis 2 recounts that by the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing.  He had not yet created the first man, Adam.  God rested from all the work.  In retrospect, God should have taken an extended vacation before creating Adam!  In looking back at all of man’s actions over thousands of years, to include numerous atrocities, I simply have to ask the question, “What was God thinking when he created man and woman?”  God apparently had a plan and a vision for what man and woman would be.  That plan appears to have gone awry quickly.  God placed the first man, Adam in the Garden of Eden and assigned him to take care of the Garden.  Man was the first caretaker.  Man was given a restriction to not eat from the tree of knowledge but otherwise was free to do as he chose.  After creating a number of animals which he allowed Adam to name, God felt that Adam was still alone.  So he made a helper, Eve.  Genesis describes Eve as someone suitable for Adam.

God created woman to be the companion of man.  This was God’s plan.  Sometime after that some men and women created another option.  They decided that another man could be the sexual companion of a man.  Or another woman could be the sexual companion of another woman.  There is no coverage in Genesis that these same sex relationships are what God wanted.  People from the very beginning have done what they want to do.  Man has often made decisions without asking whether his Creator was okay with the decision.  The decision to have same sex relationships was one of the first decisions of man/woman that ran contrary to God’s original vision.  Did God intend for us to have the right to modify his plans for us?  It is not a matter of are same sex relationships correct?  It is the issue of do we have the right to modify what God intended for us?  Many of us think we have that right.

Genesis 2 and 3 do not initially address whether Adam and Eve were married in the sense of the word we have come to acknowledge.  It also does not address if Adam and Eve were initially sexually active for pleasure or procreation before the fall from Grace.   Only after the fall from grace and the commission of the first sin does Genesis 4 address Adam and Eve being sexually active to the point where Eve becomes pregnant.  Genesis does not address what Adam and Eve must have thought when they observed Eve’s physical appearance changing after she became pregnant.  Did God tell them what was happening?  How did they know what to do during the actual child birth?

No passage of time is illustrated in Genesis 2 or 3.  One can’t tell if the violation of God’s rule against eating from the tree of life was done shortly after Eve was created or years after Eve was created.  Regardless one can come to the conclusion that Adam and Eve were flawed creations.  The events that would follow would only lend support to such a conclusion.  Man didn’t stand a chance for long term survival.  We would never collectively be what God wanted us to be.  We would march off into any direction we chose, not what God intended for us.

God’s concept of man was well intended of course.  Seeing how the plan quickly went awry only leads the reader to ask again, “What was God thinking when he created mankind?”

Sunday, January 20, 2019

A dialogue on Genesis in the Bible

I am a 61 year old man.  From DNA results my ancestors are related to the Eviya and Eshira people of Gabon, Africa.  The truth as I know it is that hundreds of years ago, one or more of my ancestors was kidnapped from a life of freedom in Gabon.  They were enslaved by European Americans who had invaded the North American continent and systematically wiped out a Native American culture that already existed there.  European Americans through a combination of diseases they brought with them and aggressive land grabbing annihilated a culture in North America to the point that today it barely exists.  Before these events, life was created on Earth thousands of years ago.  We tend to not focus on our historical past to find understanding to our present.  I believe that is a major mistake. That is my truth.

Seeking some understanding to life in the United States and the events of today and the past, I have turned to the Bible.  A religious historical document that stands at the foundation of many of our lives and beliefs.  This series of blogs takes into account my understanding, questions, and reactions to the words in the Bible.  Let us first start with Genesis, the beginning.

I recall as a teenager writing to the company that published a dictionary.  I was questioning the accuracy of the definition of the word “beginning”.  I had spent 8 years in a Catholic school environment.  I recall reading catechisms and being taught in a classroom setting the beliefs of the Catholic church.  As a teenager it occurred to me that based on what I had been taught, somehow a God, Gods or some form of life always existed.  There was no beginning.  There just was life that existed beyond the understanding of human thought.  I’ve always remembered that moment.  Although there was no answer, it was a moment of clarity for me.

In the bible, Moses is stated to be the author of Genesis.  Somehow he passed on the content of Genesis to future generations.  The story/events were finally put into writing in biblical form.  Genesis 1, starts off with “The Beginning”.  I always assumed that Genesis was talking about the beginning of life on the planet Earth.  We as people seemed focused on believing that all life began with the creation of human beings on Earth.  I see no reason to not believe that our Creator, God, or whatever you want to call “Him” has created other life forms beyond human beings.  So why do we think the beginning of life revolves around us here on Earth?  It seems somewhat of a self centered approach to life.  Human beings self promoting ourselves into the number one spot on the life cycle!
Are there other inhabited planets and life forms out there?   I really don’t believe that human beings are the best life form that God, our Creator, could have made.  How and to what extent do such other life forms worship our Creator?

The “beginning” referenced in Genesis, may be the story applicable to life on Earth only.  It is possible there are other stories of “beginnings” for life forms different from ours on other planets and other solar systems.  As I read Genesis 1, it covers the creations of God, such as water, living creatures and the natural resources of the Earth.  The thought struck me, “if God created all these things and humans in the role of caretakers, don’t we have an obligation to protect the environment that He created?”  Why should we destroy what God created?  Genesis does appear to give people the role of ruling over animals.  We were given every seed bearing plant to use as food to include every tree with fruit.  As Genesis 1 ends, it is apparent that what God was doing was “working” at creating human kind and the supporting systems for human kind.  It would not be a smooth creation.  Drama and humanistic problems were coming quickly.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

We Truly Can Be Our Worst Enemy

I've heard that there is a new movie coming out in a few months.  The theme revolves around how the problems a family is having is basically their own fault.  I recently realized that we as people do not realized that help and advice to our personal problems is often within a family or through an organization we belong to. 

Maybe it's because we don't want to share problems or questions with others?  But the same problem you may be going through may have been handled by someone you refuse to seek advice from.  Even when that person has offered help.  It may be a question of us not trusting someone enough to seek advice or open up about an issue?  Regardless, the non questions results in us losing an answer or option that could resolve our current dilemma.

I am 61 years old and have been through a myriad of experiences in my life.  I consider my status as a retiree going on 6 years now with a comfortable annuity as a sign that my life has been a success.  I live a comfortable life with a few luxuries and am able to travel to see some of the world. My health is good and I live a mostly stress free life.  I have offered my advice on how to get to the place I am at now, but have very few takers who seek my advice.  So what I do is just continue on with my life of enjoyment until someone realizes, "Hey, maybe I should ask him how to handle a situation? or "Let me ask him how he got to the point he is at now!"

When I was younger I also failed to follow the advice I'm giving above.  We need to be taught to seek advice, especially within a family.  Lessons learned by others can help us avoid pitfalls in our own lives.

So next time you reach a point where you need help, seek the advice of several people.  Don't be your worst enemy!