Saturday, July 26, 2008

A Cuban Writes about Change --Obama Another Fidel?

: Letter to the Editor from a Cuban . . .
> From Richmond Times-Dispatch, Monday, July 7, 2008 ~
> Dear Editor, Times-Dispatch:
> 'Each year I get to celebrate Independence Day twice.
> On June 30 I celebrate my independence day, and on July 4 I celebrate
> America's. This year is special, because it marks the 40th anniversary
> of my independence.
> 'On June 30, 1968, I escaped Communist Cuba, and a few months later, I
> was in the United States to stay. That I happened to arrive in
> Richmond on Thanksgiving Day is just part of the story, but I digress.
> 'I've thought a lot about the anniversary this year. The election-year
> rhetoric has made me think a lot about Cuba and what transpired there.
> In the late 1950s, most Cubans thought Cuba needed a change, and they
> were right. So when a young leader came along, every Cuban was at
> least receptive.
> 'When the young leader spoke eloquently and passionately and denounced
> the old system, the press fell in love with him. They never questioned
> who his friends were or what he really believed in. When he said he
> would help the farmers and the poor and bring free medical care and
> education to all, everyone followed. When he said he would bring
> justice and equality to all, everyone said, 'Praise the Lord.' And
> when the young leader said, 'I will be for change and I'll bring you
> change,' everyone yelled, 'Viva Fidel!'
> 'But nobody asked about the change, so by the time the executioner's
> guns went silent, the people's guns had been taken away. By the time
> everyone was equal, they were equally poor, hungry, and oppressed. By
> the time everyone received their free education, it was worth nothing.
> By the time the press noticed, it was too late, because they were now
> working for him. By the time the change was finally implemented, Cuba
> had been knocked down a couple of notches to Third-World status. By
> the time the change was over, more than a million people had taken to
> boats, rafts, and inner tubes. You can call those who made it ashore
> anywhere else in the world the most fortunate Cubans. And now I'm back
> to the beginning of my story.
> 'Luckily, we would never fall in America for a young leader who
> promised change without asking, what change?
> How will you carry it out? What will it cost America?
> 'Would we?'
> Manuel Alvarez, Jr.
> Sandy Hook

"God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance and have eternal life."--the Bible

Obama in Afghanistan --a Soldier's Observation

I got this in email --indirectly from a soldier in Afghanistan.

Hello everyone,
As you know I am not a very political person. I just wanted to pass along that Senator Obama came to Bagram Afghanistan for about an hour on his visit to 'The War Zone'. I wanted to share with you what happened. He got off the plane and got into a bullet-proof vehicle, got to the area to meet with the Major General(2 Star) who is the commander here at Bagram. As the soldiers where lined up to shake his hand he blew them off and didn't say a word as he went into the conference room to meet the General. As he finished, the vehicles took him to the ClamShell (pretty much a big top tent that military personnel can play basketball or work out in with weights) so he could take his publicity pictures playing basketball.

He again shunned the opportunity to talk to Soldiers to thank them for their service. So really he was just here to make a showing for the Americans back home that he is their candidate for President. I think that if you are going to make an effort to come all the way over here you would thank those that are providing the freedom that they are providing for you. I swear we got more thanks from the NBA Basketball Players or the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders than from one of the Senators, who wants to be the President of the United States. I just don't understand how anyone would want him to be our Commander-and-Chief. It was almost that he was scared to be around those that provide the freedom for him and our great country.

If this is blunt and to the point I am sorry but I wanted you all to know what kind of caliber of person he really is.
What you see in the news is all fake.

In service,
CPT Jeffrey S. Porter
Battle Captain
TF Wasatch
American Soldier

"God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance and have eternal life."--the Bible

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Got This in Email --about the Terrorist Shoe-Bomber

I guess this is from 2003:

Sentence of Reid ......

Remember the guy who got on a plane with a bomb built into his shoe and tried to light it?

Did you know his trial is over?

Did you know he was sentenced?

Did you see/hear any of the judge's comments on TV or Radio?

Didn't think so
Everyone should hear what the judge had to say.

Ruling by Judge William Young, US District Court.

Prior to sentencing, the Judge asked the defendant if he had anything to say. His response: After admitting his guilt to the court for the record, Reid also admitted his 'allegiance to Osama bin Laden, to Islam, and to the religion of Allah,' defiantly stating, 'I think I will not apologize for my actions,' and told the court 'I am at war with your country.'

Judge Young then delivered the statement quoted below:

January 30, 2003, United States vs. Reid. Judge Young:

'Mr. Richard C. Reid, hearken now to the sentence the Court imposes upon you.

On counts 1, 5 and 6 the Court sentences you to life in prison in the custody of the United States Attorney General. On counts 2, 3, 4 and 7, the Court sentences you to 20 years in prison on each count, the sentence on each count to run consecutively. (That's 80 years.)

On count 8 the Court sentences you to the mandatory 30 years again, to be served consecutively to the 80 years just imposed. The Court imposes upon you for each of the eight counts a fine of $250,000 that's an aggregate fine of $2 million. The Court accepts the government's recommendation with respect to restitution and orders restitution in the amount of $298.17 to Andre Bousquet and $5,784 to American Airlines.

The Court imposes upon you an $800 special assessment.

The Court imposes upon you five years supervised release simply because the law requires it. But the life sentences are real life sentences so I need go no further.

This is the sentence that is provided for by our statutes. It is a fair and just sentence. It is a righteous sentence.

Now, let me explain this to you We are not afraid of you or any of your terrorist co-conspirators, Mr. Reid. We are Americans. We have been through the fire before. There is too much war talk here and I say that to everyone with the utmost respect. Here in this court, we deal with individuals as individuals and care for individuals as individuals. As human beings, we reach out for justice.

You are not an enemy combatant. You are a terrorist. You are not a soldier in any war. You are a terrorist. To give you that reference, to call you a soldier, gives you far too much stature. Whether the officers of government do it or your attorney does it, or if you think you are a soldier. You are not----- you are a terrorist. And we do not negotiate with terrorists We do not meet with terrorists. We do not sign documents with terrorists. We hunt them down one by one and bring them to justice.

So war talk is way out of line in this court. You are a big fellow. But you are not that big. You're no warrior. I've known warriors. You are a terrorist. A species of criminal that is guilty of multiple attempted murders. In a very real sense, State Trooper Santiago had it right when you first were taken off that plane and into custody and you wondered where the press and the TV crews were, and he said: 'You're no big deal.'

You are no big deal.

What your able counsel and what the equally able United States attorneys have grappled with and what I have as honestly as I know how tried to grapple with, is why you did something so horrific. What was it that led you here to this courtroom today?

I have listened respectfully to what you have to say. And I ask you to search your heart and ask yourself what sort of unfathomable hate led you to do what you are guilty and admit you are guilty of doing? And, I have an answer for you. It may not satisfy you, but as I search this entire record, it comes as close to understanding as I know.

It seems to me you hate the one thing that to us is most precious. You hate our freedom. Our individual freedom. Our individual freedom to live as we choose, to come and go as we choose, to believe or not believe as we individually choose. Here, in this society, the very wind carries freedom. It carries it everywhere from sea to shining sea. It is because we prize individual freedom so much that you are here in this beautiful courtroom. So that everyone can see, truly see, that justice is administered fairly, individually, and discretely. It is for freedom's sake that your lawyers are striving so vigorously on your behalf, have filed appeals, will go on in their representation of you before other judges.

We Americans are all about freedom. Because we all know that the way we treat you, Mr. Reid, is the measure of our own liberties. Make no mistake though. It is yet true that we will bear any burden; pay any price, to preserve our freedoms. Look around this courtroom. Mark it well. The world is not going to long remember what you or I say here. The day after tomorrow, it will be forgotten, but this, however, will long endure.

Here in this courtroom and courtrooms all across America , the American people will gather to see that justice, individual justice, justice, not war, individual justice is in fact being done. The very President of the United States through his officers will have to come into courtrooms and lay out evidence on which specific matters can be judged and juries of citizens will gather to sit and judge that evidence democratically, to mold and shape and refine our sense of justice.

See that flag, Mr. Reid? That's the flag of the United States of America. That flag will fly there long after this is all forgotten. That flag stands for freedom. And it always will.

Mr. Custody Officer. Stand him down.

So, how much of this Judge's comments did we hear on our TV sets? We need more judges like Judge Young, but that's another subject. Pass this around. Everyone should and needs to hear what this fine judge had to say. Powerful words that strike home. God bless America

"God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance and have eternal life."--the Bible

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Atheist Soldier Sues Army

Yes, this is my second blog today in reaction to something from One good blog deserves another.

Apparently, there is an atheist soldier suing the army for religious discrimination, harassment, and proselytization by the army towards evangelicalism. Now all this criticism may be fair, though it should be noted that the military is having religious issues all over on different sides. For example in that many military chaplains have felt pressure by senior officers to pray in a certain way (without mentioning Jesus). It is important to respect the religious freedom of anyone of any faith, and that includes respecting the necessarily public nature of Christian faith as well as the atheists right to abstain from religiosity at an individual level (meaning, it's not his place to demand for example that chaplains can't pray at formal events... he doesn't have to pray along).

There was a dead end suggested in the article by Michael Weinstein who is the founder of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation towards the end of military freedom.

According to Weinstein "...when you put the uniform on, there's only one religious faith: patriotism,"

If this understanding ever prevails (and that's a big if), then it's time for every God fearing Christian to put off the uniform or avoid it all together. It's one of the big 10, that we are to have no gods before Yahweh, and that restriction isn't restricted to Zeus or Baal but can include democracy, liberty, patriotism, free market and so many other values and ideals that our nation supports with force which very well could become gods if we are not careful and critical of their limits and pitfalls. Many of us American Christians no doubt give more thought to our status as American citizens than we do as citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven. Perhaps this is a major reason why our salt isn't so salty.

There was another item of interest in the article regarding the atheist soldier himself. After two tours of duty in Iraq, he says he lost his faith after he was challenged on his faith in scripture by atheists. He had too many questions without answers and thus became an atheist with nor reservations for the supernatural.

Is this really the thinking man's journey? It seems to me, if you have questions, you go and seek the answers. Perhaps he did, but between two tours of duty, how much time does one have to give these issues serious thought and seek the the help of the learned scholars upon on them.

Here's the original article

Abuse High in Teen Romance

CNN reported on a study today that demonstrates a high level of abuse amongst teens who've had sex. According to a poll by, "Sixty-nine percent of teens who had sex by age 14 reported some type of abuse in a relationship, with slightly more than one-third saying they had been physically abused,"

Original article here.

The study describes the finding as surprising, and I admit, I didn't give much thought to the idea that sexually active teen relationships would involve abuse. But it makes sense that people who engage in one foolish activity, acting on destructive passions such as that in sex outside of marriage are likely to involve themselves in other foolish activities, such as abuse.

The report went on to discuss what legislators in Rhode Island have done to address the problem which primarily involves educating teens on abuse.

That's all well and good, to treat the symptoms. The root of the problem is that we don't view persons as sacred, and we've failed to teach younger generations of the sacredness of sexuality and the importance of entering that sort of relationship under the most sober agreement and with intentions to preserve that relationship and the dignity of the other unconditionally before God and society (and that is what marriage is about).