Saturday, September 17, 2022

The civil rights movement and letting go of the past.



I wrote this after reading Mr. Filco's commentary on letting go of the past in the Williamsburg Gazette. Septemeber 2022. 


"Why Isn't Everyone Enlightened?

 

I had been thinking about Joesph Filco's commentary on letting the past go. If all it took was "following your bliss," why wouldn't everyone be as enlightened as Mr. Filco? It seems that the pathway to get there is barred by the necessity of a passage through hell, which is something few people want to go through. I think about Mr. Filco's perceived course through the suffering of the early 1960s and how that shaped his thought process. We all believe the world needs more good, and yet I think evil is necessary. Without evil, the human has no baggage to pull in his life's cart. Humans are, by nature, oxen in a sense. When the weight is lifted, the oxen become fat and lazy, and envy becomes our only baggage, the worst of all sins. I think that is what has happened to our society, where hard work is no longer revered; envy takes its place. Could it be that government intervention in the 1960s movement destroyed a part of our society? 


My main goal as a parent of two children was to let them fail. Let the children find out what a good work ethic looks like. Yet, when the child got close to the edge of a bad decision, I offered a hand to pull them back. The most difficult decision I had to make was when to hold out my hand. I am trying to say, did the civil rights movement go too far in protecting a society of people who rightfully deserved equal opportunities from failure? Was the helping hand held out too many times? Indeed we have all witnessed the helicopter parents of today's children and wonder aloud how that child will ever become an adult without evil, the opportunity to fail and learn from it. Have free government subsidies, women with children married to the government, destroyed 

the family structure where no father can hold out his hand? Are we ready to look back and admit things did not go as planned, and will we ever be able to pull our hand back in the interest of failure? 

Monday, July 11, 2022

Amazing Grace, Liberals get it wrong again





The Poem Amazing Grace was of "poor choice" as a sing-along presented by the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation's 2022 Fourth of July Celebration, wrote Malcolm Keating of Williamsburg. Typical liberal idealism misplaced, as to a separation of church and state. 

While the Poem is immensely popular in Christian circles, The poem is not founded in Christain beliefs. The Poem is about the writer's experience while at sea. Newton believed that only by the grace of God did he survive a horrific storm in 1778 while aboard the ship, Greyhound. I think we all know, man is predictable, when hope is lost, we pray, and we seek God's intervention. 

“There are no atheists in foxholes.”

The first saying circulated during World War 1, and the second saying spread during World War 2. The earliest close match appeared in “The Western Times” newspaper of Devon, England in November 1914. A speaker at a memorial service for a fallen soldier held at St. Matthias’ Church, Ilsham read from the letter of an unnamed chaplain serving at the front. 

“Tell the Territorials and soldiers at home that they must know God before they come to the front if they would face what lies before them. We have no atheists in the trenches. Men are not ashamed to say that, though they never prayed before, they pray now with all their hearts.”
 
The Poem is used for both religious and secular purposes. The term "Grace" has many meanings, yet this definition matters most. "Disposition to an act or instance of kindness, courtesy, or clemency." With the understanding that Muslims, Jews, and Christians follow the same God, the idea of grace is the same in all three religions and texts.
 
In Hinduism, grace is the central tenet of Bhakti Yoga and Bhakti movements, which are seen as reform movements in Hinduism. These movements can mean "grace," "mercy," or "blessing," depending upon the context.
 
 We should consider the idea of grace. Grace is meant for forgiveness, and in this day and time, forgiveness is in short supply. You must possess grace to be able to forgive. Grace and forgiveness do not mean we worship a particular God; Grace is an act given by God for man and an act given by man for man. A man does not have to believe in God to offer grace and forgiveness to someone who has wronged them. Yet if our children are not taught grace and forgiveness, we are forever caught in a loop of the mass killings and hate for one another we see today. Only with grace and forgiveness can we reduce and stop the mass murder issues we find in our country today. So, I say, if the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation sings a song about grace, what we are doing is reflecting upon the grace we should have for each other.
 
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost, but now am found
Was blind but now I see
 
Was Grace that taught my heart to fear
And Grace, my fears relieved
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed
 
Through many dangers, toils and snares
We have already come
T'was Grace that brought us safe thus far
And Grace will lead us home
And Grace will lead us home
 
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost but now am found
Was blind but now I see
Was blind, but now I see

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Roe vs Wade is not about abortion, Roe vs Wade is about right and wrong





Roe vs. Wade is not about right and wrong. 



Recent Supreme Court decisions should remind us that our president and Democrats who disagree with recent decisions may not uphold the rule of law. Will they completely ignore the third branch of Government? We saw this when the Supreme Court ruled on the Dred -Scott decision. Soon after that, Lincoln declared war, and 100,000's of people lost their lives on both sides of the Civil war. 

This is not about whether slavery is good or bad. This is not about whether abortion is good or bad. In the next few weeks, we will see if those who cherish our Republic, cherish our three branches of equal Government, will treat each branch as equals and with respect. Today, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer rattled the sabers of war. Sabers of hate and division. Today Democrats showed their immature asses. Democrats are quick with speeches meant to divide and show hate and discontent for the rule of law. 

We have already heard from Chuck Schumer that he wants to codify abortion, so in his words, no matter what states do, abortion will be legal. I have to wonder where that sentiment was when federal drug laws were broken and ignored by the states. Where was Schumer when the border was overrun? Where was Schumer when federal laws were ignored? Where was Schumer regarding illegals entering our country over the past 18 months? Where were the federal law enforcers when Schumer threatened Supreme Court justices in 2020 if Roe vs. Wade did not go his way? Will we see the same vigor to prosecute insurrectionists and violent protestors? My guess is no, and history will be the telling tale. Democrats will tell you like they have before, "there is nothing wrong with good trouble," but that claim begs a definition of what is good and what is bad. 

The truth is they (our politicians in DC) are a bunch of hypocrites. 

May God have mercy on their wretched souls. 100's of thousands die, and many more to come; all the while, these hypocrites use propaganda and the media to control the public. Propaganda is used to turn our eyes from high inflation, high gas prices, wars in Europe, food shortages, and baby formula shortages. We are (the public) manipulated and laughed at by those in DC. 

Monday, June 13, 2022

Louis Cantrell recently wrote an opinion piece that was printed in the Virginia Gazette. Basically, this man raged against the Christain Community, seeking pastors to denounce the ownership of guns. I found it to be a sad misinterpretation of morals. My discourse follows. Opinion can be found in the Williamsburg Va. Virginia Gazette dated 6-11-2022 

 What is the moral course? 


 Louis Cantrell asks a very important question yet does not define morality and the result of a moral decision being a person or group of persons' ethics. Both morality and ethics loosely have to do with distinguishing the difference between “good and bad” or “right and wrong.” Many people think of morality as something that's personal and normative, whereas ethics is the standards of “good and bad” distinguished by a certain community or social setting. The ethics of Christianity reveal one simple truth. We are not a perfect society or people. We make mistakes; we fail to live up to the ethics of Jesus every day. This is where forgiveness comes into our lives as Christians. Forgiveness is, in my opinion, the hardest moral decision a person will ever endeavor. 

 Let us examine the moral decision to pick up an inanimate object with hate in the heart, pull a trigger, and do harm to his fellow brother and sisters. In your own mind is where evil starts to pollute your moral decisions thereby lowering your standard of ethics. Christianity is, in fact, our shield from these low moral decisions. Blaming the inanimate object and not the moral decision to pick up the inanimate object to do harm is a short-sighted pollical ploy that some have fallen for. 

 Morals have changed over time and based on location. For example, different parts of our country can have different standards of morality. Many large urban centers exhibit a society whereby low moral decisions are made every day. One only to look at the murder rates of Baltimore, Chicago, New York City, Los Angeles, and Saint Louis to get an idea of how politics in these urban centers have affected moral decisions. Let us examine our urban center society for the following seven morals and see if these urban societies meet the standards of a good life. 

 1. Bravery: Bravery has historically helped people determine hierarchies. People who demonstrate the ability to be brave in tough situations have historically been seen as leaders. 

2. Fairness: Think of terms like "meet in the middle" and the concept of taking turns. 

3. Defer to authority: Deferring to authority is important because it signifies that people will adhere to rules that attend to the greater good. This is necessary for a functioning society. 

4. Helping the group: Traditions exist to help us feel closer to our group. This way, you feel more supported, and a general sense of altruism is promoted. 

5. Loving your family: This is a more focused version of helping your group. It's the idea that loving and supporting your family allows you to raise people who will continue to uphold moral norms. 

6. Returning favors: This goes for society as a whole and specifies that people may avoid behaviors that aren't generally altruistic. 

 7. Respecting others’ property: This goes back to settling disputes based on prior possession, which also ties in with the idea of fairness. 

 I would caution Louis Cantrell in this quest to tie religion to politics. The reason why we see such hate and lack of love for our fellow brothers and sisters is that society has turned its back on God and Christianity, among other well-respected, highly ethical religions. It is politics that has offered low moral advice to sin. Louis Cantrell gets it wrong. Christianity is the ethic we adhere to, the individual’s moral decisions to do harm do not meet Christianity’s ethics, and therefore it is here, in the heart of the individual, where sin is found. It is here we offer forgiveness, however hard that may seem to be to give. We forgive you, Louis, for your attack on our high ethical standards.

Monday, June 6, 2022

Virginia Senator Mark Warner's apathy for the voter


I wanted to highlight one of the biggest issues we have with our representation at the Federal level. The following letter was sent to Mark Warner, a Democrat Senator from Virginia. If you find yourself here reading this, note the response to my letter. Note the response informs me I have written about Robb Elementary School in TX. In fact, I never mentioned the School at all in my letter. This is nothing more than a $10.00 an hour lacky using a form letter developed for responses to recent shootings. Mark Warner never addresses my letter. Note the difference in fonts for my name and the letter. This is nothing more than apathy for the voter. Our biggest issue is apathy and this apathy for the voter starts with the local leaders all the way to the President.


My letter to Senator Mark Warner:

All Concerned, 

Today, the Daily Press in Hampton Roads had an article on June 5th, 2022. "It is initialed "Seeking safety on city sidewalks."

"He was struck by a driver in a hit-and-run on East Little Creek Road. His death came as a shock to family members. He hit him," I want you to think about this. When a driver kills someone with a car or truck, the media, in this case, blames the driver.

The use of a vehicle as a weapon in a terrorist attack is not new. Recent terrorist incidents and violent extremist propaganda demonstrate that the use of vehicles as a weapon continues to be of interest to those wishing to cause harm. Attacks of this nature require minimal capability but can have a devastating impact in crowded places with low levels of visible security. We have seen carnage like this in America and across the world, whereby not 19 like texas, but, in some cases, 50+ people lose their life as they did in France. Foreign terrorist organizations encourage arson attacks in the U.S. because of its perceived simplicity and potential to cause significant and widespread damage.

May 23rd, 2022, Santa Anna, CA. Three children were injured as they walked to school in Santa Ana Monday morning when a man drove onto the sidewalk and struck them. The scene unfolded just prior to 8:30 a.m. on Keller Avenue neat Taft Elementary School, where moments earlier, a man had been asked to leave the School's campus as he was trespassing. He was escorted by authorities before getting back into his vehicle. It was then that he drove onto the sidewalk, striking the three children. All of the victims were taken to a hospital for treatment, though they are all said to be in stable condition. Two of the children were students of Taft Elementary, while the third, a cousin of one of the students, was walking them to school.

Arson-initiated wildland fires in the U.S., especially in the west, resulted in major human, property, infrastructure, environmental, and economic losses. About 40 percent of all U.S. homes are in the wildland-urban interface (WUI)b communities, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce, putting these communities at greater risk of wildfires. Although most WUI arson incidents in the Homeland resulted in criminal charges unassociated with terrorism, messaging by terrorists may result in acts of arson connected to terrorism. Has it ever occurred to you once that the California wildfires might be related to terrorists? (https://www.dni.gov/files/NCTC/documents/jcat/firstresponderstoolbox/124s_-_Mitigating_the_Threat_of_Terrorist-Initiated_Arson_Attacks_on_Wildland-Urban_Interface_Areas.pdf)

According to the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime's 2019 Global Study on Homicide, knives were the weapon of choice in 97,183 homicides in 2017, a full 22% of the world's total. Knife attacks and stabbing deaths occur all over the globe, from those with high rates of violent crime to the safest countries in the world. That said, the frequency of knife-related violence (which includes not only knives but also other "sharp objects" such as scissors or axes) varies greatly from one region to the next.

In North America, firearm deaths were responsible for roughly 76% of all homicides, with knife-related homicides accounting for less than 20%. However, the numbers are reversed in Europe, where guns account for barely 20% of homicides, but knives are used nearly 40% of the time. In fact, the United Nations identified sixteen countries in which knives and sharp instruments were used in more than half of the country's homicides. What does this mean? This means where guns are confiscated, knives become the number one weapon of murder and mayhem. In Cuba, where no firearms are allowed to be owned. 76% of the murders are by knife.

James City County is a 2nd Amendment Sanctuary County. That means federal laws on gun confiscation mean nothing to us as it means nothing to many counties in Virginia. 
 
The fault is not the gun but the person who pulls the trigger, the person who drives the car, the person who lights the match, and the person who wields a knife. I find it hypocritical of anyone to suggest guns kill and then turn around and ignore the same for cars, arson, and knives. A person has to light the match, a person has to drive the car, a person to thrust the knife, and they blame the person, but I will be damned, liberals blame the gun, not the person when a gun is used.

As I have written many times. Gun violence is a direct result of our failing society. Our will to turn our backs on God and Religion, the destruction of the family structure. The day higher-level academia, politicians who present apathy to the real issues, and liberals in question finally realize Dr. Walter Williams, and I have been right for 20 years, America will be a better place to live.  



Mark Warners Response:


Dear Mr. Johnson,

          I have received your letter regarding the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, which resulted in the deaths of 19 children and two teachers. There are no words to express the magnitude of this tragedy.

          As a father, I can only begin to imagine the immeasurable grief these families and the Uvalde community are feeling. As a member of Congress, I am pushing my colleagues to finally act.

          It doesn't need to be this way. The majority of Americans want stronger gun safety laws, and Congress must take action.

          I am a gun owner and a strong supporter of the Second Amendment right of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms. But we have seen time and time again the deadly consequences that can follow when dangerous weapons land in the wrong hands.

          According to statistics from the Gun Violence Archive, in 2021, the number of mass shootings in the U.S. increased to nearly 700, and over 300 children younger than 12 years old were killed with a firearm. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that in 2020, there were 45,222 firearm deaths in the United States.

          I am committed to working with my colleagues from both parties to advance commonsense, achievable legislation to curb gun violence.

          That is why I joined Senator Kaine in introducing the Virginia Plan to Reduce Gun Violence Act of 2021. The bill would enact a series of commonsense gun violence prevention measures, like those adopted by the Commonwealth, including measures to remove firearms from those at risk of harming themselves or others, close background check loopholes, mandate reporting of lost and stolen firearms, prevent children from accessing firearms, and implement a one-handgun-a-month policy.

          These commonsense policies help to make our communities safer by keeping guns out of the wrong hands while still respecting the rights of law-abiding gun owners.

          I am also a co-sponsor of the Assault Weapons Ban, which would ban the sale, transfer, manufacture, and importation of military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines. I wrote about my decision to support this policy in a Washington Post op-ed. To read the op-ed, visit https://beta.washingtonpost.com/opinions/i-voted-against-an-assault-weapons-ban-heres-why-i-changed-my-mind/2018/10/01/3bfa76a0-c594-11e8-9b1c-a90f1daae309_story.html?noredirect=on.

          We must also strengthen our background-check system. That is why I have cosponsored the Background Check Expansion Act. The bill would expand federal background checks to include the sale or transfer of all firearms by private sellers, with certain commonsense exceptions like gift-giving between family members.

          It is incumbent on all of us to change policy, laws, and minds to make our communities safer. We owe it to victims and their families to stop talking about the problem and start doing something to address it.

Sincerely,
MARK R. WARNER
United States Senator


Monday, May 23, 2022

The Double-edge Sword of Propaganda

 



The double-edged sword of propaganda 


 "A fascinating and controversial look at how government and corporations control how we think and act. The nephew of Sigmund Freud, Edward Bernays (1891-1995), pioneered the scientific technique of shaping and manipulating public opinion, which he called "engineering of consent." Bernays, along with Lippmann, was a part of a powerful propaganda machine that advertised and sold World War One to the American people "Make the world safe for Democracy."

A visit to the Virginia war museum in Newport News, Va., is all one can make to understand how propaganda was used to turn American citizens into fighting mad saviors of the free world. Here you will find posters depicting "the Hun" noted as Germany, or the Japanese in cartoonish depictions aimed at turning the average citizen's efforts to win World War Two. A 1942 poster titled This is the Enemy circulated in the United States following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Its purpose was to embody the entire Japanese nation as a ruthless and animalistic enemy that needed to be defeated. This image represents a clash between two nations at war and illustrates the biased perceptions that developed as a result. By dehumanizing the Japanese and instilling fear in the minds of Americans, WWII propaganda posters prompted cultural and racial hatred that led to massive historical consequences for the Japanese. 

The extent to which propaganda shapes the progress of affairs about us may surprise even the well-informed person. Nevertheless, it is only necessary to look under the surface of any newspaper for a hint as to propaganda's authority over public opinion. An example would be the following: More Scars for the VA employment commission. Dated May 9th, 2022, Daily Press. I couldn't help but wonder why this article included a picture of Governor Youngkin? The issues were related to past governor Ralph Northam, and the article expresses that issue in writing. This expression, however, finds its way into the article near the end. When understanding how to look for propaganda, one must wonder if the picture of Governor Youngkin was used with the big headline knowing and associating Governor Younkin with an issue created before his elected duties were to commence. Is this a mistake, or is this propaganda? Was it the media's intent to use a big headline and attach the new Governor (a republican) to an issue created by the past Governor, who happens to be a democrat? I believe most readers will see the picture, read the headline, and then associate the two with bad governance. Think about it, how many times do you look at a picture and read the headline moving on to the next article in the paper? The intent here was to make our new Governor look bad in the eyes of the voter, and that is why I am a critic of the media. Other media outlets are far worse. "The View," Fox News, MSNBC, and CNN, the list goes on but know this, every one of these shows is propaganda and not the news. 

 Edward Bernays goes on to write. "The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in a democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. ...We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. ...In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons...who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind." I want each of you to think about this part of the quote. "Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society? I believe the powerful few, this invisible government, has used propaganda to divide our country. This is a double-edged sword; I hope you will understand. Edward Bernays's book "Propaganda" is available online.

Friday, April 29, 2022

          

"A Horse named Ray-Ray"
Reed Johnson

If you are reading this, you have found your way to my Blog. This blog, "discourseweekly"  is where I started to teach myself to write. I started this blog because I enjoy a good debate, putting my thoughts in words, and helping others achieve in the same manner; I have achieved a good life. Over the years, I had grown despondent concerning the lack of our elected and media leaders to respond to questions or print my opinion for review and critique. 

Please consider a purchase of this now internationally sold book for your children and grandchildren. The book can be found on Amazon, Barnes, and Noble, and other outlets found in a search engine.


Our horse riding partners in this book come from all over the world and compete in trial competitions. The idea is to bring together the world from a women's perspective or, say, a girl's perspective to learn and get along with different cultures. Some are scared at first but learn to overcome their fears. This experience helps girls to be brave, fearless, and independent. This experience also teaches the girls to care for others and work together as a team. Girls and horses are a special bond, not to say boys can't have the same bond or learn the same riding lessons. In my experience, girls and horses seem to have a special bond, unlike others. We will learn teamwork, we will learn about women in history, combined with girl power, and life advice from a horse who can talk and his horse friends. About my sister Jennifer: Jennifer suffered a brain aneurysm on December 12th, 2019. She survived two brain surgeries, a year of rehabilitation, and over a year of recovery in Baltimore, Maryland., at Autumn Lake, a Post-Acute Care Center. Jennifer received the very best of care and made many friends. If it were not for the nurses and support at Post-Acute Care, my sister might not have recovered to the extent she has. The doctors and staff at John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore cared for Jennifer with the utmost professionalism and compassion. She is now home and living with her Mom. Jennifer is disabled and suffers from short-term memory issues, tinnitus, and dizziness. Jennifer is still recovering from a third surgery to replace a hip that was broken years ago, most likely from a fall off Ray-Ray if I had to guess. I wrote this book to help Jennifer with her memory. I spent many hours having her recall memories about Ray-Ray and how she rode him. I took notes, and we found this to be very helpful with her progress. The book proceeds, if published, will help pay for Jennifer's care, pay expenses, and a little compensation for the author.



 

The civil rights movement and letting go of the past.

I wrote this after reading Mr. Filco's commentary on letting go of the past in the Williamsburg Gazette. Septemeber 2022.  "Why Isn...