Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Notre Dame murals: A reminder of Hitlers Germany

Notre Dame murals: A reminder of Hitlers Germany.

The murals of Notre Dame were created around 1882-1884 and are historical. The murals are a form of art. It is not the story they tell but, the time in history they were painted, tells a story. If an accurate depiction of the story is what you seek, then a plaque installed next to the historical mural, Iconary, plaque, painting should be placed. This plaque can depict today's interpretation of the past, this is not a time to start removing art and historical depictions of history. Honestly, I can walk into any museum of art and find 1000’s of Renaissance paintings that do not depict the past as accurate. Are we to remove all art that does not factually portray the past as precise due to today's interpretation of history or remove because the historical art offends a few?

Charlottesville Virginia 2018, students demanding the removal of the Jefferson Memorial because he was a slave owner. The founder of UVA, we want him gone!  William and Mary removed confederate art and attempted to remove a gift, a Christian cross, from Wren Chapel.  Of course, when donations were threatened President Nichols was fired, the cross stayed as pheasant under glass, W&M caved and relinquished their convictions for money.  The Silent Sam, University of North Carolina, was torn from its historical base by an uneducated youthful mob of students. These artifacts are ancient in nature, they tell us about a time in the past and how people thought. I think the ideas of the past should not be erased. I think we need to understand how people felt at that time in the past and record this time as important history. We do this through art. These historical murals that were painted represented what people believed to be art. This in itself satisfies historical and art definitions.

Confederate Iconary, a plaque, given in the early 1900s to honor fallen soldiers was removed from William and Mary. President Reveley promised a new plaque to honor all fallen soldiers, on both sides of the civil war. He lied and to this day the plaque has never been replaced. New President Katherine Rowe, in my opinion, has exhibited an unwillingness to consider a change.  President Rowe will not discuss the Confederate plaque as art or of historical significance and will not pursue its replacement as promised. Let us be clear here. A hand-carved plaque is as every bit a piece of art as a statue of Jefferson, residing in the sunken garden. Is every bit a piece of art found in the cross, residing in Wren Chapel. To witness the defacing of art, Jefferson’s statue should be a concern to the President of William and Mary. Alas, it has not historically been a concern, it seems to me.

The murals at Notre Dame are art. Plaques are art, Iconary is art. The biggest fear we face today is, the art we find in museums will be taken down and removed by the left as they see it offensive. It is these leaders of the left, professors, students, presidents, congressman-women, who remind me of Hitlers Germany.

"The Nazi book burnings were a campaign by German Student unions to burn books in the 1930s ceremonially. These books were targeted for burnings as they viewed these books as being subversive or as representing ideologies opposed to Nazism. these included books written by Jewish, pacifist, religious, classical, liberal, anarchist, socialist and communist authors." Books are a work of art, they are historical, and they tell a story. The same can be said for paintings, sculptures, plaques, and Iconary. Today we witness the removal, the cover-up, the torn down, the art of our past being destroyed. A past that the left finds subversive or as representing ideologies they oppose. It is here we see this comparison to Germany's Hitler youth.

Definition of historical: of or concerning history; concerning past events.

Definition of art: The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form. Examples of visual form: paintings, sculptures, murals, plaques, music, literature, dance.

In closing: I predict as America moves ever farther left, in its ideology, our very country will be threatened, books will be banned, music removed, paintings burned and all for the call to not offend those of political ideology, a left doctrine. The very inclusiveness they shout is but arouse, it is the power they seek, it is the power they seek, to destroy America.


Sunday, January 6, 2019

The Follower Chapter 2: We are the sum of life's experiences.

Chapter 2
We are the sum of life's experiences.

My father passed this past June 2018. Hugh Tipton Johnson, 82 years of age, had taken a fall in a park in Roanoke. Dad never recovered from this fall. I look back and wonder if God had not planned this all along. You see, Dad was an avid dancer. Shag dancing at the age of 82, his favorite of all social events. Dad had been a part of Shag clubs for the last 50-60 years is my guess. Every summer for the past 20-years, Roanoke had sponsored music in the park. A beautiful park, built in the representation of an ancient Greek amphitheater. It was early May 2018, the first concert, Dad was excited, and had been waiting for this day all winter. Dad would arrive early like he always would. He wanted to get a good parking spot and his favorite place to sit. Front and center on the first level of seating, two feet up and easy to get to the dance floor.

Witnesses say Dad had gotten up from his chair, turned to the crowd to wave to a friend. Music, dancing, his friends were all there. Everyone knew Dad as he had been coming to this event for 20-years. I can see the smile on his face, the satisfaction of making it through another winter. It's springtime, leaves are sprouting on trees, flowers fill the gardens, music is in the air. As Dad turned to wave to friends he lost his balance fell to the dance floor two feet below him. I think God gave this gift to my Dad. This gift of seeing friends one more time, to feel springs warmth after a cold Virginia winter, the music, the dancing. Dad was where he wanted to be and God knew that.

We are the sum of life's experiences. Growing up in the 1960's - 1970's certainly did make for some interesting self-preservation instincts. Thomasville NC in the late 60's early 70's was still a divided town as I remember it. The train tracks ran right down through the middle of town. Blacks lived on one side of the tracks and us whites lived on the other side. The elementary school was of course in the white neighborhood. Everyday gangs of black kids would stroll through our neighborhood on the way to school. We, of course, all knew we needed to get to school before they did or leave after they passed. If you got caught by the gang on the way to school, you were chased and if you got caught, fights broke out. Fights were never fair. Always 5-10  on one. Black boys would not fight a white boy one-on-one. They waited in gangs for you. The black girls would cheer them on, calling us hateful names, it was here I learned to fight, to run and to seek revenge.

This is a part of the civil rights movement liberals don't want to talk about. This is the part of the '60s the media will not report on and that is this truth we lived.  These poor young impressionable kids being taught to hate whitey. Parents, Grandparents, older siblings, I think all contributed to this type of behavior. Of course, the media, and we were in the midst of a civil rights movement, did not help create relationships between 10-year-olds, in fact, it separated us as it did our parents. Looking back, I can understand why black youth were in riot mode most of my young life. The peaceful protest turns violent, police harassment, assassinations of good men trying to create a better life for those who follow.

In 1974 and at the age of 13 years, was my last year living in Thomasville. My last year of playing baseball with my friends I had grown up with. I did not know this at the time but, my team sports career was over as soon as we moved yet again. The summer of 1974 was a magical year for Manns baseball. Our team, all white kids, of course, had the gracious fate of the first girl to join our team. I don't remember much of her but I do remember some of the boys on the team giving her a really hard time. I had enough of that one day and stepped in to have her back. I told my friends to leave her alone this was not right. I stood up for her and as far as I remember it was this day they backed off, at least in front of me.

Back in my day, your team was named after the group that supported the team. In our case, it was Mann's Drugstore. Our rival was The Lion Club. The only black team of the 8 or so teams in our town was called Civitan. In my day you had to make the team. You had to try out and you had to be good enough. A midsummer night I remember so well. The day before I was told I was pitching. Our two good pitchers were gone on vacation and it fell to me. Our opponent was Civitan. I pitched 6 innings of decent ball from what I remember. We won the game and afterward, I made the mistake of hanging out after the game at Doak Park. I was attacked just like before as this was a daily occurrence. Attacked before and after school, fighting blacks and no clue as to why. What we do learn is, blacks are not willing to fight one on one they are only willing to fight if they have numbers. Basically, I had to fight the entire Civitan team. Why you ask? I don't know, I got caught where I should have not been. I remember being on top of one kid beating the crap out of him, and the other nine or ten on top of me. I got lucky really, some adults saw what was happening and broke up the fight. What happened next was forever etched in my mind. The adults made me fight one kid. What seemed like forever, this fight, once I had gotten him on the ground and started to pummel him, the adults pulled me off. My white friends were just arriving with baseball bats ready to fight, things were getting out of control. The black kids were told to get out of the park, go home to your side of the tracks.

A few weeks later after being chased home again by blacks, I had managed to get home early and quickly beating these kids to my home. Every day they would walk past our home on the way to their side of the tracks. This day, revenge was to be mine. I had set up a sniper position on top of our garage. My trusty Daisy BB gun locked and loaded. As the gang came by I took my aim and shot. Pop! right in the ass. I cocked and shot again and again before they took off running. As they ran out of sight yelling bee's are stinging us, I was laughing, satisfaction complete knowing tomorrow, I would have to find my way to school and not get caught.

Over the years I did find a way to school and back in order to avoid these kids. You see, black kids did not like the woods. If I could get to the woods they would not enter, I was safe. Something about the woods, the forest, the brush, I don't know but they would not follow. The woods became my haven and my playground.

Boy Scouts: I have fond memories of Boy Scouts. I don't care what you want to call it today, it will always be Boy Scouts to me and that is what I am going to call it. We had meetings every Monday night, played games, worked on badges and ranks. Camping was the best part of the 1960-70 scouting era. No, I did not have to take a swim test to go swimming. No, we did not have to camp next to or insight of the Scout Masters and yes we were given way more freedom to make mistakes and learn on our own than to today's Boy Scouts. We hunted snipes by night with the newbies, we wandered around scout camp with no supervision, we swam alone, we were free. Camporee was an especially good time. This was when we got together with other Scout troops and competed in things that Scouts do. In my day at least in my Troop, we boxed. Scoutmasters would tie off a rope within trees to form a ring, we were gloved, no headgear, no mouth guard and fight! 3-rounds and if you won you had to fight the next kid. I have to say, I remember beating the crap out of a lot of kids in my day. The time I spent fighting in grade school and middle school with the gangs of blacks who would attack me proved to be useful. I could take a punch and deliver deafening blows. I bloodied up this one kid so bad they pulled me off of him in the ring. An older scout grabbed me and carried me into the woods. I was maybe 11 or 12 and he was 15 plus. He hit me as hard as he could right in the face, a sucker punch. I looked at him and said, "why did you do that for?" Surprised, he told me to go back to camp. I never did find out why he did that. I must have hurt someone he loved or a brother or something but boy was he pissed.

Around 2002 my son joined scouting. My gosh had things changed. I had more than once made the remark to Scoutmasters how we were raising a bunch of pussies. Liberals were taking over Scouting, the rules and regulations were unbelievably many and in most cases absolutely unnecessary. Two deep was one of the good things they had done along with background checks. One of the worst things they did was take God out of Scouting, allow Gays in, and of course girls. Now we got Scoutmasters and leaders who are women, liberals everywhere, boys being turned into pussies and the right to just be a boy was gone. Since when is a woman allowed in scout camp? This is and should be a time for men and boys to be men and boys in a common bond of masculinity. But no, masculinity is now outlawed in Scouting. I am glad my son got out when he did. Jake made the rank of Eagle in 2016. Two years later, Boy Scouts became "Scouting" the damn liberals have taken over completely, girls are allowed in a boys club. Damn you to hell you liberals, Damn you to hell.....

I got introduced to motorcycles around the age of ten. My first bike was a Honda CT70. Our home on Spring Street had a small patch of land out next to the garage. I would ride around in a circle for hours at a time. Over the next couple of years, my friend Bill and I built trails on a piece of land out near a railroad track spur for one of the Thomasville furniture plants. We would walk our bikes to a gravel road and ride to the trails. Many summer days were spent riding trails and building trails. We even built a lean-to for our clubhouse. Every summer we would pack up our bikes and head to Baden Lake. Here we found 100's of the miles of trails and would ride 8-hours a day while our families enjoyed the lake. A friend of my Dads had a farm. His children rode as well. One of the many nice things my Dad did for us was,  we would pack up the bikes and head out on a Saturday or Sunday to the farm to ride. We rode all day. Sometimes we would visit a Par-3 golf course and play golf just down the road from the farm. Other times we would ride to the local country store to get drinks and candy. It was here I learned to love Zots. Zots was a hard candy with a powdery sugar hidden inside. I think I paid a nickel apiece.

I got paid to mow the grass, Dad paid 2.00. The entrepreneur in me started a lawn mowing business. I got 2.00 a yard no matter the size. When I was 10-years of age I was recruited to run the neighborhood paper route. I got up every morning at 4am, rolled papers and delivered. The first year or two was on my bicycle, eventually, I migrated to my motorcycle. The local police seem not to care at all. Good times flying through the neighborhood delivering papers on a motorcycle. When I talk about my Dad, I don't want people to think it was all bad as it was not. There were good times too but when you start to look back, you realize as a ten-thirteen-year-old you were oblivious to the obvious bad decisions.

Many a summer day we spent at the Moose club pool. I learned to swim, dive and play a game called sharks and minnows in the deep in. The Moms would sit and smoke cigarettes, gossip I am sure, and play cards. I learned to swim and dive from the older kids. Backflips, Gainers, Forward flips, 1 1/2's, inward diving on 3- meter boards. When I was 40-years of age we joined a pool locally to take our kids. My son and daughter tried to learn to do flips and the such, but the passion was not there. Sharks and minnows are still on the menu I am happy to see. Life had changed, parents more involved in their kids. No longer did kids come home when the lights came on. No, everything had to be structured with these young parents. God forbid you to take your eye of a child for a second, oh Lord what could happen? I am an older father compared to other parents with the same age children. I am 40 with 8-year olds hanging out with 30-somethings with 8-year olds. So protective they were, there was no keeping score in the little league. The child had become the most important thing in life and they were sure to remove every obstacle so their little snowflakes would not fail. While I did learn how not to raise children from my father still I had only one rule. I will let them fail but, I will not let them hang themselves or jump off the cliff. Knowing when to let it go and when to step in was the hardest part of my parenting philosophy.

The end of summer is drawing to a close. Knowing my family is about to move to Appomattox VA. Another job another opportunity to start over. In 1974 Manns Drug won the city championship. In the top of the 6th down 1-0, Jeff Stone pitching for Lions throws a fastball to a part of the plate I could handle, boom two-run home run over left field fence. A monster of a shot for a 13-year-old as this ball ended up in the parking lot. One kid later told me, "you hit a windshield and it was the Lions coaches car." I still have the newspaper clipping today. I look at the clipping from time to time and remember that moment in time, that pitch I remember well, I remember the ball as it sailed out of site and through the lights. A fitting end to my time living in Thomasville, North Carolina. Appomattox VA here we come.

Experiences learned from this era. Black people will only fight in gangs and never one on one. When you walk past a black guy, look over your shoulder and make sure he does not hit you from behind. Avoid black people when you can, walk on the other side of the street if you have to. Black girls were usually nice unless they were in gang mode. Inside, fastballs are my favorite pitch to drive. Motorcycles were my passion. This is what was running through the mind of a 13-year old.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Merry Christmas Daily Press

My discourse to the Daily Press opinion's written on this joyous day of Christmas. May you learn something today, find joy in your hearts and give thanks for family.  

As I do every day, we make the coffee, hope the paper is on time and awaiting my barefoot scamper across an aggregate driveway. The scamper reminds me I should have put on shoes for the millionth time. In this moment of darkness, as I reach for my paper, I look up. The winter stars are shining, the sun nowhere to be found, all is quiet on the western front. It is here I stop every day and look up. I look up and I thank God for everything he has given me. 

Have you ever stopped and watched a crowd of people? Watched intently, selected individuals and then regress to the understanding of the crowd? For me, I do not see people, I see individual realities. Every person in the crowd lives their own reality. There are times to stop and offer assistance to realities and, understanding. There is also a time to stop and fight realities lived by those who mean to do us harm, change our realities or harm our nation. 

Today we remember Jesus the Christ. My church reality has become neutral over the years like Digby’s. I ponder the need for humans to have to believe in miracles to believe in Jesus the Christ. The Bible is riddled with stories of nonbelievers until Jesus performs a miracle. I think my faith has grown, has found a different reality, a lonely reality. I do not need Jesus to perform miracles for me to believe. I do not need Jesus to die on a cross and rise three days later for me to believe. I believe because I know, it is the right thing to do to help humanity.  I am reminded of a small book Thomas Jefferson wrote, I have a copy but for the sake of having to leave my coffee, I will not retrieve for the proper title. Google this and find “The morals of Jesus Christ.” This book is a book that every reality should own and read. It is this book if lived by, will bring you happiness. Or shall I say, brings my happiness to bear. 

I think about  Barabbas and another book I read “The Zealot.” While our bible leads us to believe he was a robber, factual history tells us he was a freedom fighter captured. This freedom fighter resisted the Roman rule in Jerusalem. This is why he was set free by the crowds and not this rabble-rouser Jesus the Christ. Jesus to was a fighter, prone to acts of demeaning others, and violence in the temple, throwing over the money changers tables in the temple (John 3:15). Luke 22:35-36 Jesus called for his follower to buy a sword. Luke 12:51 Not peace, but a sword. Because of him, a son will turn against father, the daughter against mother, and a daughter-in-law against mother-in-law. Even a person’s enemy will be a member of one’s own household (Matt. 10:34-36.) Like John the Baptist, Jesus the Christ was a freedom fighter, a rabble-rouser, a zealot, and a thorn in the side of the Jewish Priest he saw as collaborating with the Romans. He saw the taxing of the poor and requiring animal sacrifice in the temple as a means to find favor in the eyes of God. You see the money changers were there to sell animals to be sacrificed and we can all guess who kept the money or do I have to spell it out for you?

What amazes me most is the people's lack of understanding Jesus. There are two Jesus’s if you will, Jesus of Nazareth and Jesus the Christ. Each has a story to tell, a beautiful story of love, forgiveness, anger, violence, and war. Today’s Daily Press offers only one side, much like our Pastors found in everyday church USA. They are preaching a dogma that benefits them and justifies their own realities while trying to change my reality by using shame. 

I urge each person to read Thomas Jefferson's book. I would also urge each person who reads this to understand, there is a time to fight and a time for forgiveness and love. This is what Jesus teaches.  

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Medical science and morals, the Left will not tolerate

Abortion: Medical science and morals, the left will not tolerate.

I think Liberals will say the mother carrying the child owns the unborn child and therefore may do with this unborn child as they see fit. Kill her, bear him, give the child up for adoption.

Conservatives might say, The moment of conception is the birth of a child and therefore the child should be protected. 

Charles Krauthammer, a brilliant man, in my opinion, offers us this. “There is not the slightest recognition on either side that abortion might be at the limits of our empirical and moral knowledge. The problem starts with an awesome mystery: the transformation of two soulless cells into a living human being. That leads to an insoluble empirical question: How and exactly when does that occur? On that, in turn, hangs the moral issue: What are the claims of the entity undergoing that transformation?” How can we expect such a question to yield answers that are not tentative and indeterminate? So difficult a moral question should command humility or at least a little old-fashioned tolerance, I think." 

Liberals either do not agree with the medical interpretation of Charles Krauthammer or will not use science in determining when two soulless cells become a child. In other words, it is here that liberals (some liberals) cast aside science. It is here where the hypocrisy of the left begins. It is here where liberals will simply tout only the science they agree with. Example: Liberals tout climate change science as factual. Yet when it comes to the unborn child, in the 10–12 week period of pregnancy, the liberal will disregard the functioning brain of a child and the rights of a child, afforded to the child life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. 

My interpretation: Abortion: At 10–12 weeks the unborn child has by medical standards, a functioning brain. If a child, a person, has a functioning brain then the questions become who owns this person? If the mother has made the mistake of not keeping her legs crossed, do I blame the child? I do not have a problem with abortion before the functioning brain has developed and in cases of severe defects or harm to the mother. My best research finds the 10– 12-week window to be the time if, we have to establish time, as a reason to make a decision. I think Walter Williams said it best. I am paraphrasing here but, will use quotation marks to make sure my social hero is documented. Take a moment to ponder the following and please stop and answer the next question before you read on. Do you believe you own yourself? 

“If you believe you own yourself, then what others try to take from you, without your permission, is a form of slavery” Is the unborn child a slave to the mother? If abortion is ok then yes, a child with a functioning brain is a slave to the mother. Here we see Liberals, in this case, promoting slavery. A child, a slave to the mother, the mother with every right to kill the unborn child. I am reminded of the rights of the southern slave owner. They had the right to kill slaves with functioning brains 230 years ago. 

Thursday, December 20, 2018

The Follower

The Follower: Chapter one

From time to time, I tire of politics and current events. I have tired of puppets and have begun to ignore them. As dangerous as they are, I have to let go for now and try something new. I plan to write about my life. Throughout this year, I plan to write a few chapters and continue this story.  

1961-Morristown Tennessee is home. Born and raised until we left for Thomasville NC. I don't remember a lot and I suppose that is normal. I grew up in Thomasville NC. My father on his 4 or 5th job now, has gone to work for Thomasville Furniture. We rented a small home on Elliott Street.  Doak Park was nearby, Doak Park was a city park with basketball, swings, tennis, and baseball. How I loved baseball growing up and, with other children in the neighborhood who became friends made growing up a little easier. A great time to be a kid I think but, also a hard time to be a kid. I want to save those stories for the next chapter. My father had finally found a job he could hold on to. It's 1966 and after 2-3 years of renting my parents bought their first house, 400 Spring Street. This home was in really bad shape and needed tons of work. My Mom and Dad did a lot of the work that they could and, created a beautiful home for the next 10 years. 

 Three gentlemen came to our front door. Dressed in business suits I remember, my father greets them at the door and calls for me. " These men are here to see you, Reed, my father said." We sat down in the living room and oblivious as to why they were there, they start to ask me questions. I don't rightly remember the questions except for one, " do you believe in Jesus Christ, do you take Jesus as your savior?" Not knowing what else to do, I simple remembering nodding in agreement, and told them what they wanted to hear. A few weeks later, I was baptized at The First Baptist Church. I have fond memories of this church, many friends, fun, RA's. Today, I think back to that day the three men came to see me and wondered why at such a young age would someone be asked to make such a profound statement of belief?

    Fond memories of our church in Thomasville NC, but to look back on my memories of Church in Morristown TN was another story. When I was 4-5 years of age the memories of church are still with me. One has to ask how can memories of such a young age stick with us all these years? Does something horrible or wonderful have to happen to impregnate these memories into our brain? I remember being beaten in church, yes that's right, for whatever reason, my father thought I should be able to sit still for one hour. Sit still and listen to the pastor preach unknown and at that time uncaring words of wisdom, after all, I was just four, On more Sundays than I can count or remember, after the sermons, I would be taken to the deacons room and beat with a belt for not sitting still. In my later years, I would wonder why God would allow such a thing to exist in his church? This was long before the Catholic Church was forced to admit to the assaults of children. 

 After moving again, to Appomattox VA our family settled down in a small rural town at the age of 13. Another town and another Baptist Church. You see my father could not hold a job but somehow had managed to hold down a job with Thomasville furniture for the last 15 years. The move to Appomattox was a promotion, a move up. In the first 16 years of my life, my Dad had been fired from 6 jobs. An angry man, a man who abused my Mom and my sister. I was lucky for the most part, he left me alone, most of the time. Church in these years was not of anything particularly worth remembering. My friend Bill and I spent our time playing ping pong in the student center, our parents thinking we are sitting in the balcony. One day my Mom and Dad brought us all together and we talk about moving from the Baptist Church to the Episcopal Church. Evidently, a group of women had come to the house one day and, asked my Mom why we were not in church, Something happened and I am not sure why but, we left the Baptist Church and began a life in a new Church. Good or Bad my parents have made sure we attended. 

Saint Ann's Episcopal Church was a great Church with fond memories. Our pastor worked on VW's and I use to go over to his house and work on cars with him. This is where I learned to work on VW's and established a love for the Karmann Ghia. I was an altar boy, I read in Church at least one time and, attended youth group. I was still not particularly religious it seems but, still a part of the Church. 

    At the age of 18, I am off to college and failed miserably. This high school life of just being passed along, parents more concerned with fighting each other than raising children took its toll. The moving from Morristown to Thomasville to Appomattox was detrimental to my sister and I. Constantly having to fit in, to this day I believe if we had just stayed in NC until we graduated from high school, life for my sister and I would have turned out much differently. Age 20 my parents divorcing, my father fired yet again and the Church became a thing of the past. Living on my own in a trailer, in a campground, the day came, it was time to leave. I left Appomattox with a pick-up truck, a bag of clothes and, a tent. A new life before me, a poor life, an uneducated life, but God, thank-you for giving me the tools to use my hands. I was fortunate to have the ability to work with my hands. Living in a one-room boarding house in VA Beach on Pacific Avenue, my first job was rebuilding starters and alternators, on a night shift for a small business. Later on building shipping crates for equipment headed to Saudi Arabia. Moving in and moving out with housemates, and for some time living in a tent again. I would only see family once a year, Christmas time was nice. My Mom had gone on to remarry a good man, my Mom went on to build a successful real estate business but never knew how I lived or struggled, never asked. My father living the life of a bachelor, a ski instructor, fired yet again from another job in sales but, he did manage to continue with ski instructing and living off his parent's money until of course that was all gone. I did not see my Father much and for many years. 

When people ask me why I am, who I am, I generally don't have an answer. Reflection has been the key to resolving my inner demons I think. The whole "an unexamined life, is life is not worth living." Don't get me wrong, I still have demons but unless you can identify them, you cannot be rid of them. Some demons, I don't want to be rid of and some I have yet to identify in a meaningful way.

I had presented forgiveness to my father and I never told him how disappointed I was with him. I just let it go and did the best I could to make sure he had a roof over his head.  Somewhere along the way I think, God has guided. Somewhere along the line, I chose not to be my father. I chose to apply what I had learned from the bible in my everyday dealings with people, but mostly I had become fiercely independent. I had, through life's experiences learned, I could only depend on myself. This independence I think created a part of me where it was hard to make friends and trust others. This life also created the idea that if I can make it anyone can. The fact is, this is not true. Some will not make it in life, some will fail, some will simply not have the brain power to succeed I think. It is this population we need to care for. Some, like my father, possessed the ability to succeed (college educated mind you) but chose to abuse the system, take and not give, me first, cheat welfare, cheat insurance companies, cheat on others, cheat himself of a blessed life. If there was one thing Dad was good at, it was scheming for the easy money. In hindsight even this, he was not good at I think. Dad was often caught in lies and deceit. I wonder, why do people behave in such a destructive way? I had every opportunity to turn out like my Dad and God had other plans. 

Saturday, November 10, 2018

My open offer to College lecture: Rural conservative values and to shed light on the puppet masters.

A few weeks ago, I wrote within my blog the following: “Diversity a range of different things.” And “The Unobtainable Equality.”

I had sent copies to Katherine Rowe, President of William and Mary. I believe the common conservative opinion is often silenced by local and national media and in our classrooms. I wanted to share my ideas, address misconceptions, and teach that we can make good decisions through knowledge.

Ms. Rowe’s response was as follows.

 “Though our views differ on many of the matters you raise, I appreciate you sharing your
thoughts with me. One area of potential alignment is ensuring a range of views,
including those from more conservative perspectives, are welcomed to campus. I have
extended some speaker invitations to do just that.” 

I am grateful to respond to my concerns and offer this abstract for consideration to speak at Colleges and Universities. The question becomes, are College Presidents brave enough to turn me loose on their students? 

In this Lecture, we would discuss the following:

  • We will examine the common conservative, rural living and small business owners’ collective thoughts concerning politics and a way of life.
  • We will examine the ideologies of rural living and urban living. Is it Republication vs. Democrat or Urban vs. Rural?
  • We will create discussion around the thoughts as to why urban politicians will sometimes refer to rural inhabitants as racist, deplorable, and stupid. We will discuss why rural America views urban cities as lacking morality.
  • We will discuss why the mainstream media and Hollywood attacks rural America with degrading cartoons, opinions, and contempt. 
  • We will take a look at famous people and politicians. How do they influence the population?
  • What can Socrates teach us? 
  • Closing remarks.

Part one: Who is the MAGA voter?
Abstract: Who is the MAGA voter? Why is southern heritage disparaged in colleges, the
media, and Hollywood? Who is the real southern rural conservative? How can our values
help you become successful in life?

The common rural conservative
I grew up in the small town of Appomattox, VA. I have lived in large metropolitan cities since I was 21 years of age. My observations of residing in a large metropolitan yet, living by rural moral standards differ me from others. I understand I am not special and to allow identity politics to claim you are special simply because of the color of your skin or heritage is nonsense according to our rural way of life. According to urban Democrats, I am stupid, deplorable, and now, get this, an uninformed racist. Why?

Who am I? I am a rural raised, self-sufficient, lawful conceal-carry permit holder, NRA member, motorcycle rider, hunter/gatherer and, a tactical gun enthusiast who can thrust a 30-caliber bullet downrange, 800 yards, into a deer’s lung. Yes, my dear college professors, I can utilize mathematical ballistics and variables like a minute of angle, windage, humidity, elevation, temperature, barometric pressure, gravity, and the Coriolis Effect to launch a rocket the size of a pencil tip into an 8 x 11 sheet of paper at 800 yards. I took shop in high school, was an FFA member, and became an accomplished welder by 13. I have had a job since I was 10 years old. I have delivered newspapers, worked dairy farms, washed dishes, planted trees, garbage collector, a furniture plant worker, and all before the age of 21.

Today, I am the person who makes sure the water you drink is clean. I use advanced mathematics and science to calculate the important tasks of making sure the dinosaur pee you depend on is potable. I am responsible for ensuring you do not die or are sickened by cholera, dysentery, amoebiasis, giardia, and other water-borne diseases. Your life is in the hands of a deplorable Trump supporter; it is a good thing; you are wrong about us. It is a good thing that I am tolerant of urban media pundits and the politician’s lies that spew hate for us.

Lastly, I have been homeless, a functioning alcoholic, drug use in my teens and college years was regrettable. I grew up in the 1970s and, if you want to use this against me, then go right ahead, as I do not worry about what any of you think of me. I have made my share of mistakes and, I still made it without complaining too much about my past and how others kept me down. I have owned up to taking responsibility for my actions. My good decisions have outweighed my bad decisions. Thusly, I am wealthy, married 28 years to a wonderful spouse, two grown children that have never been a minute’s trouble. My daughter will practice speech pathology after graduate school, and my son, a sophomore in college, is studying economics and doing well. After 4 and 6 years of College, each will come out only owing about fifteen thousand dollars as my wife, and I have paid the rest. We live and have lived by a few rules I share today. Let’s discuss the top 10 rules of the common conservative.

  1. It is not what you make. It is what you spend.
  2. Is it a want or a need?
  3. Do not convent thy neighbor’s possessions. In other words, don’t let what others
    have achieved get you down.
  4. Stay focus on what you can change about yourself.
  5. Delayed satisfaction is the key to wealth.
  6. Learn from your mistakes.
  7. The ladder of achievement is generational. There are few shortcuts.
  8. Do not have children outside of wedlock.
  9. Do not have children you cannot afford.
  10. (Number one rule) Children who grow up in a committed relationship between a man and woman have the best chance for success and the best chance to eliminate poverty. This idea alone creates the best chance for success.

The common conservative’s beliefs

In this segment of our discussion, we will examine the true common conservative. My findings are based on common conversation with those in my industry over the last 30 years. We are small business owners, mostly rural upbringing, high school educated, college-educated engineers, and 95% of us are pro-gun, nationalist, and Pro POTUS. We will discuss common traits of the rural small businessperson.

Republicans. We don’t care about your skin color; this is a progressive liberal lie about rural. We care about how you take care of yourself, how you take care of your family, and how you accept responsibility for your actions. The president’s immigration policy is a lot like a rural business owner's decision to hire.

Let me explain; I like to write; I am not the greatest writer, the best writer. Creators Syndicate, I would assume, wants the best writers for their business. Why not let all writers be published based on equality? I am a small business owner, I want to hire the best available employees I can find. Why should I have to hire based on skin color or race? I like to speak on conservative values; why not let me speak at William and Mary....... where is the diversity? Why should academia be the only speakers you hear from, so I have no value? They all want what they deem to be the best. Elites look for education and experience. Small rural business owners look for talent and experience. Your best speakers have talent and a vision that others will follow.

We also care if you are self-sufficient. To be self-sufficient, one must not need outside help in satisfying their basic needs nor, should you want what others have achieved. I am 57-years old and have never taken a dime in handouts from the government (food stamps, unemployment, housing subsidies, etc.) I would have rather been homeless, living in a tent, and did so. We do not discriminate based on race in this respect.

We have learned to make good decisions; however, colleges do not want to lend a hand to those who work for a living or better themselves. Is this because we work too hard and make good decisions. Are we too successful? In the last month, UVA declared free tuition for those who make less than 80,000 dollars. This is discrimination towards those who have achieved and worked harder. Colleges reward scholarship and admittance based on skin color, background, and wealth. We see higher education discriminating against people based on race. Is it fair to allow a person into college with 
lower SAT scores and GPA based on race? Harvard University seems to think so. We believe your work ethic is your grounds for admittance into the workforce, so should it be for College. We care not when it comes to skin color or race in the private sector, we care about probable success.

We do help those who are less fortunate, despite what most Democrats may think. According to ChristianityToday, 10 million Americans donate more than 50 billion dollars to religious and charitable causes each year. However, these donations are falling because of debt inherited by our children and, a move away from religion. Most rural business owners are religious and give regular penance to the church, which helps the poor.

Part two: Why do others ridicule southern men?

Start Powerpoint here:
PowerPoint example: Slides to discuss.

Why is the white southern man the only demographic, ok to make fun of, disparage, hate, and insult? Why does the mainstream media, Hollywood, Colleges and Democrats not care? (wait for a response as you run through these slides) discuss.

"Deliverance is the most influential image that there's ever been in the modern period,"
"That's what Hollywood wants us to think of the rural South. Get out of the civilized
world and you're going to be surrounded by these people." I assure you we are not what
Hollywood depicts us as.

"They're all designed to showcase the pathologies of poor white people for middle-class
viewers," "It's a foil for suburban or urban classes who can effectively feel superior to
poor whites."

This is the same divineness that accompanied the Dixie Democrats or
Dixiecrats in the late 1940s. Their slogan was “segregation forever.” Dixiecrats wanted
division. Dixiecrat's protest was to segregate based on the color of the person's skin. Today, we see the same thing when Democrats attack southern white men, this is meant to divide us, to humiliate us, as did the Dixiecrats humiliate blacks in the late 1940s.

The Politically correct America has few "safe" groups to poke fun at these days. The white poor is still one of them and the liberal left as exemplified by Hillary Clinton’s boast calling us deplorable for the mere fact of who we voted for, is somehow still ok. The news media regularly runs cartoons depicting poor white southerners in demeaning ways. Urban opinion writers like Leonard Pitts and Eugene Robinson call us stupid and ignorant because of whom we voted for. Why is this still ok? (I believe it is meant to divide us.)

Part Three: A study of famous people
Famous Hampton Sydney Graduate:
Stephen Tyrone Colbert is an American comedian, writer, producer, actor, and television host. He is best known for hosting the satirical Comedy Central program. Stephen Colbert is a Hampton Sydney College graduate. You may already know that Colbert grew up in South Carolina, but you may not know that he consciously trained himself to speak differently from those around him. “At a very young age, I decided I was not gonna have a Southern accent. Stephen Colbert once said “Because people, when I was a kid watching TV, if you wanted to use a shorthand that someone was stupid, you gave the character a Southern accent. And that's not true. Southern people are not stupid. But I didn't wanna seem stupid. I wanted to seem smart. And so I thought, ‘Well, you can't tell where newsmen are from."

Stephen Colbert on politics: "However, the next best thing is to vote for Herman Cain."

“He’s an outsider - how much more an outsider can you be? He’s not even running!” said Colbert. “If people hunger for a Colbert candidacy, then they should vote for Herman Cain on Saturday, and then I will know that people out there share both my and Herman Cain’s values.” “Herman Cain is my main man. He’s my main man with a tax plan so fine, they called it 9-9-9. The Mad Max of the flat tax, he’s a family man, he’s pro-business." My point is, we have a lot in common. Mr. Stephen Colbert, however, will often attack the current POTUS. Why does Mr. Colbert attack DJT when they seem to have much in common? DJT is a family man; he is pro-business, wants lower taxes, and is an outsider? What considerations might Mr. Colbert deem DJT as unworthy? (Stop here for student input.) Discuss.

Kanye West: “Kanye West is what happens when negroes don’t read.”

"That is how CNN commentator Bakari Sellers, who is black, responded to Kanye West’s meeting in the Oval Office this week with President Donald Trump. Sellers made his insulting remarks on the CNN Tonight program with host Don Lemon, who is also an African American, precipitating approving laughter from Lemon, and fellow commentator Tara Setmayer, who is also black.
Setmayer was particularly vicious in her insults of West because he dared to speak favorably of Trump, calling him “an attention whore like the president,” adding, “Black folks are about to trade Kanye West in the racial draft,” dismissing West as “the token Negro of the Trump Administration.” There were even insinuations that West has mental problems, supposedly explaining his wearing a “Make America Great Again” cap at the White House."

Donald Trump, Jr. responded on Twitter, accurately describing what had occurred. “Kanye dares to think for himself, so @CNN commentators mock him, saying Kanye (a wildly successful businessman) ‘is what happens when negroes don’t read.’ At some point, you have to ask, why is free thought & expression so dangerous & scary to liberals.”

The answer to Donald Jr.’s question is quite obvious. The overwhelming black support for liberal Democrats is essential to the Democrats’ continued competitiveness in American politics. Without the African American vote, which is consistently between 85- 95 percent Democrat, the Democrats simply could not win a national election.

That is why every time a well-known black person such as Kanye West dares to support a Republican, or take a conservative viewpoint, that person must be shamed, and if necessary, have their reputation shredded, complete with name-calling, with names such as “Oreo" (referring to the cookie and meaning black on the outside, white on the inside), “Negroes,” or “Uncle Toms.”

Reference: Steve Byass of The New America

Famous Comedians, and the left: I think those like Jimmy Kimmel, Stephen Colbert, Samantha Bee, Trevor Noah, Jon Oliver, Jon Stewart do not possess the knowledge to make good decisions. Television is like Plato’s Allegory of the cave. If you have not done so, take a philosophy class. Take at least one, and I hope you study classical Greek philosophy; the Socratic method is a method worthy of your time and study. This will help you in business once you reach the outside world. If you prioritize, go to the library and check out a book on the subject. I believe the puppets on the wall are actors and comedians like Stephen Cobert but, they are not real forms, they are not the puppet masters. The puppet's masters are the Media, the powerful Hollywood executives who, are pushing an agenda in combination with Liberals who want to change the world you live in. They do this by casting shadows on the wall that are not real but deceptive in nature. The facts are, the Media controls what we see and hear and the narrative. Kanye West opened his mind; he looked left and right, broke the chains, and walked out.

They hate Republicans and anyone not on the left of American politics, as describe a few minutes ago. How many jokes or skits have you seen or heard, ever seen or heard, about Obama, Clinton, Biden, Schumer, Waters, Pelosi, or Harry Reid? You didn't get to laugh at the hilarious skit about Hillary collapsing on election night because there has never been such a skit; oh, but Alec Baldwin doing Donald Trump is 'hilarious.' Comedians who can only be funny on one side aren't comedians; they're political hacks. How I miss Carol Burnett, Flip Wilson and Red Skelton, these were true comedians.

Perhaps Mr. Colbert’s time at Hampton Sydney taught him nothing?

Look at today’s hosts. Jimmy Kimmel goes on a rant about how good Obamacare is — and how awful people are if they don’t think so. Stephen Colbert goes on a profanity-laced tirade targeting conservatives. I believe in  “Come here as boys so you may leave as men,” One has to ask, Does the vile rhetoric of Stephen Colbert hidden behind comedy really a Hampton Sydney College trait to be proud of? Did he really leave as a man? 

Congressmen elect Dan Crenshaw: A Veteran was recently mocked by SNL.

Congressman Crenshaw lost his eye in combat as a Navy Seal “We do not have to be
outraged by offensive material because it was offensive.”

Washington (CNN) A Republican congressman-elect who was the target of an insensitive joke on SNL, referring to him as a porn star because of his eye patch, said Wednesday that entertainers and politicians, including President Donald Trump, should tone down their divisive rhetoric and not "attack someone's core."

Dan Crenshaw -- who lost his right eye in 2012 while serving as a Navy SEAL in Iraq -- urged athletes and comedians Wednesday to "take a break from politics."

"Please don't politicize your comedy in a way that is just mean-spirited," he told CNN's Alisyn Camerota on "New Day." "And that's what happened, but it happens a lot more than just that. I think the American people could use a break." "I'm going to try to be part of the solution there, not part of the problem," he continued. "And by that I mean, don't attack someone's core, don't attack someone's intent if you disagree with them. "The Houston-area congressman-elect also said that Trump should use less incendiary speech." I would always call for him to tone down the rhetoric sometimes and lower the temperature," Crenshaw said. "It would certainly help."

But Crenshaw also lamented the overly personal attacks that he felt were directed at conservatives." Especially on the conservative side, we feel as though every time we have a policy disagreement, the left attacks who we are," he said. "They attack our intent as if we were bad people."

Republican Congressman Ben Crenshaw sends a message we all need to learn from. Don’t attack a person core, making fun of southern white men, poor urban blacks, Jewish community and the Muslim community are just wrong. Hollywood and the Main Stream Media seems to think this is also wrong until, “you guessed it,” white conservative southern men and those who agree with our current POTUS.

Part four Socrates: What can we learn from this man

“Socrates is one of the few individuals whom one could say has so-shaped the cultural and intellectual development of the world that, without him, history would be profoundly different. He is best known for his association with the Socratic method of question and answer, his claim that he was ignorant (or aware of his own absence of knowledge), and his claim that the unexamined life is not worth living for human beings. He was the inspiration for Plato, the thinker widely held to be the founder of the Western philosophical tradition. Plato, in turn, served as the teacher of Aristotle, thus establishing the famous triad of ancient philosophers: Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. Unlike other philosophers of his time and ours, Socrates never wrote anything down but was committed to living simply and interrogating the everyday views and popular opinions of those in his home city of Athens. At the age of 70, he was put to death at the hands of his fellow citizens on charges of impiety and corruption of the youth. His trial, along with the social and political context in which occurred, has warranted as much treatment from historians and classicists as his arguments and methods have from philosophers.

i. Unity of Virtue; All Virtue is Knowledge
In the Protagoras (329b-333b), Socrates argues for the view that all of the virtues— justice, wisdom, courage, piety, and so forth—are one. He provides several arguments for this thesis. For example, while it is typical to think that one can be wise without being temperate, Socrates rejects this possibility on the grounds that wisdom and temperance both have the same opposite: folly. Were they truly distinct, they would each have their own opposites. As it stands, the identity of their opposites indicates that one cannot possess wisdom without temperance and vice versa.
This thesis is sometimes paired with another Socratic view, that is, that virtue is a form of knowledge (Meno 87e-89a; cf. Euthydemus 278d-282a). Things like beauty, strength, and health benefit human beings but can also harm them if they are not accompanied by knowledge or wisdom. If virtue is to be beneficial, it must be knowledge since all the qualities of the soul are in themselves neither beneficial nor harmful but are only beneficial when accompanied by wisdom and harmful when accompanied by folly.

ii. No One Errs Knowingly/No One Errs Willingly

Socrates famously declares that no one errs or makes mistakes knowingly (Protagoras 352c, 358b-b). Here we find an example of Socrates’ intellectualism. When a person does what is wrong, their failure to do what is right is an intellectual error, or due to their own ignorance about what is right. If the person knew what was right, he would have done it. Hence, it is impossible for someone to simultaneously know what is right and do what is wrong. If someone does what is wrong, they do so because they do not know what is right, and if they claim to have known what was right at the time when they committed the wrong, they are mistaken, for had they truly known what was right, they would have done it.”

Donald Trump and Socrates have a lot in common. Is Donald Trump the philosopher of what we find in Socrates? Not by a long shot. The commonality is he was put to death or, in Trump's case, attacked by the media and Democrats and at the hands of his fellow citizens on charges of impiety and corruption. Why? It is because he thinks differently. Trump's ongoing trial in the media, along with the social and political context in which this has occurred, hold commonality. Human nature has changed very little, in my opinion.

I did not know; I did not err willingly in my life. Your education is the most important priority you can achieve today. Gain the knowledge to not make mistakes later in life. If you are struggling, work harder; if you are still struggling, ask for help, there is not one person in this room who is not willing to help you make something of your life. Remember this, education does not equal knowledge when the education you receive is an indoctrination. According to a recent survey, college professors should realize that 52% of their students are afraid to say anything that goes against the professor's doctrine. What a sad day in the life of a student, afraid to ask a question. At this time, let us thank God for the public library where anyone can gain knowledge. You have got to want knowledge more than anything else in the world, even more than the breath you take. Do not make my mistakes, I truly regret not finishing college and even though I have gone on to be wealthy and successful, I regret not finishing. Don’t make the same mistake.

Closing Remarks:
We have discussed what the rural conservative stands for. We believe in working hard to get ahead and not free handouts. You are not special and, the laws of the land already make for fair achievement. The fair achievement was won within the civil rights movement, and we are indeed grateful for the sacrifice of those whose vision made this possible. We are leery of the social welfare movement that accompanied the civil rights movement. Social welfare in its form today is thought to be detrimental to achievement. Are there those who need a helping hand? Sure there are, but when 56% of America are the only ones paying taxes that, does not bode well for “all of America?” If you want to live here, then contribute to living here and, it is that simple. We live our lives well, despite our lowly income and disadvantages early in life. We live by simple rules. We say it is better to die on your feet than to crawl on your knees and pray at the altar of socialism. We say it is better to achieve on your own than to take from others. To take from others is a form of slavery. 

The mainstream media, politicians, and Hollywood depict white southern men as racist, ignorant, homophobic, and evil. This is far from the truth, many southern men and women of all heritages have contributed to our great nation and have resided in the south, Martin Luther King, George Washington Carver, NASA engineer, and writer -Homer Hickman, Norbert Rillieux, Charles Townes just to name a few.

Despite a rural upbringing, low social standing, poor and uneducated like some of the scientists mentioned above, I have struggled, fought, worked hard, and made good decisions to achieve a good life. This achievement does not discriminate; without these traits, all citizens will fail. No amount of social welfare will help you achieve a good life, a happy life. This is why we call for “the pursuit of happiness.” Happiness is not an entitlement; it must be earned. While some fringe elements on both the left and the right promote hate, we must be mindful of the majority in the middle and not allow ourselves to become the fringe.

Passion/virtue/vice, It is virtue we should seek, and I believe our friend Congressman. Ben Crenshaw has exemplified this virtue. The one thing that Democrats fear most is success and self-reliance. If we are all successful, we do not need the crutch of the government to lean on; this, in turn, can shrink our federal government and take power back from those who want to control us. We need to mimic what our founding fathers meant for us in the beginning. If you have not done so, obtain the knowledge of John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison. Seek the knowledge of the federalist papers, our Constitution and, The Bill of Rights. Understand our founding fathers' intent for making America great. If there is no class on this subject, you should demand one.

Note: Another author to read: Dr. Walter Williams George Mason University. Visit his website and gain his knowledge, read his books, understand self-reliance and understand the puppet masters.

If we are to come together, I can only ask that we open our minds, look left, and look right. We realize puppet masters create the shadows on the wall. Some puppet masters tell the story of division and hate and can be found in high school classrooms, college classrooms, our government, and the media. We offer you a chance to break your chains, to walk out of the cave and into the light.

The walk of life through the cave or up the never-ending and winding staircase is tough and can only be accomplished through self-reliance, hard work, and knowing thyself. We are waiting for you at the entrance to the cave, encouraging you to come forth and live a life of self- reliance and self-awareness. Kayne West, John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, Walter Williams, and I dare not enter the cave to help you. The puppet masters who intend to keep you in your place will martyr us if we enter.

One last thought: Dan Crenshaw said it best “We do not have to be

outraged by offensive material because it was offensive.” We do not have to be outraged because we disagree. This is why you do not see southern men in the streets every time you disparage him, ridicule him, thrust hate speech at him. 

Democracy is explained, the Constitution evaluated, and the writer leaves out the 2nd amendment.

Joesph Filco has taught economics and American government. Joseph writes commentary for the Williamsburg Gazette. The gentleman is relativel...