We arrived home from Brainerd last Friday evening after some light shopping and turned on the television a short time before a couple of our favorite programs, and to say we were shocked is well beyond an understatement. We were speechless and barely breathing as detail after detail of the murderous rampage in Paris was relayed by the newscasters. Things haven't changed a whole lot since then as I spend a lot of time trying to make sense of all of this. The believers and practitioners of Islam cover a wide range, just as their Christian and Jewish counterparts.
There are a lot of wars going on in contemporary American society and the world today. I recently read a letter to the editor in another newspaper in which the author lamented the actual wars being waged in the world and how they are fueled by greed and hatred - among the many other factors - and what damage they are doing to children. I have written about the supposed war on women and my assertion of a war on men, and also about what I see as a war on Christianity.
In my not always humble opinion, one of the greatest shortfalls of our society and educational system is that people are not taught critical thinking. By that I mean when presented with a problem, an issue or a tragic situation, our reaction never seems to get too far beyond the emotional side of things into the realm of an in-depth analysis of all aspects of a situation to the point that solutions are grounded in logic and rationality. I don't guarantee those solutions will always be effective, but solutions resulting from knee-jerk, emotional reactions will hardly ever work. Take the rece
I reached one of those milestones last month and the inevitable thoughts and questions have been popping into my mind ever since. One of my first thoughts was that I had surpassed the age at which my father passed away by another year (it's only been two years). We Abler men don't have a track record of longevity. I think it's because our women pretty much wear us out. I've been pondering my medical needs of late, given that I have some additional aches and pains that seem to travel around my body like Jack Kerouac and Charles Kuralt used to travel around the United States.
I've often wondered what it takes to have some real and lasting effects on the psyche of the people of our nation and the world. It is fairly obvious that most of us are so totally absorbed in our lives and activities that we often just can't be bothered to have much sympathy or empathy with the problems of others — be they our next door neighbors or someone halfway around the globe. Now if you're a lion in Africa that is part of a wildlife study and you get killed by a hunter from Minnesota under admittedly questionable circumstances, about one-quarter of the world will be in an uproa
We have already witnessed too many accusations of "wars" on various segments of our society, including the most recent claims of a "war on women." Let's be honest with each other.
A few years ago, Charles Krauthammer, a syndicated columnist and commentator on Fox News, published a selective collection of his columns titled "Things That Matter." If you change that statement into the form of a question — no this is not Jeopardy — you might discover a way to think about and analyze just about everything in life. Krauthammer's book focused on a wide range of important issues and his analysis of what is right or wrong in our collective approach to those subjects. To me, truth really matters.
I almost don't know where to begin. But let me start off by observing that back in the time following the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, Jewish leaders were debating how to deal with His remaining followers. A leading rabbi, Gamaliel, who instructed Saul (later Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles) as a protégé, told his fellow leaders that they should not persecute the Apostles as leaders of "The Way" (as it was known then). He observed that if The Way was like so many others, it would burn itself out as all others had before.
I spent last week fishing at a remote location in Canada. It was very relaxing to have no phone, no radio and no television for seven days and nights. We did a lot of fishing, eating fish, reading, talking and relaxing.
I had a revelation while thinking about the recent decisions by the Supreme Court — neither of which I agree with. In upholding the Affordable Care Act, the court stepped far into politics by trying to interpret the intent of Congress, instead of making Congress clarify that itself, thus overstepping the role of the court.