Pete Abler, Columnist
This has been a very disturbing few weeks for those who believe in the sanctity of human life. So many predictions of the future negative results of Roe v. Wade have come true that there really doesn't seem to be a light at the end of this tunnel of lunacy. In their decision, the majority of the Supreme Court wrote that they didn't see the need to consider the legal, moral and philosophical questions about when human life begins. With that Pontius Pilate move behind them, they were able to justify anything they wished.
"Good fences make good neighbors," is an old proverb in many cultures and languages that is quoted twice in a poem by Robert Frost. A modern person would slap himself on the forehead and say, "Well, duh," isn't this common sense? Since humans started roaming the earth they have likely erected some sort of fence, wall, barrier, hedge, fortification, divider, partition, border, pen, enclosure, roadblock or barricade to delineate a piece of land or a division between "what's mine" and "what's yours."
Some of us are old enough to remember the television game show with that name - I've got a secret. In Minnesota, today our state government - specifically the secretary of state - is playing his own version of that show with information that has been deemed as public information. That means it is supposed to be available to the public. But it isn't.
There're only a few days left in 2018. If you were writing a novel or a screenplay and you included the drama and events of this past year, do you think anyone would take it seriously? These two sentences were written on Dec. 13 to try and get my brain started in forming my final column for this year. You could almost write a book just about the events of this past week.
I'm a fan of many types of music and artists. Bobby Bare had a song years ago titled, "Nashville is Rough on the Living, But She Really Speaks Well of the Dead." It appears you could substitute "Washington, D.C.," "The Washington Post" or "The New York Times" for "Nashville" and it would be spot on.
It's a week after Thanksgiving. Most of us are probably still feeling the effects of consuming the standard meal and days of leftovers. Some of us may have participated in the insanity of Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the other gimmicks the business communities and ad agencies have come up with to lure us into overspending as easily as we can catch sunfish. In the midst of all this seeming largesse lurks a socio-economic problem we don't have the will or ability to fix - poverty.
When does human life begin? This is a question that far too many people don't want to consider, much less answer. In most states it appears the legal or accepted answer is "at birth." But legality and acceptability aside, viability of the baby happens weeks or months prior to the point of natural birth. In a recent crime in another state, the suspect was charged with two counts of murder because the mother was pregnant at the time she was killed and the baby died as a result of the mother's murder. The charges were upheld by the state judiciary.
I seldom agree with Don Bye, the Echo's more liberal columnist, but I'm forced to this week. Undoubtedly, there is too much money in politics. This has almost always been the case and I don't know a constitutional way to change it. I don't want to live with it. But as long as we keep electing unprincipled politicians whose allegiance is to a party or interests above the people, we are stuck with it.
I'm fairly certain I've used this headline before. An old friend used to ask this question when we had reached a logical end to our discussions without really solving anything or having a good conclusion. That's exactly where I believe we are today. A few weeks ago we witnessed politics at its worst. Expecting unvarnished truth to come out of a hearing in our federal government is pretty much wishful thinking. Hoping that reason and decorum will prevail in discourse from either side appears fruitless.
Once I got to be a supervisor in the Air Force, I reluctantly became very familiar with these situations. Whether they involved he said-she said, or he said-he said, or she said-she said, it was virtually impossible to discover the truth unless there were reliable disinterested witnesses. Even then I sometimes wondered if I was being presented with reliable information upon which to make a decision.