Friday, August 24, 2007
This may be an unpopular view, BUT...when is our government going to stop trying to parent our children? And WHEN are parents going to start parenting so the government doesn't feel a NEED to continually be trying TO parent?!!!
This whole violent video game controversy makes about as much sense to me as gun control. Guns don't kill people...screwed up PEOPLE do. Video games ALSO don't kill people, but sick people DO. A healthy, normal person is quite capable of responsibly handling weapon ownership and certainly capable of distinguishing fantasy from reality.
I was raised around guns, my father was an avid hunter, and also liked to go the range to shoot handguns. I was taught gun safety when I was very young. It would have NEVER run across my mind to "play" with a gun. I had parents that TAUGHT me. They did not rely on the school system, my friends, and other people to be my parents or "teachers" in ANY area of learning. I knew how to read and write BEFORE I entered school. My parents...PARENTED.
Make a law outlawing guns and law abiding citizens will follow it. The criminals don't care about the law NOW, they certainly will not THEN. Criminals....will always have guns.
And on the topic of video games, as I know they are a different subject matter than the gun control argument. The Columbine shootings are always brought up here. The kids that did that were psychologically disturbed kids. I would bet my life's savings that this was a problem LONG before they picked up a video game. Their parents seemed to ignore their strange anti-social behaviors to a good degree, and obviously did not get them the mental health HELP that they NEEDED.
I have been playing video games since their initial creation and release into the "public sector." I also allowed my son to play video games. Some...were probably a bit violent. But long before he (or I) began gaming, we had parents that had taught us the difference between fantasy and reality. I knew that Santa Claus wasn't real. (People REALLY need to quit LYING to their children.) I knew that movies were made by writers and actors. MY son knew all these things as well.
I've played a vast array of video games, from Painkiller to World of Warcraft, to Counterstrike, and I have never had the inclination to go out and kill anyone. I can say the same for my now 18 year old son, who is the varsity wide receiver for his high school football team, makes good grades in school, and WORKS, as well. He is a responsible young man who ocassionally enjoys (still) a good video game.
I think what this country needs to invest in, is a law and program that legally REQUIRES parenting classes for new parents. Period. Any IDIOT can have a child with no training or knowledge whatsoever. Instead of trampling our freedoms...why not teach people to be better, well...PEOPLE? And certainly there is a DIRE need for better PARENTS.
As human beings, when are we going to start taking RESPONSIBILITY for own OWN actions and quit blaming this, that, and the other thing? Inanimate objects and media are not responsible for the ACTIONS we take....WE ARE.
GROW UP America.
Friday, May 18, 2007
Okay, I'm not generally a "quick to jump to conspiracy theories" sort of person. I have been highly resistant to even considering the posibility up until now. I've been guilty of LAUGHING at people who considered it. I'm not laughing NOW.
True, I don't trust the U.S. Government any further than I can throw the lot of them, BUT...I've never been much on "conspiracy theory" overall. And yet I seem to see more and more accounts of things from 9/11, by people that were there, by scientists, by experts in many fields, that somehow I never saw the first time around.
Is it possible that the terrorists (if that is what we choose to believe) were able to infiltrate the buildings weeks beforehand and lay out timed explosives throughout with no one knowing? Or is it possible that, heaven forbid, this was the result of something even MORE terrible than an attack from OUTSIDE our country? I'm open to believing that anything is possible. Yet I don't come down on either side of the fence on this....not YET.
What do YOU think? 9/11 Revisited
Sunday, May 06, 2007
Question: Who said this?
"An evil exists that threatens every man, woman and child of this great nation,". "We must take steps to ensure our domestic security and protect our homeland."
First try answer: George W. Bush?
Sounds like a good thing! Or...does it? The use of fear and psychological terror thrust upon nations by governments during times of upheaval and need for change is called propaganda. It has been used before. (see 'fine print' below for actual answer)
The answer to the question: Adoph Hitler, writing about creation of the Gestapo in Nazi Germany.
Interesting that he also said, "It is not truth that matters, but victory." Another quote, also from Hitler, "The great masses of the people will more easily fall victims to a big lie than to a small one." Are we beginning to see the problem here, fellow citizens of the United States?
For more quotes that will raise the hair on your neck see: Adolf Hitler Quotes Not a comprehensive list, but nonetheless....quite interesting.
Here you go, try this direct quote from Mein Kampf on for size, citizens of the U.S.:
Volume Two - A Reckoning
Chapter XV: The Right of Emergency Defense
"A shrewd victor will, if possible, always present his demands to the vanquished in installments. And then, with a nation that has lost its character -and this is the case of every one which voluntarily submits- he can be sure that it will not regard one more of these individual oppressions as an adequate reason for taking up arms again. 'The more extortions are willingly accepted in this way, the more unjustified it strikes people finally to take up the defensive against a new, apparently isolated, though constantly recurring, oppression, especially when, all in all, so much more and greater misfortune has already been borne in patient silence."
Can you say PATRIOT ACT?
Thursday, April 19, 2007
1. Wealth without work
2. Pleasure without conscience
3. Knowledge without character
4. Commerce without morality
5. Science without humanity
6. Worship without sacrifice
7. Politics without principle
What incredible words of wisdom.
~image from Paradise Engineering
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
I feel a sense of outrage, mixed with fear....and not fear of other citizens, but fear of a government that tends to use current events to fuel political propaganda machines.
The right to bear arms....at what price?
I have very ambivalent feelings about this. To quote an article by a conservative (yes, I know, that's a shock coming from me):
"The fact of the matter is that gun bans do not work. Period. It only emboldens criminals that obtain guns illegally smuggled from nations who broke the very treaty they signed to keep international gun trades at bay. A citizen without a weapon makes for a very happy criminal. That criminal can rob and rape without the worry of being shot or stabbed in the process. However, a lady wielding a .40 caliber Glock tends to make a potential rapist back off. The very presence of a firearm in some cases are enough to actually prevent a crime from happening. Would a robber be more afraid of a homeowner with a 12 gauge shotgun full of buckshot or more afraid of a homeowner holding a telephone dialing 911? On average it takes about 15 minutes or longer for a police officer to arrive at a home after an emergency call. That's enough time for the criminal to have raped, robbed, and killed the person inside. However, if the person inside fires off a couple dozen rounds of 9mm shells, the criminal is guaranteed to be either full of holes or far away scared and hiding. Don't tell me that gun bans are good in making crime decrease because that's the biggest lie ever told." ( Rob Hood )
The original intent of the 2nd amendment was to afford a citizen the right to defend oneself and one's family from a potentially power-hungry government. It was not meant to be an excuse for us to war amongst ourselves.
Do we trust our government? I, for one, do not. Yes, they are "elected officials." Unfortunately, I don't even trust our election process fully. I do not have great faith in the government.
However, the above statement by Mr. Hood also makes such a valid point.
I have had discussions with people both from Great Britain and Canada and they often point out to me how many LESS gun-related crimes there are in their countries. However, they almost always fail to tell me their knife-related crime ratio. They quote these low crime statistics leaving out the population differences of our countries, and also the racial differences and tensions, along with many other factors that vary greatly when holding up the U.S. to other countries.
I do not believe that "guns kill people." I believe that PEOPLE kill people.
Do I think guns are dangerous? In the wrong hands, yes....I think they are. And yet, in the wrong hands a knife is dangerous, a bat is dangerous, even.....an airplane is dangerous. The violent will find ways to be violent. The laws do not matter except to the law-abiding citizen. Criminals will always find violent means to subject their victims to their will, regardless of any established "law."
With all that has happened within the past 2 days, this is not an easy topic for me. My mind reels with all kinds of statistics. I don't love my children any less than Canadian parents, or British parents, or any OTHER parents worldwide. They are precious to me. Life is valuable beyond measure. Yet how do you enforce laws on the unlawful?
Gun ownership is strictly regulated in Britain. The Home Office, which is in charge of public safety, said gun crime accounts for less than half a percent of all crime recorded by police, according to the Press Association.
In a special report on BBC 24 Monday evening, a commentator, Gavin Hewitt, said mass murder on school campuses had become 'part of the American landscape.' The network showed video footage of Columbine and the Amish shooting in Pennsylvania and noted that the powerful U.S. gun lobby had blocked gun restrictions that Europeans regard as simple common sense. 'Even after today's horrific tragedy, laws are unlikely to change,' Hewitt said.
Queen Elizabeth II, who is scheduled to visit Virginia next month, was 'shocked and saddened' by the killings, according to a spokesman at Buckingham Palace.
The story led Canadian news reports throughout the day. But while Canada, which has strict gun controls, has long looked askance at the proliferation of guns in the United States, no sense of superiority was expressed. Canada has had five school shootings since 1975, the latest last year when a young man shot 20 students at a junior college in Montreal, killing one."
Thursday, April 05, 2007
Sunday, April 01, 2007
– Joseph Campbell
Saturday, March 31, 2007
"To laugh is to risk appearing a fool,
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out to another is to risk involvement,
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.
To place your ideas and dreams before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return,
To live is to risk dying,
To hope is to risk despair,
To try is to risk failure.
But risks must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.
The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing.
He may avoid suffering and sorrow,
But he cannot learn, feel, change, grow or live.
Chained by his servitude he is a slave who has forfeited all freedom.
Only a person who risks is free.
The pessimist complains about the wind;
The optimist expects it to change;
And the realist adjusts the sails."
~William Arthur Ward
Thursday, March 29, 2007
I've been obsessively surfing for hours. This happens to me pretty regularly, oh...like every day. There is just too much information on the web. My brain feels like it's about to enter the beginning stages of spontaneous combustion. The worst thing about this, is I want to see it ALL. I want to learn new things and see things I haven't seen before. I want to hear every opinion, read ALL of the web logs, see all of the videos and there is just no conceivable way that will EVER happen.
I'll be honest with you. I'm not so sure that the internet is making addicts as much as it is attracting those that already have addictive and/or obsessive compulsive natures. I, for one, have some pretty obvious psychiatric diagnoses that would lend themselves to web-entrapment for SURE. And while I don't want to just be making weak excuses....there are far worse things I could be doing with my time that would be more detrimental to myself and my family.
So, alright....this topic has been re-hashed forever and ever. I've no interest in the debate about it really, other than the question I personally have and that is; how can I get over the feeling that if I'm NOT online....I'm missing something? Because the fact of the matter is....I AM missing something! There is new information being made available every second. And I just KNOW that I'm going to be the last person to hear about it, read about it, chat about it, blog about it.....
Oh nevermind....I'll just go take my prescribed psychiatric therapeutic meds and carry on.
~image from http://flickr.com/photos/vickispix/
Monday, March 26, 2007
I have another blog, of sorts, that probably has, up to this point, reflected my laughing-self better than this one. I would love it if you'd visit me there! You can find it here at StumbleUpon.
However, just so you know, I'm going to try to interject the same lightness of being into this blog. I have just been investing more of my time "over there." So, bear with me through my budding blogger growth, and know that I'm just a baby blogger coming into her own. As with everything else in life....there is nothing that is changeless except change itself. And oh yes, there is always plenty of that.
Saturday, March 17, 2007
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy;
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
~St. Francis of Assisi
And from where I have come from....it pretty much boils down to this. This is what the journey so far has left me with regarding faith and spirituality.
I said in my last post, that I had been through an interesting journey so far in my life. Well all of the spiritual searching ultimately led to something more simple than what I thought it might be. I came to the crazy conclusion that yes, I am a believer, but I don't believe that "God" (by whatever name you call him/her) wants us to fight amongst ourselves sowing hatred and unforgiveness, self-righteous judgement, and all kinds of cruelty. I believe He/She wants us to have the simple faith and love of a little child....one that has been unstained by the cynicism and hate of the world.
I can't think of a prayer that more reflects what I believe our Higher Power WANTS us to pray for, long for, and strive to see fulfilled, yet trusting Him/Her to make it REAL within our hearts. Even if we don't feel everything we ask for.....this is what serves the world best.....and we will be given the purest desires when we ask for them. If the people of the world could align themselves with THIS prayer, this petition unto their Higher Being.....life on this planet and beyond, would be a more beautiful thing.
Of course, this is only my opinion. We are all entitled, by our God-given right to free will, to formulate our own opinions. Funny though, He/She seems to reserve the right to CHANGE our opinions with growth and experience. I pray that my heart will be open and full of light to see where I'm being divinely led.
--Image courtesy AFP and www.abc.net.au
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Today as I sat at my computer, I was plagued with something that was either depressing or motivating, or maybe a little bit of both. I really want to leave this world having contributed something memorable. I want to leave an imprint on the lives that I have touched....something impacting for good....something that will affect people in a lasting, warm, and loving way.
If I was to make that statement to someone that knows me well, say my family, or close friends, they would say, "Lori, you've already done that. You have a wonderful son...." and I DO! "You have a beautiful family that loves you, and you have done so many unique and unusual things. You've had an interesting and adventurous life." And I HAVE! However.....from the time I was maybe 12 years old, I have always wanted to write. I don't know....to create and leave something somehow tangible, something that stirs others' hearts and minds. It seems very important to me. The dilemma is....I have no earthly idea how to do that or where to begin.
So I sit and blink, yes....blink....at my empty blog posting page, wondering what I have to contribute to this online world of which I am a part. And with all of the life experiences I have had, with the talents that I have for communication and the love that I have for writing, I STILL cannot seem to compose a cohesive plan for how to accomplish this one important goal of mine.
There are so many many blogs. The personal/diary type blogs are so ridiculously numerous and they are probably the least read of all blogs. And yet if you have something to share that others can embrace and relate to, they can be so very vital to SOMEONE who reads them, even if only one person.
My sixth grade teacher was a marvelous woman. I remember her telling our class that you should write about something that you know well. You'd think at the age of 43, I would surely know SOMETHING well. I have to chuckle at the notion that her advice seems less helpful today than it was when I was younger and thought I knew a lot about many things. It seems the older I get, the less confident I am that I know much of anything. I'm more in tune with the truth that all of life is a classroom and that we are endlessly learning, and the older I get, the more quick I am to proclaim my lack of knowledge!
So what do I have to share? I haven't actively written in a long time. I used to write poetry, some of which was published in an American anthology. I used to write music and play acoustic guitar and had such a passion for that. Over the years of raising my son and working, that too faded into a blurry and now distant past. It seems that somehow over the past 20 years, I lost.....me. I'm not too sure of who I am anymore. I am unsure of my talents, my joys, my ideas. I feel so tentative and timid. Yet I know that deep inside....I am still there.
Perhaps the most vital thing that I have to share is the story of how I survived the many "adventures," as my mother kindly calls them, of my life. I think using the word "adventures" is probably my family's way of dealing with the myriad of foolish things I have done. Because looking back....they seem more like a symphony of tragedies and miracles than an "adventure." I have survived meth addiction, abusive relationships, mental illness, two failed marriages, assorted spiritual confusions and commitments, including being a vegetarian "enlightened" by metaphysics, a born again fundamentalist Southern Baptist "enlightened" by fear, a holy roller charismatic Christian devotee to evangelism and the gifts of the Holy Spirit enlightened by "deliverance" from drug addiction and hopelessness, to where I am now, which really doesn't resemble ANY of those things much.
I have done a lot of seeking, both spiritually and intellectually. The "conclusion" that I came to is that life is most enjoyed in simplicity, and that I, personally, have a tendency to complicate things for myself.....such as the simple procedure of blogging. :D
And speaking of "conclusions"....I will conclude this entry with one statement. One of the core elements of deep peace and joy is simplicity. In seeking joy, happiness, peace of mind and heart, success, and love.....I think often what we lack might well be just that....simplicity.
At the moment, I simply need some sleep! So with that I will end this entry and look forward to the next.