High Noon at Ground Zero

Saturday, August 21, 2010 \PM\.\Sat\.

I figure it’s time for me to finally put down in a sort of structured way what I think about this “ground zero mosque” controversy, beginning with the admission that I know it isn’t “only” a mosque, but a mosque is a part of what will hereafter be referred to as that “construction project.”

Next, I might simply wrap it up by saying I think that Charles Krauthammer, a man with whom I typically find little to agree with, is absolutely right in his assessment of the entire situation, while Ron Paul, a man with whom I typically find much to agree with, is almost entirely wrong in his own assessment, which makes repeated appeals to property rights.

Let me give you Krauthammer’s thesis, which is also a reply to this sort of argument, and which has been my own since the first day I heard about this:

No one disputes the right to build; the whole debate is about the propriety, the decency of doing so.

In my own readings and heated debates, the refrain I hear from the defenders of this construction project is the same as Obama’s: they have a right. What this argument boils down to is this: “we are doing this because we can, because you have no legal standing to stop us, and all of your complaints are irrelevant.”

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Christopher Hitchens Faces Cancer

Saturday, August 21, 2010 \PM\.\Sat\.

I just lost a young friend to cancer, I watched my own stepfather die of the type of cancer that is now afflicting Christopher Hitchens, I am only concerned here with two things- his conversion and his bodily healing.

I never “hated” Hitchens, I didn’t always disagree with his politics, but his extreme views against Faith/Belief in God were indicative of something missing on the inside for him.  In this interview he speaks a little about the trauma of suicide in his family- particularly his mother. It seems to me that the little child within all of us eventually wins out- if that child longs for love and innocence then faith will come more easily. If that little child is damaged by traumatic events very much outside of his control- well he may well give over to a sort of hopelessness and despair.

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Rule Britannia

Saturday, August 21, 2010 \AM\.\Sat\.

Something for the weekend.  Rule Britannia.  I grew up with a bit of a love-hate relationship with Great Britain and her now vanished Empire. On my father’s side the family had been in America since before the Revolution, except for the Cherokees who had been here I assume for 30,000 years, and the family could have cared less about Great Britain one way or the other.  On my mother’s side however things were different and more complex.  My mother, an immigrant who became a naturalized citizen, was proud Newfoundlander Irish.  Her Great-Grandfather, who regarded pews and kneelers as perfidious Protestant innovations and would kneel on bare stone floors into his eighties in the back of  the church he attended during Mass, had come to Newfoundland from Ireland and kept alive in my Mom a memory of Ireland.  She played in our home as I was growing up all the old Irish rebel songs, and part of the heritage I imbibed did not stint on remembering the grievances of the Irish against the English.  On the other hand, my Mom loved Queen Elizabeth II and from my Mom I developed a life long interest in British history and politics.  My Great-Uncle Bill on my mother’s side served in the infantry in the Royal Army from 1939-1945 joining up, he said, “Because someone has to teach the Limies how to fight!’

Therefore on this blog I happily play both the Irish rebel songs and an occasional salute to the land of the Queen my sainted mother loved.  In regard to the vanished Empire, I am fully cognizant of the wrongs that were committed by it, but I believe perhaps this section from The Life of Brian might be applied to the British, as well as the Roman, Empire, in some ways. Read the rest of this entry »


What Role Did Catholics Play in Rwandan Genocide?

Saturday, August 21, 2010 \AM\.\Sat\.

  (from anarkismo.net) (photo)

I was watching the documentary “Shake Hands With The Devil:  The Journey of Romeo Dallaire” tonight, and there were disturbing charges made against the Catholic Church concerning the role of Catholics and the local and Vatican Hierarchies in doing little or nothing to reduce the factional tensions.  Here is an article that makes a more direct case against our fellow Catholics  http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2010/mar/29/pope-catholics-rwanda-genocide-church

I am one who believes that the official teachings and the Sacraments of the Catholic Church are the places of security for us as Christian believers, but the administrative decisions and the actions of individual Catholic laity/clergy are not protected from error or sin by the Holy Spirit. So, I would like to know more about the role of my brother and sister Catholics in the lead-up to (and direct actions), during the genocide of 1994.  Was the Catholic Hierarchy in Rwanda (as well the representatives of the Vatican) teaching a vigorous message of non-violence, anti-tribalism, and informing the global community of the scope of the man-made horrors in the attempt to bring in the international community to halt the spread of violence?  I want to know because I often feel that we Catholics are our own worst enemies in what we do and what we fail to do as ambassadors for Christ and His Church.  But I don’t want to jump to hasty conclusions that unfairly charge fellow Catholics with horrible accusations.  So, does anyone know more about all of this? Is there a need to acknowledge some more self-inflicted Catholic damage to the mission of promoting the Good News? Or should we be defending the overall Catholic effect before, during, and after the genocide?


Senator Kay Hagan Just Does Not Get It

Saturday, August 21, 2010 \AM\.\Sat\.

Miss Kay Hagan is doing a poor job of defending the “merits” of ObamaCare to a mother who has sick children.  In addition to her sick children, her and her husbands benefits have been cut down or eliminated in order to comply with ObamaCare.

Yet Miss Hagan insists on pushing for more European style socialism.

(Hat Tip:  Culture War Notes)