Navigating the Blog

For any tab across the top that you click on, scroll down past "Hello and Welcome" to see the results. To view blog postings click on the Index tab at the top. Scroll down past "Hello and Welcome". Find the topic that you are interested in, and date posted . Begin to scroll down. On the right hand margin you will see Archives. Select the month in which the topic was posted. Then click on the posting. It will appear below "Hello and Welcome" in the center.

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Over the summer of 2010 I began to ask myself, "what do you do if two of our Rights, as citizens of these United States, are diametrically opposed?" I came to the only viable conclusion: you compromise. Our great Nation works when there is compromise.

Right now most of you will agree with me that our political system is broken. What we currently have is: the politics of destruction; special interest groups who have the power and money to dictate policy; politicians who must spend their time raising money for the next election instead of doing the People's business; and, there are those who are so concerned about getting re-elected they cede their responsibilities to the citizenry to those groups making the loudest noises and the greatest threats.

The attacks that we were inundated with during the this election cycle belittled the democratic process. Shame on everyone involved. And, shame on the political obstructionists who are more interested in gaining and maintaining power than doing the people’s business. During these very difficult times all of us should be supporting our President. The challenge for all of us is, how do we improve upon this imperfect union that we call the United States of America? One thing I know for is not by dividing us.

I can remember when I was sixteen years old there was a day when my father called out to me, "Jackie, come quickly. You have to hear this. It's Winston Churchill. Come listen." I raced to the radio and for the first time heard a recording of Churchill's speech to a Nation standing alone against the greatest evil the world has ever known: "...we shall defend our island no matter what the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; and we shall not surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until in God's good time, the New World, with all it's power and might, steps forth to the rescue and liberation of The Old."

That day my hero was born. Where are our heroes today? jkt

Thursday, January 20, 2011

God's Cathedral

                                    Jacquelyn K. Thompson

The Rev. Fletcher Harper, an Episcopal priest, recently wrote: "I've found over the years that most people have powerful spiritual experiences outdoors, experiences which move them deeply and which connect them with the divine as powerfully as anything else. These stories -- of God entering their lives through plants and animals and landscapes and storms and flowers and rocks -- are spiritual touchstones, cornerstones in the foundation of their faith. These are often the most real experiences of God with which they are blessed."

Our parks fulfill the longing in our children for adventure and exploration. By cultivating the natural curiosity and sense of wonderment in our children, we prepare them for the future. It is from a childhood well spent...days and nights filled with dreams, both real and imagined; of curiosities and longings (for what, we do not always know); of adventures, awaiting, around the next bend. It is from these children that our future leaders, our inventors and innovators, our writers and philosophers will emerge. Our parks are an integral part of the fabric of our Nation.

According to the National Park Services, Theodore Roosevelt's experiences in the North Dakota badlands shaped his adult life, helping him become the Rough Rider, the President, and the world's leading land conservationist.

Theodore Roosevelt wrote, "it was here that the romance of my life began."

As did mine in the hills of southern Ohio. -jkt-

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Murder in Tucson

A Federal Judge and 5 others were murdered. A U.S. Congresswoman was shot in the head, execution style, and is fighting for her life as I write this. All told 20 people were shot by one man in front of a Safeway in Tucson, Arizona over the weekend. 

On December 4, 2008 I wrote a letter to my community newspaper: "I am deeply troubled by the racism and hate-mongering that is rearing its ugly head against President-elect Obama. I am sensing the same dangerous atmosphere that engulfed us in the '60s and ultimately led to the assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr. and Bobby Kennedy. I say to all people of faith, put a stop to this, put a stop to this now."

Should we really be surprised that this blood bath occurred? The difference between then and now is that today there are enough guns in this country to arm every man, woman and child. Are we to walk away from yet another slaughter without doing something to end the gun violence that is engulfing our Nation? If our leaders are sincere about coming together during this tragedy, than have the courage to stand up to the gun lobby and pass some common sense gun laws.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Food Safety


The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the
 way its animals are treated." - Mahatma Gandhi

I remember when we had the mad-cow disease scare during the Bush era.  President Bush and his administration barred ranchers and farmers from obtaining the kits to voluntarily test their own herds for mad-cow disease. Three cases of mad cow disease have been discovered in cattle in the U.S. between 2003 and 2008. Only 1% of cattle are tested for mad-cow disease at the slaughterhouse.

Downed cows (a symptom of mad-cow disease) being dragged into the slaughter houses, filthy conditions in meat processing plants and egg factories...the list goes on and on.

Of course we need to put in place procedures to ensure the safety of our food. And, laws are only as good as enforcement. "One in six Americans gets sick from contaminated food each year. About 128,000 end up in hospitals, and more than 3,000 die."

That is unacceptable in the United States of America. We need to get our priorities straight.