Saturday, July 28, 2012

Chick-Fil-A

Obviously the Chick-Fil-A story has generated a lot of controversy lately, but based on the amount of Facebook traffic I've seen on the issue, I'm afraid the most outrages aspect is being overshadowed. The president of Chick-Fil-A came out in support of traditional marriage, which is his right to believe. That generated a backlash from the pro gay marriage supporters who then have vowed to boycott Chick-Fil-A, which is also their right. Both sides of this issue have been very outspoken which in my mind brings out the beauty of the American system.

The part that upsets me when political figures in Boston and Chicago have publicly vowed to do everything possible to block Chick-Fil-A from doing business in their cities. How is it that when the people responsible for defending our freedoms make blatant, public, promises to engage in unconstitutional behavior that both sides of any issue don't speak up?

I would hope there would be a strong outcry from the entire country if it were discovered a politician blocked a business that was run by a gay rights supporter. The role of government is to remain neutral on issues like this and allow the people to decide things for themselves. The problem that has developed in America is that we are losing the ability to recognize how important it is for us to defend the rights of those with whom we disagree. We fail to see that when they lose their rights, we lose ours too.

Instead, government has become a tool to try to take freedoms from people we disagree with rather than defend them. When we begin to ask for Constitutional Amendments to define certain behaviors we are setting a dangerous precedent that could someday backfire. We somehow have taken the stance that getting the government to legislate morality, what ever that morality might be, will make us a more moral country. I'm not sure I want the government in the business of legislating anyone's morality because someday, I might be the one who's morality is being legislated against.

There will always be times where we disagree with people of other perspectives, but please America, let us PLEASE unite when it comes to defending each other's rights to have those perspectives! We cannot ignore our leaders using their powers to restrict others because of their beliefs, even if it is in our favor.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

What Really Happened in Aurora

This past week, something remarkable happened in Aurora Colorado. Unfortunately, in our sensationally driven society I'm afraid its being missed. If you watch the news, you will hear that some deranged lunatic cowardly opened fire on hundreds of innocent movie goers. Sadly, this lunatic is getting all the attention that he so sadistically desired.

But barely being recognized is what really happened. On that chaotic night in Aurora, Colorado we got to see placed on display the absolute highest level of human bravery and love. There were hero's of the most honorable kind that entered that theater disguised as regular people. Sadly, in our society that worships rock stars, movie stars, and the like, we have failed to fully appreciate true greatness. You see, in a moment these paragons of humanity went from casual movie goers to human shields as they threw their bodies between their loved ones and the evil that threatened them. In a split second, in the midst of immense confusion and uncertainty, they quickly and clearly cemented in their hearts the resolve to sacrifice themselves to save others.

A local politician, whom I will not grant the honor of naming, naively asked where the men where that night. He suggested that a real man might have stopped this lunatic, who weakly armored himself from head to toe so as not to experience any pain at all. Sadly, this politician is so detached from what true greatness looks like that he failed to see it. The only good thing about evil is that when it takes it's stage to inflict pain and suffering, it also sets the stage for it's counter part to shine. For evil attacked, but once again it was love that conquered. Sadly, if it were not for the actions of wickedness, the hero's within these individuals would have never been drawn out for the world to see. They would have lived their lives and eventually passed away and the world would have never known the type of giant whom had shared their midst.

It was once said that, "Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends." In few other cases has that been more true than it was that night in Aurora. Now it is up to us to ensure that it doesn't go unnoticed. We must ensure that the names that live on forever belong to the greatest among us not the worst.

God bless: Alex Sullivan, John Larimer, Jessica Ghawi, Micayla Medek, Jon Blunk, Alex Teves, Alexander "AJ" Boik, Gordon Cowden, Rebecca Wingo, Matt McQuinn, Veronica Moser-Sullivan, Ashley Moser, and Jesse Childress. May you all rest in peace, and God bless those who acted with the utmost heroics and survived. Perhaps if we made famous the names hero's rather than villains, some of the narcissists who will do anything to gain attention would turn to pursuing what is noble rather than what is evil. And for those who don't, may your names forever fade away into obscurity.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Wise Man and The Fool

A few years ago my wife and I decided we wanted to try to get our kids to all 50 states before they graduate high school. We realized this was a lofty goal but we felt it was worth trying for. In order to lengthen our vacations we purchased a large tent and have been embarking on summer road trips to various national parks and sites across the country. We found that by staying in campgrounds we are able to extend our vacations since it is so much cheaper than staying in hotels.  We also like the idea of the memories that will be forged by vacationing in this manner. 

This week we were experiencing the wonders of Arches National Park in Moab Utah. We arrived later in the day and set up our tent in the dark.  Luckily our campsite was mostly soft powdery sand so the stakes went in easily and the tent was up quickly. The sand under the tent was so wonderfully soft we hardly needed any sort of air mattress. 

My wife's niece and her husband camped one site over and unfortunately their site was much rockier and their stakes were very difficult to drive in.  

The next day as we were admiring the various arches of the park a strong monsoon rolled in.  Upon returning to our campsite we found our tent flat on the ground with two broken poles and everything inside soaked.  The stakes had given way in the wind which put too much pressure on the tent poles.  Our friends one site over were fine as their stakes held in the solid ground.  (not to mention they had a sturdier tent) 

Thankfully we have some friends who live a few hours away and we were able to go to their house to dry our things and repair the tent. After all of this my oldest son made the observation that our situation was like the story Jesus told in the Bible of the wise man who built his house upon the rock and the fool who built his house on the sand. When the storm came the wise man's house was left standing.  

As a father it has always been a dream of mine that my children would one day see in me the strong characteristics of a Biblical man.  I just never envisioned it being the fool.