Persons of sufficient age will remember how, 50 or so years ago, we looked forward with excitement to a truly remarkable future. There were from time to time world’s fairs which demonstrated how things would soon be. We couldn’t wait to get there.
The night is filled with the pop-pop-pop and occasional, ever satisfying thud of fireworks. For someone who has spent every Fourth of July with a punk in his hand since he was old enough to shoot off fireworks, those sounds seem a bit out of place tonight. None of them were coming from my fireworks.
I want to start by saying that I know, respect, and love probably dozens of military service personnel. No one ought to doubt, on any side, that they see and deal with horrific situations that most of us can’t even guess, much less cope with. Courage is both tested and proved in their lives and stories over and over. But—and we’re quite good at saying the opposite—I don’t believe that bravery translates into policy. Frankly, I resent the suggestion that to urge a massive change in policy denigrates them.
Have you ever stopped to watch — really watch — cereal commercials on television? My favorites are those aimed at children. The punchline is always “part of this complete breakfast,” which is accompanied by a picture of a breakfast setting that would be no less complete if the cereal disappeared entirely. The cut up fruit and the eggs and bacon and toast and glass of milk do not really need little orbs of puffed sugar with a crunchy sugar coating to fulfill their nutritional aspirations.
By now, regular readers of my sports columns here know my schtick: I say something provocative, make a prediction about an upcoming contest that is completely, utterly wrong in retrospect—thank you Patriots, Steelers, and Miguel Cotto for nothing—and we talk about the thing behind the thing.
The sun rose gloriously over the hill. A few wisps of fog floated down by the creek and there was just the tiniest bit of frost on the tulips. What a good day, I thought, to consider Google. I don’t know for certain that Google is now evil, but I bet that if it isn’t it soon will be. No one has ever survived possession of that much power without slipping over to the dark side.
Sports and sports journalism are replete with overwrought praise, military imagery, and hero worship. I get that. I’m a theologian; when the excesses of this sort of thing get really out of hand, few feel worse about it than me. But I’ll take the risk now, and I won’t dare try to be objective. Pat Summitt is the reason women’s college basketball matters, and why it matters to me.
A few years ago a lady of my acquaintance, the wife of a colleague, suffered terribly from arthritis. The only thing that was effective at relieving her pain was a product called Vioxx.
Have you ever had the experience where you had a conversation that seemed relatively ordinary until after the fact? Most of us have experienced this sort of retroactively meaning in our lives. Life would be different now, because what was normal ended.
Have you ever read the Bill of Rights? It is one of the foundational documents of our nation, put there to place limits on the power of the government. It specifies rights that are so fundamental that the even the government has no authority to deny or abridge them.
|Home About Connect: Twitter Facebook RSS|