July 31, 2009

Which one are you?

If you knew that the actions you took today would hurt your grandchildren tomorrow, would you still take them? What kind of person would knowingly hurt the future generations for their own personal gain? I know the answer, do you? An ungodly person, that's who. You see, if you believe in God then you believe that your reward is in heaven. Yes, heaven is an abstract thought to most of us and even the most pious amongst us has only a rudimentary idea of what heaven could possibly be. But it is the belief in heaven that informs your decisions on a daily basis. One who believes does not spend inordinate amounts of time worrying over ones own situation but worries more about neighbors, children and friends. One who believes in nothing worries only about today, about what they have now, about what they want, about what they feel they deserve...and let future generations do the same. So...which are you? Be honest because, I don't know and don't care. My job is to make you think. If you are thinking right now...then I've done my job. So every time that the government comes along and sings the sirens song about how it is going to take care of your every need; think about future generations. Are you going to leave them liberty and freedom? Or...are you going to leave them a bill for your own personal gain? Which kind of person are you?

by: Keith D. Rodebush

July 30, 2009

The best of times, the worst of times...

Many times in recent years I have heard friends or acquaintances opine about this being the worst times for our civilization. Many reasons are given from violence and sex on TV, movies and video games to socialization of our government. More often it is just an overall diminishing of the human spirit in the form of lack of respect for each other and the slow demise of general good manners. While I may agree that there are many things going on today that are not the best reflection of the human soul, we must keep things in historical perspective.

I remember a few years back, one of my favorite commercials was by the Church of Latter Day Saints. It had the narrator lamenting the state of our youth today. "Kids today are tyrants! They have no respect..." etc. It all fit the generation up and coming to many degrees. Turns out that the quote was from...Socrates, over 2,000 years ago!

It is a common part of the human psyche to relate our experiences to our immediate surroundings. This most assuredly reflects our rise from a much less sophisticated hunter/gatherer existence. When one is engaged in survival among the wild animals that inevitably pose a danger to humans living in the exposed environment, a historical sensitivity to the situation is probably neither warranted nor expedient. Certainly, short term reference is vital. Last month when Grog stabbed the mammoth in the posterior, it turned and skewered him on it's tusk. Hmmmmm. Don't stab mammoths in the arse, okay! Point made. This tendency to individualize our experiences goes a long way to explain why every generation tends to think things are much worse than they used to be in the 'good ole days'.

It is true that we can all look back at 'simpler' times and cherry pick romantic observations of a time gone by; When a handshake sealed a deal, When men were men, When kids rode their bikes without helmets, etc. etc. etc. However, we seldom also reflect on the bad parts; When air conditioning didn't exist, When three networks controlled almost all information, When wars killed millions instead of thousands, etc. etc. etc.
Take a moment and think: Would you rather have lived through the black plague, where upwards of a third of the entire population of the world was exterminated?
Would you rather have been a Christian, when you proved your faith not by prayer and helping the needy, but by allowing yourself to be eaten by a lion? Go ahead, take a second or two to answer.
Many of my friends pine for days of cowboys and indians, living off the land, just you and your horse. Think about that the next time you get a cold beer out of the fridge. Weeks if not months without anything cold to drink? Hardtack and jerky? Not to mention the 'cure' for that little problem you have since the visit to Ms. Mabels House of Joy. Can you say hot poker? I'll give the male readers a moment to recover...

Clearly, these are not the worst times. Certainly, we must be strident and persistent in the protection of our liberties, the preservation of our Constitution and we must lead by example so our children and grandchildren understand how a civilized person should conduct themselves in daily life. Just as clearly we should give thanks every day to live in these times, with these conveniences, with this prosperity and with all of the blessings bestowed upon the greatest nation to have ever been dreamed up in the taverns of the colonies. God Bless America, now and forever!

by: Keith D. Rodebush

July 28, 2009

Why Are They Afraid of Us?

Quite often in today's media we hear stories about the 'Christian Right' or the 'radical religious right'. Every since the Christian Coalition was formed and began uniting and mobilizing Christians the media has launched a barrage of attacks on them. By doing so, they have succeeded in lumping all Christians together in one group with various unflatterig monikers such as the aforementioned. Never mind that all Christians aren't conservative or liberal, but a mix of various political beliefs. Why then would newspeople, who themselves are oftentimes Christians, go so far in condemning the actions of other good Christians? The answer, in this writers opinion, is threefold.

First, during the late 70's until the early 90's there were numerous incidents of priests in the Roman Catholic Church and other ministers accused, and some convicted, of molesting children. This is the worst possible thing that could happen in the eyes of many. It's bad any time this happens, but when it is done by someone who we love and trust as a person with the higher calling of doing God's will; it is unbearable. These incidents caused a dark shadow to be cast over all religion. Coupled with the fact that the church was slow to react to these charges gave the impression that the church was willing to cover up such horrendous behavior to save face. This unfortunately gives the impression that there is a hidden agenda; that the church itself is more important than the people in it. This perception has continued to overshadow the numerous achievements, as many are still concerned with the 'hidden agenda'.

Secondly, I can only believe that these are times when our faith will be challenged. Just as the Christians were thrown to the lions in the days of the Roman empire, todays Christians are torn apart by the media lion. It is more important than ever that we stand tall in our faith and continue to do God's work, for love will conquer all.

And lastly, but certainly not least is the ever explosive abortion issue. Most reporters that this Christian has seen believe intently that the sole purpose of Christians uniting is to make abortion illegal once again. Ironically, this seems to have had a backlash effect as more and more Christians realize that those in the media 'just don't get it'. There are a mountain of issues upsetting today's Christians; lack of morals in school, leniency for the wicked, sex as a sales pitch to our children, homosexuality as an alternative lifestyle, violence in movies called "...what we want..." even though some of the best selling movies of all time are non violent family films such as E.T., Forrest Gump and Ice Age.

Perhaps people of all persuasions should lighten up on our brother Christians. After all, it's not Christians that are out there murdering our children. It's not Christians selling drugs on the corner of the school grounds. It's not Christians stealing our hard earned goods. It's not Christians blowing up innocent civilians on the streets throughout the world. Being a Christian is a good thing and we must continue to set the example. Part of the problem is that a lot of people nowadays don't want restrictions on their lifestyle choices. We are now seeing the result of that sort of new age philosophy.

In closing let me say that being a Christian has a responsibility, and part of that responsibility is to fight against tyranny. Many Christians today are choosing to fight against the tyranny that they see demoralizing our children and our country. They fight with their vote, within our great system of government, which by the way was founded on Judeo/Christian principles. I, for one, believe that is a good thing. Something to be lauded and passed on to our children with joy and passion. Are you passing it on? Or...are you demeaning it in front of your children?

by: Keith D. Rodebush

Hands Off Joe Biden!!

For some time now, many in the state run media and even many conservative pundits have been pontificating on the musings of Joe Biden, our current Vice President. One thing that no one can say about Joe, however, is that he is secretive. When the latest democrat primary was under way and Barack Obama began getting glowing media attention, who was the only democrat out there who was willing to admit...on camera...that the only reason he was receiving this attention was because he was a "clean, articulate black man"?
Yes, boys and girls, that was none other than Joe Biden. When we, as a nation, were concerned that we may not be sensitive enough to the plight of people from India in this country, who reminded us that you cannot go into a 7/11 in this country without a slight Indian accent? Yes, my friend, that was none other than Joe Biden. Think about it ladies and gentlemen, when the latest plague of our era, the swine flu, was lurking at our borders, and the government was ensconced in full 'calm the masses' mode; who stepped up to the plate to tell us that he wouldn't have any of his family ride buses or planes or trains for fear of contracting a contagious illness in the confines of a small transportational space? Yes, indeed, it was our friend in truth, Joe Biden. I ask you my fellow Americans, who was man enough to admit that Hillary Clinton, probably would have been a better choice for vice president than he himself? Yes, it was the insufferable Joe Biden. And finally, when President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton sought to 'reset' the relations between Russia and America, who reminded us that Russia has a withering economy, a shaky banking sector and are clinging to something that is unsustainable? You are learning, folks, it was our old compadre, Joe Biden.
So...please, all of you out there that tend to lean to the more conservative or libertarian point of view, PLEASE, lay off of Joe Biden! At least we know; he will tell us where the concentration camps are located!

by: Renay Thomas

Modern Man

All hail to you O' Settlers of old,
I admire your courage,
Your stamina and guile.
Pity the modern man who tries to match your feat,
He wouldn't make it a hundred miles.

Honor to you O' Soldiers past,
Your sacrifice appreciated and celebrated
By those you protected.
Despair befalls the modern warrior,
Left only with scars, pilloried and neglected.

All praise to you O' Christians afore,
Your steadfast faith tenaciously accepts
Your fate in the jaws of the lions.
Dare not to compare O' modern pretenders,
You shroud your sins in the cloak of tolerance,
And hence your Father is cryin'.

Glory to you O' Artisans of the Renaissance,
Masters of beauty,
Fit to depict the saints.
Disgrace befits your modern counterpart,
Their sculptures are blobs, their canvas but
Globs of paint.

Wistful dreams of all who came before,
Ages of dignity and character,
So glorious and sublime.
Alas! I am a modern man, such a pitiful
Ending to a marvelous tale.
Left only the regret of a man beyond his time.

Written by: Keith D. Rodebush - March, 2009