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Proud To Hear
I was watching my favorite Sunday pundits debate on the sign of the times, the confrontational tones, and heckles at a presidential speech; and a few clips of other countries, whose citizens are showing spirited discourse. Very exciting time to be a witness to history. My absolute favorite was the history lesson on Aaron Burr. I laughed out loud! His passions, his ego and vanities, did not allow him to back down when his honor or opinions were questioned. He flogged a man, with his cane, during a session of congress, and won the dual of his political enemy; at 10 paces, and a pistol. There is precedence of heckling, fillabusting, and character assassination all through political history and a rare few who have moral courage; to be a weight on the other balance of the scales. Still, in this moment in history, there is also another story.
I was watching the story of the life of the senator from Massachusetts, Edward Kennedy.
What a life. I must confess, I have not followed his politics, and at times felt he was American Royalty and didn't have to do much, as he was already riding on the coat-tail of the brothers. I've since asked the good Lord to forgive me and my arrogance.
In his time, he was able to redeem himself for the arrogance of his youth, and along the way affected a whole society with a good intention to serve and help. In my lifetime, I've had these benefits, never realizing its only been 40 years for some of these basic human rights in America. In his story, I not only see a man who overcame his demons, I see a man who was a good steward of the Irish Brehon Laws. These ancient laws ring thru the Irish culture, and are never questioned, as the laws are so good, the citizens want to follow them. Despite the assassination of the Irish character, much is emulated, as witness the 17th of March.
One of the laws states that the wife has the right as the husband does. Early equality.
One of the big laws made it a crime and punishable by a clan shaming, to turn away a stranger from the hospitality of your home, however humble. Some have teased me that the Irish would make a law regarding manners, and have suggested that being the oldest whiskey makers doesn't always give good manners. I will allow your opinion, while sharing some Irish hospitality, with the knowledge it will not cost taxpayer money, to send state run liquor store clerks to class, to learn manners.
He is called the "Lion of the Senate" due to his ingrained sense of the brehon, and the high art and law that it is. Maybe the trouble with politics is that courtesy is something quaint, and the sign of the times is only 200 years old, and therefore more revered.
As you can imagine, I'm very curious to see how this new politics works, will public flogging come back to the house and senate? Will the art of diplomacy reign, therefore allowing some positive movement between warring fractions?
I believe there is a reason and season for everything, and although I may disagree on the method of the politics, I do know that more is accomplished in the spirit of collective benefit, than in pistols and character assassinations of all kinds.
My prayer is to hear political life stories that one is proud to hear, and less stories of unbridled passions and disgrace; if only to add more moral courage to the scales weight.
History will tell.
Ted Kennedy's America
The last prince of Camelot is gone. The paeans barely audible, the memories rapidly fading, as Ted Kennedy finds his place in history. But what about today? How are we to judge this controversial figure and his accomplishments? Shakespeare wrote, “The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.”
True, indeed, for most men, but for the Massachusetts senator it is the other way around: The evil that he did is interned with his bones; the good lives after him. This is a look at some of those buried evils.
Ted was a legacy student at Harvard, admitted in no small part due to his father and three brothers who attended before him. But he had trouble staying there. He was suspended once for cheating on an exam. Reinstated after a year, he was suspended a second time for paying a fellow student to take the Spanish final for him. But graduate he did in 1954.
Kennedy became a senator in 1962. In his first term, he began work on legislation that was to have a profound effect on the United States: the Immigration Act of 1965. This legislation reversed the criterion by which immigrants were admitted to the United States.
Prior to 1965 immigrants were chosen based largely on national origin. This favored Europeans while imposing restrictive quotas on Asians and Africans. The 1965 bill reversed this. Now immigrants from the third world countries were favored. Opinion is still divided on this legislation, but judging it by Kennedy's own words, it is a monumental failure.
“Our cities will not be flooded with a million immigrants annually,” said Kennedy. “Under the proposed bill, the present level of immigration remains substantially the same.” He couldn't have been more in error. Nevertheless, he was shortly to top it.
He continued, “The ethnic mix [of the nation] will not be upset.” Once again, he was spectacularly wrong.
Whether one agrees or disagrees with the 1965 bill, it is incontrovertible that Kennedy's bill changed the population, demographics, ethnic composition, and culture of America more than anyone at the time imagined and in ways that no one wanted.
Kennedy changed many lives, none more so than Mary Jo Kopechne who died in 1969. After a late night party, Kennedy made a “wrong turn” onto a secluded dirt road. A little farther on he made another wrong turn, this time through a bridge and into the water. Kennedy managed to escape the half-submerged, overturned car but Mary Jo did not. She struggled desperately for breath in a tiny pocket of air until, mercifully, she expired.
Near the scene of the accident were four houses and a fire station. Kennedy made no attempt to seek help and did not even report the accident until the next day after it was discovered. Not reporting an accident involving a death is a felony. But for the Heir Apparent to the Oval Office the “punishment” was two-months in prison (suspended immediately) and a 16-month suspension of his driver's license (he already had a full-time chauffeur).
Reflecting on the fateful night, Kennedy said his behavior was “irrational and indefensible and inexcusable and inexplicable.” Yes, yes, yes, and no. “Inexplicable” or true to character?
In 1985, President Ronald Reagan nominated Robert Bork to the Supreme Court. Chief Justice Warren Burger called Bork “the most qualified nominee he'd seen in his professional lifetime.”
Kennedy exploded: “Robert Bork's America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions...rogue police could break down citizens' doors...the federal courts would be shut on the fingers of millions of citizens.” His slanderous diatribe on the floor of the senate marked a new low in gutter politics.
Further, the senator's inflammatory rant permanently politicized the process of Supreme Court nominations and introduced “Borking” into politics and into the vocabulary.
“Robert Bork's America?” Regrettably, no, senator. This is the America you made. This is Ted Kennedy's America.
New Milford, PA
East Lake Is A Blessing
It is Labor Day weekend... the weather is perfect! Another summer coming to an end. As we sit at our campsites enjoying the beautiful outdoors, good family and friends, and wonderful campground memories, we are thankful for another season at “The Camp at East Lake.”
Through the years, our children and families have grown and changed, yet we still end up at the same place... “The Camp at East Lake - where it is family camping at its best.”
Thank you, Scott, for another wonderful season. We are all hopeful and looking forward to seeing you in the spring.
Full And Proper Perspective
How critically important it is for us to understand that what we think is primary to the order or our spiritual lives in society. Our obedience to God and his laws in creation are not optional. The further from Jesus we drift in technology, the more death and destruction we bring upon ourselves.
In Christ we have a Heavenly inheritance that he won for us. Yet we must remember that it is through Mary’s obedience and faith that paradise can be restored with the eternal sacrifice of Christ’s precious body and blood, on the altar at holy mass, that is our calvary. This Mary, the mother of God and of men, is portrayed in the book of Revelation. This one and the same blessed virgin Mary was sent from Heaven by the most holy trinity to demand that the holy rosary be prayed every day for the conversion of sinners and the consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The errors of Russia - Communism - are still spreading.
Just say no to abortion and every other related evil, pray and prepare for Heaven on Earth. But - the holy father must consecrate Russia with all the bishops in their cathedrals.
TO THE EDITOR POLICY
Thank you, Susquehanna County Transcript
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