Liberty Just in Case

A Dialogue for the September 12th World

Archive for June 16th, 2005

Unpopular Opinion – Terri Schiavo

Posted by zaphriel on June 16, 2005

Ok, so what I am about to write will not be very popular with my fellow conservatives, but here goes anyway.

Over the past few days the autopsy of Terri Schiavo has been made public. The findings are rather clear, Terri had effectively died over 15 years ago, only the very basic motor functions were still there, what was Terri, has long since passed. But this only highlights this issue and does not go to the “real” core of it.

This, to me, was not a right to life, or right to die case. This was a case both for the importance of having a living will, and right to choose one’s own destiny through your voice, let me explain.
Who had the right, in this case, and in all cases unless otherwise specified? The Husband. In this case Michael Schiavo was Terri’s attorney in fact, he had the right to make decisions for her, in her best interest, and given the nature of his relationship to her, was best placed to make those decisions. I know personally, the person who knows more about me than anyone else in the world right now, and knows my most current wishes, is my wife. While I truly love my mother, she has not been a dominant part of my life for several years now, so how is she to know exactly what I want? However, I talk with, and share my thoughts with, my wife everyday. If I was in the same situation as Terri, and my mother stopped in to do what Terri’s parents did, I would return to haunt her the rest of her life. What could possibly have been wrong with letting her go to heaven?

Much speculation could be put forth as to the reasons Terri’s parents tried to keep her alive, but with my admittedly incomplete knowledge, I think this was simple. Michael knew what Terri wanted, and the Parents could not let go, and/or accept that. So they did what any parent in that situation would do, they fought. I can understand that, but I stepped back from the story, and saw what I think is the reality of it. Michael had the right to decide what happened to his wife, and that should have been the end of it. PERIOD.

But as I mentioned there is a more glaring issue here. Unless you want to be another Terri, paraded in the news as a cause, broadcast all over the world in you lifeless body, GET A LIVING WILL. In your living will, be very specific as to what you want. Consider these things. Do you want to be artificially resuscitated? When should they remove artificial life support? Who is to make decisions for you if you are incapacitated? Be specific, outline a chain of command. Remember that your spouse may be in the car with you as it careens off the road, so who make the decisions then? Be specific, have 3 or 4 people in the chain of command, just in case. These decisions are important, and sometimes they need to be made quickly, don’t make the system decide, because as we can all see, the system does a terrible job at it, and is subject to the people in power positions at the time.

Get a living will, and most of all, get a life and live it. That is the best advice I can give to anyone, including Terri’s Parents. Life is too short to fight over it, live like it is your last day, because it very well may be.

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Balance of Power is Up: Poverty

Posted by Mark on June 16, 2005

Great stuff at Balance of Power. Patricia worked the left side of the aisle in her usual well-written way. I, of course, took the right path. Despite a few (well, more than a few, alot actually) of differences, we sort of met in the middle by the end of my post.

Posted in War and Terror | Leave a Comment »

And Now For Something Completely Different: Save My Butt.

Posted by Mark on June 16, 2005

If you made it through Blogging in Athens, this post will seem completely unrelated. You would be right. One of my hobbies is computers, though, and if you are reading this, its one of yours too. if you don’t have this site in your favorites, you should. And if you don’t have the downloads up and running on your computer, then you will find it slooowwwiingg waaayyy dooowwwnnn. I’m especially impressed with Microsoft’s anti spyware program. Seems to work very well on my computer. See what you think.

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A Response to RV: Blogging in Athens

Posted by Mark on June 16, 2005

Prologue: If you’re like me, you’ve never read a complete prologue. Feel free to skip this one, and come back only if you find your self going “huh?!?!” midway through the post.

Republican Vet left a comment on Balance of Power that set me to thinking deeply about blogging as an Evangelical Christian. I decided to post my response here rather than in the comment section at BoP for a few reasons. The first, and primary reason, is that “blogging as an Evangelical Christian” is far afield of the topic of Abortion currently running over there. It makes me nuts when I’m working my way through comments on a blog, and someone throws in something from left field..or right field, as conservatives are just as guilty as liberals of this blogging faux pas. Now, don’t get me wrong. RV’s comment was right in sync with the topic. But I knew my response wouldn’t be. Hence the change of venue.

The second reason has to do with my frustration with haloscan’s commenting. Great for comments, lousy for links and cut and paste unless you know a lot more HTML than I want to .

I would strongly encourage you to read RV’s comment, posted at 6:20 am on 6/15/05. Great comment, as it got me going on a post I’ve had running around in my head for weeks now.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior, but if there is one biblical character I identify with, its the Apostle Paul.

Lots of reasons, I guess. Most scholars believe his “thorn in the flesh” was poor eyesight, or some other physical condition. I can certainly relate to that. He was prone to falling back in to “rulebook thinking” from his Pharisee days. Goodness knows, there’s a whole tribe of little bitty Pharisees running around in my heart, and they sneak in to this blog more than I care to admit.

But Paul had his shining moments, times when he “got it.” Those moments defined his ministry, and his life. Those are the moments that make Paul my hero.

One of those moments was in ancient Athens. The story is told in Acts 17:16-34. If you aren’t familiar with it, the story is in the link.


I love verse 21:

All the Bloggers and the other websurfers who lived there spent their time doing nothing but talking about and listening to the latest ideas. (Okay, it says Athenians and other foreigners, but work with me here.)

Can you think of a better description of blogging? I can’t. Nor can I think of a better way to engage bloggers as a Christian than Paul’s speech to the Areopagus. I especially like the way he begins:

Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: “Men of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. 23For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD. Now what you worship as something unknown I am going to proclaim to you.

He didn’t back off what he believed. But he acknowledged in a real and sincere way, the beliefs of the Athenians around him. He engaged them in discussion, and worked hard not to shut them down, or out, of the discussion. Yes, at the end, when he got to the most important part, Christ rising from the dead, some sneered, and left. Others didn’t. Some said they wanted to hear more. It is this example that tempers what I write on Liberty Just in Case, and most especially what I write in the comments section of someone else’s blog.

RV, I seldom, if ever agree with Patricia, most especially in terms of religion. But I’ve worked with enough non-Christians to know that they will shut me out if I don’t show respect for their views. Respect does not imply tolerance, and it does not mean compromise. But respect for their views opens the door for them to hear my views, my arguments. And we both know that our views win in the end.

I keep Paul’s words to the Colossians (Ch. 4) in mind while I am writing:

5Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

I take blogging very seriously, RV. I didn’t always. I thought what I wrote just went out in to cyberspace without any effect. Boy, have I found that to be wrong over the years!

It didn’t start out as my ministry, but blogging sure has become that. This sharing of ideas in Athens has changed lives. Some don’t respond in the comment section. In fact, most don’t. But you should see my email inbox!

What you say matters. As a follower of Christ, it matters more than you can know. I’m not rebuking you, RV. Hope it doesn’t come across that way. Just responding to your comments, and to the thoughts that have been rattling around in my head for a few weeks. Thanks for being the catalyst that allows me to get them out. This is my wish for you, RV:

16I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.


Eph. 3:16-19
Peace

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Stop the ACLU Blogburst – Child Porn

Posted by zaphriel on June 16, 2005

Quotes from Twilight of Liberty by William A. Donahue:
“Students of liberty, from John Stuart Mill to Thomas Emerson, have all intentionally excluded children from their formula for freedom. The ACLU does not-not even when the subject is pornography.
In 1982, the ACLU, in an amicus role, lost in a unanimous decision in the Supreme Court to legalize the sale and distribution of child pornography.”
The case is…: New York Vs Ferber, 458 U.S. 747
Quotes from Twilight of Libery:
” The ACLU’s position is this: criminalize the production but legalize the sale and distribution of child pornography. This is the kind of lawyerly distinction that no one on the Supreme Court found convincing. And with good reason: as long as a free market in child pornography exists, there will always be some producers willing to risk prosecution. Beyond this, there is also the matter of how the sale of child pornography relates either to free speech or the ends of good government. But most important, the central issue is whether a free society should legalize transactions that involve the wholesale sexploitation of children for profit.”
“The ACLU objects to the idea that porn movie producers be required to maintain records of the ages of its performers; this would be ” a gross violation of privacy.”
This whole subject just make’s me sick. How the ACLU can conscionably look at an issue like this and try to say it is a freedom of speech issue is beyond me. There is no lower form of criminal than a child predator, anyone with a child, and I suspect, anyone who has ever been a child, know that. And yet The ACLU has the audacity to say to us that these people deserve protection, that the simple viewing of this filth should be OK. The ACLU wants you to believe that the members of NAMBLA should be able to buy and own child porn, but they don’t want it to be legal to make. Where do they think it will come from? How do they think it was made?

The people who think it is OK to make this stuff, and the people who do, deserve no less than a bullet to the head, but I digress, at the very least we should not be trying to protect the rights of these pervs to own this crap. Allowing them to own it leads to demand, and where there is demand, there will be supply. And that my friends will be the downfall of society. When we start treating our children as commodities and sex toys, we have lost all that we are. Any group that advocates such a thing does not deserve our protection. CHILD PORN IS NOT SPEECH, it is action, and it is an action that IS NOT and SHOULD NEVER BE protected.

We need to do away with these perverted, communist, clandestine bastards over this issue alone. They are not working for “our” interests, they only work for theirs. STOP THE ACLU, and stop the madness. We need to get groups like the ACLU off the Taxpayers’ Dime. Support the passage of HR 2679, Public Expression of Religion Act of 2005. Write, call, and email your Congressman and Senators urging passage of this important legislation.

This was a production of Stop The ACLU Blogburst! If you would like to join, it is very simple.

Go to our new portal at Protest The ACLU , click where it says “sign up now”, and fill out a simple form. This will enable us to send you a weekly newsletter with information, and keep your email private. Current members who have not registered, please do so. There are additional advantages and features that will be available for you there…You can opt to use them, or not. Thank you!

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Balance of Power is Up: Poverty

Posted by Mark on June 16, 2005

Great stuff at Balance of Power. Patricia worked the left side of the aisle in her usual well-written way. I, of course, took the right path. Despite a few (well, more than a few, alot actually) of differences, we sort of met in the middle by the end of my post.

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The Balance of Power – Poverty

Posted by zaphriel on June 16, 2005

So we at the Balance of Power have started to post twice a week, Today is our new forray into this uncharted territory, the post is hosted by one of our new contributors, Patricia from Ancient Eyes for Current Times. Boy is this one explosive, she really got Mark fired up, so go read it.

For my part I wrote about my personal experience with this issue…

From the Balance of Power:

Where do I start? Poverty in America, well let me start with a personal story then I will go from there. As many of you may or may not know, I grew up poor. While I rarely went to bed hungry, (mainly due to garbage soup and hobo stew) I did have all the struggles that the poor generally have, and I grew up in a single parent family, so I know first hand much of what Patricia speaks of. We moved allot, anytime Mom had trouble paying the rent, we would just find a new place to live. School shopping always happened at the thrift store, and Christmas and birthdays came from the discount store (we call them dollar stores now). My toys consisted of no name action figures and hand me down legos. We never wasted anything, for several years I remember we didn’t have a tree for Christmas, one year Mom showed up with Half an artificial tree, to this day I don’t know where she got it, because the top was missing we called it the Hanukah Bush, we didn’t know any better, we had that “bush” for about three years. And then slowly, with allot of work, things got better. As far as I know Mom used some assistance, the food bank, and unemployment when she lost her job for a while, but only for a short while. Then we worked hard as a team, and eventually, we were living in our own house. I could get shoes that weren’t Made in Korea, and eventually we got two cars, so I could learn to drive.

That all seems so long ago but I have never forgotten the lessons I learned back then. If you work hard, and use the assistance when you need it, and accept charity when it is offered, you WILL get by. And when you work hard and improve yourself you can break out of the poverty mold, and live a comfortable life, but no one is going to hand it to you. It’s all in your attitude and the attitude of your community.

I will acknowledge that more can be done in our society that will lead to the betterment of all. We need better work skills and education programs to give people the tools to succeed. It goes along with the “teach a man to fish” thing that is so often overlooked, mainly because it is a hard route to take.

I believe in charity, and I myself get involved with local charities both physically and monetarily, but what I have seen over time is that I do NOT want the Government to become the charity, for two reasons. One, that is wholly a socialist/communist idea and has failed miserably over and over, leading to a society with very high taxation, very big government, a redistribution of wealth, and very limited benefit. The net result being EVERYONE is poor, NO ONE is happy, and the government is a self-feeding, self-expanding entity. Two, it just doesn’t work, nor does it allow for choice. IF I feel a charity is worthy of my money, I will give to them and help them out, but if I feel my money would be wasted by a certain charity, I am not going to give them my money, just to stuff someone else’s pocket.

No, getting involved in your community, and helping with issues you feel strongly about, is a much better answer. It is not the Governments job to provide for its people’s every need. We are guaranteed Life, Liberty and the PURSUIT of happiness, meaning no one will unjustly kill us, we are free to do as we choose as long as it doesn’t infringe on someone else’s liberty, and we are free to try to make a life for ourselves. Nowhere in there is a guarantee of success, That you must do for yourself. Maybe that is harsh, but I did it, and I believe anyone else can too; I am not special, I just worked my way out.

So go see what everyone else wrote about this subject at The Balance of Power.

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And Now For Something Completely Different: Save My Butt.

Posted by Mark on June 16, 2005

If you made it through Blogging in Athens, this post will seem completely unrelated. You would be right. One of my hobbies is computers, though, and if you are reading this, its one of yours too. if you don’t have this site in your favorites, you should. And if you don’t have the downloads up and running on your computer, then you will find it slooowwwiingg waaayyy dooowwwnnn. I’m especially impressed with Microsoft’s anti spyware program. Seems to work very well on my computer. See what you think.

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A Response to RV: Blogging in Athens

Posted by Mark on June 16, 2005

Prologue: If you’re like me, you’ve never read a complete prologue. Feel free to skip this one, and come back only if you find your self going “huh?!?!” midway through the post.

Republican Vet left a comment on Balance of Power that set me to thinking deeply about blogging as an Evangelical Christian. I decided to post my response here rather than in the comment section at BoP for a few reasons. The first, and primary reason, is that “blogging as an Evangelical Christian” is far afield of the topic of Abortion currently running over there. It makes me nuts when I’m working my way through comments on a blog, and someone throws in something from left field..or right field, as conservatives are just as guilty as liberals of this blogging faux pas. Now, don’t get me wrong. RV’s comment was right in sync with the topic. But I knew my response wouldn’t be. Hence the change of venue.

The second reason has to do with my frustration with haloscan’s commenting. Great for comments, lousy for links and cut and paste unless you know a lot more HTML than I want to .

I would strongly encourage you to read RV’s comment, posted at 6:20 am on 6/15/05. Great comment, as it got me going on a post I’ve had running around in my head for weeks now.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior, but if there is one biblical character I identify with, its the Apostle Paul.

Lots of reasons, I guess. Most scholars believe his “thorn in the flesh” was poor eyesight, or some other physical condition. I can certainly relate to that. He was prone to falling back in to “rulebook thinking” from his Pharisee days. Goodness knows, there’s a whole tribe of little bitty Pharisees running around in my heart, and they sneak in to this blog more than I care to admit.

But Paul had his shining moments, times when he “got it.” Those moments defined his ministry, and his life. Those are the moments that make Paul my hero.

One of those moments was in ancient Athens. The story is told in Acts 17:16-34. If you aren’t familiar with it, the story is in the link.


I love verse 21:

All the Bloggers and the other websurfers who lived there spent their time doing nothing but talking about and listening to the latest ideas. (Okay, it says Athenians and other foreigners, but work with me here.)

Can you think of a better description of blogging? I can’t. Nor can I think of a better way to engage bloggers as a Christian than Paul’s speech to the Areopagus. I especially like the way he begins:

Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: “Men of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. 23For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD. Now what you worship as something unknown I am going to proclaim to you.

He didn’t back off what he believed. But he acknowledged in a real and sincere way, the beliefs of the Athenians around him. He engaged them in discussion, and worked hard not to shut them down, or out, of the discussion. Yes, at the end, when he got to the most important part, Christ rising from the dead, some sneered, and left. Others didn’t. Some said they wanted to hear more. It is this example that tempers what I write on Liberty Just in Case, and most especially what I write in the comments section of someone else’s blog.

RV, I seldom, if ever agree with Patricia, most especially in terms of religion. But I’ve worked with enough non-Christians to know that they will shut me out if I don’t show respect for their views. Respect does not imply tolerance, and it does not mean compromise. But respect for their views opens the door for them to hear my views, my arguments. And we both know that our views win in the end.

I keep Paul’s words to the Colossians (Ch. 4) in mind while I am writing:

5Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

I take blogging very seriously, RV. I didn’t always. I thought what I wrote just went out in to cyberspace without any effect. Boy, have I found that to be wrong over the years!

It didn’t start out as my ministry, but blogging sure has become that. This sharing of ideas in Athens has changed lives. Some don’t respond in the comment section. In fact, most don’t. But you should see my email inbox!

What you say matters. As a follower of Christ, it matters more than you can know. I’m not rebuking you, RV. Hope it doesn’t come across that way. Just responding to your comments, and to the thoughts that have been rattling around in my head for a few weeks. Thanks for being the catalyst that allows me to get them out. This is my wish for you, RV:

16I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19and to know this love that surpasses knowledge�that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Eph. 3:16-19
Peace

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