• Tag Archives abortion
  • A Heart of Stone

    Good heavens, I’m annoyed.

    This morning my employer called to discuss some concerns with me. An important project is coming up, and she’d been informed that I was behaving in an unreasonable manner when presented with the latest in research regarding this particular body of work.

    Others in the company for which I work have been made aware of certain problems. My employers are concerned because the problems will affect thousands of people if not addressed, up to and including causing death.

    I’ve been employed by the same people for many, many years. I have done a wonderful job, working tirelessly to provide the best service, and nothing whatsoever has changed. I have subcontracted the work requested out to a reputable provider of the services in question, but because certain factions and shareholders are not satisfied with the work, they have taken to contacting me directly to “find out what my intentions are” when my larger group meets on Monday.

    Actually, I heard of this secondhand. I am much too important a personage to actually take the calls of my employers myself; I have advanced too far for that. I now have an office of underlings to answer such calls and to calm and soothe any supervisors who raise concerns. My underlings are good at their tasks.

    They speak in soothing tones to the supervisors in my faction who call to make sure the project will not change in any way, no matter what. They really have no need to even call, of course; I have been employed here for so long that they all know my stance. However, the “evidence” has come to their attention as well. For some strange reason I can’t begin to understand, many are a bit put off by it. They call for reassurance. My staff does a splendid job of making them feel better about everything, and by the time they hang up the phone they have put it all behind them. They return to their pursuits of chatting with others about Lions and such with a clear conscience.

    They’re no problem.

    Some of this same faction (those who hold more power than the Lion mourners) call to remind me of who put me in this position. I am reminded that they ensure that I may stay here in this beautiful building, a lovely place full of history and prestige. Sometimes it’s necessary to speak to these supervisors myself. However, it’s no hardship, as they know I will follow their orders to the letter, despite the “proof.” This faction is extremely happy with the services of the subcontractor despite the “proof”, and that is all that matters to me.

    I know what my intentions are. And I intend to go ahead as planned. One of these supervisors in particular was rude and unkind to my staffer on the telephone this morning. She told him that he and I are both reprehensible, and unworthy of even a smidgeon of respect. After all my hard work! I am incensed.

    Because a few measly and unimportant supervisors (not even in the main office for goodness sake) have scruples is no reason to stop now, so I plan to go ahead, despite the evidence of death and destruction which my supervisors insist exists. I have come too far to be stopped.

    I own these people. I despise them, but I also own them, despite their quaint notion that I am accountable to them because they pay my salary. This is piffle. They pay me because they owe me, not the other way around. They ought to have learned their lesson by now.

    How stupid they are to think I would take their small concerns into account. It’s just another boy, and he’s silent.

    Nobody heard his screams.

    Signed, A Senate Democrat.

    —————————————————————————————————————-

    I called the Capitol this morning to voice my concerns about the Planned Parenthood videos. Legislation to defund Planned Parenthood has been introduced, and a vote on the bill is scheduled for Monday.

    I wanted to know how the Senators representing  my state planned to vote, since four videos showing that Planned Parenthood has committed crimes have been released. I was very happy to hear that the Republican Senator I called will vote yes to defund this evil. Unfortunately, the Democrat’s staffer said he will vote no. Following is a synopsis of the call.

    I called the Senator’s office and a staffer answered. The staffer insisted that the Senator is prolife, but that he intends to vote against legislation to defund Planned Parenthood.

    When asked to elaborate, the staffer repeated  the same lies and talking points I’ve heard from Cecile Richards, President Obama and others–that the taxpayer funding granted toPlanned Parenthood is not used for abortions and is only used for gynecological exams, breast exams, etc.

    When I told the staffer that such a thing is physically impossible, because Planned Parenthood does not have a special coffer into which the tax money flows that says: “Not to be used for abortions” he merely repeated that the money is not used for abortions.

    I again tried to reason with the staffer. I asked, again, how a prolife Senator could be in favor of allowing the tax money of residents who do not agree with what is going on at Planned Parenthood to continue to be sent there.

    He answered that “The Senator likes Planned Parenthood.”

    I asked if Planned Parenthood contributes to the Senator’s reelection campaigns.

    The staffer ignored me. Then I repeated the facts about Planned Parenthood, and that the bill to be voted on this Monday would take the taxpayer funds which are now flowing into Planned Parenthood and grant them to clinics, hospitals and other places, so women could get free or reduced care. I asked again, what is the Senators reason for voting to keep the money flowing into Planned Parenthood now that we have video proof that they are dissecting babies and selling body parts?

    I was ignored. Then I asked: “Are you still there?”

    The staffer answered yes. I again asked why such a place should receive our funds to perform abortions. He snarkily replied that he had already answered that question, and that taxpayer money is not used for abortions.

    That’s when I went off on him. I told him that there is zero excuse for this now that we have seen the evidence, and that I have no respect whatsoever for any man who would support it, including the Senator and the staffer. I told him they are reprehensible and hung up.

    ~~~~~~

    This week has been grueling, disheartening and strength sapping. I can only pray that some of the Senators representing us will allow their hearts of stone to be softened before Monday.

    Unborn Lament
    I was refused a glimpse of the sky
    To greet the rising sun
    For me—a poor unwanted child
    Life had just begun.
    I might have been a priest or a nun,
    And worked for God and man
    But Seven men condemned
    me,
    Just as my life began.
    I might have been a President,
    (or maybe the mother of one)
    I might have been a scientist,
    (What good I might have done!)
    A child denied a place on earth,
    A child refused a name:
    A child begrudged by those his owe
    A place in the Hall of Fame.
    But seven men condemned me
    Before I saw the light
    As lords of life and death, they chose
    The wrong instead of the right.
    I know that He who took a child
    And placed it on His knee
    Has not forgotten who I am;
    And He will shelter me.
    And He will have a place for me
    That none can take away;
    Although my own refused, before
    I saw the light of day.
    The time will come when every man
    will face the judgment seat;
    I will not have a single fear
    But only mercy sweet.
    Though my own flesh and blood conspired
    To give no place to me,
    I shall not be refused a place
    For all eternity.
    For He who is the God of love
    Will come to my surprise
    He’ll look on me, and I shall gaze
    With love into his eyes.
    Sr. M. Aloysius Peach, O.S.U.
    2001

  • If Planned Parenthood Sold Baby Parts and the News Refused to Report it, did it Ever Really Happen?

    When the lid was blown off the Kermit Gosnell House Of Horrors in 2011, I was horrified because I am a resident of the State Of Pennsylvania. The lax inspection laws of the abortion clinics in my state seemed to be a big part of the reason this monster’s crimes didn’t come to light much sooner.

    It is not my intention to rehash the Gosnell atrocities in this post, but rather to pose a simple question: Since the Mainstream Media refuses to report in an unbiased manner on Planned Parenthood or anything remotely related to abortion, and, in fact, do all they can to give the abortion industry nothing but good press (even when atrocities come to light) I am simply wondering: Did the Gosnell case really happen?

    Now stay with me a minute.

    Please read this story on a coverup by MSM outlets re Gosnell. The article was written by Kirsten Powers, who cannot in any way be termed a Conservative. Additional commentary, along with links and photos can be found here. (Warning- Video contains disturbing content).

    images

    Above is a photo of the seats which were reserved for the media at the Kermit Gosnell trial. As you can plainly see, the seats are empty except for one man. So, since many people may not have been aware that such a trial was taking place, perhaps the MSM can, indeed, believe the fallacy that the incidents did not occur. And their viewers, who are kept ignorant, may simply dismiss the whole thing as right wing lies.

    I have noticed a trend over the past ten years or so… Good people, neighbors, family and friends are unaware of many abuses having to do with abortion. And others, who know of these abuses, simply sit back and put their feet up, keep quiet, tweet and post about puppies or baby seals, and wait until the stories blow over.

    This is a pattern. Perhaps these folks feel that “such things should never be discussed in polite company” or that “abortion is a woman’s right” or whatever the case may be. Okay, fine. They are not the media. They are simply people who believe that abortion is legal and that is that. However, they are complicit in the cover up. Some of these folks degrade prolifers by saying that we lie, because if what we were saying was true it would be on the news.

    This is problematic, because it IS on the news. (It’s just not the “right” news.). When pro life Americans cite facts and back them up, the folks who choose to ignore the facts simply point and hoot: “Fox News! FoxNews!” It doesn’t matter if the article cited came from Fox news or not;  to the willfully ignorant, no news is good news unless it is found on ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC or NPR.

    Soooooo…. Let’s look at the latest abortion related scandal, the video showing Deborah Nucatola of Planned Parenthood discussing the harvesting of body parts from unborn babies.

    *Warning* – If you typically shriek and run away at the mere mention of Fox News, do not click the above link. Click this ABC News story instead. (Video not included).

    Following are two screen shots, both taken today.

    Screen Shot 2015-07-22 at 6_FotorThe above screenshot is the google result of the words: Deborah Nucatola video. As you can see, there are many, many links to editorials and opinion pieces, some of which attempt to make Planned Parenthood the Victim.

    NUCATOLA 2015-07-22 at 6_FotorThe above screenshot, taken approximately five minutes after the other one shows the results of the following — ABC NBC CBS Deborah Nucatola video, after they were typed into google.

    Notice the difference?

    A second video surfaced yesterday, which can be found here: (Fox News Phobics, don’t click. Please go to CBS, NBC or ABC news for an account of this story. Simply type the words ABC NBC CBS Planned Parenthood baby parts scandal into google. There you will find what you were looking for. (See Photo).

    NBC2015-07-22 at 6_Fotor

     

    As you can see, ABC, NBC and CBS did cover last week’s story, but you will have to go to Fox News (Oh, the horror!!!) or another news source if you want the story on video number 2.

    (Did such a video even really exist? I mean, seriously, it wasn’t reported on the news… so it must be another right wing lie from Christian extremists. Nobody with a freaking brain in their head would ever watch Fox News. The people who frequent the Fox News website are ignorant redneck hillbilly toothless losers. Glad I’m not that stoooopid).

    So. let us go to the best place for breaking news: Twitter.

    On the Fox News twitter feed I found the Planned Parenthood story in a retweet of a post by Todd Starnes:

    I also found that the Fox News video twitter feed contained a tweet letting viewers know that the scandal would be discussed on The Five at Five.

    Yes. I know the tweet is ironic.

    Following are samples of tweets on the NBC news twitter feed:

    https://twitter.com/NBCNews/status/623123142089814022

    Ashley Madison got three tweets in the span of twenty-four hours. Planned Parenthood got zero.

    Yes, that's right: Hackers target scuzzbucket cheating husbands: 3

    Baby body parts harvested for their organs: 0

    The ABC News twitter feed also contained zero references to the second video of the Planned Parenthood scandal, however it did contain this, which is truly heartwarming:

    The CNN twitter feed contained the following tweet on Planned Parenthood. The video in question was not included.

    So, if Planned Parenthood gets caught on video discussing the harvesting of baby body parts which they may or may not be making a profit on, and the news does not report it (except for Fox News, which is not real news and is only accessed by stupid uneducated redneck toothless hillbillies who probably can't even read) did it ever even really happen?

    Ask your neighbors-- the ones who watch the news.


  • Saving Nineteen Minutes (Part Three)

    Part three (and the last in this series since I’m thoroughly sick of thinking about Nineteen Minutes and its underhanded, nasty advocates) will detail the lead up to the Kennett Consolidated School District’s November 10, 2014 board meeting, the meeting itself, and the aftermath of the meeting.

    For backstory please read Saving Nineteen Minutes (Part One) and Saving Nineteen Minutes (Part Two) if you missed them.

    Though I will be linking to other editorials and possibly other news articles in this post, I will be primarily referring to this Daily Local News story. I will try to make this post as brief as possible while ensuring that all pertinent information is recorded, since the newspapers do not bother to tell both sides.

    I’ll begin with this passage from the above news story from the perspective of the KCSD.

    The book, published in 2007, can be found in the library of Kennett High School and became the hot topic of the school board meeting Nov. 10 after a parent, Angela John, requested the book be removed.

    “The parent felt the book content was not suitable for high school students,” Superintendent Barry Tomasetti said during the meeting.

    He went on to say the district followed Policy 109 and tried to resolve the issue informally, but the parent was not satisfied and completed a Request for Reconsideration of Resource Material Review Committee.

    From there, the committee reviewed the book and its merits and voted unanimously that the book remain in the library.

    The parent made a final appeal to the board and the matter was brought up at the Nov. 10 meeting.

    Policy 109, mentioned above, can be found here. The pertinent information in policy 109 regarding Nineteen Minutes or any other contested resource says:

    Procedure For Reviewing Challenged Material

    The procedure for review of resource material may be a two-phase process that can be initiated by the parent/guardian of a District student or a District employee. When a concern regarding library resource material is received, the principal will inform those staff members using the material, the Superintendent, and the librarians. Prior to any meetings, the complainant shall be given a copy of this Policy. Challenged resource material will remain in use during the review process.

    Phase I is an informational meeting involving a discussion with all people involved. The information meeting is for the purpose of explaining Board procedures about selecting and using educational resources, not a time for school personnel to make sudden, un-reviewed, and undocumented decisions about the continued use of resources. For example, there may be a temptation for a principal or a teacher to listen to the objections of a parent/guardian and agree with him/her and remove the resource on the spot rather than face the review procedure.

    Sometimes becoming aware of the need for a variety of resources to meet the needs of a diverse student population causes complainants to reconsider their actions and withdraw their complaints. A decision not to file a formal complaint frequently occurs after the explanation of procedures used to select the resource or the reasons that a resource is being used in the District are explained.

    If the complaint is not satisfied at this time, the Request for Reconsideration of Resource Material form will be offered for completion. If completed, the principal will forward the form to the chairperson of the Resource Material Review Committee.

    Phase II is a formal process involving a large number of staff members. The results of all activities will be communicated to the complainant(s). This phase begins only after Phase I has been completed.

    The Resource Material Review Committee is appointed by the Superintendent or designee after soliciting volunteers. Members should have knowledge of children and young adult literature and be familiar with the District and the community. Members must become thoroughly familiar with the resource material selection Policy and develop a knowledge and understanding of the issues surrounding intellectual freedom and censorship.

    The committee will be chaired by the Assistant Superintendent and will include one (1) elementary and one (1) secondary principal, one (1) elementary and one (1) secondary media specialist, and a teacher from each organizational level. This committee may be expanded to include instructional staff members who will act in an advisory capacity when material under review is related to their specific curriculum areas. These advisors will not be voting members of the committee.

    In order for the committee members to fulfill their obligation of becoming knowledgeable in this area, the District shall provide workshops, material, conferences, research data, and other sources of information. Prior to a meeting to consider a request to re-evaluate resource material, committee members will familiarize themselves with the material in question.

    The following are the steps to be used to review resource material:

    Step 1 – When a principal has completed Phase I and receives a Request for Reconsideration of Resource Material form, s/he should send the form to the chairperson of the Resource Material Review Committee with a copy to the Superintendent.

    Pol. 105.2

    Step 2 – Upon receipt of the request form, the chairperson shall do the following:

    1. Request librarians and/or other staff members to secure copies of the questionedmaterial for the use of the committee.
    2. Request librarians and/or other staff members to obtain reviews and other evaluations of the material.
    3. Distribute information including copies of the material, the reviews and evaluations of the material, and the complainant’s completed form to the members of the committee.
    4. Establish a time and place for a committee meeting to be held within ninety (90) days of receipt of the information to be considered.
    5. Allow an adequate opportunity for discussion of all information pertinent to the complaint.
    6. If appropriate, arrange for expert testimony.

    After the committee has discussed the relative merits of the material and other information pertinent to the complaint, the chairperson shall conduct a written and signed vote of the committee members to determine the majority opinion. The chairperson will vote only if the vote ends in a tie. The chairperson will forward the results of the meeting to the Superintendent on the Report of the Resource Material Review Committee form with copies sent to all committee members.

    A vote of the committee shall be to recommend one (1) of the following courses of action regarding the status of the material:

    1. The material will remain in the library collection (no change).
    2. The material will be circulated only to students above the designated grade level agreed to by the committee. The staff will ensure that such material is not borrowed nor required for the fulfillment of class assignments by students who are below this level without written permission of a parent/guardian.
    3. The material will be removed from the collection.
    4. Alternative material will be offered at the request of the parent/guardian as outlined in Board Policy. Material will be retained in the collection.

    The Resource Material Review Committee will review the material in an objective manner. The best interests of the students, school, and curriculum shall be given utmost consideration. The decision of the committee shall be by majority vote; minority opinions will be attached and forwarded with the decision.

    Upon receipt of the recommendation, the Superintendent will communicate the decision to the complainant.

    If after a meeting with the Superintendent the person remains dissatisfied, final appeal may be made to the Board through the Superintendent. The Board, or a committee of the Board, shall schedule a hearing within thirty (30) days after the request has been made.

     

     

    The KCSD (as stated in the Daily Local News article) would have people believe that one lone woman had an issue with the book Nineteen Minutes. This is false. Anyone who chooses to do a bit of investigating can find stories from  other schools all over America where parents took issue with this book. However, I must state here, for the record, that Angela John, my friend, was NOT the only person in the Kennett School District concerned about this book.

    Please glance at the last paragraph of policy 109, above. You’ll see that if there is still dissatisfaction, a “hearing” will be scheduled. While my friends were trying, for months, to deal with this school and school board, we got together for coffee to discuss progress. At one of our get-togethers, Angie showed me the notice from the Superintendent stating that she could bring her concerns to the table at a hearing. The letter stated that only Angie could be present at this hearing (though she could, if she wished to, bring her husband along). Hello?

    Does this school realize how heavy handed they sound? The taxpayers, including Angie, pay their salaries, yet they must request “hearings” on important matters concerning their own children.

    That brings me to another point. After the November 10th debacle, several local papers posted links on their Facebook Pages. Angie stayed away from newspapers, since she was devastated by what happened, but I read every article and every editorial. The comments by people who may or may not know Angie were nasty and quite ignorant, but there was one in particular that stood out. On the Kennett Paper’s Facebook page, a woman commented: “The person who complained doesn’t have a child in the High School.” Excuse me?

    Number 1) Any taxpayer has a say, as long as their kids are in the district.

    2) This woman is a parishioner at the same church Angie attends. (I’m also a parishioner at this church, but I’ve never met this woman). This person and Angie are acquainted. She could have followed the advice of Christ, and asked Angie in person about her concerns instead of showing up in public and joining a group accusing a neighbor of “banning” books.

    3) There were other parents who DO have kids in the High School who were concerned about Nineteen Minutes. I know this for a fact. The night of the hearing, another friend, one who has two kids attending Kennett High School went to the hearing. When we read the letter KCSD had sent to Angie we laughed a little. Though it sounded very intimidating, we couldn’t imagine that it would come to the point of actually throwing another concerned parent and taxpayer out of the “hearing.” But that’s exactly what happened. No one else could present their concerns about Nineteen Minutes at the hearing.

    In addition to the graphic portrayal of teen sex between Josie and her boyfriend Matt, digs at traditional Americans and religion, and normalization of abortion in general, here’s something else.  Many parents might take issue with ninth and tenth graders being exposed to the following in school. In this excerpt from page 323 of Nineteen Minutes, Josie, the teen who survived the school shooting and Matt’s girlfriend, believes she is pregnant. After contemplating asking her estranged father for money for an abortion, Josie decides to google some old wives tales, just in case.

    There was something about going to a doctor, or a clinic, or even to a parent, that she couldn’t quite swallow. It seemed so…deliberate…..

    Some she already knew: the old wives’ tales about sticking a knitting needle up inside her, or drinking laxatives or castor oil. Some she’d never imagined: douching with potassium, swallowing ginger root, eating unripe pineapple. And then there were the herbs: oil infusions of calamus, mugwort, sage,and wintergreen; cocktails made out of black cohosh and pennyroyal…..

    Use 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of the dried herb per cup of water, 3-4 times a day. Don’t confuse tansy with tansy ragwort, which has been fatal to cows that have eaten it growing nearby.

    Really? Is a book containing such a passage really worth all of this? If kids want the damn book they can buy it at Barnes and Noble or borrow it from the public library. Or their parents can give it to them if they’re so hell bent on having their kids read it. Why is it necessary for this book to be paid for by taxpayers and read in class? Why is it necessary for every kid in the school to have this trash pushed on them? Apparently the Kennett librarian is infatuated with this book. She said in a meeting that she goes into classrooms and reads passages aloud to students. (One can only hope that the above passage isn’t one of her favorites).

    Okay. Back to the lead up to the November 10th School Board meeting. At the hearing, what Angie mistakenly thought was a compromise was reached. Angie left the hearing with the understanding that Nineteen Minutes would remain in Kennett High School. The other attendees of this hearing agreed that the final vote would be on the following: Kennett High School could either place the book Nineteen Minutes in the guidance counselor’s office so younger students who might not have a good support system at home could be cautioned about what they might read, or the book could be kept without restriction. In no way does KEEPING a book in the guidance counselor’s office constitute a “ban.” So…how did the word “ban” come into play? Nobody knows, but here is a timeline of events leading up to the actual meeting.

    After the hearing which other concerned parents were not permitted to attend, rumors began circulating that “some woman” was trying to ban books. The rumor was heard at the Bayard Taylor Library in Kennett Square. The rumor was also being spread in one of the New Garden polling places on election day, November 4th. People coming into the polling place to vote were told that someone was trying to “ban” books at Kennett High School. All of this talk of “banning” did the trick.

    On the evening of November 10th, my friend Angie went to the school board meeting alone. She had asked me to go with her, and I said no. I had no idea what was going to happen and neither did she. I’m pretty sure Angie’s husband did end up joining her at the meeting before it ended, but I wish I had gone. She could have used a friend.

    The room where the school board met that night was filled with adults and students wearing “We Read Banned Books” buttons. There was quite a large group. Angie told me she was sitting quietly and wondering what the hell was going on, since the vote was to decide whether the book should be kept under age restrictions. A group of about 5-6 kids sat nearby, along with a few parents. Angie decided to ask them why they were at the meeting. Following is the paraphrased conversation:

    Angie: Why are you all here?

    Students: Our teachers asked us to come, because some lady is trying to ban books in our library.

    Angie: Oh no…that’s not what’s going on. I’m the person who’s concerned about the book, but I didn’t ask for it to be banned. I’m just concerned about kids. Some kids may be too young to read what’s in the book, so we should make sure they can be talked to by someone like the counselor.”

    Students: What? You’re the lady?

    Angie: Yes. It’s me, but I don’t want to ban books.

    Students: We didn’t know. We were told by our teachers to come tonight to support the school because someone wanted to ban books. We didn’t know.

    Angie related that the parents accompanying this group sat staring straight ahead. They heard every word she said, but they didn’t say a word to her. The group of students, however, thanked Angie.

    Back to the meeting. In the Daily Local News article above, there is not one word about the book being moved. The word “ban” was used throughout. “Moved” or “kept under age appropriate restriction” was not mentioned. In my previous post I linked to tweets between myself and Candice Monhollan, the reporter who covered the story. She tweeted to me that the school did NOT disclose the fact that the request was that this book be placed under age restriction. I don’t understand why, but for some reason this was left out. People can draw their own conclusions as to why.

    People were wearing buttons. Students spoke about free speech. Teachers spoke out in defense of Nineteen Minutes, and said “banning” books was against freedom of speech, etc. That wasn’t the worst thing, though. The worst thing was the fact that the school board played right along with these uninformed people. This meeting was mob-like. (One news article described the crowd as “civil.” Yeah, sure). The board whipped things up a bit more before they went on to other business. Following is a quote from board member Rudy Alphonso:

    “I think about the principles that our Founding Fathers laid ground for us (and) all the battles and all the people that have died over our 200-plus years to keep these fundamental freedoms in place and to allow us to have the choice whether or not we want to read something or not read something,” he said in his statement. “Banning this book, to me, would almost be like turning my back on all those hundreds of thousands of American veterans, men and women, who have died to allow us to keep those freedoms and not to have censorship. I see this attempt to ban this book as if we live in Nazi Germany. This is the United States of America. The Statue of Liberty rings for everyone.”

    This man and the other board members must have known that the book wasn’t leaving the school, yet he mentioned Nazi Germany. How unbelievably pathetic. Two other members of the school board are fellow parishioners. They also knew a ban was not requested, yet they allowed students and parents to think this was the case. I don’t know these people personally, though I do attend the same church. I must admit that I’m glad I don’t know them, and I hope I never meet them. I don’t think we worship the same God. The lone school board member who voted to place the book in the guidance office was also dissed and misrepresented by the newspapers, of course.

    In addition to my tweets to Ms. Monhollan, I ventured a couple of comments on the Facebook post from the Daily Local News, linked to the story above. I wanted to embed the post here, but I can’t find it on the DL Facebook wall at this time. I don’t know why, but it seems to be gone. If anyone reading this comes across it, let me know. Anyway, in my comment I mentioned the fact that a “ban” wasn’t what was asked for. People came back at me stating that restricting is similar to banning, or some such nonsense. One commenter stated that the Kennett Librarian was probably following recommendations from other schools and libraries and or librarians. That may well be true. For instance, look at the following article from the School Library Journal, “The world’s largest reviewer of books, multimedia and technology for children and teens.”

    This is a review of Lena Dunham’sNot That Kind Of Girl,” reviewed by the SLJ, who also put out a list of  “Best Adult Books For Teens of 2014.” Some of you may be familiar with Dunham and her memoirs. If not you can do more googling. But please understand that the School Library Journal recommends Dunham’s book for teens. If the Kennett Librarian follows such publications, perhaps Dunham’s book is sitting on the shelf. Who knows?

    Again, please read the comments following the Daily Local News article. Following are additional news articles for your perusal from The Unionville Times (Banned Books Button pictured), and The Times of Chester County. Actually this is the same article. It appeared in two different publications.

    Here’s an editorial stating that “Censorship died an ugly, messy death in Kennett Monday night. Let us hope this topic never comes up again.” Here’s a particularly snarky and ignorant post by someone named Tilda Talley-ho. Miss Talley-ho brings up Holocaust deniers. How very kind and tolerant. I could go on, but people with open minds probably get the drift.

    Here’s a word of warning. Take it or leave it as you see fit. The people behind this debacle misrepresented a good person. They probably forgot about it the next day, but it will always be with the person who was maligned. If you’re wearing blinders there’s not much anyone can say, and I doubt anyone who is wearing blinders would read this post anyway. But if you’re paying attention, take note. Some people just “don’t want to get involved.” Okay. That’s all well and good. Just remember what happens to people who continually walk right down the middle of the road. People or animals or whatever. Anything that insists on mincing down the middle of the road is going to get knocked aside sooner or later. Not standing up when good people are trashed enables the bad guys to get away with it. Someday it may be you or your family or friends who are savaged.

    It took me a month to get through Nineteen Minutes. That’s one month of reading time I will never get back. Still, I felt I had to read the damn thing, since my friend was branded a Nazi over it. I was chatting online with a young friend about this situation. (This man recently married, and the Nineteen Minutes debacle I described made him consider homeschooling any future children). My friend told me we should donate Kama Sutra to the High School Library. I told him I didn’t know what Kama Sutra was. (That’s true. I didn’t know what it was until that day). He lol’d and said he thought everyone had heard about it. I hadn’t, but for all I know it could be in some school library somewhere. I wouldn’t make a bet. As of this time, I am putting this damned book, its advocates and the rest of this behind me. I grew up within ten miles of Kennett Square, but things have changed since I was a kid. Apparently I don’t belong in this area. It’s not a very friendly place to live at this time.

    Kennett High School does hold some sentimental value for me, since my parents met there. They both graduated from Kennett. However, I’m very thankful that my children are grown and have moved away. Not very far away, but far enough that their kids will never be subjected to a school district populated with people who do what the people running that school district did to a decent, concerned parent. For that I am truly thankful.

    Update– I spoke to my friend Angie, who wanted to say a few additional words about this situation.

     

    My only concern was the safety and well being of the children of Kennett Consolidated School District.  I was disappointed to witness the vote on November 10th. The school board and the adults who spoke at the meeting acting in a non-serious manner.  They joked about having the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue in the library as well. The entire board were laughing except for the one serious, upright board member, Doug Sterling. Mr. Stirling was the only person who showed strength and intelligence by voting to have the book moved.

    I didn’t think the situation was funny. As someone who worked with inner city children in my capacity as a social worker, I was quite saddened by the  board’s lack of care and concern for the children of KCSD. I felt pity for the other adults as well. The teachers, parents and other administrators are either ignorant, or afraid to publicly acknowledge (for whatever reason) that there are some things in print that are not age appropriate. They refused to stand up and protect the kids, who may run the risk of either being harmed or harming others because of the information in Nineteen Minutes. The book detailed dangerous actions that the characters take out of desperation. How can one not see that this book needs to only be available  with adult care and guidance? Any other decision is irresponsible, and does not place the children’s well being front and center. Very sad.

     

    Her words make complete sense. However, the people running the KCSD got their way. I hope they’re happy.

     


  • The importance of voting your conscience

    Today is the Feast of All Souls in the Catholic Church, and this morning’s Mass readings contained some of the most beautiful and comforting words in all of scripture, including Christ’s words to Martha just before he raised her brother Lazurus from the grave: “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die.” (John 11:25-26)

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    “I am the resurrection and the life…” What momentous words. What a comforting promise. We can rest in the knowledge that our loved ones will have eternal life. We can pray for the dead, and hope we will see them in Paradise.

    However, as comforting as the scripture readings were, I couldn’t help feeling some sorrow, not for the dead, (including my own father), but for some of us still living here in this wilderness we call life.

    Christ’s comforting words to Martha about her beloved brother might have been a great  opening for a few words about the great privilege and responsibility entrusted to we Americans–the right to vote.

    Think about it. Christ spoke of the promise of resurrection from the dead. He wants us to

    images copy 8live. He wants us all to live. This includes all of humanity without exception. Christ wants everyone to live. “Everyone” includes unborn babies, the handicapped, and others who might be deemed “inconvenient” in the eyes of some Americans.

    A recent story out of the United Kingdom has haunted me for days. A mom won the “right” to allow her twelve year old handicapped daughter to die by dehydration. The mom is being hailed as a hero by some, and the act of dehydrating her child is thought, by certain people, to be an act of mercy. You can read about the case here, and come to your own conclusion.

    We are taught to do our best to see everyone through the eyes of Christ, and also to look for Christ in all of our fellow human beings. We are also supposed to ask ourselves “What would Jesus do?”

    Somehow, I get the feeling that Jesus isn’t exactly thrilled at the prospect of a twelve year old child being dehydrated to death over a period of two weeks, or His knowledge of millions of children being ripped out of their safe havens limb by limb and then tossed into the trash.

    Since Americans  are being asked to make some hard choices on Tuesday, it might have been a good idea for our pastor to say a few words during the homily about the importance of voting your conscience. However, with the exception of general intercessory prayers, nothing was said by the pastor himself except a quick statement urging parishioners to exercise their right to vote. No mention was made from the pastor himself, to investigate the issues and then choose the candidates with values similar to those of Church teaching.

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    To be fair, our parish displays signs pertaining to human life at certain times of year, and the bulletin does contain references to the sanctity of human life. This week a statement about voting for candidates with Christian values was included, but still, many folks don’t even read the bulletin. Folks in the pews who normally vote for candidates who will do the exact opposite of what is written above could easily toss the bulletin in the trash, the same way human beings are tossed into the trash each and every day in America. It’s pretty easy to hide the words in a parish bulletin if you’re determined to be willfully blind to the plight of helpless human beings.

    This isn’t any ordinary election. More and more human lives hang in the balance with each passing year. It’s very unfortunate that some folks aren’t taught about the sanctity of human life while sitting in the pews at Mass. How sad it is, that some pastors seem a bit indifferent to the well being of their own flocks. These priests and ministers certainly aren’t doing those in their care any favors by keeping quiet.

    However, we can’t force people to listen to their conscience, and we cannot force our clergy to speak for those with no voice. We can only pray for the best outcome on Tuesday, and that all of our family, friends and fellow Americans will eventually be able to heal our divisions.

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    We can also pray for our loved ones who’ve gone before us. May they and all the faithful departed rest in the Peace of Christ.

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  • October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month

    I’m glad there’s a special month to bring awareness to Down Syndrome, since people with Down Syndrome are special. I learned this firsthand when my sister Lori Ann was born in 1967.

     

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    My sister Lori Ann in January of 1970, pictured with Amy, left, and me.

     

    When Lori Ann joined our family, there was no special month to bring awareness. In fact, my parents were urged to institutionalize her immediately after her birth. They never even considered such an option, however. Lori simply came home and became part of the family, and for this we will always be grateful. Because Lori lived in our home for three years before God decided he wanted her back, my sister and I are better people than we would have been otherwise. Our children are also better people. We’re all better human beings, because Lori taught us to value other people, and to understand that the good health we were born with was a gift.

    Lori was not blessed with good health. She had many physical ailments, and her little life ended on October 21, 1970, exactly forty-four years ago. She was three years old. We wish she was still with us. Even though Lori Ann’s earthly life lasted only three short years, we feel blessed that God sent her to our family. She was our teacher, you see.

    I recently had the pleasure of discussing Down Syndrome awareness with author, blogger, and founder of the Writestream Radio Network, Daria DiGiovanni. Daria and I shared childhood memories of growing up with siblings who had Down Syndrome. Daria inspired the audience with her brother Ralph’s story, and shared many good sources of information about Down Syndrome. Please click here to listen to the podcast.

    Unfortunately, we were also forced to give the listening audience some unpleasant facts about societal attitudes toward people with Down Syndrome. These days, ninety percent of children with Down Syndrome are aborted before they’re born. This is a disturbing statistic. What happened to the human race? Shouldn’t we be more accepting of people with disabilities by now?

     

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    I find such an attitude distasteful, not to mention ignorant. We were supposed to have learned a lesson back in 1945, when Hitler’s death camps came to light. Hitler was on a quest to create a master race of humans. Unfortunately, his ideas are shared by supposedly educated people in today’s scientific community. What have we become?

    It might be a good idea to do some soul searching. What kind of civilization kills innocent children simply for not being “perfect”?

     

     

     

     


  • October is Respect Life Month

    October is Respect Life Month. Today’s post concerns the youngest among us, unborn children. These children cannot speak for themselves, yet they are still important. They are real people, and deserve respect, compassion, and their right to life. There have been over fifty-five million abortions in America since 1973,  when the Supreme Court made their infamous ruling in Roe v Wade, legalizing abortion in America. The ruling has never been popular with the majority of Americans, those of us who understand that under the US Constitution, each citizen is endowed with certain  unalienable rights, given us by our Creator.  The very first right on the list is the right to life.

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    Above is a picture of a child who happens to be living in his or her mother’s womb. This child is innocent, and deserves respect, regardless of whether or not he or she happens to be “convenient”.

    Please, no matter your ideology or political party, think, just for a moment, of the child’s rights. They are no less than yours in the eyes of a Higher Power.

    IMG_8902Many say that some children shouldn’t come into this world because they may suffer. Such thinking is skating on the edge. Who are we to make such decisions? Many of history’s greatest figures were born into less than perfect circumstances. Examples abound of people who made a difference, even though they were born poor, or blind, or deaf, or challenged physically or mentally.

    Abraham Lincoln, the great President responsible for ending slavery in the United States, was born poor, in a log cabin in Kentucky. He was a self educated man. He may have been poor, but where would we be without him?

    Some awesome pro life quotes by famous people can be found here. Included are quotes from Mother Teresa, Ronald Reagan, and Dr. Seuss. The pro-choice arguments are falling on their face these days. Science and technology shine light on the  “clump of cells” talking point. Just look at the 3D ultrasound photos. How can there be any doubt that this is a human child? It was a human child at conception, with unique DNA.

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    I will close with this poem, “Unborn Lament” by Sr. M. Aloysius Peach, O.S.U. Sister Aloysius was Poet Laureate of Delaware from 1963-1964. She composed the following poem soon after the Roe v Wade decision, just before she passed away. I learned about Sister Aloysius from a Franciscan priest who preached at our Parish on Sunday. He read the poem as part of his homily. It was a very moving homily, and there were tears in the eyes of some parishioners, including mine.

    I was refused a glimpse of the sky
    To greet the rising sun
    For me—a poor unwanted child
    Life had just begun.
    I might have been a priest or a nun,
    And worked for God and man
    But Seven men condemned
    me,
    Just as my life began.


    I might have been a President,
    (or maybe the mother of one)
    I might have been a scientist,
    (What good I might have done!)
    A child denied a place on earth,
    A child refused a name:
    A child begrudged by those his owe
    A place in the Hall of Fame.
    But seven men condemned me
    Before I saw the light
    As lords of life and death, they chose
    The wrong instead of the right.
    I know that He who took a child
    And placed it on His knee
    Has not forgotten who I am;
    And He will shelter me.
    And He will have a place for me
    That none can take away;
    Although my own refused, before
    I saw the light of day.


    The time will come when every man
    will face the judgment seat;
    I will not have a single fear
    But only mercy sweet.
    Though my own flesh and blood conspired
    To give no place to me,
    I shall not be refused a place
    For all eternity.
    For He who is the God of love
    Will come to my surprise
    He’ll look on me, and I shall gaze
    With love into his eyes.
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