After Las Vegas, LGBTQ needs to step up

After the mass murder in Orlando at the Pulse night club in June, 2016, the entire nation mourned those who had been killed and those who had been wounded.  As well, the entire nation condemned the wanton act of mass murder in Orlando.  Most of the victims in Orlando were LGBTQ.

We have not yet heard from the LGBTQ community about the mass murder and carnage in Las Vegas.

The LGBTQ community needs to step up and publicly condemn the murders and mourn with the rest of the nation for those killed and wounded.  If the LGBTQ community fails to do so, it will be seen by many as being just another egocentric (self-absorbed) self-serving special interest group and will lose some credibility for its failure.


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my experiences with TSA and airport security screening

Yesterday afternoon, we endured another inconvenient experience at the hands of these TSA people.  This time it was at the Sky Harbor Airport in Phoenix, Arizona.  Now, I was cool with my carry on bag being searched after it was X-rayed.  The TSA woman showed me the saved image of the scan.  Not surprisingly there was a solid color area a few inches on a side that they could not interpret or identify.  So, she opened my bag and looked through it until she found what I told her she would find.  A wrapped up rock (actually purchased legal petrified wood) that was dense enough to defeat the X-ray scan.  We were lucky that this was not confiscated.  My wife observed other passengers’ effects being taken from them at this security checkpoint.


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thoughts on “tough love”

It is said that families are the basic human social units.  Thus, society can be thought of as the aggregate of all its family units.  Strong, stable families help to promote social harmony in society.  (If you doubt this, consider the break down of the traditional family since the mid 1960s.)

What are parents to do when one (or more) of their children have become so unruly in their behavior that they present serious risks to the other children and the parents in the household?


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Is religion more divisive than race for humans?

Alternatively, we could phrase the question: Are differences in religion more destructive of social harmony than racial differences?

Consider two social divides along important fault lines.  The first social divide is that of people of the same race (or ethnicity) who are of different religions.  Specific examples include but are not limited to the people of Northern Ireland (Catholic and Protestant), the people of Nigeria (Christians and Muslims), the people of northern India (Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs), in Egypt (Muslims and Coptic Christians), and the Shia versus Sunni divide in Iraq.  The second social divide is that of people of different races (or ethnicities) who hold to the same religion.  Specific examples that come to mind are the multiracial, multiethnic congregations found within both Protestant and Catholic churches in the US, the Muslims in Sudan (Berber and Negro), the Christians of South Africa (black Africans and the white Afrikaners of European ancestry).



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clarity: multi-racial, pluralistic yet mono-cultural societies

Can a multi-racial, multi-ethnic, pluralistic nation possess a common culture such that its citizens, diverse as these may be, share common core values?  Can what people have in common as human beings be valued as much as their diversity is to be celebrated?  Does multiculturalism serve to break down social cohesion and threaten unity and harmony within a diverse society?  When each successive wave of immigrants to such a society is encouraged not to assimilate to the predominant historical cultural norms, does this help to strengthen or to fragment the social fabric of the society?

Multiculturalism and the continual emphasizing of differences among peoples tends to produce a balkanization of a nation state.  Ethnic and racial based enclaves exist in a patchwork in cities as so many foreign lands all within one urban area.  People are confronted by human differences more than they are reminded of commonalities.  Because significant differences of values and mores exist among the various groups, there can be and often is fear and distrust in intergroup interactions.

The 2 images in this post were captured a few weeks ago at the Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco.



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Are people up to living free?

True  freedom does not come cheap.  It is not licentiousness as so many people today believe freedom is.  True freedom or liberty requires and is inseparable from personal responsibility.

There are threats to individual liberty in society.  That is why eternal or ongoing, continuous vigilance is needed to protect and sustain personal liberty in society.  The chief threat to liberty through history has been government.  One recalls the adage by Thomas Jefferson to the effect that “When the government fears the people, there is liberty.  When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.”  Alas, it has always been so in human society.  Free people need to seek a healthy balance and strive to avoid harmful extremes.  The absence of government would be anarchy and chaos.  (The anarchists’ dream is a destructive nightmare that must be rejected.)  Government’s drive for power and control left unchecked produces totalitarian states where the citizens are not free, and the government is capricious, despotic and tyrannical (even when the state claims it is acting on behalf “of the people”).


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substituting quantity for quality in intimacy

Quantity is a poor substitute for quality.  Numerous superficial and shallow encounters with different sexual partners do not satisfy a person’s deeper needs.

What can be said of today’s “hook-up culture” where individuals fall into bed with each other not even knowing the other person?

It is not necessarily sex per se that those promiscuous individuals are seeking.  It is likely the thrill, the rush of sexual novelty that motivates their behavior.

Taking a step back, one may rightly wonder what are people truly hungering for?


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