Li: ritual, propriety, etiquette. Hsiao: love within the family (parents for children and children for parents. Yi: righteousness--the noblest way to act in a situation. Xin: honesty and trustworthiness. Jen: benevolence, humaneness towards others. Chung: loyalty to the state and authority. --Confucius (Kong Fuzi)

All articles appear in reverse chronological order [newest first].

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I believe the past is relevant, sometimes more than others of course. In most cases we are seeing history being repeated, so it is most relevant.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

I wonder what most of these ‘patriotic’ NFL owners did during Vietnam.

We seem to be more concerned about protecting and celebrating the flag than we are about protecting and celebrating our fellow human beings.

There is a word for that: Idolatry.

Facing the flag, remaining silent and reverent, taking a knee… are all a show of respect. Displaying a giant flag horizontally on a football field or racetrack and ‘shaking it’, using the flag in advertising, wearing the flag at country music concerts, flying tattered flags, decorating the flag with eagles and political slogans… are all violations of an unenforced flag code. That’s being disrespectful.

Have you ever considered that many of the people who spit on soldiers and called them names during the Vietnam Era are the very ones trying to give lessons in patriotism to Colin Kaepernick and anyone who agrees with him? Haven't you ever wondered what happened to all those hippies? It always been my suspension that once the draft ended, and Carter and Ford forgave the draft dodgers, that most of them took their college draft deferments and joined the Republican Party (Nugent, Limbaugh, Cheney, TRUMP, etc.).


clip_image001When did kneeling become a sign of disrespect? Don't we kneel when we propose, don't we kneel when we pray, don't we kneel when we visit a grave site of a loved one, don't coaches have their players gather around and kneel when they want to speak to them as a group. In the Army when the drill sergeant or CO called you around to give you information wasn't it common for him to tell you to take a knee?

During the second Iraq war when a company commander and his troops were approaching an area of conflict and there was a mosque in the area and civilians were out in front to protect the site, the commanding officer to show respect and non-aggression towards the mosque, told his men to take a knee. Disrespect?

In recorded history kneeling or taking a knee was seen as a great sign of respect even more so than bowing to lords, master, potentates, kings, popes, and generals.

So why is it that all of a sudden a young man who takes a knee is considered a sign of disrespect. What is it about his taking a knee that in spite of his stated reasons and intentions he is vilified. All of this is overlooked, ignored or not recognized by those who choose to view his action through a narrow lens.

He was not taking a knee to protest the national anthem, he was taking a knee during the national anthem to protest social injustice, and to bring attention to social injustice.

Personally, there are things in the national anthem that do deserve criticism… the glorification of war, the condemnation of enslaved blacks fighting for their freedom, the endorsement of slavery. Read all the verses.

As a son of a veteran, a nephew of seven veteran (veterans of World War II and Korea), the brother and brother-in-law of veterans, and a veteran myself, I do not see any disrespect in this man's choice to kneel.

I do not claim to speak for any of these veterans other than myself, but I know that we all took the same oath and it was not to protect the constitutional rights of just the people we wanted to be protected, nor was it to protect the constitutional rights that we favor. We took an oath to defend and protect the Constitution and therefore all the constitutional rights of everyone not just ourselves, our preconceived opinions, or changing opinions, but all opinions.

Glenn Littrell

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Is America less patriotic than in the past?

Sunday, April 15, 2018

My illegal 7-day pill box and your gun rights

Intro: Part 1

Every week when I sit down with all my prescription drugs and fill my 7-Day pill box with them I am breaking the law. Whenever I leave the house and I put my lunch time pills in a small plastic pill bottle I am breaking the law. If police had any reason to search my vehicle, me, or my house I could be arrested for illegal possession of prescription drugs. We're not talking about opioids, Vicodin, Valium, OxyContin, or even pain pills, we're talking about cholesterol medicine, blood pressure medicine, and heart medicine.

We’re talking about all prescription drugs. Most of which have no street value, no narcotic effect, their sole purpose is to keep me alive, both in the short term in the long term, but unless I carry them in the original prescription bottle, properly labeled, I am breaking the law.[i]

How can this be? Don’t we all have a god given right to pursue good health and prolonged life? Doesn’t

the Declaration of Independence guarantee a right to pursue “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”? Doesn’t a right to self-defense extend to all physical threats? Is someone threatening to do me bodily harm any more dangerous to me than the threat of a life altering stroke, the slow death of cancer, diabetic seizures resulting from a faulty pancreas?

Laws against me carrying benign prescription drugs are necessary because less than 2% of the population breaks the law.

In most states where this applies even though I:

  • might be taking pills for mental disorder I can still purchase a weapon,
  • might be taking pills for a behavioral problem that might contribute to domestic violence I can still buy high capacity magazines
  • may have committed domestic violence I can legally buy high capacity magazines and a modification kit to turn my semi-automatic into a fully automatic tool of mass destruction
  • may have threatened violence I could still legally purchase, carry, and stockpile a weapons stash,

…in most States where my fully loaded 7-day pill bottle is illegal it would be legal to carry a weapon, concealed or openly.

I’m not advocating for the outlawing of guns. I’m arguing for more rational and reasonable access to my daily medications.

I am not arguing for the abolition of laws concerning controlled substances. I’m arguing for rational and reasonable measures to address mass killings and violence.

I am not being hypocritical by taking opposing stands on the restrictions of gun ownership and the use of my 7-day pill bottle (the present, opposite, position of the laws is hypocritical), I am pointing out the hypocrisy of fighting for unfettered gun access but not fighting for unfettered access to my legally prescribed medication.

My steady and consistent position is that in both cases there rational and reasonable solutions between the two extremes: its called compromise.

As a lifelong gun owner, I cannot see how it is so unreasonable to even consider trying to find a solution that might help hinder these mass shootings and epidemic levels of violence.

Many people would defend the laws against 7-day pill bottles as necessary to fight the devastating drug epidemic. Oddly many of the same people will rationalize against even the most benign regulations to slow the flow of dangerous weapons into the hands of irresponsible, impaired or dangerous people.

End of part 1

[i] Technically you break the law the second you take a pill out of the original prescription container… for that two seconds it takes to get the pill out of the bottle into your mouth you have been breaking the law.