Friday, February 21, 2014

Religion - A Stumbling Block To Progress



I have been doing much more reading than writing lately. I know, I know; I should get busy and do something productive. But . . .

Mother Jones is a magazine I used to subscribe to, sometime back nearer to the Stone Age than we are now. Of course, Mother Jones is now online and is free, so I am no longer subscribed to the print version. It often surprises me how many of their articles grab my attention and pique my curiosity.

Such as the three that follow:

Last month, a Catholic school district in Montana fired middle-school teacher Shaela Evenson for becoming pregnant outside of marriage. Evenson, who taught literature and physical education at Butte Central Catholic Schools for nearly 10 years, was dismissed after the school district received an anonymous letter revealing her pregnancy. Despite the fact that Evenson's principal has called her an "excellent teacher," officials at the Roman Catholic Diocese of Helena, which oversees Evenson's school, are standing by their decision. They contend that sex outside of marriage violates the morality clause in the teaching contract Evenson signed. On Thursday, Patrick Haggarty, the superintendent of Catholic schools for the diocese, told the Montana Standard, "It's not easy being a Christian or a Catholic in today's world. Our faith asks us to do things that right now are not popular with society."

More . . .


In early August, a few weeks before forensic scientists began exhuming dozens of unmarked graves at the Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys, five older black men took a road trip to Marianna, a rural town on the Florida panhandle -- historic Klan country -- to confront their demons on the reform school’s vast, wooded campus.

At least 96 children died at Dozier between 1914 and 1973, according to school records, and while state officials say there’s no proof, former students insist that some of the deaths were the result of foul play. Boys of all races were routinely, brutally, and even fatally beaten by staff, they allege; some were raped, and “runners” were fired upon—at least seven kids were reported dead after trying to escape.

More . . .


Thoughts About Good And Evil

Maybe you already know the famous hypothetical dilemma: A train is barreling down a track, about to hit five people, who are certain to die if nothing happens. You are standing at a fork in the track and can throw a switch to divert the train to another track -- but if you do so, one person, tied to that other track, will die. So what would you do? And moreover, what do you think your fellow citizens would do?

More . . .


Did You Know . . .?

African-Americans comprise 13 percent of the U.S. population and 14 percent of the monthly drug users, but 37 percent of the people arrested for drug-related offenses in America.



On this day, February 21 in 1965, one week after his home was firebombed, Malcolm X was shot to death by Nation of Islam members while speaking at a rally of his organization in New York City. In 1946, at the age of 21, Malcolm was sent to prison on a burglary conviction. It was there he encountered the teachings of Elijah Muhammad, the leader of the Nation of Islam, whose members are popularly known as Black Muslims.

Malcolm made a Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca, where he was profoundly affected by the lack of racial discord among orthodox Muslims. He returned to America, rejected Elijah Muhammad's philosophy, and founded the Organization of Afro-American Unity, which advocated black identity and held that racism, not the white race, was the greatest foe of the African American.

One week after his home was firebombed, Malcolm X was shot to death by Nation of Islam members.



1.  The act of segregating or state of being segregated.
2.  The practice or policy of creating separate facilities within the same society for the use of a minority group.

Racial segregation is separation of humans into racial groups in daily life. It may apply to activities such as eating in a restaurant, drinking from a water fountain, using a public toilet, attending school, going to the movies, riding on a bus, or in the rental or purchase of a home



(born February 21, 1955)
Kelsey Grammer is an American actor, voice actor, comedian, producer, director, writer and singer. Grammer is known for his two-decade portrayal of psychiatrist Dr. Frasier Crane on the NBC sitcoms Cheers and Frasier.

(born February 21, 1979)
Jennifer Love Hewitt is an American actress, producer, and author. Hewitt began her acting career as a child by appearing in television commercials and the Disney Channel series Kids Incorporated. She rose to fame in teenage popular culture in her roles in the Fox series Party of Five as Sarah Reeves Merrin, and films I Know What You Did Last Summer and its sequel.

(born 21 February 1946)
Alan Rickman is an English actor. He is well known for his film performances as Hans Gruber in Die Hard, Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Severus Snape in the Harry Potter film series, Éamon de Valera in Michael Collins, Metatron in Dogma, and Ronald Reagan in The Butler.

(born February 21, 1946)
Tyne Daly is an American stage and screen actress, known for her work as Detective Mary Beth Lacey in the television series Cagney & Lacey, Maxine Gray in the television series Judging Amy and as Alice Henderson in the television series Christy.


Once you begin to explain or excuse all events on racial grounds, you begin to indulge in the perilous mythology of race.
--James Earl Jones



  1. I'm reading you today while lying in a Stanford Hospital bed. Thank you for entertaining me, good friend.

    1. I am glad my scribbles have brought about such a grand result. To entertain a reader is indeed, a consummation devoutly to be wished. Thank you for the comment, Anthony.